At the beginning of Summer I get all excited about my maxi dresses, the gingham, eyelet and linen, and my shorts; oh I love a good pair of shorts. Summer is shorter than a pair of daisy dukes and winter is long, brutal, and never ending in New York. So enjoying warm weather fashion can conjure nostalgia of previous warm and steamy nights. I’m not being provocative, due to humidity and conservation of energy, my apartment is usually warm and steamy.
Every year, right around Memorial Day, I open up my vaults and purge my spring and summer fashions and start to create lovable outfits and reminisce of stylish summer nights. All goes well and I let those long days take over. Then right around mid-July, I get hit with a summer style rut.
It hits you suddenly, but you knew it was inevitable. You’ve done laundry weekly, you realized some things were either too casual or to dressy. Then the humidity hits and no matter what you wear, by end of day you come off as a sweaty drenched walking towel. You walk down the street and see all the cute outfits, and start to feel like your striped maxi from three seasons ago just isn’t cutting it. It’s not that you are flawed or that your clothes suck, it’s more that you are seeing more than you want.
When you pound the pavement in this concrete jungle, you see so many stylish people. Naturally, you get street style envy. Suddenly, that floral print shirt you hugged in May looks like a rather sad bouquet that hasn’t been watered. Your dark denim doesn’t compare to the cool ripped jeans that girl wears on the L train.
So what’s a person in a style rut to do? Do you run and get every trend you see? That will leave you bankrupt and style corrupt, YES, style corrupt. Just because you like a trend so much, it doesn’t mean it is for you. I appreciate the independent style some people sport. Do we have to jump on every stylish trend we see? No.
There is a solution for those stuck in a style rut: Thrift for your trend. It will make your pockets happy and your insatiable style you quest.
My now favorite Goodwill located on the Upper East Side takes care of all of my style spazz outs. I will pop in on a quest for leather culottes because my favorite magazine told me to get them. Gingham print dresses that channel my inner picnic table, I may run across but deep down, I know I’ll locate something, fun and frugal and will help my style drought and keep my wallet not on empty.
Styleruts hit us in January and July, that’s when the stores start putting new merchandise on the floor, retailers know what they are doing. Don’t fall fully prey to the surge of Christmas in July fashion traps, stay calm, go thrift or reinvent your already overflowing wardrobe. Styleruts are normal for stylish people.
Native New Yorker Shaunya is the owner and curator of VintageShaun, a collection of vintage clothing with a contemporary vision that has been featured in NBC’s The Today Show. She is a longtime Goodwill fan and style expert. Last May, Shaunya collaborated in Goodwill’s Spring Fling the Excess, our Earth Day/spring cleaning promotion. Most recently, she styled models for Goodwill Suits You, a fashion show to mark October, National Disability Employment Awareness month.