Creative fits start with constraint

A moment of Saturday morning bliss

The art of being content with our day

Dark Light

Conventional wisdom dictates that we should bias towards optionality, the more options we have, the better our overall welfare. The paradox of choice aside, I have come to realise that we ought to seek constraint and restraint for another reason: creativity.

I often apply artificial constraints when I decide what I want to wear. My go-to is to choose one (or two) articles of clothing and designate them as my statement piece(s) around which I will build an outfit. Generally, the things I consider in ascending order are:

  • Shoes
  • Socks
  • Pants (+ belt?)
  • Shirt (+ jumper?)
  • Outerwear
  • Scarf
  • Headwear

By locking in one of those sections, it makes the process of finding complementary pieces of clothing not only easier but a lot more fun. There is no stress associated with the thought that I could wear anything today. Plus, I find myself finding fits that I wouldn’t have otherwise thought of because sometimes if I choose an my olive-green pair of shoes as the statement piece, it really makes me dig into my wardrobe to try every combination. Making an olive-green pair of shoes work in an outfit is not as easy you think, at least not with the aesthetic I have grown to admire.

This has reflected my shopping habits, I often splurge on items that do well to catch the eye e.g. basically anything corduroy, sleek outerwear, funky shoes, vibrant scarves. For 99% of the rest of my clothing –– the shorts, dress shirts, sweatshirts, and other wardrobe essentials – I shop almost exclusively at Uniqlo where I know the the quality is top-notch. While I would never label myself as a designer, I do think I have a good eye for what looks aesthetically pleasing.

While some make a hobby out of thrift shopping (or even just shopping), I feel as though I have made a hobby of the art of choosing an outfit. I am as far away from the Silicon Valley trope of buying 10 of the same outfit and wearing that everyday as you can you can get.

Related Posts

The beauty of soul music

If I were to describe to someone else what type of music I listen to, I would say…

Essential Footwear

Footwear, in my eyes, is the most critical part of any outfit. Someone could be wearing a stellar…