There’s a brave new world…

‘I wish I had the guts to wear that’ is a phrase I’ve been hearing in one form or another since I started picking my own clothes. It’s not a sentiment I’ve ever properly understood. Putting on the clothes I like has never struck me as a particularly brave act.

Displaying some early flare

To begin with I felt a bit sorry for people who said it. They would admire whatever item I was wearing before enviously making the proclamation. I pitied that they didn’t know they could wear whatever they liked. There was very little at risk. I’ve been called weird for as long as I can remember, but with very little negative impact. There really isn’t much people can do if you own the label the give you. You say I’m weird, I say I’m proud of it. There’s nowhere for that conversation to go. It’s hard to mock someone who isn’t ashamed of the thing you find laughable. I felt sorry for people who didn’t know that. Who worried too much about what other people thought to spread their wings & give it a try.

Burgeoning fashionista in tropical print & side pony.

I got older, experienced more of life & understood their fear a little more. I never felt the need to conform in my life decisions or even my sartorial tastes. I did however learn the weight of societal judgement. Getting fatter proved just how much the world wanted us all to live up to it’s expectations. I spent too many miserable years feeling the need to hide my too large body. I added scars to the mix & the pressure to keep it all under wraps increased. I finally got what all those people meant when they said they lacked the courage to wear an eccentric outfit. They were just trying to fit in, trying to be good enough. They were simply straight jacketed by a different societal standard. That’s when those comments started to make me mad.

ly h Kerr

I wasn’t angry at the person saying it (well sometimes I was, occasionally it’s just a bitchy back handed compliment.). No, I was pissed off at all the ridiculous standards we place on each other. Moreso, I was angry at myself for falling for it. You see, I had been right. My original theory of pleasing myself & laughing in the face of judgement was spot on. Having since applied that approach to the areas of my life (& body) that I was taught to dislike, I realise it works. Just as I didn’t have to be ashamed of being the only vegetarian in class or the only kid who wanted to wear tartan tights, I also don’t have to feel bad about my flabby bits. I can wear what I find beautiful & be who makes me happy. Those who seek to bully me still have little impact because I don’t think their idea of beauty is more valid than mine.

ly h Kerr

This realisation bought my freedom back. With it, an even greater desire to break the stupid limits society places on us. Fitting in is not they key to happiness. Being authentically you, is. I have never lacked friends or adventures. You will always find your people if you hold tight & refuse to compromise the important parts of yourself. Some people will try to attack your willingness to be different. As I already said, it’s really difficult to tear you down when you stand on rock solid ground.

ly h Kerr

All of which has brought me full circle. I don’t understand why so many people squeeze themselves into boxes that don’t fit. I’m angry that we continue to be taught to conform. I’m desperate to create & consume anything that crushes the idea of rigid norms. And, yes, I still feel sorry for anyone I hear doubting they are brave enough to wear really big glasses or a crop top or head to toe sequins because it really doesn’t require bravery. Nothing very bad will happen if you wear the thing you love. The worst you can expect is a double take from a stranger or an online idiot leaving a comment. Trust me, the joy of having the stunning thing on your body is very much worth it.

ly h Kerr

So, next time you catch yourself thinking I love it, but I can’t pull it off. Stop. You can. You’ll look amazing. You’ll feel fantastic. You will learn to laugh at fools who try to deride you. Life is too short & the world is too full to limit yourself. Screw the trends. Forget what’s cool. Fuck flattering. Wear what you love & be who you are. You’ll thank me when you feel free.

Summer lovin…

It’s wedding season again & this year scotland even has the weather for it. Summer weddings are so much more fun when you can have some fizz in the sun. The rising temperatures also make cute floaty dresses an option. I have a couple of weddings to attend in upcoming months, so I’ve put together a wee collection of wedding guest attire.

Obviously, me being me, I don’t want any boring formal wear. Thus I’ve been scouring the summer lines for wedding suitable dresses that I can still feel myself in. I don’t have a specific look, I tend to dip into lots of different styles because I’m too random to commit to just one. The common thread is often being a little on the weird side & never blending into background. Luckily, the high street has plenty to offer that fits the bill.

Lindy Bop are always a good first stop on the search for a fancy dress. I love their retro styles & funky prints. I’ve yet to wear one of their creations that didn’t garner a million compliments. My top pick is this amazing jungle print 50’s piece. You couldn’t fail to feel like a starlet in it.

Keeping with the 50’s theme, but giving a slightly more sedate impression is this beauty. It’s basically an LBD with a little extra magic.

How wouldn’t want to be adorned in starlit woodland love?

Coast is one of those shops that always has a few gems hidden amongst the predictable. This dress is one of those sparkling finds. I love the light, flouncy layers, I bet it looks amazing on the dance floor.

Florals are standard affair for June weddings, but turn up the colour volume & they really come to life.

This wrap number from Lovedrobe would be perfect for drinks & canapés in the grounds of any luxe wedding venue. If you’re looking something more unique Elvi have you covered. This is is the prettiest jumpsuit I’ve ever seen. Flirty, floaty & graced with a cape. It’s the superhero of nuptial fashion.

I couldn’t do a dress guide without including my current colour fad. I am digging everything orange this summer & this tea dress is not the exception. It’s so fresh & vivid. The cut outs add a little sex appeal whilst remaining subtle enough to be worn in a church. Asos have knocked it out of the park again.

If I can’t exclude my flavour of the month it would certainly be remiss not to my mention true colour love; red. You can never have too many red dresses. I can see absolutely no cons to this particular example. The lace is so delicate, the fluted sleeves are divine & that v neck is just deep enough. Asos are on a roll.

A pair of little magic glasses…

I’m mostly a go big or go home girl. I won’t wear one colour when I can wear three. I won’t pick elegantly understated over weirdly wow. This is absolutely the way I approach choosing glasses.

I probably have too many pairs of specs, but I don’t see me being satisfied with my collection anytime soon. Every time I see bold & extravagant frames, I want them. Thus I introduce to my latest ocular obsessions.

ly h Kerr

Cat-eyes are my favourite shape & blue was a colour I did not have. Need I say more?

ly h Kerr

I don’t usually buy prescription sunnies because I always lose them, but these were just too amazing to resist. I adore these so much that I might just manage to hang onto them.

Both pairs of glasses are from where.light who are my current purveyors of crazy spectacles.

When you’re strange…

I have always walked on the weird side of the road. From a young age I decided the best option was just to embrace my quirkiness & roll with it. It’s a strategy that has served me well. Sure, I still get stares from strangers & folk making snap judgements about me, but fuck them. 

I’ve found that confidence in strangeness is the key. Don’t be apologetic or hide, boldness is the way. No matter how odd your views or look there are always like minded folks  & the Internet guarantees you can find them. However, you don’t have to section yourself into a little pocket of society. I have friends of all varieties, many don’t really get a lot of my choices, but they support them nonetheless. A frequent occutance for me is having newish friends confess that their first impression of me was ‘weird af’, but on further inspection they found they liked me. My point is eveyone is entitled to be exactly who they are; people will love you despite or because of your differences. 

So, what better way to celebrate my irregularities than celebrating some classic eccentric chicks? 

I’m going to kick off with my 11yr old hero, Blossom. Blossom was my fashion icon. I had several floppy hats that I pinned at the front with ridiculous badges. More than that, I felt a kinship with the character. She was smart & quirky & frequently teased by her ‘cooler’ older brother. I think Blossom was my first hint that being weird could be amazing. I’ll always love her for that. 

  

You can’t talk about weird characters without bowing down to Pheobe Buffay. Pheobe was me. She was the veggie, hippie, black sheep of her group. The other ‘Friends’ were continually puzzled by her, but loved her anyway. Moreover her outlandish ideas often held a needed wisdom.  Pheobe walked her own path, which was exactly my plan. As a teenager it was so affirming to see a woman like that on the biggest to show in the world. 

  

Ok, so this one might be controversial. Lena Dunham is problematic in a number of ways, which at times filters through, but I still love Hannah. I arrived at the Girls’ party very late. I have only recently delved into it & was of course sucked into a box set binge. Hannah is odd. She makes some horribly bad choices & let’s face it, she gets annoying. Even, so, I love her. I adore her body positivity. She wears whatever she wants & she gets naked whenever the notion takes her. She’s a writer, she struggles with her mental health & she loves a very kooky man. Wait, is Hannah me too? Most of all she is honest ( perhaps sometimes too honest). She’ll talk about scary feelings & taboo topics alike. Shame is not a thing to be tolerated in Hannah’s world & I am in awe of that.

  

Now it’s time for ultimate 90’s weirdo, Daria. God, I still love her. Daria is everything. She’s cynical & witty; she shuns all conformity. Fashion is irrelevant, popularity a non issue. Daria & her equally cool friend Jane live in their own world. She finds her cheerleader sister ridiculous. Her come backs are top level. She even has a romance with an older musician dude without altering herself one bit. For your supreme snark & flawless misandry, I salute you Daria.