cloth heart

Badu wearing Givenchy

(pronounced gee-VON-shee)

Jay-Z and Beyonce; Omar Epps and Sanaa Lathan in Love & Basketball [The Wood as well], Will Smith and Jada Pinkett, and the Obamas; all couples differ but still have that indefinite bond through the power of love. That is, if love is even powerful these days…

Love is fabric. The hot fad in the streets that everyone wants. An epidemic. Getting an engagement ring is an Instagram competition, a wedding is a new Prada bag, and marriage is a cooler Facebook relationship status than “It’s Complicated.” However, I need something more stylish. I’d like Givenchy. 

During high school and college, I thought I had an idea of what it was like to be in love and what love was precisely. (Of course, we all did). As I got to know myself a bit more, I realized that it was nothing more than a profound infatuation with those I was involved in a monogamous relationship with. Usually when my relationships ended, I would ponder over the breakup a few days, reminisce for a couple of months, and then move on.

I want love to inspire me. I want it to be something that I feel firsthand. Relative to when I go shopping! Some people like to pick out a bunch of articles that they think would look good on them. Grab them, try them on in the fitting room, make themselves like the way it looks on them (even though the garment is somewhat unflattering), buy them and take them home. Then after a couple of days, they realize that the clothing isn’t really what they expected and take it back. Me? I do the exact opposite.

Let’s ponder over that idea for a second though. Shopping in an expeditious manner and just buying thing because it looks good for the time being. Not actually thinking about the functionality of the article or where they would wear it, would it really compliment their style. No, we don’t have time for that. We must get the goods stuff now. The skater skirts, the teeshirts with leather detailing, the multi-printed blouses, and the all that other cool stuff that is trending right now. We have to get what we see on the backs of public figures; celebrities, musicians, artists, the Kimyes in the world. We want what they showcase and we want it as affordable as possible. We go to stores and we fly through our shopping, picking and choosing.

Personally, I can spend hours in a store. I will find an item, pick it up and stare at it. While staring, I’ll think about a few things:

Where will I wear this?

What will I wear it with?

How often will I wear it?

Would it even flatter my style?

Will it even look well on me?

*If I can get through the first four questions with appeasable answers, I proceed to try it on. If it’s flattering, I’ll put it on hold until the end of the day or buy it. If it isn’t, I’ll give it back to the fashion stylist supervising the fitting room.*

Most times, I’ll be shopping around and something will come to my eye instantly. It’s like love at first sight. (There goes that word.) I’m in awe. My mouth drops, my heart drops, I gasp, and I run over to the item and dash to the fitting room.

*As I try on the love of my life, I pray that it works. That it will fit me perfectly. If it’s a success, I leap for joy and continue to dash to the register.*

Shopping always satisfies my needs even if finding the exact things I want comes difficult. It’s like my mental therapy when I want to escape from the rest of the world and my peculiar thoughts. It’s what makes me happy. The best part about finding the loves of my life  is showing the rest of the world my findings. When I wear them, I feel confident. I do it for myself because I am confident that they will make a good impression. No matter whatBecause I am proud of them and want to show others the reason why I am happy.

Then I wonder. Why is it that I shop for love the same way that everyone else shops for clothes? Why do I constantly grab things without evaluating the value of the article first? Why do I find myself always taking the articles back?

It could have a lot to do with the fact that the way I shop for clothes is also a risk. What if when I find the clothing of my dreams in the store and try it on, it doesn’t work out? Then I’m let down. Constantly thinking about the article that I tried on in the store and how I wish I could do something to change the outcome. Maybe find another size or lose weight? Or just let it go? What if I don’t want to let it go? If I find something that makes me feel complete, it’ll be hard for me to find anything else that brings similar satisfaction.

So it’s fear. The fear of being let down. Recently, I have fallen in love with the idea that I can shop for love the way I shop for my clothes. There is possibly some amazing fabric out there just for me that I can turn into a masterpiece. Something that makes me feel important. Something that makes me excited to put on when I wake up in the morning and satisfied when I take it off at night. Because I know that it will still be there tomorrow.

Recently, I found a suit. It’s beautiful. High waisted wide legged trousers with black lace floral designs. The blazer is cropped symmetrically to the trousers. Perfection.  The designs represent its versatility. It still has a conservative look but the design gives it that extra flare! I fell in love with it instantly. I carried it around with me in the store as I continued to shop for more. Then I started to second guess it. Maybe it was too soon. Maybe I should wait. Maybe I should put it back and walk away from it. I should actually wait until it’s on sale. It took me 45 minutes before I put the suit back down and proceeded to the register. After I left and got in the car, I instantly regretted it.

I have fallen in love with the idea that I can shop for love the way I shop for my clothes. I found someone perfect but I left him behind. I should have went with my intuition. Instead, I continue to thrift for love expecting Givenchy.

Thanks for reading.