by Yasmeen Ati
As a child I remember being captivated by the way people dressed. My grandmother's friends were some of the first people I was exposed to and they each had their own signature style — the way they dressed, spoke, and personality. All those components helped make them who they were. You couldn't separate one element from another and experience their true essence or the signature mark that they left on the world.
My grandmother had one friend in particular who used to wear an armful of bangle bracelets. She was a very expressive speaker and used gestures to express her thoughts. As she swung her arms you would hear jingle jingle jingle. She made music, she was like a human instrument who always seemed to fill the air with joy. I loved the sounds she made and remember visualizing myself as an adult also adorning an armful of bangles.
Of all my grandmother’s friends, my grandmother was the most stylish. I didn’t watch much television or read magazines at that age so I didn’t have anyone to compare her fashion sense or style with. There was no one to confirm or disapprove my belief. I just knew that she always looked regal, sophisticated, poised, and ladylike. Her appearance evoked a sense of pride because I knew I was in the presence of someone extra special. She also wise, faithful, spiritual, and kind. She cared about how she made others feel and she listened to not just what they would say, but what they meant through the pauses. She seemed to have the power to listen to the thoughts of your heart and soul. She understood.
I equated her sense of style with her sense of grace almost as if the two were interchangeable characteristics. Every time I saw another woman who has great style I would imagine that she too held the beauty of a sincere heart. Their style allowed me to see a piece of my grandma in their being and that would help fill my heart with joy.
From a tender age I understood that style was more than garments, it evoked emotions and represented a core part of an individual’s personality. I thank my grandmother and her friends for teaching me very valuable lessons.
If you are interested in receiving a Style Consultation or want free fashion advice, please email Yasmeen Ati at FashionStylist@EmergeWithStyle.com.