General · work in progress · Writing

C is for Clothing

C is for clothing! That is, the clothes my characters wear. Usually, I don’t think about it all; I just have them wear whatever seems most sensible.

That’s just as well, because I start second guessing myself when I begin to actually consider, in detail, my character’s style. I mean, the current work in progress, the main character is a laid back, smart, charming guy. He wore jeans. I am sure he wore other things- a shirt, a jacket, but the only the article of clothing I mentioned was his jeans and only because he needed to take something out of his jean pockets.

But, later, I needed to really consider what he had in his closet. Was jeans too obvious a sign of a laid back guy? Too stereotypical? But I wasn’t thinking when I gave him jeans. So no. But what kinds

02-CityScape-Coat-Hanger-by-HookPegSupport-Cityscape-Art-1 of t-shirts? The kind with weird pictures and/or strange words or just simple, solid color tees? But words can be interesting. So what quote describes him best? What kind of pictures?

So, yeah, it was hard dressing him. But fun! And I still haven’t got his jewelry ironed out (he has a LOT of piercings).

But is there a wrong way to dress a characters? Do the clothes always have to reflect the character, even when they are not working? I want to say no, but I feel like I should say yes.

It’s just that clothes are a quick, easy shorthand for conveying who a character is. Maybe too easy, because it would be too simple to also stereotype like that. Question is, how do I avoid it?