What really inspired me to write this post was a Carine Roitfeld quote I found on tumblr (I've lately taken to tumblring again).
The new luxury is a small wardrobe. Not necessarily an expensive one nor one filled solely with goods from only the world’s leading fashion houses. These are defintions of luxury fashion past. The new luxury is now to be able to live and thrive with a small, pleasurable wardrobe. Curation is refinement. Refinement is a skill… we must cull from our wardrobe removing from it all that looks average. We must become our own curators.
But a small wardrobe needn’t mean doing without. Anything but. It is in fact the hallmark of the modern fashioniser with their finger on the pulse. You see, to have a small wardrobe and still look stylish requires one to actually have style.
Even a week, in fashion, makes a difference. There is always something new, something more now. Fashion isn't about shopping excessively. Really, it's not. It's about having a constantly changing, small wardrobe.
A reader asked for some help with regards to determining one's personal style. We all like to label ourselves and our style choices. I don't believe anyone's style is straightforwardly punk or classic or boho or urban. We're all beautifully eclectic. Because style is all in the detail. There is no recipe or set of instructions which I can give you. It is a process one has to go through. There are some questions however which will definitely help you in determining your style choices -
2. Whilst getting dressed, if you think of something you think would 'make your outfit pop' or that would really 'take your outfit to another level', list it down. Before going shopping see which item you've written down the most and bam - you know your 'most wanted!'
3. Observe. Your eyes are your best friends. Look out for inspiration, when you see something you don't like know why you don't like it. That will serve as constructive criticism for yourself. Likewise, when you see something - an outfit, a look, a colour combination - you do like know why you like it. Go through fashion magazines, websites and the like to get all the inspiration you can possibly get. As Carine aptly says - keep your finger on the pulse!
4. Use the tools around you - polyvore, for instance is a great tool for creating outfits without spending a penny. That way you'd be developing your own style without comprising your budget. Another great tool would be tumblr, track tags like 'fashion', 'vogue', 'style' and find inspirational blogs to follow. Keep yourself inspired and open minded!
5. Do you have a particular style icon who you feel inspires you? Try to determine their style rule book. One of my favourite style icons for instance is Kate Moss. I blogged about her style choices a while back. It helped me determine what I liked best about her style and channeled it in my looks. Of course, don't copy. Style icons should inspire you but not give you whole outfits to wear. Also, keep an eye on the details, sometimes even the way they wear a bracelet, a necklace or tie their shoe laces makes them unique in their style choices.
6. Know yourself - know what you love, but it's as important to know what suits you best! Does your striped breton top make you look fat? Or do your Mary Jane heels make you look short? Be aware of these little things.
7. This may seem a tad unorthodox but - do not shop with your best friend. Especially if they are highly influential on you. You may end up buying what they like rather than what you like. Sometimes I find shopping alone turns out to be a more successful trip for me - but to each his own, of course!
8. Do not fall into a rut. Always be open-minded and be ready to try new things because otherwise you'll end up buying too much of the same and in the end not have anything 'new' to wear. I for one, have 6 white shirts in my wardrobe. Not that you can ever have enough white shirts - but enough is enough!
9. It's okay to pass on trends. Sometimes the season may just not be the one for you. But being 'trendy' and being 'fashionable' are totally distinct things. Trendy is someone who follows trends, fashionable is someone who is stylish and current (the way you hold your bag, the way you wear your bag - it's all in the styling.)
10. Be confident! It shows if you're not comfortable in what you're wearing. You can tell me crocs are comfortable as much as you like - but they sure don't make me comfortable. You have to be yourself in what you wear! And I certainly do not see myself wearing crocs.
Now that I've shared that with you, there are some other news I'd like to share - I've finally started Project Sewing. The designs are done - I might upload them later on if I think they're presentable enough, the fabrics are bought and all is set. Now what's left to do is the actual sewing. I will show you the end result of course when it's ready.
Here's a glimpse of the fabrics: