I feel that fashion is finally waking up. That designers are starting to consider the modern lifestyle and design clothes that fit in with our lives and worked out that the modern woman needs options. As Maria Grazia Chiuri, the artistic director of Dior said, “In the real world you need different looks. There are moments when you might feel more romantic, more rock ’n’ roll, more male, more sensual. Women change, even in the same day.” I love this quote because it totally aligns with my style values - authenticity and evolution. In our modern world our lives are multifaceted so will our style be. You will have a style for the office, for meeting clients, for work trips, and a style for hanging with friends and family on the weekend to ski holidays to sun holidays.
With so much choice available and varied demands on our time how do you define your personal style to make a good impression, build a consistent brand and feel like the best you?
I spend a lot of time understanding my client’s lifestyles, their likes and dislikes and what makes their heart sing. I use this same process no matter who the client is.
Step 1. Have a good understanding of what your lifestyle is like and the clothes that are appropriate now. Whether you are a young professional with a busy social life, a new Mum on maternity leave or a professional Mum with young kids who travels a lot, what are the clothes you need to fill all those aspects of your life.
Step 2. Now start collecting inspiration to discover what naturally appeals to you. I ask my clients to produce a Pinterest board of images they love so I can see what resonates with them.
Step 3. Then look at it analytically - are there lots of dresses, is there a limited colour palette, are the silhouettes structured or relaxed, are there masculine influences or is it overtly feminine? Focus on types of items, colours, silhouettes, materials and styling. Pick 3-5 key things that you consistently see for each of these categories.
Step 4. What is the overall theme? If you look at my Pinterest board pbennett1234 ‘Fashions’ my key words or phrases would be feminine, romantic, languid, soft, muted tones. Even saying those words makes me happy! You will find key words and phrases that resonate with you that may be the very antithesis of this. You will be your most confident when you look like YOU!
Step 5. Now look in your own wardrobe. The take a photo of yourself in your favourite outfits - even if you only have one.
Step 6. Now analyse it. Does it involve denim, or is there a masculine influence or is there an element of tailoring? What are the key items?
Step 7. Now write down how you feel in the outfit. Does it make you feel feminine, cool, polished, comfortable, sexy. How can you do more of this - the looks you love and less of the ones you don’t. What are the key pieces you need that fit with your overall theme and how you like to wear clothes.
Step 8. It needs to be fit for function. Remember you may have a different look for work than weekend as long as there are nuances of you (go back to the lists you made in Step 3.). Whether that is great colour combinations that make you feel vibrant, nice accessories to make you feel feminine or working with texture to make you feel romantic.
You now have key words and phrases that represent your style and you have thought about key looks and silhouettes that make you feel good. Keep your list and refer back to it. Remember it’s an evolutionary process - keep checking in with yourself to tweak it and refine it. This will keep your wardrobe tailored to your evolving sense of style.
If you would like help defining or evolving your style I would love to go on this journey with you. Please get in touch.
Penny is an award winning Personal Stylist and Wardrobe Consultant working in London and the U.K. who can help you develop a strong personal style and functional wardrobe you love.
Photo Credit; Harpers Bazaar.