I should be on my way to work, but I’m still in the clothes that I slept in. In a few minutes I’ll go upstairs, shower, dress– but right now I’m dreading it. Why?
Because tonight I have to attend a fancy dinner.
I know, I know: poor me. I have to go to a fancy dinner. The food will probably be delicious. There will be dessert. Somebody else will do the dishes. What’s my problem? Well, clothes.
As you may have gathered from my last post, my style isn’t the most gender-conforming. I don’t identify as butch– far from it, in fact– but I do almost exclusively wear clothes designed for men. My gender identity is closer to sissy, maybe. Or dandy. Or rumpled teenage boy.
In any event, the dilemmas of female-bodied person seeking out clothing designed for men– clothing that is even vaguely flattering– are numerous at the best of times. Luckily, my formal wear challenges are usually resolved by my impressive collection of ties and bowties. I iron a button down shirt, pull on a sweater, pick a coordinating tie and am good to go. But now my wardrobe is in flux.
At 17 weeks, I don’t look pregnant– an aspect of body anxiety best reserved for another post. I am, however, getting fatter. The items in my wardrobe that are still fit to wear are dwindling. Occasionally I will come home from work to a gentle suggestion from Sea that a certain item be retired. But I’m clinging to what I still have. The one pair of maternity pants and one pair of maternity shorts that I’ve purchased lie unworn at the back of my closet. Behind the bowties, in fact. Maternity clothing simply isn’t made for those on the sissy-dandy-rumpled-teenage-boy spectrum.
My clothing modifications so far have revolved around advice from the genius, though short-lived, blog Preggo Butch Fashion. Pants fastened with a hair elastic, covered by a cloth belt? Yes!
But it is hard to elegantly tuck in a button down shirt into pants held up by a hair elastic borrowed from your partner. The elastic would show. Or the gap from the unbuttoned pants. Or worse, the shirt would stick out of the fly. Also, I’ve only worn jeans for the past several months. I’m not sure if the hair elastic trick will even work with my dress pants. It’s too warm to wear a sweater. I’m afraid the buttons on my button down shirt will pull. In short, I’m in the midst of a wardrobe crisis, minutes away from going to hunt desperately through my closet, and probably only minutes more away from lying slumped in a pile of clothes pulled off their hangers, loudly sobbing that nothing fits.
At least I have the bowties?