TEAM CHALLENGE! #onedresstoimpress

 @Marinatestino (IG)

@Marinatestino (IG)

This July esa members all over the globe took part in the #onedresstoimpress challenge which was started by Marina Testino. Check out this interview to learn more about Marina and what inspired this young New York based model, businesswoman, and fashion activist to create this challenge!

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Aly:

A friend of mine brought this challenge to my attention because she follows Marina on social media, knwoing I would think it was cool. Once I read about the intent behind the challenge, I got so excited about it and wanted to take it on myself. After I shared this with the esa girls, I was so happy that everyone agreed to take it on together! Thinking back on this challenge and how it went, the first thing that comes to mind is that it wasn’t challenging at all!

I had so much fun with this. I not only felt like myself every day, I also I felt like I could have fun with my outfit without putting in too much extra effort! This is why it feels so incredible when we choose garments for our wardrobe that match our personality and that genuinely make us happy when we wear them. I would rather have 5 pieces of clothing in my closet that are 100% uniquely my style than 50 trendy things that I mindlessly chose because they were “in”. When we invest in our style, it shows in the way we confidently live our lives.

I think another thing that made this challenge so easy was that I grew up wearing a uniform to school from kindergarten to senior year of high school. I was nominated for “most fashionable” just based off the accessories I used each day to change up my look. I’ve always had to make the most out of a small amount of garments to pick from. I have always been challenged to look different while wearing the same thing as everyone else.

Lastly, I just want to say I really enjoyed doing this right along with the esa team and it definitely made it much less scary to try! I still can’t believe I extended my 5 days to an entire month and still loved every second of it! I think the biggest thing I learned is that one garment can go a really long way and we should just have fun with our wardrobes and try fun new combinations and accessories as much as we can. I would high key do this challenge again in a heartbeat.

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Taylor:

I enjoyed doing the #onedresstoimpress challenge a lot! I chose to wear a short sleeve, pink and white polka dot top and black Tommy Hilfiger jeans. I loved not having to worry about what I was wearing in the morning, and didn’t even feel a desire to wear something else throughout the week. The most challenging part of the five days was the weather. Some days reached a high of 95, and one day I wore a pair of shorts that came as a set with the top to withstand the heat. I think the main thing I realized throughout this experience is how susceptible I am (and we are as a community) to advertising and trends. This challenge allowed me to slow down and be creative with the clothing I already own.

Julia:

I was so excited to take on the challenge with some of the gals on the esa team! Doing it together definitely made it less intimidating and way more possible. I found the challenge to be a fun and refreshing experience. I love creating new, exciting, and interesting outfits out of things I already have in my closet, so the challenge was a fun game and new take on that. The challenge really showed me that instead of getting bored of what is in your closet, with a little bit of thought and creativity, you can use your current wardrobe in a whole new way. Having to work with one piece every single morning, really reduced the time it took me to get ready. I didn’t have endless options to decide on and that truly was my favorite part of it all. Getting dressed was a lot less stressful!

Willa:

his was by far the simplest week of my life. The team can tell you too, I was worried about taking the #onedresstoimpress challenge on! To my surprise, the challenge brought such ease to each morning. Time seemed to move slower with the dawn of each day.

I was worried I might get bored or feel like I was sacrificing my style throughout the challenge, but the moment I chose my black linen jumpsuit, I had a bunch of accessory combinations in mind! I ended up not even wearing 4 of the combinations I had thought up. I’m sure given the entire month, my style creativity would have grown as opposed to stifle.

One drawback is that I took this challenge on during the first sweltering week of summer in NYC. Temperature hit 100ºF at points and humidity had my hair hidden away in a tight low bun for most of the week. The breathable linen jumpsuit, however, left me feeling cool most everywhere I went. Although, I would welcome the opportunity to take this on in the cooler months when I can layer up to the max *stay tuned,folks!*

Additionally, I had to dry clean my jumpsuit at the end, which does have an environmental impact no matter how “green” my dry cleaner claims to be. The same impact as washing and drying 7 days worth of outfits, though? It’s tough to do the math accurately enough for me to claim conclusively one way or another.

Overall, I know taking on the challenge cut my consumption patterns all around for and not just when it came to my wardrobe. I started taking a look at everything I said I “needed”... aka coffee every morning to function, and cut some consumption habits that weren’t doing me or others any good. I definitely got way more value than I ever expected!

Aurora:

My experience with this challenge might have been simpler because I had planned to wear all the clothes that I had packed for my month-long trip to France multiple times anyways. This first thing i noticed while doing the #onedresstoimpress challenge was that my mornings were a lot less time-consuming. I am such a perfectionist that my morning routine can sometimes tale up to an hour and a half if I'm not time concious. I always get caught up with the details of my daily look. Even if i were to set out my outfits the night before, it was still far less time consuming living in my week-long capsule wardrobe. It showed me which items I truly do not wear from my closet anymore - even the clothes I picked to pack because I thought they were my favorites. I learned that I REALLY need to downsize my closet and my intake of new impulse purchases - vintage or not. As soon as i got home I purged my closet of what I knew I didn't need and donated everything or gave it away to my friends. I know that without trying this challenge out I would not have really reflected about how much stuff I have or need. If you struggle with getting rid of old clothing I would reccomend this challnege - it offered a good amount of time for me to reflect and build my appreciation for the clothes I already have in my closet. I probably saved over 400 dollars by deciding not to go back to school shopping for new clothes this year, and create a capsule wardrobe out of the clothes I know I love and feel confident in!

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 Alex:

When we all talked about taking on this challenge I got super excited, but I also debated if I was able to go through with it because I love to find new outfits to put on everyday. When I finally found a garment I wanted to use and started the challenge it came so easily. It was so fun because I had to put in a little more effort to make this piece of item look a little different, but also unique every day. It was also so fun to show this to all our followers on Instagram - that it is actually possible to wear the same clothes all the time, mix it up and still look unique. By doing this challenge I made myself, and other people around me, aware of the fact that you do not need new stuff to feel new and trendy. We live in a society that over-consumes. We all need to take a step back and look at what we already have and realize that we have enough. That we are content with what we have and slow down.