signature style

One of the things I added to my 30 things to do before I’m 30 list was “Strive to find my style.” This is a process and I don’t know if I’ll ever fully be able to cross is off.But this is a totally fun and worthwhile exercise in money saving and establishing a nice wardrobe I love. And you know. I love to make everyday normal things into a full-on project.

First, I am a thrift shopper. It’s scored me some awesome stuff. But it’s also led to some ill-advised purchases I ended up donating back a few months later. $4.99 is not a bargain if I never wear it.

Second, I’m striving to overcome my other challenge: Fashion A.D.D! I am drawn to, and identify with, a LOT of styles. I have bits of rockstarish/studded/faux leather, girly/ruffley, preppy plaid, chunky Alpine sweaters, uber casual/skater brand stuff… I like it all. But it’s lead to a closet full of stuff that doesn’t go together and guilt over purchases that require MORE purchases to wear!

In an attempt to avoid accumulating a closet full of random guilt-attached items, I am trying to nail down my style {and thus streamline my closet and purchases!}.

I did a 6-month no-retail challenge, and wore a different outfit

I did a 30-day wardrobe challenge where I wore a different outfit every day from the same 30 remixed items.

Now, I’m trying to pin down the style I WANT to have. Here’s my process:

1. I inventoried my own closet, pulling to the side stuff I LIVE IN. And I compiled a collection of images of styles I really like, to see what I’m most drawn to. I avoided anything that wasn’t practical for my lifestyle {such as anything too artsy/high-fashion} or that realistically I wouldn’t be comfortable wearing. I’m talking style I would/do actually wear/replicate. I ended up with these:

Source. Source.


Above: random Google image searches for Rachel Bilson {a fave style inspiration}.

Above: Anthropologie

2. I noted the themes. Based on the looks I like, I am into:

  • Mixing neutrals {black, grey, cream, beige, tans, browns, navy}
  • Slouchy/casual/semi-masculine styles
  • Layery styles
  • Effortless mix/match looks
  • Solids
  • Boots
  • Mustardy-yellow

3. Cleaned out my closet. Edited out:

  • Anything that doesn’t fit
  • Anything you haven’t worn in a year
  • Anything that brazenly defies my newly-defined style, especially if I have nothing to go with it!
  • Anything that makes me feel frumpy


4. Re-evaluate a bit. I own lots of things that are purple/plum/burgundy because I look good in it. No use in getting rid of a tried-and-true color from the mix!

5. Plan for future shopping. Here are some things I will try to consider:

  • Make a vow to try to stay within the parameters of looks I love. Don’t stray too much just because it’s trendy.
  • Don’t buy something that doesn’t go with anything I already own.
  • Before I make a purchase, think of several other things in my closet that I could wear with it.
  • Don’t try to reinvent my look entirely in one day… add some accessories or colors that work well with what I already have to get a new look.
  • Spend most on things I will want to have around forever. For example, jeans I could wear every day if I could get away with it, boots that go with everything, a black cardigan that will never go out of style, a classic leather purse. The things I’ve owned forever and still love were a little spendier. Probably because not only did they not fall apart, but they are totally classic. Like the purse I carry 80% of the time might have cost 3x more than any other bag I owned/have owned, but it still looks great and I’ve actually gotten my money’s worth.

6. Made a shopping list. If I buy anything over the course of the next little while, it will be stuff like this {knockoffs/thrifted mainly!Except maybe those Fluvog Mary Janes. Aren’t those lovely???!}

So tell me; do you think you have a “style?” What is it? How do you build your wardrobe?


One thought on “signature style”

  1. I used to be very guilty of buying things just because they were pretty, only to get home and realize they don’t fit with anything else I own. So, instead of just buying something because I like it has to be wearable, comfortable, able to go with a variety of things already in my closet, be a color I’ll actually wear instead of color I really like and be something I can picture wearing for more than a season.

    I’m not there yet, but I’m getting there.

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