Are Our Fashion Mistakes Like Our Men?

men and fashion mistakes
image source pinterest

We think it’s the right dress for us. We loved that color at the time…but now looking back at an old photo we wonder “What was I thinking?”

Huge shoulder pads, ‘pleather’ pants, floral material at the bottom of our bell bottom jeans.  Pea green skirts and dresses to match our appliances.  Stirrup pants with white boots? Onesies—oh they’re back, baby but you won’t catch me in one.  How about the Grunge era? Did you have a man to match your baggy plaid shirt, Doc Martins and greasy hair?  Kurt Cobain was kind of hot.

George, John, Paul…I’m not talking about the Beatles. What did we see in them? Looking back we wonder “What was I thinking?” If you were wearing a jacket with shoulder pads bigger than your head and you have the picture to prove it while snuggling up to ‘what’s his name’—your latest mistake who you thought was wonderful at the time then you know what I’m talking about.  All your girlfriends told you how attractive he was then you caught him fooling around with one of them in the basement at a house party.  It’s as tacky as that jacket and my plastic, bright colored earrings. Yes, that happened. Don’t let my 3rd person perspective fool you.

This isn’t anyone from my past (pinky swear) but it kind of captures the male, 80’s version of the fashion mistake…love the hair!

men and fashion mistakes
image source Amy Laiil-Pinterest


[Tweet “The time comes in a woman’s life to ‘overhaul’ either our wardrobe or the men in our life.”]

I mean, I can’t keep everything so I’ll carefully take inventory of my wardrobe and decide what to give away.  Sometimes I have to give away something perfectly lovely because I just don’t wear it anymore. Why have it hanging there if I don’t WEAR it? It’s taking up precious space. Out it goes…then a year later I’ll wish I had kept that particular piece. Why do I do this?  The lament doesn’t last for very long. It might even be simply a fleeting thought. “Remember that red sweater? If only it hadn’t shrunk (or I hadn’t grown), I could still be wearing it.” Alas, I said goodbye…we parted ways and wished one another well.

Then there might be the one you gave up and regretted EVER more.  He was kind of like the cashmere sweater of men.  A keeper, who always kept you warm but you got bored of the style or you were not mature enough to see the quality of man right before your eyes.  Years later you look for pictures of this one–the cashmere that got away–and look for clues as to why you were so dumb.  “How did I not see?”

The rainbow of cashmere love…

men and fashion mistakes
cashmere in every color

The trick is knowing before we invest, what and who is right for us for now and forever.  Having fashion sense and knowing quality fabrics from cheap ones will help take us beyond the current season and into the next decade. Recognizing the trend versus the classic takes experience and “je ne sais quoi”…yes, that certain something—confidence. If we have confidence in ourselves and love ourselves we’re more likely to choose the forever man and a more classic wardrobe. At least, we’re more likely to find a man and the clothing that fits us just right.

No more fashion mistakes and no more man mistakes. Well, maybe one or two…

By the time we’re in Act II of our life we have that confidence and know what and who really clicks and looks good on us.  Lucky for me I reclaimed my cashmere sweater…oh, yes I did.  He’s still keeps me warm and I appreciate his style even more now than I did back then.  The tears have been patched up nicely and he has proven his fabric will last my lifetime.

Our men and fashion mistakes
image artist Andre Kohn

It’s okay to make fashion mistakes and it’s okay to make man mistakes. That’s how we learn what and who is right for us.  The trick is in recognizing these items and men for what (who) they are before we get our heart broken or give away the wrong one.

What was your favorite fashion or man mistake? Spill it…Do you recognize a fashion trend OR do you always go for the ‘forever’ classic man?

Leave a comment, I love ’em!

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27 Replies to “Are Our Fashion Mistakes Like Our Men?”

  1. Gawd, I’ve had some horrible clothing and hairstyles over the years, along with some horrible relationships. For some reason I seem especially prone to hanging on to the mistakes for far too long. Suddenly one day you realize how horrible those pants look and how horribly wrong for you that person is.

    Sometimes I wonder about the ones I decided quickly to let go of – would it have been different if I’d given them more time?

    1. Me, too Vanessa. I had a perm in the mid 80’s. I had a pixie cut in the 90’s—horrible. So true. Unless that person was really special, more time doesn’t always resolve things. We know better now 😉

  2. Hi Lisa,

    Your reflections made me smile all through the post! Yes, there is always an afterthought when we look at old pictures and feel…what am I wearing!!

    You gals have a lot of liberty to start choosing your men as soon as you hit teenage! I know you are bound to make mistakes! But I say so now! At that age we all think nobody can be saner than us!

    I grew up at a place where there was no culture of dating and if somebody dared, they had to hide it. We were expected to marry whosoever was chosen by our elders and so was the case with me! Shocked? Well, our culture still imposes that though the youngsters of today rebel and many do so quite successfully!

    There are many such interesting stories to share on both the points you make here! Thanks for a fun-filled post.

    1. Well, Balroop you bring up an interesting perspective. Our Western culture is not bound by strict edicts as yours. We are in awe of how your culture makes a success of arranged marriages. The upside being less if zero ‘man mistakes’ 🙂 Thank you for reminding us that it is a priviledge to date who we choose. Interesting topic!

  3. I used to be an absolute train wreck with the men I dated in my early & mid 20s. They were just as awful as my gothic/grunge middle grade fashion mistakes or too tight tube tops from Bebe and Express in college. Definitely discarded that wardrobe a long time ago!
    My best pick yet has been the love of my life who I met when matured at the age of 30. He is a class act, can be casual and sexy, distinguished and just yummy! He matches more of the long term clothing hanging in my closet today:)
    This was such an enjoyable read Lisa. I always love your writing here!

    1. Hi Gina, Oh, that is too funny—tube tops? I forgot about those little numbers. I’m surprised our fathers let us out wearing them LOL. Your man sounds wonderful and isn’t it perfect that he matches your classic wardrobe! Thanks for sharing with us 🙂

  4. To my knowledge I’ve made no men mistakes…other than within myself lol 🙂 I put up some retro pics of me in a few posts here and there the past couple of years. I don’t know if I dressed like a dork or not. But, IF I did…then I still do! Good post, Lisa 🙂

    1. Haha, Mike! Don’t we all make mistakes. I love that picture of you as a kid when you were starting your paper route. I doubt you dress like a dork but don’t ya love that 80’s pic?

  5. Loved all the colours and textures used to compare fashion and clothing. I have a cashmere and very grateful to see him in all his colours!

  6. Lisa,
    I like how you utilized fashion trends to symbolize relationship[s.
    My biggest flop. Nothing. I love what I was wearing at the time.
    I had VERY Abundant BIG hair!!
    xxx KISSSSSSSSS from an 80s girl.

    1. Ha, Good for you, Kim! No regrets. Love the big hair! I’m jealous because my hair has always been fine and straight. We usually put an 80’s playlist on for our girls night parties. xoxo

    1. Well, you have gorgeous hair, Tamara! I can’t imagine it was ever a mistake 🙂 Hm, so you got it right in the man department? Sweet!!

  7. That 80s photo cracked me up.

    I basically live in jeans and a t-shirt. And I wear my tennis shoes with almost everything too, which I’m sure people would frown upon. I just prefer to be comfy and I can’t walk properly in heels.

    1. Amber, you’re a girl after my own heart! I love my running shoes and pretty much live in jeans these days (and a cashmere sweater in the winter). Comfort wins.

  8. Hi Lisa,

    Interesting indeed 🙂

    Fashion..what’s that? What’s in trend goes I would say, and no, my man isn’t and wouldn’t go for what’s in fashion, but prefer wearing what he loves and is comfortable with – same would be for me.

    I know you didn’t mean to write the post that ways…just letting you know though 🙂 Well, our end is a lot like Balroop said where our elders choose the groom and most women readily accept, but things are changing now and I am glad they are because one wrong choice and you are gone!

    Thanks for sharing this with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

    1. Hi Harleena, It sounds like your arranged marriage has worked out very well. Your hubby sounds like my guy, he has his favorite jeans and t-shirts and that’s about the extent of his fashion style. Thanks for stopping over and sharing!

  9. Hi Lisa
    This is superb and beautyful Article Loved all the colours and textures used to compare fashion and clothing. I have a cashmere and very grateful to see him in all his colours! Awesome Post really keep it up thank you very much for sharing me ,


  10. I love fashion, so this post was fun! My fashion mistakes…trying to be a goth in middle school. (Gina and I have a lot in common.) I’m pale though so wearing all black did not work very well. Overalls were another mistake because I had no curves and was tooth-pick thin so they never looked good on me. Oh, and when I was 10 I hated wearing shorts, but there was this olive-green pair with a dozen zippers that I wore all the time. As in three times a week to school. LOL!

    1. I could see you going Goth, you little rebel! The pale skin really works for that look. Think Lisbeth from The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, a real bad a**. I LOVE overalls and used to wear them in the 90’s. I wish I could wear them again! Thanks for sharing, Chrys!

  11. Hahaha, this is such a great metaphor! Looking back on my younger days, I definitely had those “trendy” fashion and relationship faux pas! (the time in high school i decided to chop all my hair off for a spiky pixie cut, ha!) The kind where you look back at pics and are all, “omg, WHAT was I thinking?!” I like to think I learned to appreciate the cashmere as I got older;-)

  12. Yes, yes, yes to this whole analogy! Now I need to drag out all those old photo albums so I can compare bad fashions to bad men. 🙂

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