The Howling Mad Guide to Fashion

What fun is it being cool if you can’t wear a sombrero? ~Bill Watterson


Let’s be honest about clothes. They’re a multi-billion dollar industry, fortunes are won and lost betting on fashion trends, and supermodels everywhere are eating tissues and cotton balls to stay thin enough. For me, they’re just a way to make sure I don’t get arrested for indecent exposure. Clothes are the least of my worries…and they should be, considering my disposable income continues to shrink.

That’s not to say I don’t pay some attention to how I dress. I don’t go for the latest or trendiest clothes, and the weekly What Were They Thinking? column is always a self-esteem booster. My clothes need to be comfortable above all else. They also need to last. Finally, and certainly not least importantly, they need to fit my weird Aspie standards. No loud patterns, certain colors like orange will always be out, and no buttons or zippers. Sound easy?

It isn’t, really. I live in a country where the stuff I like isn’t always accessible or affordable. For example, I haven’t worn jeans for over 15 years (I’m a skirts-only gal) and simple, solid-color pieces are strangely hard to find. The things I can’t live without:

Converse shoes. When your feet are as big as mine (12) and cool women’s shoes don’t exist, these are a go-to. I own half a dozen pairs in different colors. They’re comfortable. Even the site mascot thinks they’re cool.

Solid-color leggings. Paired with skirts, they’re in style now. I’d like to think I partially inspired this trend.

Stretchy tops that can be layered. If you’re clothes-poor like me, make it so you can wear the same stuff in summer and winter.

Merona t-shirts. They’re the best (and they also fit broad-shouldered women like me.)

My leather jacket. Hey, I gotta wear it. Check out AJ’s A-2s if you want one too.

Most people are shocked to hear I get the lion’s share of my clothes from local thrift stores. Yes, it’s digging through a lot of dirt to get a few grains of gold. It’s also a lot of fun, like treasure hunting. If you’re into the more high-end stuff, check out the amazing ShopGoodwill site for some real bargains. In the past I’ve gotten Nike and other designer brand items for five bucks or less.

I don’t think I have a particular style other than “eclectic casual.” A lot of co-workers and customers comment on my look(s), so maybe I have something going. The best thing is, I can look interesting and not have to wear several different outfits in the course of one day. No, I can’t wear my slogan t-shirts to work yet, but I’m working on it. Maybe next Casual Friday I’ll give it a shot. I know I’ll look better than some of these “celebrities” and their train-wreck outfits.


What’s your fashion sense? What do you always wear, and what would you never wear?

~ by Howlin' Mad Heather on April 29, 2013.

5 Responses to “The Howling Mad Guide to Fashion”

  1. I get all my outer clothes from charity shops too. Including some I keep meaning to alter to fit better but still haven’t got round to. I really must sort them out some time…

    I’m with you on the leggings and layers. Comfort is the most important thing, so long as I look reasonably acceptable. It’s nice to look nice, but not at the expense of feeling constricted or the wrong temperature. I like patterns and colour. My main restriction is my arthritis, there are clothes I just can’t manage, jeans is one of them. I think my style is somewhat eccentric. If I’m lucky that’s in a cool, arty way. If not, then I suppose just odd. Luckily my husband is odd too!

  2. Merona T’s are the best! Softest and most comfortable of all. I got a good t-shirt you’d probably go for from Shirt-Woot. There’s a bunny in his hole/reading room eating carrots and reading “Warren Peace.” It was too cute for me to resist.

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abandonen toda esperanza aquellos que entren aqui


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