My friend, Jeanette, has a very interesting husband.

I’ve thought so for quite some time. You see, he gives her unsolicited advice on what to wear and when to wear it and has even bought an entire outfit for her when she wasn’t with him.

This made me realise that husbands come in two distinct varieties. The first type roll through life tremendously interested in bikes, iPads and the latest football score, without unduly bothering about what’s living (or hiding) in their wives closets. Fortunately for me, I’m married to this first character, and I must admit, it’s a very good thing. I can surf from new shoes to new purse to cooking spaghetti bolognaise to an evening dress to my ripped jeans and he’ll never notice, unless I leap into his line of vision and SHRIEK about the absolute fabulousness of my NEW DRESS. Otherwise, I could walk into the house carrying twelve shoe boxes, teetering under the weight and he’d say, ‘Hey, babe, have you seen the remote?’ Or, ‘Did you know we’re out of chips?’

Of course, there are one or two disadvantages to being married to type one. He wouldn’t notice if I ran around the garden naked, shouting ‘Hello! Here I am, wearing nothing but a silver bracelet and ready for luuurrvvve.’ But most of the time, it works. If I had a husband like Jeanette’s, I’d be spitting nails and swearing like a trooper.

Her husband watches her like a raptor, always wittering on about what’s appropriate attire for the trip to the supermarket or that the plunging neckline is not suitable for the pub quiz night. He even buys her underwear not kidding, and usually red or black. Jeanette appears thrilled by all the attention and lovely gifts he bestows on her. It would drive me to drink. I don’t know about you, but I feel a man who’s interested in woman’s clothes is well, odd. I’ve never met a straight man for example who can genuinely understand the brilliant cut of Victoria Beckham’s clothing line.

In my humble opinion, a woman’s closet should be a very personal space, a place where she can simply be herself, where she doesn’t have to follow anyone else’s personal agenda.

To be honest, I don’t think my husband even knows what’s in my closet or even where it is. He certainly has no idea I have ‘fat’ clothes and ‘thin’ clothes, ‘winter’ and ‘spring’ clothes.

Which is why I was not at all surprised when Jennifer Lopez divorced the odd Marc Anthony due to his endless enthralment with what she wore and when she wore it. According to those in the know (miles of gossip fodder) he threw all his toys out of the pram because her clothes were too sexy (hello, this is J.Lo!) and not ‘appropriate’ for a 42year old mother of twins. I know exactly why she did it – she was saying ‘Up yours! I’ll wear whatever the hell I like!’ If I had a body like hers I’d be shaking my booty up and down the red carpet. Just try stopping me.

However, all this being over particular about what your wife wears is an insidious form of control in my honest opinion and can only end in tears. Just remember, marriage is about devotion not about ownership.

And J.Lo’s moved on and we’re seeing a great deal more of her amazing body – you go girl!!

So tell us the truth women (and men). Does your nearest and dearest buy your clothes?

Does he know the difference between boot cut and skinny jeans?

Does he know if you’re an Apple or a Pear?

Does he buy your knickers in packs of five from Wal-Mart or pure silk from Victoria’s Secret?

Tell us! We demand to know!

You know I love hearing from you! Don’t be shy, you’re among friends and we won’t tell anyone – so come and share your closet secrets!

Oh, and Episode fifteen of Desert Orchid is out and Khalid in on his knees. Just say’in!


  1. I have a vague idea of what’s in my wife’s closet, but buying underwear for her is a no, no – she works for Soma (upmarket Victoria secrets). So don’t ask what I get for birthdays, Christmas etc 🙂


  2. Alright, so I’m not exactly your target audience with this post, but I’m going to have to call you out. I’m afraid I land somewhere in between your two types of men (oh, stop it, you know what I mean!). I am the straight guy who enjoys fashion. That’s not to say that fashion is my “thing,” because it’s not, but I do notice it.

    I also notice everything that my wife wears, not because I want to have a say in her choice of attire, but because she has an amazing sense of style, and a wardrobe to match. I always give my honest opinion when she models her latest outfit, shoes, or accessory, and it’s easy, since she looks great in everything. But if something doesn’t flatter her, I say so, and she appreciates it. Usually, she agrees.

    If I happen to know when an outfit is out of season, or is too “matchy,” it’s because I’ve been her husband for nearly fourteen years, plus a couple more of dating. We still engage each other. We still have actual conversations about current events, politics, and yes, on “how in the world did that woman on TV think her outfit looked good?”. The point is, my wife and I still like each other, and since fashion is one of her loves, I take an interest in it. Likewise, she sat through Star Trek, Thor, and Prometheus with me.

    For the record, my wife buys my clothes, I love cars, movies with explosions, and I’m a techno-geek, (alright, a just a geek). Oh, and I love women. One in particular. 😉

    • Awwww, Gregory,

      You are a wonderful husband because you notice her and enjoy her looking her best! And you most certainly ARE in my demographic audience. You might be the perfect partner. And although I take the mickey out of Hugo, we’re best friends too and have been married a long time. He’s amazing in a crisis, thank God. I buy a lot of his clothes too because I’ve a better eye, and he’d agree.

      Which is why he rolled his eyes when this post went up and asked, ‘So where’s the shoes I haven’t seen?’ Busted!

    • You’re such a sweetheart! I just love the fact that you guys still talk about everything and share interests. I have friends that have been married about 40 years (closer to my parents age, but act much younger) and they still act like newly-weds, laughing and talking and just having fun together. It’s awesome. 🙂

  3. My guy notices when I dress up. He’s a fan of sundresses and skinny jeans. But he certainly doesn’t buy my clothes. Well ok, he did buy me one Packers t-shirt for my birthday which is during football season. LOL.

    I don’t need him to buy me underwear because I managed an intimate apparel department for 2 years, switched areas, and now have it back, so I’m plenty stocked!

    I like when a guy notices what I’m wearing, but I have to admit if my honey was like Marc Anthony or your friend’s guy, I’d bolt too. Your clothes are an expression of YOUR style, why would you want someone else dictating that? Having said that, I do buy stuff for my guy, but only for his birthday or Christmas. Otherwise, he’s on his own too. And that’s ok.

    • Hello Jess,

      Yep, I must admit it’s lovely when we make an effort and they say ‘nice!’ But I couldn’t cope with being dressed like a doll and my friend doesn’t bat an eye. She just grins and says ‘he’s always been the same’ and I must admit she’s gorgeous and we’re all used to it now. He takes the ribbing he gets in good part.

      Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate it.

  4. Oh wow, husband Type 2 sounds creepy-control-freakish! That kind of thing would have made a relationship a non-starter for me, so yes, my husband’s the first type. He might notice something if it’s new or unsually sexy, but otherwise, one of my coworkers (also a Type 1 guy) summed it up perfectly: “The only thing guys notice about a woman’s clothes is whether or not there are any.” LOL! If I did the running around the garden thing, my husband would definitely notice. But otherwise, no. 😀

    • Hi Jennette, Welcome back!

      LOL! I like your coworkers comment. Sometimes Hugo does clock something ‘new’ – all I have to say is ‘This old thing? Had it ages.’ Of course if he reads this I’m in trouble!

  5. My wife HATES clothes shopping — she’s never been a ‘petite’ body type at all (she’s the daughter of a football player; rowed varsity crew in college with 180 lbs of muscle and could probably kick most men’s asses), and with long legs/short midriff/wide feet, she can never seem to find things that fit.

    That background sets it up…. I’m definitely more husband #1, but I’ll help my wife with clothes shopping because a) I hate seeing her beat herself up over it, and b) the longer we’re in the store, the longer I’m away from the remote. I haven’t done so much recently, but when we were early on in marriage, I would end up finding what she wanted when we were shopping together (after she gave me her list of definite things to avoid), and I’ve actually bought her stuff, brought it home sight-unseen and had her like it.

    I’d never be the controlling type at all, pisses me off when I see guys act that way. Or guys that are overly critical of their wives… shut up and let her be herself, you dork!

    And by the way, remote monster or not, if you were to actually “run around the garden naked, shouting ‘Hello, here I am……””, I can pretty much guarantee your hubby would take immediate notice. Subtle hints might go unnoticed, but a simple, forthright “honey, I’m in the mood…..” ought to be another to get his mind off the boob tube and onto… well, you know. Unless of course, you drop said hints in the 4th quarter of a game he cares about, which I think is just mean.

    • Hello Dan!

      Aww, I feel for your wife, I really do. People always assume women love to shop and I know plenty who hate it with a passion. It’s all to do with our expectations of how we see ourselves and how we’re portrayed by the media etc. I’ve two daughters and they’ve a healthy body image. One detests shopping for the clothes and the other knows exactly what works and advises her sister. I keep out of it!

      How amazing that she has you to love and adore her.

      Dan, I’d never interrupt his football. And I have ways of making him take notice …. just say’in 😉

      Thank you for dropping by and commenting, I appreciate it!

  6. Luckily for me, my hubby and I could both care less about fashion…or clothing for that matter. 🙂 It helps that we live in Florida and everyone goes everywhere in shorts and flip flops. We can always tell when the snowbirds are arriving because they actually dress up to go to dinner. I would definitely find a husband telling me what to wear controlling!

    • Hi Shannon,

      There’s definitely a difference between controlling behaviour and supportive behaviour as we can see by the fabulous comments from those amazing men above who adore the women in their lives! Love them!

      And how lucky are you to live in Florida! Could do with some sunshine here (grumble, grumble).

      Thanks for commenting!

  7. Girl, you are way too funny! My guy will notice what I’m wearing. He’s got this way of making me feel like a Victoria Secrets’ model even though I’m not anything like one. Lol But other than that, he’s thankfully Type 1, remote control, bike, pick up truck, caveman and all.

  8. Ha! Totally unique post, CC. And enjoyable. 🙂 My hubby isn’t either type. He has good taste in clothes and notices what I wear, but doesn’t judge—he’s the same with his own clothes. He’s not much of a techie or TV obsessor, unless animals or ships come on the screen.

    • Hey Tamara,

      Lovely to see you here! It’s interesting because my son is switched into how I’m feeling and what’s happening in my life as well. We’re bringing them up right! Actually, he’s pretty good with his sisters too.

  9. I have to say that my husband doesn’t fit into either catagory. I have always been a petite woman, so fortunately buying clothes has never been a issue. He loves how I dress and will always tell me how great I look, with or without clothing. He can be quite an octopus. Oh yes, he notices! He is such a kind, lovely man who loves to take care of me. I am spoiled Christine. 🙂

    • Oh my goodness, I’m laughing so hard here,

      ‘He loves me with or without clothing,’

      Aww, God bless him and all men like him. I think what this post has shown all of us is the great love our guys have for their women, clothed or not!

      Love it.

      • Christine, I think that we as women don’t really get how much our men are attracted to us. Yes, by nature, give them a problem and they’ll find the solution. That’s just how they’re wired. But even as we age, that is not the first thing they see when they look at us. So I’ve been told. Yes, I bought into that crap, but I didn’t like the alternative. LOL!

        • Karen,

          You’re so right! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve asked for a hug. And I meant a hug and it’s turned into something quite different! They are hot wired and he loves me even more than when he met me all those years ago and proposed after two weeks. I know, scary but so true. Methinks too much information has now been shared and I might be in a certain amount of trouble. Again.

          You kill me. xxx

  10. Great post, CC! I don’t have a hubby, but I can tell you I wouldn’t appreciate the type to tell me what to where, how and when. That wouldn’t last long at all! Hope you don’t get in too much trouble when hubby reads this. Quick! Hide the shoes! 🙂

  11. Jeannette’s controlling hubby would drive me nuts. And he wouldn’t still be my hubby because when I’m at home, I dress like a bum. My hubby is similar to Karen’s. He does get excited when I get dressed up, which is seldom, but he pretty much seems to see through the rags I love to live in and still thinks I’m beautiful. Did Karen mention octopus? Yep, that’s a good description. Even when I’m wearing my goofy costumes and skeleton makeup, it still doesn’t turn him off!

  12. Neither my husband nor I is fashion forward, but every once in a while, I ask his opinion of something.I’ve bought. When I do, he turns wary because he’s learned that certain words, like “outfit,” can be dangerous. Poor guy once told me a dress I’d bought was “age appropriate.” He hasn’t lived down that one.

    • ROFL! Oh My God, Pat!

      Bless him. I say things like ‘you haven’t noticed….’ and I can see him blinking frantically trying to work out, ‘is it the hair, is it the shoes, is it the rest of it…’ We don’t make their lives easy, do we?

      ‘…age appropriate…’ yes, your honey gets the gold star. Love it.

        • ROFL!

          Now Greg, you know you are one of a kind and have a head start on all of this because you are engaged and adore your wife and are interested.

          However, some of your brethren are not as clued in as you are. And it is true that perhaps men have a feeling of not being able to win. As you can see, our men love us just the way we are, slobs or not!

          But seriously, we women ask what you think because we know we have your unconditional love and approval, which means we trust the opinion of the man in our lives. Which is not to say that we are uncomplicated or perfect people. Nope.

          One of the things that’s struck me forcibly in this chat is the deep love, commitment and affection the men who’ve commented have for their wives, along with the loving partners of the women who’ve commented. I love this and it was so unexpected! Can you see why I write romance?

          And yes, absolutely, I’m wicked!

        • Hmmm… A keen eye for the nuances of love and relationships combined with a chromosomal predisposition to have a wicked side (don’t shoot, I’m just kidding!), yes I can see how that lends itself to writing some amazing romance.

          “Which is not to say that we are uncomplicated or perfect people.”

          It’s funny that you say that, because a major theme of my horror/scifi book is the unrealistic ways that men objectify women. One character bases his actions on the premise that the girl he loves is perfect in every way, while the other character blames everything that has gone wrong in his life on the inherently evil nature of women (it’s not me, It’s my character!). Both have very bad outcomes… I’m not trying to plug, I just find it interesting that such dramatically different types of stories can be thematically similar.

  13. Hi Greg,

    Plug away!

    Hmmm… it’s interesting analysing the age old war of the sexes and how a person’s skewed thinking or their unrealistic expectations of the opposite sex can cause chaos in their lives and I believe that holds true for both sexes. And the root of that is a low or non-existent self esteem caused by whatever trauma we as writers wish to give them.

    Contemporary romance novels tend to be criticised for their contrived and ‘formulaic’ themes, usually because the emotional conflict is either not well developed or strong enough to carry a whole book of, say, 70,000+ words. And since the genre is ever popular, breaking through is a challenge. The key is character development along with ensuring there are at least five or six valid emotional conflicts of varying levels of importance for the characters to explore and overcome or accept and come to terms with. The character arcs are crucial since they need to have defined goals right from the beginning or the reader could care less.

    Someone asked me recently – I’m doing an interview later this month – about the similarities between my vampire saga and contemporary romance and why I write both. My answer is the genres and the worlds in which the stories take place are dramatically different and have their own ‘rules’ but the themes running through the heart of both are exactly the same:-

    During a life changing event in their lives, two people meet, are violently attracted, overcome external and internal conflicts to realise they’ve fallen so madly in love with ‘the one’ that they put the needs and desires of the other before themselves. And the path to true love never runs smoothly for valid reasons. And the internal emotional conflicts must always take precedence over the external conflict in a romance – ALWAYS – and this is something many writers do not do or they fudge the hard part because it’s difficult to dig down deep and write it.

    In the contemporaries I need to keep an eye on my alpha males. Some are tortured, but most are incredibly self aware and know what they want and how to get it. When they fall in love they don’t question it, they accept it even if it’s tough or something they’ve never believed in. I can’t make them too aggressive or controlling, the modern reader simply won’t accept that and my heroines all are independent, successful women in their own right – always with a difficult past with issues that are topics affecting women today – which has defined them, made them, who they are and issues they need to overcome. I also need to keep an eye on the choreography and language used in the sex scenes.

    In the vampire saga, it’s set in an urban future where humanity has been decimated by disease and the earth’s polarity’s shifting from North to South. Add in magic leaking into our reality and anything goes, almost. My vampire alpha males can be as aggressive and controlling and as sexy as hell and no one will bat an eye. It’s like the wild west. Of course, my heroines are extra special too and more than a match since they’re all from a remote clan of witches called Untouchables and each has a unique skill. The first book isn’t out until 2013 and the relationship of the main characters, along with their sidekicks from book one, will be explored throughout the series, even though each book can stand alone, nothing like a challenge. And the sex scenes can be let off the leash a little, but again I need to be very, very careful with choreography and language.

    Sorry for the War & Peace response, this is what happens when I’m editing.

    And here’s the link to Greg’s book! It’s a good one!


  14. My husband occasionally comes shopping with me and he has great taste, better taste in clothes than I do because I don’t like shopping. However, on the few occasions when I’ve taken him clothes shopping with me, I drive him nuts. I flip through the clothes racks too fast and have to look at everything in the mall before I make a purchase.

    Great post, Christine!

    • Hello Sheila,

      You might hate shopping but you look pretty well put together in that lovely photo to me. You always make me smile back! Ahh, the old ‘check everything out in case there’s something better,’ obsession. Yes, I’ve done that too, usually when there’s a big event like a wedding coming up. When we do go shopping together we split up for an hour or whatever and go our own way. It works for us!

      Thanks for dropping by!

  15. I had a boyfriend who commented on my clothes, my eating habits, and my weight. That boyfriend was kicked to the curb. I have my gay friends to bond with about looking good and fret with over weight gain, I don’t need a boyfriend to interject himself there. I agree it is very controlling and for me fatal to a relationship.

    • Hi Kourtney,

      How’s the neck, honey?

      Good for you to kick a control freak into the curb!

      And that’s an interesting point about your gay friends because my girls have those too who are amazing and so do I – head slap – should ask them to come and comment but they’d cause chaos, lol!

  16. Hi CC! It’s on the mend. I can type and I’d say I’m 70% better than I was in June. 🙂

    It never feels judgy when a gay guy weighs in on my looks because they are my friend. Boyfriends should tread very lightly in that area. It’s hard to stay attracted to someone when they make you feel unattractive.

    Bring on the chaos! 🙂

  17. Your post on Susie’s blog brought me over here and I’m so glad it did! This is a great post!

    Believe it or not I’ve managed to marry a combination of the two husbands. Mine doesn’t always care what I put on and wear around and out of the house but he knows what’s in the closet and what fits and what doesn’t. On occasion he’ll buy me something new but has such good taste that I love what he picks out.

    But if he were to go so far as to dictate what I can and can’t wear… we would most likely end up divorced!

  18. Excellent post. I think I fall into the first type of husband. I try my best, but ultimately fashion blows right past me. (I’m a jeans/tshirt kinda guy.) I do notice the results of shopping though, so maybe I’m not completely out of depth there. As for the second type, I think it comes down to a matter of trust. I trust my wife’s taste, sense of decorum, her honesty. I do not attempt to buy her clothes, unless it has been put on a wish list somewhere (including size, color, shipping preference) I can however, name some of her favorite designers.

    • Aww, you’re the best type! And the ‘including size, colour, shipping preferences’ made me laugh, she’s my kind of woman. What I’ve adored about the responses from men has been how much love and affection you guys have for your wives, you want her happy, it’s brilliant that you’ve come here and talked about it.

  19. I love designer purses and own a few. If my husband had a clue about fashion and what a Louis Vuitton purse cost, the poor guy would have had a heart attack at what you could spend to carry junk in. Ignorance is more than bliss when it comes to my fashion and my husbands interest in it. Great blog. I popped over from Susie’s party.

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