Style Is Substance
On a recent episode of Conscious Chatter, I overheard the brilliant Nadine Farag from 1 Who Dresses talk about her relationship to style. It had been an eye-opening conversation about the importance of private style and how the style industry is working to dismantle it. One Who Dresses focuses on exploring favor and why we wear what we do. In a particularly chaotic world, we will get lost in the constant noise, however, Nadine’s philosophy helps to try with the other.
“At its core, style can be a complicated and endlessly fascinating human ability. It is our spirit and what we expect, our creativity, our individual way of being, and our intention with our clothes. To foster a meaningful relationship with fashion, our job is to know the style, perfect it, carefully craft it and make it our own.”
Oftentimes, it is assumed that personal style for extremely style-conscious people, whereas, in reality, clothing affects everyone. One day you wake up and put on clothes to wear during the day, so why not confirm that it is serving you well? Finding your personal style can block out fast-paced industry noise and help you feel welcome in your clothing.
Here are four steps to help you define your style, love your wardrobe, and move forward with your fashion choices with more confidence.
The first step in finding your personal style is “gathering all the facts,” as my therapist would say. Sometimes learning more about yourself requires looking around the planet and seeing what holds up and what doesn’t. Through magazines, fashion week shows, street style, friends, movies, history, and more, you will begin to analyze what works for you. Trends can still be sources of inspiration, as long as you don’t blindly follow them. There are amazing looks that are and are being created by others, but not all elements of an outfit will work for you. Taking inspiration from the planet around us, we are ready to focus on what is specifically sensible for our wardrobe. Make a Pinterest board, watch your old favorite movie and change clothes with your friends; you’ll soon end up in trouble.
“Slow fashion is encouraging us as consumers to make peace with the fact that we can’t own or use it all, and that we shouldn’t.”
The next step is to put the dreams aside and take a look at your life. You have to be honest with yourself about what your lifestyle is and what is the most practical for that. I can’t tell you how many beautiful ruffled dresses I’ve been fond of in stores or online, but that’s just not my reality. One “truth” that the style industry tries to convince us of is that if we like something, we must own it. Slow fashion encourages us as consumers to make peace with the fact that we can’t have it all or use it all, and that we shouldn’t. You will feel great admiration for a designer, a trend, or an article of clothing, but you will not use it yourself. Some things are better appreciated from afar.
Now that you’ve dreamed of your perfect wardrobe and brought it back to earth, it’s time to seek confidence in the style that is all yours. Once he discovers the elements that suit him well and a method that is comfortable for him, there will be nothing to stop him. Lean on the things he gravitates towards that he determined to be practical for his life. Let confidence develop every time you realize that the way you dress is his style, and not someone else’s carbon. So often we have been lost in a sea of similarities, and it has been shown that more options actually give us greater anxiety than fewer options. Free yourself to be uniquely you!
The last step in cultivating your personal style is to boost creativity. After finding what is right for you and makes you feel special, there is room for experimentation. Discovering your personal style does not mean that your wardrobe now frozen in time and never changes! We as humans are always changing, so will our style, but with a better understanding of who we are as a whole. Apart from the great events of life, we grow in small and nuanced ways. Our wardrobes can grow with us, but our style remains equivalent in its essence. Your style is an extension of you. Let it be.
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