Dressing the Part

I mentioned in my last post that last week one of my students told me I should start a fashion blog based on the best teacher outfits. I legitimately laughed out loud before I responded with my “oh dear, you are too sweet, but you should have seen me in college” comment.

Then this week, one of my students complimented my outfit and followed it up with “has working here just totally increased your self-esteem?” I looked at her kind of confused, not really understanding what she meant, when she continued by saying…”you know, because we always compliment your outfits and tell you you look pretty and whatnot…”

I don’t remember my exact response, as students were rambunctiously flooding into the room, but I did find myself thinking back to her comment/question throughout the day and the days that followed.

As someone who literally spent the better-part of the last four years in sweatpants and sporting a makeup-less face, my daily get-ready routine has definitely changed.

For one, I allow more than 15 min in between waking up and being where I need to be. (sleep sacrifice!) I also actually brush my hair, and blow-dry it when it is wet…I know, crazy right? Finally there is the makeup…which I have become reacquainted with and can put on in about 5 min if I need to.

On top of all of this, we have the clothes. I have ALWAYS loved professional clothes (like a weirdo), and now I finally have a reason to wear them. So yes, the gray pencil skirt I bought (with no where to wear it) in 9th grade from Old Navy has finally seen some daylight. As have my heels and other funky shoes that I’ve had since high school. (i.e. the last time I put thought into my appearance on a regular basis)

So whereas in college, people would legitimately not recognize me when I put on real clothes and did my hair and face (Yes, this ACTUALLY happened once, possibly twice) (And Katherine refers to this as ‘Friday Mel’), I am now channeling ‘Friday Mel’ everyday like it ain’t no thang.

I tell you all this because, apart from my long-standing weird obsession with professional clothes, the way I’ve jumped from one “same-yoga-pants-everyday” extreme to the “I get ready like a normal person everyday” other begs some sort of an explanation.

Maybe it doesn’t actually require being dissected like this (ahem they are just clothes), but I’m going to do it anyways.

Basically, I’ve totally just been dressing the part. In a time of such intense transition…(from college-student taking naps everyday to “doesn’t know what she’s doing 20-something” trying to be a HS teacher) the one thing I knew I could feel confident in was- looking the part.

My reasoning being…maybe if I look like a teacher, a professional, a grown-up…they’ll actually believe me when I stand in front of them and tell them they have a quiz on Friday. Maybe I’ll believe it. Maybe I’ll be able to do this.

Maybe by “dressing the part” I’ll feel like I am actually being a teacher instead of just playing teacher with my stuffed animals and getting to write on a whiteboard.

So why yes, I do love my professional clothes and my students’ compliments have made me smile…the outfits, the makeup, the hair have all been a way for me to fake it until I make it…a way for me to look good and feel good…

Photo on 1-16-14 at 6.54 PM

(Seeing as this post was, up until this moment, without a picture AND super wordy…I forced myself into putting my blazer back on and taking one heckuva head-tilt selfie before I wrapped this thing up and crawled back to where I really belong…in my sweatpants and my Hogwarts Alumni sweatshirt)

Look the part, feel the part, be the part.

Look like a teacher, feel like a teacher, be a teacher.

Of course, all the encouragement and support I’ve gotten from family and friends has helped too…



(And way more than the clothes…)

Pencil skirts, I adore you. Blazers, you make me swoon. Wrap dresses, there are no words. Patterned tights, you’re the cheese to my macaroni. Cardigans, why are you so amazing? Heels, it’s complicated…but I still think you’re pretty.

And for kicks and giggles…proof of my college wardrobe/appearance…that’s floam on my hands if you’re wondering, and the face is due to the fact that it was DEFECTIVE.


I’ll leave you with that…this post should not be this long.


(and BTW…my last post had you all commenting lots and lots…it was fun! so do it again if you feel so inspired!)




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