We recently had our good friend Charlotte over for a visit (and I am so freaking excited to have her on our podcast!)… In the couple days she was around, she and I got to shred on mountain bikes a few times, chill on the beach, and chat all things #VanLife and being nomadic athletes over a few cups of coffee and possibly a few donuts as well.
And what we came up with is that it’s freaking difficult being ‘fashionable’ while traveling. And we’re both still trying to figure it out. But what I came up with, after pondering a few of the things we talked about, was that I’ve never really been about being overly accessorized or highly fashion-y anyway.
In fact—barring some days when it seems like too much damn work to change out of the really old sweats and sweater that I’m sure Peter secretly wants to donate to Goodwill because they’re so freaking ugly—I think I pull of reasonably stylish on a regular basis. It just may not be with that same polish that translates to a runway, or even to an office job. And I think that it’s a trend that’s catching on quite a bit with the women of my generation: more skincare, less makeup. More functional clothing, less added ruffles and bows and buttons. More movement, more ability to wear the same piece of clothing to the gym and to dinner. (Not, of course, that I recommend doing that without washing!)
In short, it’s a great time to be a low-maintenance type of outdoorsy person who still digs on fashion.
It strikes me that the cycling scene and outdoor scene has its own particular fashion—we may not be super stylish in a NY Fashion Week kind of way, but we are pretty stylish in our own particular sense. For me, that means a lot of neutrals, two accessories maximum (and one of them will be a watch), and a black faux leather jacket that I won’t give up bringing on every trip. My style runs toward black-on-black-on-gray (hello, #HealthGoth) thanks to a deep-seated love of punk rock and my angsty teen years. The athletic community trends towards more brights and pops of color, but that’s just not my thing (I like pops of darker, still semi-neutrals and the occasional jewel tone, but keep baby blue the hell away from me).
I think that’s probably why I still feel like I’ve maintained a personal sense of style, rather than shifting from punk as F to cyclist as F. Figuring out a blend of the two is still something I’m sorting out and refining as I get older and my tastes get a little less fast-fashion and more long-lasting.
(An aside: Thankfully, athleisure is ‘in’ at the moment, so leggings are a lot more socially acceptable, which makes it a lot easier to fit in wherever we happen to be.)
All of this rambling is to basically say that sure, we may not be wearing the latest and greatest on-trend items, but I think the outdoorsy ladies I know are all insanely stylish in their own individual ways. Are you comfortable? Do you feel like you look good? Boom. Done.
It may not be fancy, but it sure as hell is fashion.