Let’s do a 180 from last week to talk about this dire situation I’m in. See, things in my life are in a bit of upheaval at the moment, and as such, I find myself temporarily without a home base. Which brings about an interesting challenge: how to be a fashionable person, or at least a reasonably clean, decently dressed person, who’s living out of a suitcase.
Kiki had a great post about vacation-dressing, but I’m talking more about the times when you’re shoving things into a duffle bag and you’re not sure how long they need to last you. This has actually happened to me a couple of times, due to this breakup or that apartment falling through or whatever calamity has befallen me. It tends to be a fantastic exercise in sartorial restraint, a time when your practical nature kicks in and you find out what your essentials are.
(And yeah, I realize this is a ridiculous thing to say, when in reality I don’t need more than a couple T-shirts and a pair of jeans, but honestly I’m not that desperate yet, thank goodness.)
My hero of suitcase living isn’t a confirmed suitcase-liver, but an assumed one.
Winona Ryder as Susana Kaysen in Girl, Interrupted totally was not planning to stay in the asylum as long as she had to. She thought this was just, like, a momentary thing that she could leave anytime. So clearly she’s making do with a couple perfect striped tees, some nicely menswear-inspired overcoats, and excellently fitted trousers.
Another good source for suitcase-living inspiration? Road trip movies. My favorite movie of all time, David Lynch’s trashy-trippy Wizard of Oz-themed epic Wild At Heart, features excellent style from both main characters (“My snakeskin jacket! Did I ever tell you that this jacket represents my individuality and my belief in personal freedom?”) but Laura Dern’s Lula is especially impressive. Her entire suitcase seems to consist of stretchy dresses, lacy leggings, and random pieces of leather to sort-of-cover her naughty bits. She brings these outfits to go on the run with her recently paroled outlaw boyfriend who is being chased by hitmen hired by her mother. Yeah.
Of course, I can’t really dress like Lula during my couchsurfing adventure. First of all, I have to go to work without being arrested for indecent exposure. Also, it’s freaking cold in San Francisco, unlike summer in New Orleans and Texas, and lace leggings with a leather bra are not going to keep me warm. I might need to find something more like this:
For right now, I’m relying on a couple dresses and the kindness of strangers.