Dress to Impress . . . the Right Person

Dress to Impress . . . the Right Person

San Francisco Street Fashion – and SantaCon

I enjoy taking in street fashion – the fashion that you see on people when you are out and about. It’s kind of a hobby. It was particularly entertaining this past weekend in San Francisco for a couple reasons: SantaCon and holiday shoppers.

The SantaCon revelers were pure entertainment! Hundreds of people dressed in varying degrees of Christmas-themed “attire” (I use that word loosely): Santas, reindeer, elves, holiday pajamas – pretty much anything goes. For the most part there is no reason for this event other than to have fun being silly around Christmas and have an excuse to spend the day bar hopping. It has become quite an event and takes place all over the world. SantaCon fashion runs the gamut from corny to seductive – interpretation is open!

Those who weren’t dressed for SantaCon were interesting too.

Some people appeared to have rolled out of bed and thrown on the sweatpants that they’d found laying on the floor from the day before. It was obvious that the wrinkled sweatpants group was comfortable and warm in the rainy and chilly weather. It was interesting to consider just for whom all these people were actually dressing. I think it’s fairly safe to say that they were dressing purely for themselves – definitely not out to attract any attention.

And then there were those who were dressed to impress. And I bet they were also dressing for themselves. The dressed-to-impress folks looked cozy and smart, and something else: confident.

Who Are You Dressing to Impress?

While you’ve been out holiday shopping or running errands this season, who have you been dressing for? Are you dressing to impress? If so, for whom? I hope you’re dressing to impress someone who matters: YOU.

I like to look nice when I go out of the house, even if it’s just to run errands or do some holiday shopping. It makes me feel good. I’m dressing for me! I guess that means I am dressing to impress myself.

It used to be that when I’d buy something really nice, like a pair of expensive jeans or a beautiful sweater, I’d save it “for good.” I’d wear it occasionally for special outings or events. It cost a lot of money, it was special, and I didn’t want to “waste it” by wearing it for my day-to-day activities.

Then I realized that before I’d given myself the opportunity to really enjoy that special thing that I loved, before I’d gotten my “money’s worth” out of these “special” clothing items, they would go out of style or not fit well anymore.

When to Wear Your Special Things

So, I just started wearing my “special” clothes for regular things. In fact, not only did I start wearing them for regular activities, I began to allow myself to buy special things with the intention of wearing them for regular activities. That mindset kind of stepped up my game. I realized that wearing nicer clothes for regular activities made me feel good. And, heck, I was worth it, wasn’t I? When I thought about the fact that I had been saving my “good” clothes for other people, it sounded kind of ridiculous. I’d only wear them when I was attending an event with a lot of people. Why was I trying to impress other people, most of whom I didn’t even know? That began to seem pretty silly.

Now, I do wear my expensive jeans for regular things – for errands, for shopping, for coffee dates. And other special clothes too. And I get more enjoyment from these pieces that I bought because I loved them. If you are a practical type, you’ll be interested in the cost-per-wear rationale: the cost-per-wear becomes much more economical the more an item is worn. (When I wear a $100 pair of jeans 10 times, the cost-per-wear is $10; if I wear those jeans 100 times, the cost-per-wear is $1! It sure makes it easier to rationalize some of my pricier wardrobe items.)

And don’t forget the accessories that make you feel a little special! Adding a great pair of earrings, a colorful or fun scarf, or a cool necklace goes a long way to giving you a polished look, even if you’re just visiting your mom.

Here’s a kind of old photo of me on a regular visit to my mom’s. Nothing special – but I was feeling stylish!

Those people I saw out holiday shopping last weekend looking a bit unkempt . . . I guess they were comfortable and warm, but they didn’t look especially cheery. On the other hand, the shoppers who looked like they’d dressed with care and attention and to impress that one important person, looked pretty happy as they moved through their errands.

If you’re not already dressing to impress that special and important person, YOU, try it. I bet you’ll wish you’d being doing it all along.

And If You Need More SantaCon

If you want to know more about SantaCon (maybe join them next December?!), check out the SantaCon site.

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