There were times when all I wanted was to be a Fashion person, and I felt there was a lot of catching up to do for not enough money.
I mean, €1199 for a coat + €800 trousers + €500 blouse + €650 shoes + €1600 bag = better wear that look everyday. But don't, because people'll eventually notice you're not that rich.
Luxury upcycling queen for the people, Marge Simpson.
But Tokyo's advanced capitalism was there to help me out with more affordable options, so I'd waste whole Saturdays taking the intercity bus to a luxury outlet far away; or visiting every new second-hand designer clothing shop I could find.
I rarely found anything extraordinary with an equally appealing price tag, but I still wanted to buy labels soooo bad - which means I wasted quite some money on a lot of not-so-great stuff… that I didn't even wear!
And why would I?
I was a student taking public transportation everywhere, and I didn't even like clubbing to justify buying so many killer heels.
I only got to wear my fancies once in a while, to try expensive cocktail bars with my friends. But since I couldn't own up to that lifestyle, I'd end up feeling like an escort every time.
But there's one piece I've never regretted buying:
My Comme des Garçons skirt - Spring 2002 collection, bought second-hand in 2009.
If it looks battered… it's because it is. I wear it often and I'm getting all my ¥30,000 worth.
This is the piece that preceded my kilt obsession.
That made me love fraying edges before I knew about wabi-sabi.
It's yet another proof I haven't outgrown my fondness of frills coming all the way from Cardcaptor Sakura's season 3 opening.
And it's also been a very reliable indicator of who I'll be friends with, by separating the hardcore lovers of design from the social climbers making fun of me in their stretch LBD from Mango and the Dolce & Gabbana sunglasses.
You do you, boo. I know you're trying just as hard as me to look the part you wanna play.
That said, I think I still wanna play Cardcaptor Sakura.
Impeccable construction, lots of fabric and I'll mend it again if necessary.