One Day, 2010
It was another cold, dreary day in London, and yet again, I found myself traveling down a packed Jubilee Line on the London Underground. With my bag strapped across my body, laptop bag and umbrella in tow, I fumbled the free paper searching for something to read. I was just starting out as a graduate and searching for my calling.
The train pulled into Baker Street and the people standing in front of me shuffled their way out of the carriage. As the commuters vanished one by one, a woman sitting opposite emerged into plain sight. She was probably in her late 40s. Her blonde hair was tied neatly into a bun, held together with a simple gold clip. Her green-blue eyes shimmered, as she looked fixedly into her phone.
Her clothes began to catch my attention. She wore a tweed peacoat in different shades of brown, over a well-fitted white polo neck and beige flared trousers. She was sure of herself, confident. As she crossed her legs, it was hard to not notice the glimpse of red bottoms from her black heels. She wasn't afraid to mix and match affordable and luxury items and appreciated style and quality over both. What was she up to? It looked like she was on her way to work, so perhaps she worked for a fashion house or taught fashion at one of London's colleges. She might even be a business owner in the West End. At this point, I was in full flow of getting to know this woman – not through conventional means but through her attire.
As I continued to stare, I started to notice the little trinkets and how they lifted her outfit. Meticulously chosen pieces of jewelry that were embellished across her outfit. The pearl stud earrings came first, with their natural white luster – she preferred timeless elegance over the latest trends. As my gaze moved downwards, I noticed an elegant choker adorned with pearls and gold-plated leaves. This was complemented by a gold necklace with a maidenhair pendant. She's had her ups and downs and she embraced them, graciously. As my gaze moved further down, her layered bracelets came into view – some of beads and some of chains. She was a sentimental person and she held on tightly to her memories. As I looked up, I found her green-blue eyes staring straight into mine. She had caught me. She simply smiled and went back to reading from her phone.
I didn't know her and I never will. This gracious woman left a lasting impression on me. From this fleeting encounter, she taught me important lessons in life and inspired me to live better. I've chosen to love openly, make mistakes, embrace my past, and to dress well. In fact, I think it's more important to dress well when you're down in life. It's called self-love. No-one owes it more to you than yourself, so practice dressing well and practice self-love.
I hope this story will inspire you, and if not, it's helped you pass time on the way to work. To all the women out there, leave a lasting impression with the right outfit and don't neglect the transformative power of jewelry. This is the reason why I started J.Bubs and I look forward to bringing you all the best trinkets to transform your outfits and tell your stories.