Three tips to help you discover your personal style
The term ‘signature style’ conjures up images of a certain Vogue editor arriving at fashion shows, but discovering your personal style isn’t a privilege solely reserved for celebrities.
Even though we may not actively realise or embrace it, most of us already have a signature style. Regardless of whether you’re after a whole new way of dressing, or just a more streamlined way of getting dressed each morning, here are the three ‘Rs’ to uncovering which works best for you.
Before you get too excited and rush to the shops waving your credit card, finding your signature style is not synonymous with spending a lot of money or buying a whole new wardrobe. Rather, the first step is to learn how you wear your clothes, and figure out what you like and don’t like to wear.
While you might think you know these things, you’d be surprised in the difference between how you think you dress and how you actually do.
An easy way to discover this is to put a spare clothes rail in your room for a month and put everything you wear on it. By the end of the month you will have a very clear idea of what pieces form the backbone or ‘uniform’ of your wardrobe.
Make sure you note why you didn’t wear the pieces that are left in your wardrobe too – while some of them may be for seasonal reasons, it’s likely the rest either don’t fit properly or you don’t like them or feel comfortable in them.
Another method is to create a ‘mood board’ of your style. This is best done on Pinterest. Start a page dedicated to style and pin outfits or items you like to it. At the end of each month stop and look back over it to get a sense of what your signature looks may be. Make sure you consider your body shape and which silhouettes are most flattering on you – you should soon be able to identify which ones you should rely on and which you should avoid.
Regardless of how careful you may be, wardrobes have a way of secretly growing without you even realising. Even as someone who loves fashion and shopping, I have to say the idea of a capsule wardrobe is becoming more appealing to me – particularly as I spend longer standing in front of my wardrobe each morning, struggling to choose what to wear.
Once you’ve worked out how you actually wear your clothes, and what you like and dislike wearing, try to do a ‘cleanse’ and get back to basics.
Technically a capsule wardrobe should be 50 items or less, but anywhere in this ballpark is a good starting point. You don’t have to throw everything else out – rather, put it away in storage. This will help to show you what you reach for, what you forget about, and what is missing that would still complement your current wardrobe.
While you should now have a much clearer idea about your personal ‘look’, the process doesn’t stop here. In order to ensure you stay true to your signature style, you’ll need a constant source of inspiration, so you don’t get bored or ‘tired’ of your outfits.
Identify celebrities who have a similar body shape to you and look to them for inspiration. Look beyond celebrities when it comes to finding your style icons, too. Inspiration can be found anywhere, from someone you work with or know, to a blogger or even a family member.
Work on the colours that suit you best – read up on what is best for your skin tone and hair colour. Take note of colours that accentuate your complexion and those that wash you out.
Identify key pieces missing from your wardrobe. Shop around to invest in quality items that you’ll wear for years to come instead of pieces that are unlikely to see the season out.
Following these three steps should not only help you to discover what works best for you when it comes to getting dressed but also allow you to hone in on your style and truly own it. It should also save you money when it comes to shopping – even more of a reason to step out with confidence and a big smile!
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