Two Easy Steps To Finding Your Style Statement

Have you ever seen a closet like this in real life? Source.

I have read dozens of fashion and style books, and have two shelves of them. There’s a couple of provocative ideas in each book, nothing life-changing, but a few tidbits to store away. Other people’s ideas (and blogs) do inspire me.

One of my books promoted an exercise I’ve enjoyed over the years: Just free-associate words you “like” and “dislike” when it comes to clothing and accessories. Don’t think too hard, simply go with it. I do this every couple of years, to see how/if my tastes are changing.

On the current “Like” list:

Masculine/feminine mixes
Mixed textures
Drapey, flowy
Clean lines
Black and navy
Faux fur and faux leather

This ticks my boxes – drapey and flowy, easy-going.
Some of my likes: faux leather, waist-defining, mixed textures, lots of flow in the skirt.
Menswear tuxedo trousers and a feminine blouse. Love it.

Current “Dislikes” (mine, but maybe not yours):

Cutesy or frilly
Business suits and high heels

Very nice, but not for me, in my current life.

Then, for even more fun, narrow down the “Like” list to just three or four things. This creates a kind of “style statement” and helps me with my shopping. My statement would be: “I like clean lines, with some textural interest, and a mix of masculine and feminine elements.” I take a pass on any clothing or accessories that are very conservative, or very frou-frou.

Here are the best style books I’ve read or re-read in the past six months. I’d love to hear your recommendations, if you like this genre.

  • Parisian Chic, Ines de la Fressange. I know, “French chic” has been worked to tatters, but Ines  gives an airy, good-hearted round-up of classic chic.
  • Eccentric Glamour, Simon Doonan. He’s the creative director at Barney’s NY, and his writing is witty, deeply opinionated, and fun.
  • Simple Isn’t Easy, Olivia Goldsmith and Amy Fine Collins. This 1995 book never sounds dated to me and I read it once a year. It’s harder to find, but worth the search.
  • Not fashion, but: It’s All Too Much, Peter Walsh. I am always on my mission to de-clutter and live simply. This book has good advice.

Stay fabulous,

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