PERSONAL STYLE: A JOURNEY OF MY OWN
Why defining personal style and staying true to it is the key to confident dressing and wardrobe happiness.
Sometimes I look back on what I used to wear and what on earth I was thinking, I’m sure it’s only natural with trends evolving and often entirely changing the dynamics of what’s cool and what’s not. But that being said It’s true to say my style has evolved and really its only as I approached my late 20’s I think I truly found and understand my own style.
I can reflect on and quite clearly see the shift I’ve made between buying into trends for the sake of my blog or being ‘on trend’ (e.g. constant Zara hauls and mass bulk orders) and investing in clothes and finding brands which reflect my true style.
What I’ve come to realise is that colours, prints, oversized tailoring, boyfriend blazers and midi lengths are what I love and turn to time and time again. I’ve probably learnt what cuts work and what don’t over the years, and I’ve certainly come to know what I feel comfortable in. There are brands which seem to deliver for me time and time again these days, and they’re a far cry from the brands I used to spend my wages on month in and month out. The fast fashion high street brands really overruled my personal style in my twenties, but discovering a few key brands that really reflect my style has helped encourage me to make better investments and also to curate a wardrobe that is ‘true to me’ as I moved into my thirties.
SHOP MY LOOK
. AND OTHER STORIES DRESS (GIFTED). MASSIMO DUTI KNITWEAR . AND OTHER STORIES COAT (GIFTED) . AND OTHER STORIES BOOTS . SAINT LAURENT SUNSET BAG .
I’ve noticed Scandinavian designers and brands typically reflect my taste, tailoring and style more these days – oversize cuts, bold colours and use of prints, boyfriend sized outerwear and generally a slightly more ‘mix match’ approach to dressing versus other cultures. Not to mention an overriding principle that comfort (and feeling at ease) is key – a lesson learnt and one I will never forget.
Scandi has a preconception of being overtly minimalist, but actually most the Scandinavian brands I adore and the Scandinavians I follow are the complete opposite to a top-to-toe-beige-Cos-wearer. Ganni, Custommade, Acne, Stine Goya, and even the likes of And Other stories are all brands I love and brands that are a far cry from monochrome minimalism.
Parisian style, whilst of course typically more elegant and less statement in terms of the use of colours & prints etc, is another style I relate to and I believe has similarities to the Scandinavian approach to dressing. In particular the way Parisians typically embrace and own their personal style regardless of fast fashion trends, understand their body and what works for them, dress with a real sense of self confidence and have (and hold) an air of effortlessness in the way their look is pulled together and worn.
I take inspiration from and admire both cultures and would like to think my style (these days) sits somewhere between the two – a wardrobe packed with colour, midi skirts, statement knitwear, bold print dresses which I wear with trainers (because as I said, comfort is key), and the more ‘uniform’ pieces like a good boyfriend blazer, fail safe skinny jeans, loose fitting quality tees and basics and of course classic accessories (shoes, bags etc) which add a touch of elegance to my look.
I no longer bulk buy fast fashion in the hope of it looking okay on me and that I ‘stay current’ (despite the terrible tailoring, poor quality material that meant a piece was left redundent after 6 months and outrageous sizing often making me feel 100% less than confident) , I am finding myself more and more investing in designers who’s collections offer something more quality and long lasting (and not to mention who’s tailoring fits my shape and makes me feel confident), and embracing one off bold pieces which add a little something special to my wardrobe. I barely ever wear heels and I couldn’t bare the thought of feeling uncomfortable or self conscious in my clothes any more – One thing I admire about the Scandinavians and Parisians I know, is that they ooze self confidence because they ALWAYS wear pieces that make them feel their best, and importantly comfortable. You’ll find me in my Veja trainers or ankle boots over stilettos any day of the week.
Acne, Ganni, Sezzane, Rouje and And Other Stories (for a more high street price tag), a blend of french and Danish brands, are the places I am finding more and more of my wardrobe coming from these days. My style has become more consistent, more comfortable and more honest – in that, I’m not trying to please anyone else, dress in the latest Zara pieces or tick off a ‘fashion list’ of must haves. I wear granny dresses and trainers with pride and ease. And whilst the colours, prints, and sartorial touches may vary, I typically stick to a series of garments I know work with my shape and style, creating my own uniform if you will. It feels good.