PHOTO: Left to Right, Our childhood friend and adopted sister Kendra, Me (Shelby) and Haley
"My name is Shelby and I have a little sister I’d like to tell you about, well more like about us. First let me tell you about me. I am shy, not frightened to speak shy but quiet, I am also 5’2” with crazy bohemian waves and thick caramel blonde hair. My 'little’ sister, Haley, and I are 2 years and 9 months apart. I say ‘little’ because she is 5’9” tall, she has dark brown hair with amazing kinky curls, the kind women cry over because they can’t ever have curls like hers. She loves to wear heels and is and always has been super stylish.
From an early age I looked up to my sister, seriously I think we were the same height when I was in the 6th grade and she was in 3rd. We also moved that year and had to change schools. The dynamic between Elementary School and Junior High is insane. There is almost a protective bubble still in Elementary. Let’s just say I didn’t fit in with the new cliques so I got comfy in my blue jeans, tee shirts, glasses and art class.
In high school, I had figured out a way to be a wall flower for the most part and was kind to everyone. I was still wearing those same tee shirts and blue jeans…my sister on the other hand went from Junior High Cheerleader to Freshman Cheerleader. Always willing to tell people what she thought and very loud. My teachers couldn’t believe we were sisters. She was popular, in with the cool kids. She dressed cute, halter tops, but never skirts. Her legs are so long she was self conscious about not only the boys AND girls would think if she wore a short skirt but if she would get in trouble from Administration.
One night in high school, (by the way, we went to the same university too) I told her that she had no idea how lucky she was to have beautiful curly hair. She responded with you don’t know how lucky you are to not be towering over all the boys. We were so even. It never occurred to me that my size was an advantage when dating. She was taller than any boy she had ever dated. She loved that I could wake up and decide to curl my hair, leave in natural or straighten if I wanted to, whereas she needed at least 2 hours to flat iron her curls. She is tall, lanky and model-esque. I am short, a bit stockier and fairly average. Haley’s closet was always full of cuter, dressier and more daring clothes. Mine was full of tees.
I am in my mid/late 20’s and like to think I now know a thing or two about fashion and style. Clothes that make me feel pretty and confident. Something I call bohemian casual. I crave native designs and natural fibers. You can find me in skinny jeans almost any day of the week. I wear moccasins and roman style sandals. Cardigans are a natural part of my wardrobe. Maxi dresses are about as dressy as I get. I like clothes that fit me, Hourglass me. I frequently wear those skinny jeans I was telling you about with a tee or tank. If it’s cool, I throw on a cardigan and call it a day. There are always days I wish I had this or that or the cool new thing but it’s the classics that make me feel confident. A chambray oxford and dark indigo skinnies with moccasins are my jam all day pretty much any day.
Haley’s style is different than mine and it’s ok. She dresses for her career and is very professional; what she wears makes her confident. She has an an important job and needs to look it. However, our evening and weekend wear is the same, sweat pants and tees.
WHY does it matter if my clothes make me feel good? Because it’s how we feel in what we wear that gives us the confidence to do our best job. No matter where you are or what your doing. If what you wear that makes you confident and do well at whatever you do, then it is important. It’s not about ‘fitting in’ it’s about showing how you are through your clothes, style and accessories. Fashion is an art and it’s for everyone. How we use fashion to embrace our bodies and show off who we are is different for everyone."
- Shelby from Shelby Clarke
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