Last week I mulled over the idea that I was in a style rut and whether that was necessarily a bad thing. Thank you so much for your responses it looks like my ponderings have struck a chord so I thought I would start exploring further.
I wanted to have a go at really trying to define “My Style”. What we wear is almost a subconscious decision most of the time, you just grab what’s the easiest thing and go. And I know that our preferences change with influences from the media and over time, but there must still be some core principles that remain true.
To help I went over the worksheet set by Colette in their Wardrobe Architect series to try and solidify what I think and feel about what I wear.
And here are some of my answers…
I was always a bit of a Tomboy and had an equal love for a pair of favourite red corduroy dungarees and disdain for dresses and skirts. I also spent quite a few ‘fashion’ years just wearing black!
No longer a slave to fashion, I prefer to acknowledge the trends I like and enjoy but I’d much rather just be relaxed and easygoing about what I wear.
There are no real cultural aesthetics that I can draw on, or that restrict me in what I choose to wear. Or so I thought until I started chatting things over with The Bearded One. He reminded me that I was brought up in a reasonable affluent, mainly white, semi rural environment that wasn’t overly concerned with appearance, so maybe that has had more of an influence than I want to admit?
I walk or cycle to work everyday and as I can no longer wear heels, practical shoes are the order of the day, usually brogues or trainers.
Stratford upon Avon where I live is a semi rural town in the middle of England. So I am in the middle a bit in terms of Urbane Sleek and Country Chic.
This category more than any other affects how I feel about myself and what influences the decisions I make about what to wear. I am no longer 25 years old or a size 10 and quite frankly, I have no wish to be. I am carrying more weight than I would like and no longer have a waist. Not that I ever really did. Well I had a flat stomach in my youth but I never really went ‘in’ at the waist. Which has led me to become more of an apple shape now in my middling years. However, I am pleased to admit that my arms and legs are still not bad!
I am planning on reviving my running routine this year, as part of an overall strategy to regain some control over aspects of my life and I am hoping that this will help to alter my body image and maybe even my shape as well. So I don’t mind exposing my arms and legs, as long as the rest of me is covered up.
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Although this exercise didn’t really tell me anything I wasn’t already aware of I felt it was a good exercise to do to ‘just get it all down on paper’ (which is a strategy I am relying more and more upon to gain clarity on a whole range of things).
Why don’t you try it and see if it gives you some clarity too? You can print off the Worksheet and have a go.
Colette also suggested trying to come up with some descriptions of how you feel when you wear things you like and what would make you feel uncomfortable.
I want to feel…
Confident – being confident in what you wear allows you to think about other more important stuff.
Comfortable – comfort is a KEY element for me and directly linked to confidence
Natural – I want to look fresh and healthy
Timeless – Yves Saint Laurent said “Fashions fade, style is eternal.” So although I know my preferences will change over time, I still want to look current.
Quirky – the grown up version of rebellious, I think. I don’t need to shock anymore, but I do like to make people do a double take sometimes with something just a little bit out of the ordinary.
I don’t want to be…
Frumpy – Obviously!
Girly or cute – Frankly I’m too old and it doesn’t suit my cranky nature!
Fussy – Detail is fine, but I much prefer an uncluttered look.
“Done Up” – I like to look like I’ve made an effort but I feel really uncomfortable with too much make-up or styling.
“Shrunk wrapped” – Going back to the Body section previously, anything that is too body hugging, even with the right underwear, is just not me. I love the look of body-con dresses, but they just make me feel self conscious. Although if I keep up the running who knows?!
I know I have used a couple of made up phrases here, but I hope you get my meaning. Also having a few ‘trigger’ words that you can be aware of when you’re thinking about your core style can help you decide if a shape or style is really you. Again there is a Wardrobe Architect Worksheet to help.
I came up with 5 words that I can use as a sort of filter to sift through pattern or design ideas when trying to define my own Style.
Simple Cosy Practical Natural Individual
What 5 words would you use to describe your own style? I’d love to know so please add your words in the comment below.
I also have a Pinterest board with a few things that I feel define My Style of the moment, and actually I want it all! Have a look and let me know what you think.