I did something. I think I should be proud or maybe not.

I made someone throw away all of their clothes. Everything. Shoes. Short sets (I'll get to that later). Everything. Shoes. Dress clothes.

So here's the back story. I have this wonderful cousin whom I LOVE dearly and will literally cut somebody if they looked at him the wrong way. He is THE most adorable, spiritual guy under the age of 30 that I know. I honestly believe that he wakes up each morning with a smile on his face and it carries throughout the day. Point being, he is a great guy but dressed bad...really bad....really really bad. His clothes did not match his personality and that was unfortunate because everybody loves him.

Now, as his cousin, I knew that he wasn't that into clothes and always went for the cheapest and most comfortable clothes. I was accustomed to it. It would be nothing for him to rock a SHORT SET to a family gathering...WITH a matching hat. I just figured, hey that's just him. The older we got, the older his clothes looked. He is only 28 I think and dressed every bit of 40. Not good.

So, we had a family gathering recently and in came Cousin with the most beautiful smile on his face and the most beautiful spirit glowing from within paired with velcro sandals and a plaid short set.

I literally couldn't take it anymore. I had to save him from himself. How could I claim to be into style and let someone with the same DNA as I represent my lineage like this? Someone had to love him enough. Something had to be done and I was just the one to do it. I thought about it all night and was trying to find a way to approach him without feeling embarrassed. I didn't want to come across as being mean because as I said before, I will cut somebody if they hurt him...including myself:)

So, I bit the bullet and counted on him to be as he always is, sweet and appreciative. I called him and started off with I loved him but something had to be done with his style. To my surprise, he was all for it. Actually, he literally said that he was grateful that I thought enough of him to help him. That immediately put me at ease and the wheels started turning.

I went straight Rambo on him. I told him that I would help him shop for a whole new wardrobe for under $200 (funded completely by him) but he must literally turn his current wardrobe over to me. I wasn't going to waste my time shopping with him if he was going to slip back into his old ways. He agreed and we were off. I literally don't even remember how many short sets were in his closet. I agreed to let him keep two of them but he had to vow to wear them as separates. He agreed again. This was easier than I thought.

I asked him to give up everything including his shoes. As he was looking under his bed for all his shoes...he pulled out an awesome pair of Chuck Taylors that had NEVER been worn!! WTH? Why would he choose velcro sandals over a great pair of OLIVE green Chucks?? He said a friend of his gave them to him but he didn't know what to wear with them.

So, needless to say, the Chucks were a keeper.

So we went to Ross, Old Navy and Marshall's and he came out a new man. We went to Ross and found jeans for 6.99 and 9.99. We found a great pair of Sketcher -Steve Madden-esque shoes. Old Navy ended up being a Godsend for shirts...cute shirts...we found button down shirts and polo-esque shirts for 8 bucks and under.

What excited me the most was how excited he was at the makeover. The more he learned the rules, the more excited he got at his own upgrade. Would you believe that he did not own ONE pair of blue jeans?!?!? Just regular blue jeans...that is crazy. I concluded that was the single reason why his style suffered from so many years. If he didn't have blue jeans, of course the next resort would be patterned shorts with matching shirt and hat.

So after hours of trying things on, schooling on the art of matching neutrals and giving countless pop quizzes...my cousin entered the year 2008 and he looked fabulous! He looked so great that he even bequeath another short set to me.

He understood the rules to finding things to compliment his shape and let me tell you, he has a great bod and I am pretty disgusted typing that statement about my own my cousin but it is true. His assets were his arms or the "gun show" so we focused on finding thin, vintage-y T-shirts that accented his arms.

I felt like I had done the world some good. I couldn't wait to see him rock his clothes at a function.

Because I am completely neurotic at times, I took pictures of some of his outfits. I posted some pics of his new look and don't believe the hype...the clothes DO make the man! The smile on his face was payment enough for me...well he also bought me a burger as payment and let me tell you...that was the best darn burger I had ever eaten!

I have posted pics of my dear beloved cousin with his blessing and I just wanted to show that you don't need a lot of money to look good! The most expensive shirt was maybe 11 bucks and he even went out on a limb and bought ANOTHER pair of chucks for 20 bucks at Marshall's.

I LOVE MY JOB...(If it really were my job)...but it made me happy. He has told me that he has gotten countless compliments and people immediately noticed a difference. It was actually really fun for him...he got the full attention of a personal stylist (me) and I got to completely be in control of someone's look which makes me happier than you know.

He was a great client because he was so open to chang. If I ever stumble onto a career of a personal style or as a low budget makeover queen...that must be the first thing that is understood...YOU MUST BE OPEN TO CHANGE...and I AM ALWAYS RIGHT!

Anyway, the moral of story is..don't be afraid to upgrade your man's (or cousin's) look.

Disclaimer: Don't upgrade every man you meet. Don't do it...reconsider...read some literature on the matter (sorry, that's a line from Andre 3000)

I digress.

Make sure he is worthy! Otherwise you will upgrade him and then he will start to feel his look too much and start taking pictures of himself and sending them to random skanks forgetting that he didn't come like that....true story:(

I posted some pics of the upgrade...and one before which didn't do any justice because what I really needed was a pic of him in the velcro sandals and short sets from Suit Mart.

Again, I love my cousin...and he looks fab.

(Forgive the background of the pictures...y'all know I am working with a camera phone...and yes that is a watermelon on the floor...we are from TEXAS!)

Ironically enough...My friend had a garage sale the other weekend and I threw in the infamous short sets just to get rid of them...WHY WERE THEY THE FIRST TO GO!! Go figure...this little Hispanic lady bought three short sets (some still with tags) for her dear husband. I hope she isn't reading this...what are the odds.....????....nah)

P.S....the Before picture should be pretty obvious...its the one with the shorts...I forced him to throw on the chucks to go shopping.) All of the shirts came from Old Navy and the jeans were from Ross.

Here's a little Beyonce': Upgrade You

By the way...if you were by any chance bored and wondered if I am still "not shopping" as I mentioned in a blog last month...I SUCK...I bought a purple clutch and accessories from the Charming Charlie's outlet store. I must say in my defense that I did say that finding purple accessories would be the exception. Does it count that the clutch was only eight bucks and cute?

Probably not huh...anyway...this is my confession...at least I am honest)


Anonymous said...

Ok OK OK. I will rock the skinny jeans, and when I get them you can post me on the net. I would love being part of the fashion show. I can't seem to find the right one. As you know 3 children later that those bumps and lumps aren't well hidden. I know you got my back girl.

The Ball State Grad

Reiko! said...

@ Ball State Grad

You have been wanting those jeans forever. They are hard to find. I still see you with the white button down shirt/belt over some jeans or khakis and of course some of your fab jewelry:) I remember in Chicago that you said you were never into the Wide Leg Look:)

We will work it out!

09 10