Monday, July 15, 2024

The Basics of Great Style

Things to Consider
Before Putting Your Capsule Wardrobe Together

Style is for everyone with a public image and “public image” is not a concept that’s only for celebrities. Unless you never leave your house, you have a public image. Whether it’s with your family, friends or colleagues.   Investing in your own image and how you are seen can have a huge effect on how you feel, your job prospects, how you’re seen at work and beyond.  It’s incredibly important. And it’s worth the time and the little bit of money it takes to get right.  There’s a way to incorporate style whether you’re on a budget or not. That means starting with a capsule wardrobe. And it’s relevant for everyone – women, men, non-binaries.

Australian Fashion Week 2021
Image: Dimitra Koriozos

Invest in Your Style
If you want to be taken seriously, your wardrobe can be the vehicle to help get you there. Whether it’s at work, or socially, when you start to invest in your image it can really start to mould the direction of your life.

The way you  present yourself to the world will facilitate all the things you have going on in your life. If you want to improve your social, work or love life, your wardrobe can help get you there.

We’re not talking huge dollars and we’re certainly not talking about breaking the bank. Everyone can have great style, even on a low budget.  The key is to have a capsule wardrobe.  A capsule wardrobe contains pieces that are classic, neutral, re-imagined basics can be worn and reworn a thousand times without anyone even realising. It’s a small collection of basic garments that don’t date, around which you can add other pieces according to the seasons. Once you’ve got your basic capsule wardrobe together, your style and getting dressed for ANY occasion becomes very, very easy.

Before you start on your capsule wardrobe, there are just a few basics that you need to take on board.

White sneakers may form oneof the basics in your capsule wardrobe
Wardrobe basics – the white sneaker

Know the Basic Rules

No matter what genre or style you’re going for there are two rules and only two rules, that cannot be broken when it comes to putting together your capsule wardrobe.

Rule 1: Know your Proportions

The two strong pillars of great style are to know your body proportions and to dress for them. It’s just not possible to recreate anyone’s look on your own body shape, unless you first know your own proportions.  No-one is body-perfect. We are all simply different.

Capsule Wardrobe

So before you go clicking online for that great outfit you’ve just seen, know your own body proportions.  Are you slim? Short? Wide-hipped. Short waisted? No-one is perfect. We are all just different. So when you see that tall, svelte, super slim model on the catwalk in an outfit that jumps out at you, it’s unlikely you can recreate the look unless you know that you have the same body proportions as that super model.  When you know yourself and your own proportions you will never again wear something that is NOT you.  This is the first rule in being able to comfortably represent who you are through the way you dress.

Rule 2: Know Yourself

It’s important to know your own taste preferences. Dresses aren’t for everyone.  Nor are florals.  The best guide before getting started is to know yourself and your own style “sense”.

Forget Archaic Rules

Capsule Wardrobe

“A-line dresses should be worn to hide wide hips.” How old hat can you get? We’re all about embracing your curves, your own body shape. Don’t hide anything!

Minimalists will tell you to take one last look before you leave home and remove the last thing you put on. Maximalists will ask you what is that one thing that you can add that is going to make you look amazing! Decide if you are a minimalist or more flamboyant.  Decide your own rules. Do you want to take something off, or put something on?

First Nations Fashion Design
Images: Dimitra Koriozos

Let Go of Limiting Beliefs

Our own internal rules are limiting when it comes to our personal style. “I can’t wear this colour” or “that trend”. ” I only wear this shade. It’s the only time I can wear magenta.” All these belief systems we’ve built up in our heads have mostly gone unchallenged.  They’re more about what we’ve been told, or absorbed, rather than what we actually know for sure.

Unless you’ve actually tried it for yourself, you’re actually only assuming it doesn’t work for you. Try that thing you’ve been told you can’t wear and decide for yourself whether you look good or not.

Keep it Classic

Capsule wardrobe
Image: Dimitra Koriozos

For simple style, you can’t go wrong if you keep it classic. Enduring trends are what we call classics. They work whether you’re a man, woman or non-binary. Google what was stylish ten or twenty 20 years ago and if you can see a trend, you’ll know it’s classic. Look for a white tee, a good loafer, a suit cut, a button-up, a pair of jeans.   Incorporate more modern touches, but always think, “can I see myself in that in 15 years?”, or will it be laughable. If you’ll be laughing, it ain’t no classic.

Capsule Wardrobe
Image: Dimitra Koriozos

Keep all this in mind before you start to select those basic items around which to build your personal style.  It will make buying easy and a lot more economical because you’ll be shopping with purpose and you won’t buy stuff that you’ll be sorry about 5 minutes later.


Check our Tips on How to Find Your Signature Style

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