Outfit of the Day has become a huge feature on social media, with bloggers, vloggers, influencers and a lot of my friends, regularly posting pictures of themselves or their children, looking fabulous, standing in the perfectly decorated ‘Instagram corner’ of their home, posing in their finery. Personally, I don’t do it, for several reasons really:
1. I hate looking at myself in the mirror and hate posing for photographs, so why would I photograph myself in the mirror??
2. I don’t have an Instagram corner in my house – all of my corners are full of cobwebs/nerf bullets/hairclips, with the skirting board in need of a good hoover and a slightly dodgy stain on the wall.
3. My arse has gotten so round in recent years, it probably wouldn’t fit in a corner, I would need a bay window instead and I never went for bay windows as I thought getting curtains for them would be too much hard work.
4. I can barely get my children to keep still long enough in the morning, to get them dressed, never mind photograph them. Generally, within 5 minutes of getting them dressed, they are covered in either crumbs/toothpaste/snot or some other unidentified mark, that I hope will wear off as the day goes on. I worry the stain will cause their teacher to think I’m a bad parent, so I don’t want that level of judgement from the world of social media too!
So, I have to be honest, this O.O.T.D craze has escaped me. I do occasionally look at other people’s chosen Outfit of the Day, but to be honest, I’m just not that into them. I do however love looking at people’s special occasion outfits, especially the more ostentatious ones.
One of my Facebook friends, outfits and make-up belong on a Paris catwalk, she is utterly fabulous, and her posts always catch my attention, dreaming of the days before I had children when I had the spare cash to buy a rail of new dresses and the body to look good in them.. Sometimes I even screenshot her as an idea for the look I want next time I get invited to a wedding (still dreaming}. I do hope that isn’t considered stalking!
My focus in this piece, however, is on a totally different kind of outfit of the day. With Christmas looming, I have succumbed to the latest seasonal retail pressure. I decided, instead of buying a chocolate advent calendar, that tastes vaguely of cardboard, I would this year treat my offspring to a treats’ advent calendar.
After a particularly challenging year in our household, I even managed to convince my husband that we would buy them, rather than lie to him and tell him the grandparents got them.
Saoirse being almost 13 is getting a beauty calendar, I picked one with nail varnish I like the look of, that we can ‘share’. Patrick is getting an educational Lego calendar, as Lego is the only toy that has a calming effect on Patrick, this is a practical and therapeutic purchase, worthy of the price tag.
My 6-year-old Erin however, is getting the LOL doll O.O.T.D calendar. One tiny plastic doll and the 24 pieces of accompanying crap, that will no doubt end up further littering all of my potential ‘Instagram corners’.
Seriously who invented this shite! In an age where most us, barring a few oil magnates, are committed to vaguely trying to be environmentally conscious. LOL arrive in an orb of plastic that is 12 times their actual size, packed full with their mini accessories that would put Celine Dion to shame (she is the Imelda Marcos of the 21st century having not 3,000 pairs of shoes, but 10,000, most of which are in storage.)
Each accessory is carefully wrapped in layers of more, cheap, neon plastic, padding out the offending orb, to make you feel like you are getting a lot of stuff and therefore, value for money. You aren’t! They are a total rip off and probably have a greater negative impact on the environment than a radioactive waste plant, no doubt doubling landfill deposits in the week following Christmas.
But who is truly at fault here? The mass marketeers of this 8cm crime against the ocean, or us, for buying them? I have to be honest I have had this battle with my conscience for the last 2 months, as every item on Erin’s Santa letter is pre-fixed with the word LOL.
She and her friends all talk about them incessantly, and have the cute names of each one memorised, knowing who has the pink hair with the blue stripe, versus the blue hair with the pink strip. They do all of course come with an even more miniature, Lil’ LOL (baby) and a pet, obviously teeny tiny dogs are again making a comeback as a fashion accessory. I thought we were done with all that, when Paris Hilton fell off the face of the earth.
But as Erin’s obsession has reached the point of naming one of our chickens after an LOL doll, Hoops MVP, I really have to waver from my environmental commitment for just a little while, until after Santa visits. It’s a battle between being, ‘Mother Nature’ or ‘Best Mother Ever.’
Let’s be honest, Christmas is a huge environmental quandry for most of us. We know that so much of what we do from trees, artificial or spruce, jumpers with all of their dangly bits and useless crackers are indeed environmentally catstrophic, but they are traditions that are hard to break and would Christmas be the same without a colourful paper hat and a crap joke about penguins? I take some consolation in the fact, that Santa’s magic means his sleigh doesn’t leave a carbon footprint.
I promise, that by way of compensation to the environment, in 2020, I’ll only use canvas bags when shopping, and do my absolute best to actually remember to take the metal straws, I bought last year, out of my handbag whenever I buy a smoothie.