The Problem with "Inspiration"

By Tiffany - Saturday, February 01, 2014

Before I continue onward with the Wardrobe Architect exercises, I wanted to point out problems with how we find "inspiration" for what we want to wear. Following what other people and myself were doing for the second exercise, it's obvious most people turn to the media for figuring out what clothes inspire us. But, there are issues that I should keep in mind.

A few months ago, I talked about the show Bomb Girls as inspiration.

The outfits they wear are lovely, but I'm not a 1940's bomb girl!

And then for the last Wardrobe Architect exercise, and I picked more media influences such as New Girl. But, this show doesn't really fit my lifestyle.

First of all, the climate difference between my small town in Canada verses LA is just too great. Jess can where pretty dresses all the time, while I might get a few days a year to dress like that. Plus, pretty dresses don't really work well with my job.

My environment and job more closely matches that of the lovely ladies on Parks and Recreation. Indiana can be cold (it's a bit warmer than here right now, but not by much). And, like me, the ladies work in an office and sometimes go out into the field.

However, if I were to go out and buy some of the lovely clothes that these characters wear, I would spend a "fuckton" as this Jezebel article shows with their search for pieces of the Parks and Recreation Wardrobe. Most of us cannot afford to dress like the people we are looking up to. At least, as a home-sewer, I think I can imitate some of these clothes.  

So, we are being inspired by people who might live in completely different environments, with different lifestyles, and an impossible budget on clothes. This can create unrealistic expectations and I haven't even mentioned body issues. I think it's ok to be inspired by these people, as long as we don't forget that it can be problematic.

To offset this, we should look more to ourselves and those around us in our lives. For example, Becky of Sew and So had a great idea. Since she did not have any celebrities that inspired her, she decided to go through pictures of herself to see what clothes she liked best. I think I'll start taking pictures of the outfits I love to wear, so I can remember what I like. It's time to be inspired by me!

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  1. I kept saying "So true!" to myself all throughout this post. :)