Monday, September 17, 2012

Behind the Seams: Mr. Spookshow's Haunted Closet

Here's a post I've been planning to do for a good while now, but just finally got the time to do so. Let's get into it!

One of the most common compliments I receive in messages on the internet is envy of my clothing collection. While I can say truthfully (and without conceit) that I do own a ridiculous amount of clothing, recently my addiction to sartorial expenditures has come back to haunt me. You see, while our house is in many ways fantastic, one area that is woefully lacking is our closet space...

This is all of the closet space that Mrs. Spookshow & I have to work with, and much as I would absolutely love to have a huge walk in closet, it simply isn't possible in this house. So, we share this tiny space, with our two halves of the closet in a constant border war. To be fair, my side is definitely the aggressor here, ha. (My clothes are on the left side in this picture, fyi)

Anyhow, it quickly became apparent to me that I'm outgrowing my space here, and seeing as I've already got an eight drawer dresser full of clothing as well. So, with steely determination, I began a search for closet space saving options. Enter the tiered hanger...

A majority of my closet space is taken up by skirts hung on thick white plastic hangers, so I felt the best place to start with the space saving would be to eliminate those hangers. I found this tiered hanger on Amazon, and while a bit spendy I felt the quality of the hanger made it a worthwhile investment. A quick count revealed that I had 24 skirts that I'd like to utilize these hangers for (and 30 skirts, total), so over the past few months I've slowly purchased six hangers.

Before I started the hanger switcheroo, I thought it would be fun to take some measurements to see how much space I actually wide up saving. Before the new hangers, the clothing in my closet takes up 32 inches of space from end to end, with my collection of skirts comprising 17 inches of that space. We can do better!

I took all the skirts out of the closet and into the living room, where I sorted them into six groups based on color, style, or just how I feel about them. Above is the pile of plastic hangers that have been replaced.

Eliminating the plastic hangers and replacing them with tiered skirt hangers has actually saved me a significant amount of space. All said, my skirt collection now takes up nine inches of space, which means I nearly cut their closet footprint in half. As for my closet, it's down to 24 inches end to end...

Closet space is likely to always be an issue for me for as long as we live here, but I feel pretty good about these first steps towards organizing it and saving space. Now's your chance to chime in here; let me know how you save space in your own closet!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

08/31/12 OOTD: Pro

Time for another OOTD post! This one is from last evening when I had a work-related meeting. Let's do this!

Necklace: Looted from Mrs. Spookshow
Top: JC Penney
Shoes: Target

This outfit may look familiar if you follow my Tumblr (you DO follow my Tumblr, right? ha!). Earlier this week I posted photos of the basics of this outfit on Tumblr, asking my followers there if they thought this outfit was appropriate for business casual, and what I could change to make it better. It's not often that I need to dress "business" at all, so I really don't have any experience in that realm, especially from the perspective of skirts and such. I no longer own any pants, and I didn't think shorts or leggings would be appropriate, so that left a kilt or a skirt. I knew the kilt would work, but it seemed a bit boring, and also I feel this skirt looks much better for the occasion. 

Before we go any further, here's the original photo posted to Tumblr:

Not much changed, honestly. I got quite a lot of feedback, pretty much all of which was positive. The most common suggestion was to add a necklace, perhaps something that could tie in my hair. I had a look through the jewelry box, but we just don't have anything screaming orange, ha. I did decide to add a necklace, however, and just let my hair be the brilliant pop of color that it is. Thank you every one for the advice and encouragement, I really appreciate it!

Here is a closer shot of the necklace, and by consequence, my face, ha. The shirt has a kind of metallic sheen that I'm not sure reads completely in the photos, so I thought I could play on that a bit with this shiny grey necklace. It also helps tie in my grey flannel flats I'm wearing.

So, with the added necklace and freshly painted purple nails, this business causal outfit was complete and I was off to my meeting. As I've said before on the blog, I'm a makeup artist and during the Halloween months I work for a major haunted attraction here in Florida. One of the many perks of my profession is never really having to worry too much about any strict dress codes. As such, this seemed like the perfect opportunity to really try to bring men's fashion freedom to a business setting. 

To be honest, I wasn't really too sure what to expect. Would I get reprimanded, sent home, or even fired? I can't pretend that I didn't worry about those possibilities (especially with a child on the way, so I need all the money I can get, ha), but I really felt that the look itself was solid and well put together, and at the end of the day I really felt that I needed to just do it ....

And nothing happened. I received nothing but compliments on the look from many of my friends, and that was that. I'm really happy about that, because I do not wear the things I do to seek attention. Ideally, I don't want my sartorial decisions to be any more out of place in situations or in people's minds than anyone else in the room, though I realistically know that at this point in time it often is. Skirts and dresses for men won't become as commonplace or accepted as women wearing pants or other traditionally men's styles unless we do actually just embrace it and start wearing it out, which is why I do what I do. Speaking plainly, the end goal is for skirts, dresses, tights, heels, and other currently female-gendered clothing to be normal sartorial options in a man's wardrobe. I feel like I pulled that off here.

Anyhow, to get back to the outfit and finish off this OOTD, it's time for some closeups of the shoes. 

I'm surprised at how often I've worn this belt. When I first got it I was very unsure of how to wear it, but looking back over my past OOTDs I've managed to find a lot of situations where it has helped an outfit. This skirt is one of my favorites too, as it's super sleek and comfortable. This skirt was actually made for me by Mrs. Spookshow, so it was tailored to fit my body pretty perfectly. I'm really glad I chose to wear it in this outfit.

I got these grey flats back in February when Mrs. Spookshow & I took our trip to Tampa to see Penn & Teller. Towards the end of the weekend my feet had had enough of heels, and I just had to go find a pair of flats (I had foolishly neglected to pack any). These shoes took a while to break in, but now they are super comfortable and although I often prefer heels over flats, I do find myself wearing these quite a bit.

Anyhow, that's it for this one. I've still got an outfit from a party last week that I need to post here, but unfortunately it needs a pass through the laundry before that's possible. With any luck, I'll post that sometime next week, so look for that then. Talk to you soon!