The Stranger

Do you sometimes wonder who you are? Do you sometimes feel like the world’s biggest poseur?
My love of boots if no secret and this year I added two new pairs. Shearling boots and cowboy boots. I love them both but in some ways neither are me.

My tunic sweater, leggings, & shearling boots. I love the outfit but wondered if I only looked like a caricature of a “stereotypical white girl”. And no I don’t like pumpkin spice lattes.

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Over Christmas we went to Texas and I got to meet two my writing friends. I showed up wearing an outfit that’s totally me and not. I wore my cowboy boots (feeling a bit poseurish wearing them in the Lone Star State), my Purdue hoodie that is rather steampunk in design (me all over again), and skinny jeans (me, me, me). I wore a Purdue t-shirt, but my original choice was a t-shirt in the shape of Indiana that says “Home”. I laughed that this shirt says to a Texan, “Hello, I’m from a state the size of your panhandle.”

Hoosier by birth. Boilermaker by the grace of God.

Hoosier by birth. Boilermaker by the grace of God.

I also added two pairs of Converse All-Stars to my shoe collection and a green “Geek Girl” t-shirt. These are more articles of clothing that are me and yet not me. I may have the funky green and black glasses, but I’m not quite a hipster either. Maybe because I’d rather wear contacts and look like a newly turned vampire than allow a picture of me in said glasses. Also, since I didn’t own Converse in the eighties that somehow I’m not allowed to wear them in the twenty-first century.

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Then there’s my faux-leather motorcycle jacket($29.99 at TJ MAXX) and grey engineer boots. That’s not me either. I haven’t ridden a motorcycle, ever. There are my fitness clothes, but I’m not one to run around in athletic wear. It goes on, gets really sweaty, and is peeled off as soon as I finish my cool down stretches.

So if I’m not a cowgirl, hipster, or stereotypical white girl (with a preference for non-fat lattes, extra foam), what am I? Obviously not a biker chick or athlete. Maybe I’m not just one thing. But several. My favorite outfit is the one I wore to church today. Black turtleneck, houndstooth skirt, tights, and ballet flats. Sixties mod is definitely one of my favorite looks.

My day in and day out “uniform” is a turtleneck, long-sleeved t-shirt, or sweater, skinny jeans or corduroys, and boots. I’m also someone who likes to dress for the occasion. I wear dresses and skirts to church. I wear dress pants and tailored shirts when I have to work in the office or go on business trips. In the field, it’s Carhartts and work boots. And I find running is a whole lot more fun when I’m wearing a bright top and cute running skirt. Did I mention that I love brightly colored running shoes too?

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Do you have a go-to look? What about an outfit that isn’t quite “you” but you love anyway?

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About Gretchen E K Engel

Chemical engineer by day, spec fiction writer by night

Posted on 2015/01/19, in Life and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. I appreciate your style is eclectic =)

  2. my2ndnature Linda Samaritoni

    Maybe I should have been a gypsy. I love long skirts and bright colors, but my go to outfit is jeans (skinny or otherwise) and a sweatshirt or tunic top. I like comfort.

  3. I like comfort, too. Jeans on the weekends. Sweats or similar for hanging around at home. V-necks, please, as I hate feeling like I’m choking, plus I think they flatter me better. So I never wear t-shirts unless they are less t-shirt and more cute-top. Tops have to cover my belly as I’m very self-conscious that I never lost the ample post-pregnancy pooch. I love skirts but am too modest to show much leg – below the knee please! I’m usually more muted tones – greens, blues, purples, browns.

  4. Linda – Gypsy clothes are fun. Tunics and jeans very comfortable.
    Sparks – I like V-necks too. Next to turtlenecks, probably my favorite style. I cover my tummy too. No matter how much I run or work out, there’s a bit of muffin top in front of my 6-pack.

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