My friend told me via Instagram that I should blog about what I’m wearing because I usually share my outfit of the day. I’ve been doing it for a while so it just becomes a habit really. I started doing it as a part of the Body Positive Movement. Sometime last year, I went to get a picture of myself, only I couldn’t find any. I had a habit of running a mile from the camera, because I thought I was too fat. I knew I was fat and I didn’t want any more evidence that I was fat because that would make it abundantly clear that I was fat. As a way of countering this fear, and a method of changing the conversation about the way we talk about fat bodies and fat women, I decided to own the tag and jump on the #bopo train.
I know for me, that when I was at my heaviest of 95kg I didn’t need anyone telling me I was fat. My clothes did, my body did, and pretty much any mainstream picture or image of a woman reminded me that I was a fatty fatty boombalada. I’ve since lost weight, but I did not do it in a healthy manner, and in no way would I recommend it. At my smallest of 65kg, I was also really unhealthy, and I was wasn’t able to eat in the same way that Lena Dunham recently explained on her Instagram. Since losing all the weight (and gaining a little bit, because Hot Cross Buns are still being sold!) I had to get a new wardrobe, and I also started taking pictures of new outfits because I love the thrill of finding my op-shop bargains.
The thrill of op-shopping started for me at a young age. I’ve never been able to walk past a second-hand store, without a quick glance over the pre-loved goods. There is something really satisfying about finding a new home for pre-loved items. My local area does roadside pick ups, and I’m not ashamed to say I salvaged a perfectly good armchair from the side of the road. Op-shops however, are my favourite second-hand shops. Not only can you grab a bargain, but they help communities by providing welfare services for those in need. I can smugly walk around in my Zara pants and use my Tupperware champagne flute (I already had the set, because I’m a tupper-adict but I leant one to a friend with whom I lost contact with, and I never got my flute back from) knowing that I’m helping others as well as looking swish! And did you ever get hand-me-downs as a kid? I was lucky enough to get hand-me-downs from outside of my direct family, since I was the eldest. I can still remember how excited I was to find a Sportsgirl shirt in the bottom of a pile of pre-loved clothes.
Op-shopping for me isn’t always about designer labels or helping others. There have been times where they were the only clothes I could afford. As a long term student, money is always tight, so op-shops have been my go-to when I need an outfit. Sure, not all my things come from Vinnies or Salvos, but it’s always worth looking at. And there’s always the War on Waste (side note, today I riffled through the bin, picking out banana skins for the compost bin because I was so inspired by Craig Reucassel, and if you know about my disdain for bananas, you’ll know that I MUST be passionate about reducing waste). Last night’s episode featured food waste where they had a go at dumpster diving and Richard Fidler also did a great interview on this, but I’m really passionate about is recycling fashion. Don’t get me wrong, I have my fair share of disposable clothes, which will be used as rags when I’m done with them, but I’ve always got one eye on Ebay or my local Salvos, because you never know what will turn up.