Winter cramps my style. All I want is to cover every inch of flesh to avoid the elements, which completely trumps being fashionable. I see women in stylish canary yellow coats, in sexy stockings, in cutie-pie knit caps topped with tufts of yarn or those funky Russian jobs old guys wear to go hunting. Despite the icy tundra surrounding us, these gals look like a million bucks.
Meanwhile, I’m dressed in four layers of clothes beneath a down coat hanging to my knees. I’m in a bulbous hat covering my entire head, a chunky scarf and boots heavy enough to pass military inspection. Because of my shortness and round features, the look is far from flattering. I could only describe my winter style as “igloo-esque.”
The winter is my cocoon period, a season of reinvention in which I discover new ways to put myself into the world once I become a butterfly in spring. Clothes may be the most superficial aspect of this rebirth, but certainly they’re the most fun. Usually, I only get rid of old stuff from the closet or choose new words to describe my style. Last year, I was going to be “funky,” the year before a bit more “boho.” But 2010 feels different. More transformative. My next incarnation?
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I’m going to be an Italian woman.
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I was watching this foreign film about an Italian guy trying to extract himself from a relationship with one woman while sleeping with another. The first time we meet the passionate Cloe, woman numero uno in the film, she’s sunbathing topless. When her bully of a boyfriend comes round to demand she get ready for dinner, she yells something impassioned and Italian at him, like, “I cannot live like this, you are nothing but a worm! I have no use for you. This isn’t love, it’s brutalization!” Cloe slips on a wrinkled, sheer blouse and ties her hair in a loose knot yet still manages to look absolutely stunning. Then she and her man go to a restaurant where she continues to don the see-through top, proudly displaying her breasts to any other patron who dares to look in her direction.
I’m totally gonna start doing that.