Most times when women compliment me on a piece or outfit they follow up with an ” I would have never thought about putting that together” or ” I wish I had some type of style”. Defining your style can be a bit overwhelming, I’m here to give you some helpful tips that helped me find my personal style in my early twenties.
Take it back to the BASICS
You might want to make sure that you invest in a couple basic and staple pieces first. If your closet is filled with just trendy items it’s easier for your pieces to clash with one another.You can easily style the basics with trendy items which will add balance to your outfits.
My favorite staples to style around are:
BOTTOMS: Vintage high waisted Levis, black trousers, and black high waisted jeans
TOPS: Black turtleneck, grey turtleneck, white button up, and white t-shirt
OUTERWEAR: denim jackets (I have a couple different shades and sizes), leather jacket, wool black blazer, and trench coat.
What Inspires You?
What are the day to day tracks you listen to? What do they make you feel? These are some questions to ask yourself when you are vibing out. Artists have personal aesthetics that relate to the music they create or perform, take note of that. The music you listen to and your experiences will shape your closet. Each genre has its own sub-culture, explore those scenes and styles. I grew up on a lot of “dad music” and pop songs of the 80s, so even when I didn’t have a defined style in high school many of my outfits were inspired by the bright neon colors and accessories of that fashion period. Who are your icons? Whether they are your movie, style, or even political icons they have influenced you in some way shape or form, and they probably have some killer looks!
What Are Your Values?
What are your personal and social values? As a consumer, this is something you might want to think about. Research companies and analyze their mass production structure and if their ethics align with yours. For example, if you want to be more conscious of our environment you might want to support eco-friendly brands. Are you a latina wanting to support other latino-owned businesses? Maybe you feel strongly about social issues and want to display those ideas on your clothing? These are all personal values that can serve as inspiration.
Create A Vision Board.
I live by vision boards, and they are perfect not for just setting fashion goals but life goals as well. For the past couple years I’ve been into the “old school” method of cutting from magazines and pasting them on my wall, not only does it add to your rooms aesthetic but by having it on your wall you will never forget about the things you want to work towards to. Tumblr and Pinterest are social platforms that are great for creating your own vision boards on a desktop or phone. I still use those apps today. I love searching up fashion from the 40s and 50s, my parents’ old photos, vintage models, fashion shows, music videos of the 90s and 80s, editorials, and even specific clothing pieces so I can see how other influencers have worn them. By doing this you get a different perspective and it might even lead you to think of another way of styling the piece. The board also serves as a reference when shopping, when you have an idea of what you’re going for you are less likely to purchase clothing you might not even wear.
Remember that all creations, initially, have some type of inspiration. You are not copying, you are getting inspired.
Research different styles and trends that normally catches your eye and own it. Other great ways to find inspo is by people watching, T.V. shows, and movies.
Here are some examples of my personal wardrobe inspirations:
Understand What Flatters Your Body.
Understanding how to play up to your strengths is very important. You have to think of your body as the whole deal and your clothing as the accessories, wearing clothes that complement your best assets is the way to go. While analyzing this also think about the pieces that don’t play up to your strengths, and let those pieces go. Personally, I like to show off my legs however I am very busty and understand that not all tops will look flattering on me.
Stay True To Who You Are
Make sure that as you are developing your style, your reasoning and values align with what you are going for. Why do you like mom jeans? Is it because you love 90s trends and styles or shows of that era? If you’re moving on to the workplace, what pieces are you drawn to the most and what iconic styles can you integrate with your pieces?
Make sure it’s coming from a genuine place and not just the hopes of fitting in with a certain crowd or trend. It won’t be personal.