Closet envy.

I first encountered Clueless at age seven, at a sleepover birthday party. I remember three things.

1. I wasn’t allowed to watch PG-13 movies until I turned 13, but I was granted special permission to watch Clueless. (I was asked, however, to spend some time upstairs with a book during Spice World.) For the uninitiated, Clueless is raunchy in a sly sort of way that’s lost on underage viewers. I revisited the movie in high school, and I found it far more affronting as a fifteen-year-old Jesus camp protégée than I did as a second grader who worshipped exclusively at the altar of Scooby-Doo.

2. This particular birthday party had been rescheduled due to a head lice outbreak – twice – and took place roughly two months after the actual birthday itself. If that doesn’t speak to the importance of celebrating everyday events (like no head lice), I don’t know what does! Keepin’ it deep, y’all, just keepin’ it deep!

3. Cher Horowitz’s G D Mutha Effin’ Closet. Duh. The high-tech glamour was not lost on me and my pea green turtleneck-and-leggings ensemble. My smarmy seven-year-old brain, which was clearly supposed to be short-circuiting over Cher’s closet goddess status, instead schemed derisively, I bet I can make that. The approximation I constructed using scanned Polaroids and my dad’s desktop computer failed to advise against said turtleneck, nor did it divert my belief that Scooby-Doo’s Velma was the pinnacle of style. Technology, what is it good for?

Fashion blog The Coveteur recently broke with its usual closet porn to run a tongue-in-cheek feature on Clueless fashion. As delighted as I was to revisit Cher’s greatest hits, I couldn’t help but lament my own closet situation. I’m more or less fine with the clothes themselves, but the notch in my bedroom wall that my landlord is passing off as a closet is a hard fall from the five slightly larger notches I had in my Chicago studio. I’m making it work—I invested in 100 skinny velvet hangers a few years ago, and it was some of the best money I’ve ever spent.  When wrangled into a sleeve and color coding system, the end result makes for a user-friendly (if not exactly Pinterest-worthy) visual.

Just ignore the suitcase full of pajamas and gym clothes on the floor.

Storage solutions aside, my dream closet would also include a weather filter. My friends mock me for not owning a real coat (whatever, my metallic windbreaker is really warm) and wearing leather skirts in 90-degree heat (hi, my day today), but I really just have no clue how to dress for anything other than temperate transitional weather. I survive by layering the shit out of my shit in the winter and sprinting from one air-conditioned refuge to the next in the summer. Then I spend all day listening to leather creak under my slippery thighs while Dionne snarls things like, “At least I wouldn’t skin a collie to make my vest!” (It’s faux!) (Although I’ve been known to wear a fur coat over a fur tank top in February. Below freezing, all bets are off.)

Then Cher reminds me that anything I can do to draw attention to my mouth is good, and I thank my lucky stars that lipstick is seasonless.

How do you make the most of a tight space? If you could give your closet a superpower, what would it be?

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2 responses to “Closet envy.

  1. I LOVE your blog! I used to read La Vie En Ginger as well and it was what actually inspired me to start my own style blog! I recently switched from Blogspot to WordPress and when I found out about your new blog I just HAD to read it! I like to think of myself as a mini version of yourself as I have always wanted to be a writer too, work in London (the British equivalent of NYC!) and, although I may not be ‘consistently’ sassy, my sass shows itself most of the time!
    Love you Emma,
    Niall xxx

    • emmaaubryroberts

      Thank you so much, Niall! Keep the sass alive across the pond. Remember, it’s like a muscle—you use it, it grows.

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