Declaring war on my wardrobe

6 Jun

I think I need a new stylist

In exactly eight weeks I resume my alter-ego as a city-based technology journalist after a year of maternity leave.

I am hugely excited (there are only so many times one can pretend that a “let’s play and learn” toy which sings Pollywollydoodle every now and then is in fact a high tech mobile device), more than a little bit daunted (I don’t remember midday naps or 3pm biscuit breaks featuring very highly during the average news shift) – and feeling like Gok Wan‘s worst nightmare after two years of country living followed by motherhood.

I wouldn’t say my wardrobe wasn’t pretty. If anything, it’s too pretty. Everything has a bloody pattern on it. It’s like I’ve been possessed by Cath Kidston.

I don’t even know where my LBD is, my favourite stilettos are inexplicably covered in mould, my Aviator sunglasses are missing an arm and my trendy white jacket was obviously designed to shrink the further away it got from its birthplace on the Kings Road because it’s bloody tiny now and I can’t have scoffed that many cream cakes while I was pregnant, can I? (For your own safety, don’t answer that).

So today I hit the shops. One thing that seems to happen when you become a parent is that it is suddenly impossible to go into any major clothing store without somehow willing yourself into the kids section. I spent five minutes rifling through a rail of black trousers before I realised I was looking for size 9-12 months. To be fair I don’t really know what size I am anymore anyway – there isn’t much point in comparing something that actually requires a waistline with a maxi dress and it has been a very long time since I poured myself into the former.

I can’t go back to work in the same clothes I was wearing when I left – psychologically that would feel pretty weird. I need a new look for the new me.

Besides, i didn’t have hips you could balance a pint on back then.

My friend Becky has just returned to LA after six months in Bali and the first thing she did was get a supersharp haircut. I tried channeling her but all I ended up doing was forking out £14 on an eyebrow pencil while the baby was snoozing. Well, there is no way he would have survived a 3hr highlights & blow-dry session. Neither would my marriage.

Maybe the trick is to invest in a few boring old dark trousers and shirts until I rediscover my style (and start getting paid again). Or maybe I should go back all guns blazing in my favourite summer dress with the Russian Doll prints all over it, cardigan with stubborn stain where firstborn has wiped his nose and the freebie flip-flops from a hotel in Indonesia that are juuuuust about holding together.

What do you wear to work?


5 Responses to “Declaring war on my wardrobe”

  1. Frau Dietz June 7, 2012 at 7:59 am #

    Right, I’m going to say a word now, and you’re not going to judge me, you’re just going to go directly to the website and you’re going to buy yourself an entire new wardrobe (using discount codes). Having just started a new job after two years of housewifery during which entire period I bought approximately two pairs of clothes, I feel like we’re very vaguely in the same position and I am thus hopeful you aren’t going to laugh in my face. Ok. Are you ready? Boden. I know, I know, but trust me: Boden. Our time has come.

    • zskdorset June 7, 2012 at 2:59 pm #

      for real? when did we get this old?! *clicks Boden website*

  2. Aimee June 7, 2012 at 3:35 pm #

    I find Next and French Connection have some good work staples… that and their sizing is generous 🙂 re: Boden, I’ve a friend who works for them and they tell me that the quality doesn’t quite match the price…..

    • Aimee June 7, 2012 at 3:35 pm #

      Oh, and Oliver Bonas… when their stuff is on sale.

  3. The Coffee Table Years June 8, 2012 at 3:09 am #

    Having spent an entire year in the United States, I am utterly convinced I could sort you out for half the cost – there are plenty of bargains to be had. In the UK, I spend most of my time perusing/buying from charity shops. The budget doesn’t stretch to much else, and I like shopping too much to restrain myself to the occasional splurge.
    Not sure about Boden. I do have one Boden coat, and I have had many, many compliments, but it’s expensive and a bit mumsy for general wear.
    How about La Redoute? I think they are French, pretty cheap and they are always tempting me with online bargains. I don’t think I’ve bought anything from them since 2006, but they are still trying to get me to spend with deals, deals and more deals. Or TK Maxx?

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