Sunday, March 29, 2009

Adventures in Trackpants and Sensible Clothing

Shopping bans are the flavour of the season. For some reason, the clever folk out there thought it would be amusing to torture us with new season goodies while at the same time telling us that restraint is the word du jour. I wondered if I could do it for a week, but quickly gave up on the idea, mainly because my partner just looked a bit wistful when I told him, like I'd mentioned a golden age sans-shoe cupboard I had once let him glimpse into but that would never come to fruition. The idea is, you buy nothing except food and pay bills, and find a newfound calm and possible inner glow in the reversal of your spending habits.

Bollocks to that. Sorry, not going to set myself up for abject failure. The rush from shopping might be shortlived but the glow you get from wearing your gorgeous new boots takes at least half a season to fade. Anyway, the point is, I sort of did succeed this week, without even trying. Sort of. See, we had nice family shopping trip on Saturday morning, in order to purchase (wait for it) sensible *shudder* clothes to take on our upcoming trip to New Zealand. Now, if you're not a sporty lesbian-ish type with a penchant for unflattering pants, the choice in travel wear is fairly limited. (Note: nothing wrong with lesbians, I just mean the minimally feminine). So, while I did not purchase anything sparkly all week (success!) I did end up purchasing quite alot. But it's rare that the Mr of the house is willing to go clothes shopping and even rarer that he spends more time in the changeroom/browsing the racks than I do, so I had to seize the opportunity and just make occcassional detours to Sportsgirl to refresh and hope that they had lots of nice warm and chic knitted beanies so I could avoid a flat polar fleece headwear option (they do, and I did. Phew.). Sensible travelwear surely counts as a must-have, right?

A few merino tshirts for me, a very expensive jacket for Mr and a cute set of matching gloves and scarf for Charlotte later, I was too afraid to check the bank balance. Then it dawned on me that we had just bought techy New Zealand-made items that are all the rage and apparently worth the price take right back to NZ. I'll spew if they have some sort of Southern Alps merino factory tour where you can buy half price items. The fabrics are all very nice and stuff, it's just they insist on making mostly butt ugly colours in yukky cuts. For non-sporty types like me, it doesn't work. How hard could it be to create something mildy flattering/fashionable out of these magical materials? (I'm sure the magical capes in Lord of the Rings were just some sort of Gortex. Sooo going to ask Frodo when I see him over there. Yeah.). Basic tees, yeah you can get away with. But pants? Talk about big arse factor (and not becuase I just have a big arse, seriously it was the pants). Coupled with a baggy fit and some sensibly chunky walking shoes, I know in my heart of hearts I would be warm, snug and dry, but the vainer outer layer could not cope with the feeling of looking and feeling le frump. So I put it to you, Kathmandu: for one, stop making your shit in China; and another, make something nice out of them! Men can get away with the sporty/outdoorsy/cargo sorta look. Some women can; most can't. Can it really be that hard?

Wait, it gets better. I also braved the techno dancefloor that is Supre again (sans child, she cried when I pointed it out so her and Daddy went ahead to order babycinos and wait), wrangled my way through the overstuffed rails to the Sporte section (seriously it's called that) to buy trackpants *hands rush to mouth in shock*. Stretchy ones with an overlapped waistband, as I felt this was the better option over simply showing up to my new stretch class in leggings and a crop top (eew). Though, some girls showed up to work at Supre in this outfit, so possibly nobody would notice. Or care, obviously. What's the hotline for the Fashion Police?

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