Not all women reach this, sadly, but I'd like to hope that many do. I honestly believe that most little girls (approximately 18 months to about 6 years old) naturally live in that stage.
I think I've touched on this moment in this past year. Now, I may have firmly taken root in it. Where fashion, personal style, self confidence, self awareness, and self acceptance finally become me. For a short while, I tried to go back to the way I dressed the last few years, where I didn't really care how I looked as long as I was presentable and acceptable. It didn't feel right. I really only lasted a couple days before I went back to the newer style I've grown into.
Here's the thing... My style is not to attract the attention of others; my appearance is just another artistic creation for me. It's a story, a painting, a poem. I sometimes wonder how others are interpreting who I am from what they are seeing.
There's this belief, that women dress for other women. I've heard it go even farther with "if women were dressing for men, they'd be naked all the time." But it was usually men that created the laws restricting how women can dress, and if no laws were written in regards to a woman's clothing, taboos usually existed (and were usually heavily enforced by men... though other women definitely had an influence on both).
For me, I don't dress for other women (or to compete with other women). It's not worth my time or effort. I tried it once (a friendly competitive game) and it was far too much work. I do sometimes dress in a way I know will garner some attention, but that's not the driving force.
The person I dress for is myself.
It's nice when the way I'm dressing is appealing to or appreciated by other people, but that's not my motive. I'm just me, I like me, and I have no reason not to express that fact. I hope that my daughter and son see this in me, and carry it within themselves as they grow older.