Why style matters

Truth be told, I am not a fashionable person, nor am I stylish or trendy. Of course, I have always loved clothes – the difference they make on attractiveness is indisputable. But I used to see fashion and style mostly as an indulgence, and what I wore was merely a matter of habit. I would pick my clothes pretty much at random, depending on needs and occasions. I would either be attracted to a color, seduced by a design or I would fantasize about a popular trend, but feel and comfort would often be prioritized. Hardly ever would I take time to seriously reflect on the image I am projecting through my outfits, or most importantly, wonder whether they mirror my true personality.

That’s until recently when I noticed that few people around me see and know me for the person I really am within. While there are diverse reasons to that, my physical appearance is without a doubt the first misleading factor : because I am shorter than the average woman, the world automatically assumes that I am still a little girl and will more often than not approach me as such, despite the apparent woman features that I do have. I can’t say that I was ever bothered being mistaken for a teenager before. As a matter of fact, it always sounded like a compliment that I welcomed with a smile full of satisfaction – I wasn’t aware that it was the result of a systematic association with my stature. And now as I am getting older, that smile would rather be tainted with frustration. Because there comes a time in an adult woman’s life, when she would appreciate to be seen and treated as the bona fide woman that she is. The idea therefore, is to pay more attention to my outward presentation so as to help people see beyond my height, but also relieve myself from the burden of having to claim adulthood on a daily basis.

Crafting a personal style seems to be a good way to start because as we all know, the role clothing plays during social interactions is beyond debate. The most obvious example is in a professional setting where we all know the drill : to be taken seriously, you have to dress the part. Clothes communicate a great deal of information to others and they strongly influence the first impressions people have about us before we even get a chance to say a word. The way we look may make people want to know more about us or simply loose interest in us. And though the saying « Don’t judge a book by its cover » is very common and makes a lot of sense to us all, we still get up every day and make all kinds of unfounded assessments, snap judgments and decisions about others largely based on clothing, grooming and overall appearance. Consciously or unconsciously, we simply can’t help it. Style makes it possible to manage these impressions formed about us as well as gives us control over the message we wish to send. All these points apply to everyone, but I believe they are even more crucial in the case of petite women because our height is often against us and it may become very easy to go unnoticed. Having a clean perceptible style may help stand out, gain visibility and presence.

Aside from the practical aspect of the matter, this endeavor is a very personal one. While it is certainly important that I present myself in the best way possible to others, the first person I need to seduce and convince is myself. Sofar I am not happy with the reflexion I see everyday in the mirror and I want to change that. Working on my style is about focusing my attention on my person, making sure my perception of who I am is reflected in what I am wearing, and improving the relationship I have with myself. I believe this is what style is all about. I want to try to truly know my self, identify all my flaws and learn to love them, accept that I do have features and celebrate them, then use fashion to create a style that honors me exactly for who I am – height and all.