This past weekend I actually took some time to relax. Like, seriously relax — not just the “I’m going to have lots of fun with my friends and get a lot of social activities done and out of the way” type of relaxing, which I feel is what most of us 20-something NYC socialites like to excuse as relaxing. No. Going out until 4AM on a Saturday night, grabbing a 2PM brunch hungover the next day, and then making your way downtown for shopping, more social dates and a business drink later that night is not my idea of relaxing. It’s just the happy, happy hustle.
So, what was my definition of relaxing this weekend? It was catching a movie with my roommate and crying the entire time [it was Eat, Pray, Love, people!], making myself a delicious dinner of complex carbs as inspired by the health mindfulness and cooking expertise of RoadHug partner Darla Synnestvedt, and then pounding the pavement for 13.1 miles at the Bronx Marathon Sunday morning [running relaxes me, I swear].
But for the real relaxation [and a bit of excitement], I headed on over to the SpaHa abode of my good friends and the sisters Bartz Julia & Andi. They’re two awesome SDV customers who also happen to be moving to Brooklyn in a few weeks. It’s greener pastures down south in that borough for the ladies — they know just about every venue worth seeing and being seen at from Bedford to Broadway all the way down to Myrtle and back again.
Anyway, with the move downtown and um, out of Manhattan “town” — they had to downsize. And so they called me, Miss Sammy D, on over for a relaxing brunch and a closet clean out session. I came home with two new bags of vintage for SDV, another two bags of fall clothing for my personal collection, plus some new accessories for my kitchen [small cupcake pans! yes!]. It felt like Christmas. God bless you, Brooklyn! [Although note to Andi & Julia: I will miss you!]
Anyway, I wanted to write this blog post in such depth for a few reasons. First, we live in a world that possesses subliminal pressure for us to consume more. Just check out this recent hot article on NYTimes.com, speaking to the reality of a couple who purposely gave up everything in their material possessions — and then some — and in losing those things, gained the substance of happiness.
It’s like this: When we consume more, we get that quick high of “oh I just bought something new for ME, I deserve this, I look/feel/believe I am good, etc.” But then that high dies, and we are left wanting again … wanting more than what we had before … and wanting it over and over again so that the high of having it never leaves us, and we’re continually escaping this place of feeling cold, dry, and possession-less.
Well, here’s the truth: I experienced that exact high with Andrea and Julia’s closet clean out. We’re humans. So yes — we do want to consume, we do want new things, and we do want to feel good as a result of them. That’s why we drink, have sex, eat good food … cause it feels GOOD! So, the truth is that while I cannot lie about seeking and obtaining that consumerist high, I did it in a way that was more sustainable, earth-and-me-friendly than just visiting my neighborhood mall.
In a way, my high was anti-consumerist because I was adopting the “throwaway” pieces of what others’ no longer wanted or needed. What Julia, Andi & I discovered together in cleaning out their closets is just how much they actually OWNED. And it was almost as shocking to Julia & Andi to recognize that they were handing over so many things to me — yet still had boxes and boxes of possessions to pack for Brooklyn.
So, ladies and gentlemen, if you can leave this post with one takeaway point: when consuming, think about how to consume smart. And when it comes to seeking a new wardrobe or just a wearable piece for your dinner date/party/event this weekend … call your friends. See what they have — which is what you DON’T have — and ask if you can borrow a few pieces. Or heck, host a swap party like the one my friend Alejandra of Always Order Dessert did a few months ago. Make a brunch, invite a few friends to bring over their unwanted/unused clothing. Then pass around some tote bags and let everyone eat, mingle, and shop [for free!]. Here’s Alejandra’s great checklist on how to host your own swap party!
There’s no better feeling than that consumerist high … now, add another feel-good level to it of stylish sustainability and substance!
THE SCORED LOOK: Rocker chic
FROM: Julia’s Closet
I WANNA WEAR IT WITH: Black leggings and ankle boots. Loads and loads of jewelry.
I WANNA WEAR IT TO: Any dark rocker club in the Lower East Side, vodka & tonic in hand.
THE SCORED LOOK: Space Mod Cowgirl
FROM: Andi’s Closet [& a midwest vintage find!]
I WANNA WEAR IT WITH: Big silver earrings and flat, knee high leather white boots. Now, just where am I going to find THOSE?!
I WANNA WEAR IT TO: A cocktail party that will have everyone asking, “Who the heck is THAT girl?!”
THE SCORED LOOK: Black & White Blonde Bombshell
FROM: Andi’s Closet
I WANNA WEAR IT WITH: The dress is great with sheer black tights and knee-high, skin tight black boots. Not just the knee-high kind, but the ones that go OVER the knee. Plus, lots of white bangles — very mod, but this dress is definitely a production of the 80s [hence the wide stripes]. The black & white blazer? Booty poppin’ black sequin shorts, those sheer black tights again and pointy toed black pumps. And underneath this little number? Another little number — a frilly piece of lingerie, and that piece of lingerie only ;-)
I WANNA WEAR IT TO: The black & white dress I’d wear out running errands. The black & white blazer I’d wear to a hot, sweaty club [hence the just-wear-a-bra-underneath-idea]
THE SCORED LOOK: Just Call Me Precious
FROM: Andi’s Closet
I WANNA WEAR IT WITH: A flower in my hair, some sort of Tiffany’s necklace [or a delicate vintage piece instead!] and bright purple pumps. Maybe I’ll carry a bouquet of flowers for good measure, too!
I WANNA WEAR IT TO: Upper East Side brunch! Unlimited mimosas, please!
THE SCORED LOOK: Black, White & Red All Over
FROM: Julia’s Closet
I WANNA WEAR IT WITH: Flat espadrilles, a statement necklace like woah, and a bangin’ head scarf.
I WANNA WEAR IT TO: Any tropical vacation! I’m thinking a venture to a Caribbean Club Med — perfect coverage to seem sensible, just enough cleavage to look sexy.
Which one is your favorite scored look? Let me know in the comments below! Thanks!!! <3