There's this weird thing, that when someone looks really stylish & confident, you can kind of think that they're better than you- especially if they're also really nice or funny or interesting. Success is actually such a strange thing when you think about it.
Before I started this fashion business, I felt pitched against other girls to look the way the world says in order to appear successful. The most 'successful' people in school were the pretty, fashionable, confident, rich kids. Feeling like other people think you're a success not a failure makes you feel good about yourself- but how crazy is it that a human being can be seen as a failure- someones daughter or son.
It seems a bit like, now were older, we have a bigger stage to impress- it's not just other school kids any more, it's everyone.
But we all know that this success that 'the world' demands, isn't really success, yet we still go along with it, because, after all, we are 'the world'. Once everyone thinks you're really successful, does that make you successful? If we either strive or settle for looking successful, then we're just fooling ourselves.
I watched two films recently: Jeff, Who Lives at Home and The Giant Mechanical Man.
I don't want to spoil these films, but both say 'you don't have to be what the world expects'.
My dad works a lot. He's probably not trying to look successful, he's going to be 60 next year, and doesn't really have anyone to show off to anyway. But it is heartbreaking for me because from my point of view, he has heard, all his life, that you need money to be happy. This was also confirmed to him when he found years of trying to strive to get some pay absolutely miserable- so I don't blame him. I just wish he knew that happiness is a choice. As are most good, valuable, true things. I wonder if he thinks he is successful.
So my dad is a 'Printed Electronic Circuit-board Designer', so he's very clever. He's freelance, and the last tax return he submitted was based on him estimating that he works 116 hours a week. You might do the math and think this is impossible, but he could even be rounding down. If he worked normal working hours then his brain and body would be more productive anyway, but he can't.
I've dreamt of earning enough to give him a massive retirement present or to win the lottery and give it to him. But even if he got lots of money now, we can't use the money to make it so that he had been happy, relaxed and peaceful his whole life so far, and he would still be poorly. I'm sure he has liked a lot of his life, he loves my mum, has had three daughters and loves comedy, music and gadgets. There's a lot of good, but I still think that it can be 100% good by choice- even through pain and suffering. Money just isn't success.
One of the brilliant things about having your own fashion business, is that you can wear your own clothes that you've made yourself. This gives me the feeling of not being in competition any more- as if I'm set apart from the competition of looking good- not that I look the coolest, but that it doesnt matter to me anymore. I didn't know that that would happen, but I think it's because I enjoy the making and designing, and so the clothes are made by me and for me, so the whole process is completely for me, not for others any more.
And when I make something for you, you must know I make it completely for you.
Don't buy clothes to look good for other people- buy them for yourself, and if you buy WAHP clothes- remember this post when you wear them!
We hope you have a wonderful weekend, and that we will see you at our Topshop launch in London on the 11th, to celebrate the spreading of WAHP love, and to make friends! If we don't see you there then stay tuned for pictures!
Sarah & Lizzie,