The Art of the Wabi-sabi Wardrobe

There is a difference between looking and staring.

The act of staring involves shrugging off the polite glance of 1.5 seconds that society prescribes. Instead, these outfits or colours provoke an instantaneous translation from external to internal; where our thoughts are so explosive they focus our retinas’ inwards.

This ability being one of fashion’s proudest qualities. Established before 2010 B.I. ( before Instagram) where one had to hunt the streets for their own fill of serendipity, that is far-fetched fashion. Like the prize of tasting that one perfect cup of fluffy Cappuccino from the cafe, 1.2kms away.

The sustained looks, comments or whispers equivalent to a super-like. To trigger this response you cannot settle for pretty or delightful.

You have to be nothing less than unforgettable. Positive or negative, you will insert yourself into people’s highlight reel of the day.

It’s not about a lack of execution. The French, for example, exert their lifestyle of flawless style in the format of carefree composure. This could be noted as their makeup free faces, wind-brushed hair or lack of clutter. A cultural injection that best highlights this idea of a Wabi-Sabi wardrobe. The French interpretation being a fat-free gateau with a rich filling of classic chi​c`.

A recipe, the rest of the world has been trying to imitate for centuries.

For some designers not fearful of this aesthetic like John Galliano or Rei Kawakubo, Wabi-Sabi Wardrobes can also come in the form of re-doing a staple piece and then recycling it into something quirky. It could came out of a failed sketch or a tare in the fabric.

Major fashion heads use these cliche pieces gone wrong and choose to exploit them, making a negative into a positive. A kind of buddhist mediation woven into the fibres. Next month your shapeless jacket with the sparratic beading could be sported on the head of Karlie Kloss. It could be the foundation piece to a new collection, a new way of thinking.

These random ideas usually build around a powerful aesthetic, accumulated solely on their mesmerising effects on people. So simple, yet never celebrated for their experimental nature. Their unusual zest. Look at Alexa Chang, the trend of wearing satin Pj’s outside has caught on the tongue of every affordable fashion label beginning with global name-tag Zara.

That’s the formula to selling; dividing stares from looks. And all it takes is one persons’ ability to look at something and see it could be more.

JB’s 2015 Purpose album speaks volumes on this concept. Everything he sang has been said billions of times over. The difference is the way he delivers the message so delicately, almost fluid next to the music. Making his listeners enjoy the idea of apologising. Making accountability appear almost charming (if only he took his own advice…)

A Wabi-sabi wardrobe begins with recycling something we may think is ugly, into something to be seen differently. Not for it’s cleanness or symmetry.

For simply being a testimony to say,

I tried. It didn’t quite work as flawlessly as I hoped but it still deserves it be appreciated for what it is.

There is a recognisable beauty in the unexpected.

In the unwanted.

Not to mention, experimenting welcomes creativity into the mind, releasing those endorphins. So the happiness menu for today includes the gym,adult-colouring or taking a peak in your wardrobe.                                                                                                                  The options are as endless as your single-sock gallery.

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