6 steps to find your personal style
6 steps to find your personal style
Like all worthwhile pursuits, uncovering your personal style takes time. For many of us, this process of discovery can often expose choices that don’t work, before revealing ones that do.
If you are ready to permanently file those fashion blunders away as research, and avoid making the same mistakes in the future, getting to know your personal style will help you to become more intentional with your purchases and gain a whole new sense of confidence.
If the goal is a beautifully curated wardrobe of items that make you feel like the best version of yourself, then finding your personal style might just be the key.
What is personal style?
The difference between someone who is fashionable and someone who has a great sense of style is the ability to place themselves at the centre of the equation. Their styling decisions centre around their own style ethos, and are not driven by the latest trend.
Of course there will always be room for trend pieces in your wardrobe, and why shouldn’t there be? Trends can be fun, inspiring and encourage you to try something new. But having the ability to select and adapt pieces to reflect your own signature style and tailoring them to fit you, and not the other way around, is a key part of uncovering your personal style.
Why do we care so much about defining our personal style?
Miuccia Prada famously described fashion as an ‘instant language’ for the way we present ourselves to the world. And she was right! Through our fashion choices we desire communication and expression of ourselves. In many ways it is an extension of our personalities.
When there is a mismatch between who we feel we are and the way we dress it can create a barrier for a strong sense of self in other aspects of our lives.
Where to begin
While there is no magic formula for curating the wardrobe of your dreams, you will find your personal style with much more clarity by following a few key guidelines.
Focus on feeling
Articulating your style can be difficult, especially when you are still uncovering exactly what it might look like. Luckily, uncovering a style that is uniquely yours has everything to do with the way you feel, and can be a great staring point to get you on your way.
Step 1: Go through your wardrobe and take note of how you feel in each item of clothing. Are there certain pieces that give you an instant confidence boost? Perhaps you feel effortlessly stylish in an oversized shirt and relaxed denim? Or maybe you feel incredible in bold prints and bright colours?
Whatever it is, take note of those styles that leave you feeling your absolute best, as well as those that don’t. Let the way you feel become your key guide as you begin to sort through your wardrobe.
Being a little ruthless at this stage of the process can be difficult, but it will serve you incredibly well in the long run. We often hold onto pieces for all the wrong reasons, but if you can be discerning about what gets to take up space in your closet, you will provide a much better foundation for building your ideal wardrobe.
Step 2: Once you have determined what styles aren’t working for you anymore, make sure to clear them out of your wardrobe. This will make it easier for you to see what gaps you have and what quality pieces you have to work with.
Once you have filtered through the clothes that you own, it’s time to start looking forward and finding inspiration for your wardrobe glow up. This is the fun part! We all have styles that we gravitate toward or know women who’s wardrobe we admire. Being able to identify what it is that resonates with you will help to guide you as you invest in new pieces.
Step 3: Whether it’s Pinterest, Google or your favourite fashion magazine, take some time to create a mood-board of looks that you adore. The intent here isn’t to replicate someone else’s entire look, but to find inspiration for how you might construct your own outfits. Perhaps they combine pieces that you hadn’t considered before? Or maybe they wear a colour palette that you love? Take notes of details that inspire and excite you.
Don’t be afraid to shop solo
While indulging in a little retail therapy with friends can be endless fun, it doesn’t hurt to tackle the shops solo every now and again. Allowing the focus to be just on you for the day will provide you with more clarity and intention with your purchases, and give you the opportunity to develop an eye for what you like without being swayed by those around you.
Step 4: Make some time just for you, to explore the shops and experiment with new styles. This is the time where you can begin to step outside of your comfort zone and discover new options. When making a purchase, don’t forget to focus on the way it makes you feel. To ensure new purchases will pair seamlessly with items you already own, it can be a good idea to bring a few key pieces along with you.
The idea of hitting the shops an emerging with an entirely new look can be enticing, but it’s not always the best idea. This process can be entered into one item at a time, without having to do a complete 180 on your current look. It takes time to build confidence when trying new styles, and the last thing you want is to step out of the house and feel uncomfortable in what you are wearing.
Step 5: Start with an accessory. A handbag or a new pair of shoes are perfect transitional pieces for trying something new, and a great way to start changing up your current wardrobe and expressing your personal style.
Get it tailored
One of the most transformative things you can do to curate a wardrobe of clothes that feel intrinsically yours is to get your pieces tailored to fit your body shape. Even the smallest tweaks can make a huge difference and are often inexpensive to get done.
Step 6: Whether its a new purchase or an item from your current wardrobe, make a point of tailoring each item to fit your shape. It could be getting a classic pair of trousers taken up a few centimetres or cropping a jacket to fit perfectly to your waist, all of these seemingly small alterations will reshape your whole look.
Don’t forget, finding your personal style is often about uncovering and refining what is already there, and celebrating those things that you love. Trust your instincts, embrace your creativity and have fun in the process!