I was listening to Radio 4 this morning and heard about an idea called ‘The Uniform Project’. A woman bored with aspects of her life wanted a new challenge so decided to wear the same Little Black Dress (LBD) everyday but using accessories and other clothing to create different looks each day. She couldn’t buy anything else, apart from ethical shops, she could be given items or make items. (This isn’t as self indulgent as it sounds she raised some serious money -$100,000 for children in India)
Could you do that?
I come from a background of having little money so charity shops have always been a place I go to. I remember wearing an old long tweedy coat in my teenage years, men’s jumpers and I was obsessed with finding a 1940’s style dressing gown as I hated the pinky, girly ones on offer in the shops at the time. I found one; it was maroon and edged with a beautiful cord. I loved it. But I also loved its individuality. No-one else had one (or wanted one!) and I loved that. I’ve carried this on through my life and still want to be individual in that I don’t want a copy cat house like the ones that seem to surround me all having the same furniture, vases in the window and pictures on the wall. I buy art from visiting people who knock at the door, from a tiny framers in a local market town, I have my father’s oldish pine table as a computer desk but as I look down when I type I remember it being in our family home and also in a student house. One day we’ll eat round it again but for now it does a great job holding the computer. I like old, previously used, stuff that makes you think ‘Where did that scratch come from??’ things that, if they could talk, would tell me the most amazing stories of previous lives in previous homes, not a factory somewhere in China…
So my challenge for this year isn’t going to be wearing the same dress for a year, for a start I hate LBD’s and only have one due to needing it for a friend’s funeral. I am pretty creative in my dress sense already I think and re-use clothes long after they should be thrown. (I am currently wearing a wine coloured, polar necked, maternity top that was bought for my second pregnancy nearly 4 years ago. Thank God for ruching that fits any shape I say!) It’s going to be that I buy less of what I don’t need, more of second hand things that are already made but most of all to use my creativity to make a wonderful home for me and my family that reflects us, not a page in a fashion magazine.
By the way, Buzz made it down from the fridge and was reunited with a delighted Henry and all is good with the world!
Here’s the link to the Uniform Project if you’d like to know more.