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pink blouse 2
Real transformation happens only when the inside and outside of any person are one and the same. In other words, there is complete transparency. That’s just one of the themes in Dallas Willard’s book of theology, The Divine Conspiracy.

For anyone involved in social media, that’s a provocative statement that should make us slow down and think about what we’re doing—which is often building a façade of perfection or aspiration for others. We’re managing our reputations. Or in some cases, spilling the beans way more than anyone but God should need/want to know.

I admit that I’m guilty, in part because it’s expected. It’s called “conforming to the world.” That’s what the blogosphere is all about, isn’t it? In the kindest terms, blogs are the projection of ideas that makes us want to be, do or experience the world differently.

I could be having the worst day of my life or suffering from a heart that’s full of envy or strife, but I can snap a photo or post an update that makes it look like I’m sitting on top of the world, wearing some new acquisition. But acquisitions and “stuff” are a poor substitute for divine companionship and approval. That’s a fact.
pink blouse
Transformation and Fashion
Fashion is very important to me, but I hope it’s never the center of my world. In the interest of transparency, I’ll be completely honest: I am a very plain girl. Given the choice, I’d spend almost every day in a pair of trousers and a boring blouse.

I’ve tried to swear off blouses in favor of more remarkable stylish statements. I’ve even given away several blouses, trying to limit my attraction, but I’m remarkably drawn to them, no matter how plain they are.

When I mentioned this dilemma to one of the most stylish women in my life, she suggested an alternative that seemed both logical and plausible: swath them in gobs and gobs of jewelry, a la Chanel. Or add a striking piece of statement jewelry. (I don’t think I quite achieved that here. It still looks plain to my eye.)

For people whose acquisitive habits have reached an advanced stage of pathology, it’s a good starting point toward transformation. Quit buying clothes. Turn to your jewelry collection and milk it for all its worth.

If you can’t throttle your inner collector, at least imagine how much less space vintage jewelry requires.

Here are two of my favorite vintage statement pieces.
Periwinkle daisies

duo of rose and thatch package
The pendant is a collage of vintage pieces, handmade by Karen Graham, founder of Rose and Thatch.  It arrived in meticulous packaging that makes me want to know Karen personally—a box decorated with sheet music and poetry. Hope is the Thing With Feathers, by Emily Dickenson.  I’ll share more about Karen in a future post. Check out her Etsy store, filled with eye-popping custom bridal necklaces—just beautiful with strapless bridal gowns. (Karen is also the winner of my latest giveaway, Vintage: A Novel, by Susan Gloss.)

The periwinkle daisies are made of heavy glass beads—another remarkable find from Queen Bee Vintage.

What’s your secret to making plain things look more interesting? I haven’t mastered this transformation thing. If I had, I probably wouldn’t be writing a blog that has at least a little something to do with how to make art out of clothing, would I? But I still have hope of transformation. Step one: understand why I collect more than I need. What about you? What are your transformation goals?

Hooking up today with my #secondhandfirst friends, hosted by the lovely, Bella, founder of The Citizen Rosebud. Stop by and get inspired to shop more sustainably.

Life is short. Wear the good stuff.