My Kind Of Valentine: An Open Love Letter To Fashion

It’s Valentine’s Day again, but no, I am not going to give you some fabulous fashion ideas for your date night with its nauseatingly precious plans. Also, I am not going to gloss over this day like it doesn’t exist or indulge in anti-Valentine’s day rhetoric. This is a fashion column, is it not? We should at least pretend like it is.

Today, I got into bed with a big, sugary hunk of Valentine’s Day cake from Lower (the kind that is long and skinny and shaped like a rose-I’m sure you know it, it’s amazing) and was ready to bemoan my circumstances before my post-work nap. Just then, my roommate reminded me that Valentine’s Day is not just about romantic love but the capital ‘L’ kind of Love, too. I think she meant that I was supposed to celebrate all the people I love, like her, and that’s all nice and good. But it got me thinking that I could celebrate the fashion I love, as well. And I do love my wardrobe-it deserves to know how much I love it this year. So here it is: a valentine for fashion.

In the words of the immortal Elizabeth Barrett Browning, “How do I love thee, let me count the ways (fashion).”

Admittedly, the parenthesis are my own, though I am sure Elizabeth would love my interpretation of her great work.
I love thee, maxi skirts, for the way I can wear you in all four seasons, from beachy summer days to cold winter nights. I love the way you are somehow so much more comfortable than pants, yet still make me look put together. I love the different fabrics you come in, from pretty, pleated chiffon to comfortable, loving jersey. I love the way you move as I walk, and you give me the freedom to dance. I love you for covering up my legs when I haven’t had time to shave.

I love thee, stiletto heels, for the way you take me from shrimpy to loftier heights. I love the way you can dress up a pair of pants and are the perfect companion to any dress I may have. I love the way you hurt me, because I know it’s worth it. I love the way you first made me feel grown up and like a woman, and I love the way you never cease to give me that feeling. I love you when you are strappy and I love you when you are platformed, I love you when you are chunky, vintage, expensive, or cheap.

I love thee, soft Italian leather bag. You are a perfectly fabulous shade of robin’s egg blue, and you are as soft as a pat of butter. You hold so many things and complement every outfit. You come from far away in Milan, but you fit in right here with me, right in the crook of my arm. You are a story, an accessory, a companion, and a conversation piece. This is why I love thee.

I love thee, blazer-and pencil skirt, you too. I love the way you instantly transform me from a yoga pant-clad wash-up to a young professional woman with a mission. You will lead me through interviews, and maybe into a job someday. You are a state of mind, you are feminine, and you are strong. I love the way you change the way I walk, stand, and carry myself. I love how you lead me to new places.

And just a few more things I love …

I love thee, snow boots, for taking me all the way to the Arctic Circle, for letting me keep sure footing on international ice, and for allowing me to have adventures.

I love thee, bright red lipstick and nail polish-thank you for complementing any and all of my fashion choices.

I love thee, Boston College quarter zip sweatshirt for tying me to the school I love-and for having sneaky pockets.

I love thee, harem pants, for not taking yourself too seriously. And peplum top, you too.

Cardigan and little black dress, for always being there whenever I need you.

And last of all, I love you, Paige boyfriend jeans. Because even though you aren’t jeans from an actual man that I have stolen and lovingly worn as my own, you remind me that you can in fact love fashion and have a relationship with it. A relationship that can grow and change, blossom and flower anew each year. A relationship that is loving and trusting. I don’t need to get my wardrobe an anniversary present, it never argues with me, and I never have to say sorry to it. Happy Valentine’s Day to you, fashion-thanks for another great year.