Recession dressing: who needs pants anyway?
I’m a slave to fashion, I admit. Working in the industry has let me indulge my unhealthy obsession up till now, but because of the GFC, I, like most other women, have had the incredibly boring task of cutting back.
Cue recession dressing. Or if you want to get technical, dressing like a Recessionista (noun: a resourceful woman who’s great at updating her look while spending a minimal amount of money).
There are many ways to do this. Inventive and fun ways. Cheap ways. Exciting ways. The best ways for most women of course, involve spending money on stuff we don’t need so we can justify it by saying we’re actually saving money in the long run. “Sure, they were $300, but I’m going to wear them 50 times, so that’s only $6 per wear. Cheaper than the op shop.”
But my new fave has to be that women, out of sheer necessity and financial conundrum, have created an entirely different category of clothing to add to our fashion arsenal: Leggings.
According to the UK Times, we’ve sparked a whole business around lycra bottoms and it appears to be sticking. It used to be Jeans; Pants. It’s now Jeans; Pants; Leggings.
What started as a passing trend a few seasons back, has quickly jumped from fleeting fad to wardrobe staple, thanks to the overwhelming need to downsize budgets and stop buying into expensive trends.
This is one for every demographic. Last year, women’s magazines cried out, “forgot to put your pants on did ya?” But they didn’t see the future – or the financial benefit.
I for one, am a big believer. They’ve single-handedly pulled me off the what-do-I-wear-in-winter-when-my-jeans-are-too-tight-cause-I-ate-all-the-leftover-shepard’s-pie-and-can’t-afford-new-denim ledge.
$20 is a wonderful amount for a brand new piece of clothing I can wear under dresses, shorts, long jackets, t-shirts and make every item look New! Fresh! Exciting!
Heck, even Lindsay Lohan’s cashed in and is living off her leggings line (which is just as well ‘cause her acting isn’t going to support her for much longer).
Clever, clever us! We’ve honed in on the one thing that makes it okay to shop while the world falls deeper into the GFC. Aren’t we resourceful.
What better way to kick our money blues and feed the hungry fashion monster than to leap on a new craze that’s a) cheap, b) versatile, c) comfy and d) sucks your thighs in while streamlining your bumpy bits? It even lets us wear short dresses we’d never normally consider in winter.
In short, they’ve at least doubled, if not tripled our wardrobe. For every body shape. And while I can’t see my mum in them, I can certainly see women of all ages donning a pair, at least around the house. Yep, they’ve even taken over trackies for me.
Of course, as is usually the way unfortunately, the more you pay for your leggings, the better they look, which defeats a Recessionita’s logic, really. Sass & Bide’s Black Rats, for example, are in a shiny black fabric that slick your legs from lumpy stumps to lean stilts, and ksubi’s laser cut lace pair catapult leggings to the designer pant category.
They’re both around $190.
But for a good 20-50 bucks, you can hit everywhere from K-mart to Supre and Sussan for the best fashion investment you’ll make all year. Just don’t wear them like you did in the 90’s – oversized t-shirts + leggings are only good on girls who are too young to remember that trend from the first time it did the rounds.
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