You can spot girls (and the occasional guy) in their ‘special Ibiza outfits’ (let’s call them SIOs for the purpose of this blog) a mile away on the streets, beaches and in the clubs of Ibiza. There’s an air of unease about them, as they shift their hems, adjust their busts, uncomfortably stagger on heels, bump their feathered headwear on doorways and self-consciously keep checking their reflections out in shop windows. Let me be clear here and say – I am not criticising girls in their SIOs one little bit. I am a girl with about 30 SIOs in my wardrobe, so I am not only speaking from the experience of watching this phenomenon as it struts though Dalt Vila on a nightly basis, I speak from the experience of BEING that girl myself. Let me set the scene: I am closer to Kylie Minogue in height than I care to admit. I do not ever wear high heels to help compensate for this fact. I have quite an ample bosom, which can sometimes make me look a little chunky due to my stature (or lack thereof). And yet I continue to buy long, flowing maxi dresses (the bulkier and more billowing the better) and kaftans, with a dream of floating through the old town with my long skirts trailing in the wind behind me, in the true bohemian spirit of Ibiza. The actual reality of my fashion choices is a combination of looking like a bag lady, a pregnant woman or like I am in a long nightgown from the turn of the century. And I know this, because I am constantly having to shuffle my hemlines off the ground, adjust the bust and self-consciously checking my reflection out in shop windows to confirm it!
Some other shining examples of SIOs include fresh-off-the-flight Brits, with lily-white skin that may have never seen sun, embracing the all-white Balearic trend without thought that it makes you look a little ill. There are the over-the-top bold Dutchies, who go all out with the Ibiza trends of the summer, not just wearing one, but combining them all at once – think knee high gladiator sandals, an pom-pom embellished kaftan, a cowboy hat, friendship bracelets layered up each arm and an oversized tasseled basket. Bigger girls wearing ultra-small denim shorts. Or Coachella inspired pre-teens getting into the Ibiza spirit with flower or feather headpieces and dripping with jewellery on the beach. The ladies of a certain age who don’t realise Taylor Swift style crop tops and pigtails don’t mix with less-than-Taylor-esque bodies. Why do we do it? Why do we continue to buy SIOs and insist on wearing them, even though we know in our heart of hearts that they don’t suit us? It’s because those fashion choices – even if they are not the wisest for our body shapes or age groups – represent who we want to be when we’re on holiday (or living) in Ibiza. Whether it’s a carefree bohemian babe, a sassy party girl, a yummy mummy, a bling-tastic dancer or a sporty surfer girl, it’s a form of escapism that really doesn’t hurt anyone (until we trip over our too-long hemlines and break a leg on the cobbled streets that is). Let me finish by telling you one other important thing: They may not get worn often, but those 30 or so maxi-dresses and kaftans are hung up with pride in my wardrobe. They make me happy when I open the doors and see them each day. I may even stroke the soft, beautiful, colourful fabrics on occasion. Because to me, that is Ibiza style. So what if the style doesn’t necessarily suit me? This is Ibiza and I believe we can all wear what we want, wherever we want, whenever we want and so I will continue to flaunt my SIOs with, well, slightly self-conscious pride, even if I am tripping over my own hem as I daydream! Photography by Ana Lui. Hair & make-up by Diva Borelli. The clothing featured in this blog do not in any way represent Miss W’s occasional bad taste and can be found online for sale here.