So you bought a new bag. The next thing you probably did was take a nice photo of it and share it on social media, most probably Instagram, or any other platform you felt it would gain it the most exposure. It probably got you likes. Maybe even comments. You felt nice. You love your new bag, so you start wearing it often. You also love all the different outfits you are wearing it with, but you realize that you have been sharing way too many photos with that bag. Here, self-doubt slowly creeps in.
Am I going to post another photo wearing the same bag? Sure, it’s new, but hasn’t everyone seen it by now? Should I wait till some time passes before I post another photo with it or should I just buy another bag that will go better with this outfit? Perhaps I can borrow my friend’s bag for the shot. Or, I can just omit the bag from my outfit photo. Yes, that will do.
Probably not everyone’s internal monologues develop in the same way, but a great deal of us have had similar doubts about how often can you post the same fashion piece before people get bored of it or you start looking like you don’t have anything new to show instead. There is an almost unspoken rule to dress differently on every occasion as if it’s socially unacceptable to repeat something that was already once documented on social media, converting us in mannequins rather than the creators of our personal style.
For some time, we, fashion bloggers/influencers, thought that it was an occupational side-effect from our need as content creators to inspire our audiences. But as we turn to our followers and more importantly, to our friends, we realize that this constant need for something new is not exclusive to us. We are all exposed to the same avalanche of visual content filled with all kinds of ‘fashion influencers’ with huge followings who not only post daily, but also rarely -if never- repeat an outfit. Instagram is the space that perfectly reflects that. The platform is indubitably the best place to inspire and to get inspired at the moment, but it’s also the place where comparing ourselves with others happens the most often.
But photos by third parties on Instagram are not the only reason behind this growing need for something new. The way social media works by offering so much new content on a daily basis, makes it natural for you to feel like what you bought yesterday is no longer new today. And it doesn’t really help that we live in a time when fast fashion offers you the possibility to get something new, and get it fast, cheap and with free shipping.
Our fear of being seen as outfit repeaters coupled with the availability of fashion items at incredibly low prices, frequently result in impulsive purchases. Rather than buying a piece because we are in love with it or because we know we could wear it for years to come, we buy it because we imagine it as another building block for our Instagram feed.
Think of it like this: how often have you or a friend of yours decided against wearing an almost new dress to a wedding just because you had already worn it to a different one? The fact that those two weddings hosted completely different guests is not important because it was already once seen on someone’s Facebook. Sure, you could wear it with different accessories or go for a completely different hair and make-up look, but instead you stop and think how it still might not be perceived as original.
This all leads me to one question: Is social-media induced pressure to constantly wear something new killing our creativity? Swiping our credit card just because there is a cheap sale somewhere should not become our answer to our daily ‘I don’t know what to wear’ or ‘I don’t know what to Instagram’ dilemmas.
As the fear of running out of new things to post about grows, quality takes a backseat to quantity, and we limit our creativity by failing to visualize all the different ways we can wear something that we already publicized to the world.
Repeating an outfit is not a sin and in order to fight this perpetual need for more, it’s important to commit to pieces we know we will love for days to come, regardless of the price tag or the brand name. We have to start training ourselves to think that we are buying clothes for us to wear and not for the single purpose of showcasing them to others on Instagram.
Whether you invest your savings or you just encounter a bargain in a store, make sure that you are buying something that you can reinvent and you can always go back to when you ‘have nothing to wear’. You can always get creative with what you have.
Today, instead of a bag, we went for a pair of trousers by Cinq a Sept ($365 – sold out everywhere) that are so versatile, you can literally wear them every day of the week! In hopes to inspire you to maximize the potential of your favorite pieces, we present you with not three, not five, but seven outfits featuring the same pair of trousers. Each outfit has its own character and gives off a different vibe, making it easy for you to transition from one location to another without looking like you were wearing the same thing.
So, which look are you going to try out first?