Daily Prompt: The Clothes That Made This Woman

How important are clothes to you? Describe your style, if you have one, and tell us how appearance impacts how you feel about yourself.

Photographers, artists, poets: show us STYLE.

My older brother graduated with a degree in Hotel Management but became a fashion photographer.  During those early years, he practiced taking pictures of things and people.  His friends, some of them aspiring fashion designers, found their favorite rising photographer in my brother.  And when my brother got desperate for a model, they found me (stress on the word ‘desperate’ here).

I’m no fashion model material but when you’re 15 years old, you really think you’re the bomb – and then some.  I thought I was such a fashion plate.  I even had tailor-made clothes.  In fact, my mother had most of her clothes designed for her, and when I was a little girl, we even had matching outfits.  Couture dresses for her and A-line mini-me outfits for me.  No one would ever mistake me for being someone else’s daughter with our matching outfits then.

When I was a teen, the practice passed on to me.  My mother took me to the design house where they’d take my measurements and we selected the fabrics and the designs we wanted for our dresses for the events we all attended.  Some I designed myself based on fashion I’d see on Seventeen and Vogue – though looking back, they really were horrendous and I didn’t have an eye for prints – at least not ones that would flatter a body for they seem like perfect curtain prints to me now.  By the time I turned 18, I had found my own designers and went to them for my tailored dresses.  I starved myself for fashion then and loved wearing every single outfit – even the ones I designed myself.

I had to go through so many fittings for this dress that I wore it without its lining sewn in. I should have thought of pads then, too. That’s one flat chest…

These days, couture to me is what I’d find at the discount stores (and one season behind at that) because I can’t justify the US dollar prices versus the Philippine peso prices that I grew up with.  But then, labor was – and still is – cheap in the Philippines.  I actually learned how to draft patterns and sew clothes before I moved to the US – just in case I wanted to make my own tailored outfits.  I learned how to do embroidery and attach sequins to anything.  Besides, ever since I found myself living at a beach city for almost ten years, life for me became all about being comfortable – flip flops and all.

And because my days now are spent at home with the little guy smeared in peanut butter and jelly instead of having to work in an office – and even when I do work, I prefer wearing scrubs after losing too many good shirts to damn massage oils and lotions – the clothes that I wear these days are way more simpler than the ones I wore then.  Times have changed.  And I have changed.

But then if I were to be in a different setting than where I am now in my life, you bet I’d go back to the couture life in a blink of an eye.  Oh yes, I would.

Just leave me the Gold card before you go…

Daily Prompt