We’re all guilty of buying clothing we see in the store or on models because we love the way it looks, without putting much thought into how we might style it or pull it off in our real life. Far too often, this results in a closet full of clothes with tags still on because we’re either too worried we can’t make it work without equally trendy accoutrements or we’re holding off for the ‘perfect occasion’ to wear it. Well I say, “enough of that!” There’s no such thing as the ‘perfect occasion’ and anything in your wardrobe should be en garde and ready for action at any time, regardless of the occasion.
The reason the outfits we see in photoshoots and on cover ads always look so perfectly put together is because there is a creative director behind every look and every spread making the big style decisions. But you don't need professional stylists or the most expensive brands and fancy lighting to pull a look together. It’s time to be the creative director of your own personal styles, and I have a few tips and tricks to help you start your own journey to curating your own ‘perfectly you’ wardrobe.
Your purchase decisions should be made with your own personal style and real-life needs in mind, so take time to consider what ‘s going to serve you and what isn’t. Before buying anything, take a minute to think about specific ways you could incorporate the piece into your existing wardrobe. You’re building a wardrobe to serve YOU, not to serve any one particular article of clothing. So, if you find yourself saying “Oh this would be perfect if I had…” or “Now all I need is to find this to go with it.” then you’re probably well on your way to curating a closet full of unworn and unused pieces.
Your goal should be to create a collection of fluid pieces; pieces that adapt with you and grow with your ever changing and evolving self. So, choose items that will not only enhance your current style but will also have a role in your ever evolving style. Our outfits should be a reflection of our priorities and our everyday lives, so if you’re struggling to come up with at least a few very specific ways you’ll be able to wear an item, you may want to reconsider your purchasing decision.
Think About Versatility
Clothes should have to earn their way into your closet, not because they’re the perfect statement piece or because they’re this year’s biggest style trend, but because they’re going to be a team player. Start looking for pieces that are going to revamp the wardrobe you already have and will work with your existing pieces to create even more possible outfits, not pieces that are always going to need to be the center of attention.
Your closet should be as versatile as you are, so don’t buy “pants for work” or a “going out shirt”. Invest in multi-purpose items that can seamlessly transition between all the different yous. There are going to be times you’ll have to head straight from the office to fancy evening functions or date-nights without time for a wardrobe change, so invest in pieces that will be able to play agent as well as you do.
Don't Get Caught Up In The Mainstream
Following all the current trends isn’t for everyone. Not only can it be incredibly expensive buying new clothes every season, but you’ll likely always be outside your comfort zone worrying about whether you’re pulling off new trends you’ve never tried before. It’s great to experiment with new styles but we shouldn’t be completely starting from scratch after each Fashion Week.
Invest in pieces that transcend trends, and can be used in collaboration with the rest of your wardrobe to create any aesthetic, fit any trend, and adapt to you as your style grows and changes. Everyone takes inspiration from trends or people we admire, but it’s important to make specific adjustments to suit our needs and style. If you don’t feel confident in your outfit it’s going to show.
Follow Your Heart
Dressing is meant to be fun. Remember how good it felt as a kid to dress yourself, often to your parents’ chagrin? You spent less time (or no time) worrying about whether or not you were “pulling a look off” or if other people were going to like it and just wore what made you feel good. There’s no reason dressing ourselves can’t be so lighthearted as we grow.
I think we all have a “sixth sense” for our own personal style. Deep down we know what looks good on us, and more importantly, what makes us feel good, so, the more honest we are with ourselves, the more playful and easy building our style will be.
At the end of the day, building your wardrobe should be all about investing in pieces that are going to serve you, empower you, and bring you one step closer to becoming your ideal self.