It's been quite a while since I've intentionally thought about my own "personal style." I know that I have one because people are always saying "insert such-and-such item of clothing looks like something you would wear!" It's not always accurate, but kudos to those of you who recognize that I've got a certain je ne sais quois going on. I feel like my clothing choices are all over the place but I don't mind it. I wear what I want. Since I first wrote about my thoughts on personal style last February, I've gone through a myriad of changes. Location, career, relationship... hair... all of which have had a tremendous impact on what I choose to wear. Some things (we're all thinking it: that damn orange hat) have stayed and others (I'm not even linking to them because they're so embarrassing) make me cringe. So hard. I figured that it's high time I wrote a new little "guide" on personal style.
Trends are constantly changing but the best looks are timeless, so find a middle ground to stay fluid. A lot of bloggers use the excuse "my style has been like, ever-so evolving!" to jump on the latest trends. (Looking at you, seemingly endless Rockstud invasion of early 2014.) It's true, fashion trends are in constant flux but that doesn't mean we should all dress the same for the sake of keeping up with trends. There are silhouettes, color combinations, and certain anchor pieces that you should have in your wardrobe because they are timeless. Full skirts, simple ankle boots, and fitted earth-tone tops are a few good examples of this. You can change the entire look and feel of them with accessories and other statement pieces. There are some trends that you'll feel undeniably drawn to: for me, an example of this would be crop tops. I think they're flattering, fun to wear, and I love showing off my tattoos. See how I changed the entire look of this skirt pictured above by pairing it with a coordinating crop top? (Click link to see original post.) Find pieces with built-in versatility and you can never lose.
Layers are flattering, create visual interest, and enable you to wear the same thing over and over again. I love these two looks because of the variety of texture. Don't shy away from layering jean-on-jean, especially since there are so many different kinds of denim. Color, thickness, and pattern are good things to keep in mind even when you're not just mixing denims. Don't be afraid to experiment. Layered solid colors are always flattering but pattern mixing is fun! If you don't know where to begin, start with one bold pattern and one subtle pattern. This is one of my favorite examples. Simple striped top, intricate but delicate wide-leg trousers.
When in doubt, vintage. My style has changed a LOT since I first started this blog but the one constant in my wardrobe has been my vintage dresses. Stock up because vintage pieces really do stand the test of time as far as quality goes. Mine always survive my "closet clean-outs" because I just can't stand to part with them. They're not only beautifully crafted but I also like to think of who may have worn them and where. I like to think that this little number pictured above ran with the likes of Janis Joplin in upstate New York for Woodstock in '69. Did it happen? Probably not, but it more than likely has a far more interesting story than the pair of shoes I'm wearing. (Which, in case you're wondering, is this: I tracked their shipment all the way from White Plains and then wore them to a coffee shop a few blocks from my house. I tripped on the way there and almost ran into a utility pole.) Vintage styles are also great for girls like me who have a more "curvy" figure. I can try to squeeze into Forever 21 dresses all I want but this booty is probably going to pop a seam or two. If these vintage dresses have made it this long, they can survive that as well.
Don't be afraid to play up your best assets. See what I did there? This one speaks for itself. If you've got a booty, don't be afraid of it. (This playlist might also help with that.) If you're confident in your legs, let those babies breathe. I'll keep this point short and sweet and leave you with this simple concept: life is too short to be insecure.
Don't try to put yourself into any sort of box. Wear what you want. Some days I rock band tees and Vans. Some days I drape myself in flowing dresses. Once you become part of a "scene," you're boring and predictable. I can look out my office window and get lost in the sheer volume of "young urban creatives" in a carefully "curated" (GOODNESS I HATE THAT WORD) mish-mosh of overpriced high-waisted "replica secondhand" denim and tacky "ironic" tees. (You're such an individual, everybody else drinking a PBR at this dive bar looks just like you.) I kid, I kid. But for real... don't be that person. It's an overused phrase but you should really just be yourself. Once again, life is too short to be square.
Stay tuned for part three.... eventually.