Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Risktaker? Me?

I suppose I could be called a risk-taker when it comes to some things.

At 18 I left my family and friends and traveled by myself to New Zealand and Australia where I lived and backpacked around for half a year. I’m not sure what propelled me to do so, but I just left one day and came back a changed person, someone who was no longer afraid to be single for the rest of her life or eat alone in a restaurant.

In 2003, I actually moved to New Zealand, permanently, to go to university. Though I only finished one year there before it became too expensive for me, I had no problems leaving my friends and family behind for what could have been forever.

In 2005, I backpacked by myself around Europe…something most people do, however it is a bit daunting when you do it alone. However, I wouldn’t – nay couldn’t – imagine doing it any other way.

I miss this sense of adventure and the unknown. I miss having my brain challenged, feeling like I am actually doing something with my life instead of muddling through with foggy vision.

And lately I have started to do things to combat this dreary stability. I am training for a 10K race (the second largest timed 10K race in the world) – this may sound like peanuts to most of you but when you factor in the fact that I am disabled and my podiatrists would never have imagined I would be able to do this, this is something different, challenging and exciting. And you can bet I will start blogging more about this, sharing my painful journey with you. And as of today, it is literally painful. Ow.

I also started taking a writing class on Tuesday nights at UBC. Yes, it is vaguely redundant to do this considering I have a degree in Journalism and have worked as a journalist and I write daily for my current job. But I wanted something that would challenge my head since my body is getting challenged. It’s a Travel and Food Writing class, and even though I have had my travel writing published, I want this class to motivate me to do more and I’ve always wanted to try my hand at food writing.

The bad side is that the class really, REALLY makes you want to travel more. Sigh.

However, there are somethings that I play on the safe side with. And that is Fashion.

So many wonderful fashion blogs have girls wearing super-high spike shoes, miniskirts, backless tops, crazy crap.

I can not wear those things. I do not have the confidence, and more importantly, I do not have the body.

Super high heels are wonderful but my feet can not handle them (My feet are too small I can’t stand on my toes – part of my disability). And I can’t wear shoes without tights because you’ll be able to see the scars on my feet. Short shorts or mini skirts are fabulous. But these thighs are way too huge and my butt is way too big to make that look fashionable – on me, it would just look fat. And sad. Crazy crap, again, only girls with thin arms, pointy shoulders and streamlined abdomens and mile-long legs can pull off the more risqué fashion and get away with it.

Unlike most fashion bloggers – and people in general – I am just a bit too big for that. I'm just not a model.

(though I would like to point out that many bigger girls look great no matter what they wear - so as long as they have confidence. I don't have any, so there ya go!)

So, when it comes to fashion, I do play it safe. I stick to dresses that go to my knee or close enough. I wear long sleeves whenever I can. I stick to empire and babydoll cuts so no one can see my overflowing gut. I like coats and blazers and big sweaters because they cover me up.

And before anyone points out that I look FINE let me point out that I have been wearing variations of the above in all my recent pics. You can’t see my thighs. You can’t see my arms. You can’t see my belly. You can't actually see how bloated and flabby I really am (at least I HOPE you can't, dear Lord!).

I haven't worn pants since January 11th - I'm gonna rock mumu-esque outfits for as long as I have to. Chic, mumu-esque outfits. Hell, looking back, aside from Disneyland, I haven't shown my arms on this blog or in public since September 1st!!!!!

Maybe as I lose the weight, my confidence will grow and I will branch out a bit more. In fact, I hope that’s the case. It was like that last time.

(though looking back, I DID wear a tuxedo on New Years Eve - so I guess that was in fact a fashion risk! For me, anyway)

In the meantime, I am faced with THIS:

Tights! Super wacky tights! Super wacky tights that are meant for toothpick thighs and not thighs the size of a T-Rex (his thighs, that is)!

I have been inspired by colorful and different tights lately due to all the lovely bloggers out there parading theirs around and thought ME TOO! I ordered these two from Mytights.co.uk and they arrived quickly, in all their quirky glory.

Only now I wonder if it’s possible for me to pull them off. Me, who should stay away from anything light, patterned and tight.

I DO have one thing going for me, I have thin (and shapeless) calves so perhaps I can pull these off with a little Amish action.

Anyway, as soon as I got home I tried on these Celeste Stein Comic Book ones:

No WAY! Nuh uh. They looked atrocious on my legs and for the life of me I have no idea why I bought these. I mean, did I forgot who I was for a second? Even if they were flattering, they just aren't...me.

My boyfriend saw these tights lying on the couch and remarked how hideous they were. That surprised me because he never says anything about my clothes, especially when unprompted.

So I turned my attention the next pair, pale pink, grey and black snakeskin (also by Celeste Stein):

I paired it with random patent Ebay flats, Forever 21 dress and shawl cardigan and ASOS dip-dye necklace and wore it to work.

Holy crap, did I get comments - and people here rarely say anything about my clothes. One hyper-critical co-worker seemed amused by them. An accountant (a HE) said my "socks look cool" - haha, socks. My boss said they were flattering because the diamond pattern ran vertical. Other people here are giving me a double take.

Next to the comic book tights, I think these tights are actually pretty normal. But on their own and in the office, I guess I am standing out a bit. I can live with that.

Problem is now, the accountant now wants me to wear the comic book ones to work.

I'm not going to do that. But what I am going to do is give them away to one "lucky" blog reader!

Remember, these tights are brand new, have not been worn, have only been tried on for at most two minutes. They are Celeste Stein, cost $26, are super soft and comfy and one size fits all.

To win these, please tell me in the comments below: what is the one look or item of clothing that you tried to pull off but just couldn't...either it looked bad or it just wasn't you.

Spill to win!


Rebecca, A Clothes Horse said...

You're making me want to travel more too...travel seems to be the only real passion in my life and yet I am constantly lacking the means...
I adore your tights. I think you have the body to rock backless things and short skirts, but I understand the need for confidence in such areas. There are definitely clothes I can't/won't wear...I think my addiction to short skirts has to do with the fact I'm short (5'1"), so shorter things make me feel tall. :)

megan said...

I actually had an identical pairs of those comic tights when I was in high school. I wore them all the time.

See, at my catholic high school, the only way girls could "individualize" their uniforms was their sock/hosery choice. The guys, their ties. So you saw some pretty crazy ties and tights/socks throughout the year.

Rachel said...

I have a twin sister...an identical twin as a matter of fact...so our clothes are all pretty interchangeable. I bought this really great oriental style outfit. Spaghetti strap, zebra print tunic that went to my knees with slits from the bottom seperating it into 4 panels and black pants underneath. It was awesome. When I got it and tried it on it looked AWFUL! I mean really bad, my arms looked huge, my boobs faded into nothing-ness and my legs looked like I'd cut them in half. No one in my family liked it on me...then my sister tried it on and rocked it like she was on fire. It looked amazing on her. We are still a little confounded by that one. Anyway that is my very long story of one of the worst outfits ever.


I love your hair. Thanks for the comment. =]


Luxe said...

I stumbled on this blog but I just wanted to say...

Honestly I think you're really beautiful. I know getting paid compliments can't always erase what we mentally think of ourselves but I think it can help.

I admire the decisions you've made for your life and how you're embracing your own personality.

I absolutely don't want to guilt-trip you but maybe the next time you feel really blah just think 'There is someone (probably more than one!) out there who would love to look at me. Who looks at my photos and sees someone really beautiful'

Because I did. I'd kill to trade your looks, lol.

Btw um body for fashion blogging? Hon you've got a great body and can take a good picture.

I'm starting/started a fashion blog and am more than a little annoyed because all my cute clothes don't look as good photographed on me. (I am mentally persuading myself that they look awesome when one can see me walking and moving around)

Anyway I just really wanted to give you this compliment because well..you look AMAZING, lol. Therefore proving once again it's always the hottest chicks who don't think they're hot.

Le Sigh. Anyway I like the snakeskin tights on you, they look more together than the comic book ones did. None the less the comic book tights are also super cute.

Luxe said...

Oh and the one fashion look I tried to pull off but just couldn't...I could never quite get into the summer scarf thing that was going on last year.

It's like sandals with socks, if it's warm enough for you to wear a t-shirt...

But scarves in the winter should be celebrated and exhaulted.

Ashleigh said...

haha awww thanks for letting me know and yes, comic book tights would so be my thing ;)...they look pretty awesome...I think its all about the length..need to pair it with something plain and short...hmmmm I dont pull off shift dresses very well, mostly because I have a body boyish figure and this just emphasizes it!

p.s. The snakeskin tights look great on you....;) you picked the right pair...

Ashleigh said...

ps I love this "risk" you took....!!

Lopi said...

Call me crazy, but I liked the comic book tights too! It's just that the snakeskin ones look a bit more lady-like... Anyway, it's all a matter of taste.

And you know what? I don't think I wear any of the "crazy stuff" you described, like super-short skirts or low-cut tops or dangerously high heels. And I really don't crave them either! There's absolutely no reason everyone should wear that stuff! Some people do wear them and rock, and some people wear full skirts and button down shirts and ballerina flats, and look as hot.

Mind you, I gave the baggy-jumper-and-leggings look a try once. Awful! Just not for me. I have hips and thighs and a butt. But there are so many other things that male me look fierce, so I have never looked back.

Odette said...

I tried the whole long sweater with a belt to cinch in the waist and it was bad. I have no waist. frack. I can never ever wear short skirts I have huge thighs and it's soooo bad. man now I'm depressed....

PorkStar said...

One piece of clothing that... etc: may have to be hats. My head simply does not like them and I do not look any good or any better with a hat. : (

Anthea said...

Aww don't worry! You look marvelous! Who do you write for? Just be yourself and be confident :) I love the tights on you but if you feel self conscious it wont work. I once tried to pull off a fluorescent pink furry shrug back when shrugs were big in the late nineties. Needless to say I was teased all day and never wore it again! Hhahah ah well we all have fashion mishaps !!

Magdalena said...

I am still afraid to eat at a restaurant all by myself.

yiqin; said...

The tights are amazing! you are def a risk taker :) I want to trabel more & bagpack around the world!!

Couture Carrie said...

I miss that youthful sense of adventure too! Fab tights!


DaisyChain said...

those tights are incredible,
and this post is so...
true and touching
(I relate to it on many levels).

Romeika said...

Oh those celeste stein tights look so great, I wish I could purshase some, but the shipping cost is just a little over the top, I think..

caroline said...

I love the snakeskin-tights. They look fab on you! The other tights surely are funny, but you need the confidence. And it's important to feel that they are YOU.
Due to the tights I have seen, I wish it was possible to buy those here in Oslo.. but havn't seen them yet..

Cupcake Blonde said...

You are a risk taker! This is what I love about you. Here you are this totally cool, carefree woman who has had some amazing experiences in her life, experiences most people never get in their lifetime, and you appreciate what you have been able to do and know it has made you who you are! And you are still as humble as ever. You are fabulous girl! :)

Natacha said...

You are so cute!

Todd said...

I LOVE patterned tights. They're super hot.