emilie | on creative expression & style
For many of us, creativity is daunting.
We learn early on that our ability to create is less advanced than many others. Nothing to do, we tell ourselves that we simply weren’t born with the inherent abilities to be creative. Best to stick with more logical and predictable ways of being and leave creativity to the artists, the ones gifted with self expressive talents.
A struggle develops as our desire to create does not subside. We yearn to be seen, yet we fear rejection and shy away from the experience of being vulnerable with something so personal. For years I had the desire to express myself through writing. I loved to write and felt a unique sense of being seen when someone would encourage this in me. I would often consider sharing my writing in a public domain but would hold back. I’d dismiss these desires, claiming they were frivolous and lacking purpose.
What I’ve learned is that we are all creative. Our mere existence proves that we are creative beings, here to make a unique impact. In each moment of our lives, we are shifting the makeup of the world. We are creative beings by nature - whether we choose to acknowledge this fact or not.
We have the right to create and need no permission.
Once we accept creativity as our birthright, we begin to play with creativity for the sake of it. We let go of the need to gain recognition or acknowledgement and simply do. We stop asking “Why?” by reminding ourselves that we need no logical explanation. Creativity isn’t linear, it isn’t logical. It isn’t about approval or being celebrated. It’s about fulfilling our personal desire to express our unique selves imaginatively and experience our ability to make something from nothing. We do it because it feels good. We give ourselves permission to paint.
For this week’s post, I went to a close friend of mine whom I deeply admire for her ability to express herself fearlessly while simultaneously activating self expression in others. Emilie emanates self expression with her every move - it spills over in such a way that draws you in and makes you curious. She celebrates others so genuinely that their uniqueness is reflected through her eyes.
I adore her and am thrilled to share her personal experiences with self expression through the medium of style. It demonstrates how creativity takes shape in a wide variety of ways. It is, and should always remain, personal and intimate. There is no one-size-fits-all.
Painting with style
author: Dear emilie g
Stylist, blogger, digital strategist
Inspiring others and impacting others with your ideas, your experiences, your adventures, your outlook and vision is a goal for many. But, having that same impact and inspiration for our own person seems almost unreachable. As a society, we tend to do things that are expected of us, that are already written for us and carving your own path seems to be an oddity and the “difficult path to take”.
I can attest to that. At the start of my career I thought I had it all – a car, my own apartment, a government job, a good salary, and all of this in the most beautiful city in Canada but, boy, was I unhappy. Through the shambles that I thought was my life, the only thing that I could do was try to motivate myself and to think creatively. My way of doing that was through clothes and style.
It’s through style – the creative and personal expression of fashion – that I was able to express myself in a time when words couldn’t motivate me or make me feel better.
Experimenting with clothes and style has been the only constant in my life. Growing up, I moved around many times for my dad’s job and the one thing that I owned and could refer to during every transition was my wardrobe. It has been the crux of my ever-changing life and it has been my personal source of inspiration. When I’m down, I make outfits. When I am happy or excited, I make outfits. When I need a change, I make new outfits. Sometimes with new clothes, most times with the clothes I already own. With my clothes, I paint. I paint a picture of who I strive to be – a better person everyday.
This self-expression method that acts as a creative outlet for me is personal to how I see clothes and style but it can and should be like this for anyone and everyone. Often we think of clothes and style as a superficial yet necessary fact of life. This contradiction between superficiality and necessity that comes with talking about fashion and clothes is so overrated. It’s time to look at style as personal and at your clothes as art and a mode of self-expression. Mostly, it’s time to look at style as a separate entity to body image.
After realizing that clothes and style could have such a strong impact on myself, I decided to expand on this passion and new understanding of myself with others – through personalized wardrobe consulting and outfit-making. After delving into many women’s closets, the one thing that stood out is that as women, we are very hard on our bodies and ourselves (shocker, I know!). We are expected to look a certain way, to act a certain way and to not care about certain things all the while caring strongly about everything. That gets exhausting! Every woman I have worked with has her insecurities – all of them have extremely different bodies yet everyone has something that they want to change. I can tell you with the most confidence in the world that all their bodies (and yours!) are perfect. All of them.
And that’s when I realized that the reason why style and fashion seems so unattainable for many is because of the societal pressures and negative body image that women have been dictated to have.
It’s sad to think that having a positive body image is frowned upon in our society. To change that, we need to look at style and clothes as a way of ending or altering this detrimental cycle. I can assure you that by disassociating your insecurities about your body with the clothes you wear, you can change, craft and express your true self. Fashion is one thing and style is another. Fashion is an institution and I’m not telling you to buy into it. Style is personal – it’s your expression of yourself and I am telling you to explore it and to think about it. By making a conscious effort to accept your insecurities, find your voice and express yourself, you’ll be able to go through things that you never thought were possible. I guarantee you. It worked for me!
With that in mind, and with 2017 ahead of us, let’s paint together and change this boxed-in mindset so detrimental to so many women. Let’s collectively express our personal style to uncover even more truths about ourselves. Let’s motivate ourselves, make an impact on ourselves and inspire ourselves to be the best version of ourselves.
Let’s take that strength and inspire, impact and motivate others. Let’s find ourselves – that’s stylish!
Want help and inspiration to go through the steps of experimenting with your style? Follow me on www.dearemilieg.com. Let’s take on this challenge of self-expression together!