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odd realizations
I have no style.

That may be harsh.  I have a sense of style, yet I don't seem to apply it to my wardrobe/hair/makeup at all.  Mostly I wear jeans and t-shirts, with the only excitement being whether the shirts are long or short sleeved, or have a graphic of some sort.  I tend to wear minimal makeup and most of what I do with my hair is about getting it out of the way.  Over the past few months, this has become bothersome to me.

Several things have led up to this point.  Before the move this summer I spent time cleaning out my closets of the things I don't wear, and realized that it was a decent chunk of what I owned.  Due to technical issues our closet currently doesn't have doors so I can see all my clothes all the time and I've realized what a mish-mash they are, there's no cohesion to anything.  I also was watching a lot of 'What Not to Wear' this summer for background noise, and of course 'Project Runway' is back now.  And I just finished reading the book Gothic Charm School by Jillian Venters.  I've always been attracted to the goth look, and even dressed up that way for Halloween for a few years.  In general I've always been attracted to more extreme personal looks, but have always felt like I don't have the right to do that; somehow on me it would be playing dress up instead of a style.  But then, I've always liked how I felt inside the look few times I've tried things out.

So I'm thinking of doing a major overhaul to my personal style.  This obviously wouldn't happen overnight, both the time and money factors require this to be a drawn out process.  I tend to lean towards the Victorian style of goth and Steampunk which I think overlap in fun ways.  I was trying to figure out how to do this yesterday and realized that if I bought new pieces that fit the theme, I could slowly phase my current wardrobe out.  Honestly, I'll probably still end up in pants regularly, but maybe it could be slacks instead of jeans, with a button down shirt and cool vest and my hair pulled back into a snood.  I have a color palette in my head of mostly browns, blacks, and grays with the occasional bright color thrown in.  I'd be aiming for a style that mostly wasn't noticeable as a specific label, but that would have a few specific fabulous pieces for those dress up occasions that would be unmistakable.

But here's the biggest question in my brain - Am I being ridiculous?  I'm 36, and while I certainly don't believe that only 20somethings can make statements with their wardrobe am I starting way too late?  Can I own this without looking like I'm playing dress up?  (I do know the only appropriate response to that question is 'I don't know, can you?')  I'm excited by the idea, but a little afraid of the execution.  And I know me well enough to be a little concerned about my ability to follow through, though shopping with a specific look in mind might actually be easier.

Have any of you ever tried to overhaul your style?

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(Deleted comment)
Let's see if I can do definitions.
A snood is something that is worn in the hair, it's kind of a net bag that attaches near the crown of your head and then holds all your hair at your neck. It was a very 1800's thing.
Victorian Goth is essentially goth dressing - lots of black, lace, velvet, but kept more strictly in a Victorian period style: so lots of long skirts, the occasional bussle, corsets, cameos.
Steampunk is also of the Victorian period, but as if they had the ability to do things we do now built out of the technology available then, so lots of steam powered things and gears, buttons, metallics. (I don't know if you watched Warehouse 13 but the tech stuff in that show like the computer with a keyboard that looked like it was made out of old typewriters is very this esthetic.) Here's an article to look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steampunk
and I adore the photo that accompanies - though I could never wear a skirt that short. In general the clothes are in sepia tones with lots of embellishments.

I absolutely think you are not too old to have a pink strip in your hair, I say go for it! (Especially since I'm thinking of dyeing in a blue streak myself).

Theatre definitely lends itself both to a casual look and to being able to have a more extreme style. No one would particularly care if I started dressing differently, though I'm sure they'd comment. I think I just have to be careful about what pieces I use - like avoiding the tiny skirts that pop up sometimes, and figure out what I'll actually wear, as opposed to what looks good on others but not so much for me.

Thanks for the support. I'm thinking I want to get a really nice pair of tailored slacks and a great blouse to start, and then build from there. Doing this in pieces will be better for my bank account, as well as let me figure things out before I dive too far into something I won't actually wear on a regular basis. Maybe I can ask for money for a custom corset from everyone for Christmas, though I don't know how that would go over.

I love that you've dreamed about me - this internet thing is more real than some folks will ever give it credit for. And speaking of J - hopefully this year we'll get to spend New Year's together, since that hasn't happened since the first one.

Oh and a leather bracelet would fit either esthetic, so I'll add it to my list - just for you.

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