Beyond Glamorous as a T1D

WRITTEN BY: Doris Hobbs

Screen Shot 2016-08-03 at 2.17.53 PMCall it destiny decades away. I’ve often felt I had truly been raised in an era that lacks glamour and glitz which can only be found in 1947 with Christion Dior’s “New Look.” From a number of afternoons spent delving within the depth of a jewelry box belonging to my namesake and grandmother, I cherished these carefree moments spent playing dress up and manifesting my current reality.

Throughout my youth to adulthood, it seemed foreign, almost ludicrous, to direct my attention away from a life paved in authenticity. For decades I knew Glamour was the trade I desired, from pin curls and ruby red lips to everlasting grace and class. From youth I was taught a few fundamental principles consisting of determination, understanding value and to dreaming big — you could say, I was a little girl determined to stand out from the crowd.

For me, I find you just have to surround yourself with stories. That’s how I feel when I play dress up in all vintage. I feel, as if, I am providing a poetic homage to the influential women of yesteryear, gifting life to a ritzy rhinestone brooch, pretentious yet practical dress or a millinery design that once was worn on the streets of San Francisco in the 1950s. Nonetheless, I’ve taken a wardrobe that showcases an infinite amount of history to the steadfast of today’s modern style with each piece I wear that tells a story.

My style story started at the age of 8 with the askew application of my grandmother’s red Revlon lipstick, I remember standing in front of her vanity mirror tossing my golden red locks over my right shoulder as if I were mimicking a scene from Sunset Boulevard. At that very moment a sense of glamour was felt, as the reflection of the woman I was destined to become shined before me. Finding throughout my early 20s, the only article of clothing I felt quite comfortable in came from a number of vintage garments found at local thrift shops. In many cases, I’ve always been seen as a glamorous Hollywood scarlet who possessed many European attributes, often being referenced to Australian actress, Cate Blanchett. That’s not to say I am always glamorous; few can be, and certainly I constantly aim to maintain such an appearance, but can’t say I awake in such awe. We are all human with flaws that without conscious intuition navigating our lives; at times we can be taken to unseen directions and uncomfortable situations.

doris hobbs 5For me, that moment came on October 22nd of 2014, weeks prior to my 33rd birthday as I was formally diagnosed as a Type 1 diabetic. During this unpredictable moment in my life, I, of course, wanted to do what many might have felt to be therapeutic which was to live in sympathy, self-pity and even doubt. But instead I decided to go beyond the autoimmune disease, not wearing it as a sympathy garment; instead seeking a way to refashion how others perceive such a life altering disorder.

With only two days after the nature of the news was given, I by choice found myself conducting an on location photo-shoot for a previously contracted client. That decision was the first of many to never label a setback as “failure;” instead I embrace each tragedy as a setup to promote self-growth, in addition prove that my capacities are without measure.

Through the empowerment of wearing vintage garments along with the unbinding strength each one holds for me, I’ve found each one to metaphorically represent a shield of amour providing me courage and confidence. My style journey has consisted of many moments: failure and beauty, while I’ve gravitated to obtaining a grammarian, yet glamorous life as an aspiring writer. Just like a security blanket a child latches onto for many years of their youth, I’ve taken hold onto vintage as my sanctuary knowing I am authentic, I am fearless, and can prove that there’s more to life beyond diabetes.

A Cinderella Story — A T1D Teen Pursues Shoes Design with Mentors from Vogue byShelene Knisley.

Doris Hobbs

On October 22nd of 2014, the vintage beauty states her life carried a new meaning and purpose, as she was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Doris has partnered with a number of international designers, luxury retailers, and premier founders to produce professional glamour editorials while elevating social presence through media exposure. She's also written a book entitled Confessions of a Job Whore. Visit her blog to learn more.