Every few months or so I settle on an outfit that holds power. It bounces me off the pavement, pushes me into new situations, and allows some sort of energy to emanate from me into the world. Somehow, through the steady gathering of clothing I love, find, buy, and layer, a “power palette” has been formed.
Lately, this has been my wellspring:
Here we have a worn Filson canvas jacket, a 1980s Wrangler denim western shirt of a farmer’s blue, a herringbone overshirt from Eddie Bauer, a pair of stove pipe dark denim jeans from Levi’s (Matchstick fit and made in the USA), a pair of oatmeal-colored Smartwool socks, and vintage Italian wingtips steeped in Seattle mud. Accesorized with a Whillas and Gunn mechanic’s hat, and a vintage silver ring set with turquoise and opal.
All of these pieces have been selected over the last few years of my life for various reasons. Some purchased new, some bought for under five bucks at a thrift store, the ring procured from my favorite vintage store in Minneapolis, The Corner Store, off Hennepin for $40. The rodeo belt buckle, a thrift score in Norman, OK.
The hat has an interesting story, and is the most recent acquisition. A beautiful man in Portland, who later broke my heart and turned out to be a borderline sociopath, gifted it to me because he couldn’t work it into his wardrobe. I highly respected this man’s taste. He had under 10 items in his wardrobe, all of the highest quality, because his belief was if he wanted to look good every day, he needed to wear his top-game clothing daily. His shit was truly beautiful. What I love about this hat, besides the texture and fit, is the oil paint smeared on the top. This gentleman was a highly skilled figure painter, and he wore this hat while working on his art. I’m a strong believer the hat didn’t want him. I wear it not with a heavy heart, but with reverence.
The neck piece below never leaves my body. It was a gift from my friend Nile, and holds a witchy power that keeps me safe. It’s a heavy silver pendant from legendary origins too intense to fully disclose. It also looks great with everything in my wardrobe.
So, I wear this outfit at least once a week. The layering is so important here, a texture and color rainbow of men’s heritage-wear. I feel autochthonous to my surroundings, and the color pop of my burnt-orange road bike sets me on fire down the Pike/Pine corridors of Seattle.
One of my dear friends Erin told me I seem to think about clothing like some folks think about gemstones and crystals, honing in on the correct set of stones for the day. I wholeheartedly believe this, and that the right outfit can attract the goodness of the day to you.
All of these pieces are points in my life. Points where I was traveling, loving my life, trying to love someone else, wanting to adorn my body with something beautiful. When pieces like these come together, it’s more than a store-bought look or on-trend acquisitions. I am wearing moments on my body: my time, my stories, my trials, my lovers. I am binding them together like a spell into the new day.