HOW TO GET OUT OF A STYLE RUT
“I’m totally stylish enough to pull that off, right?”
“I could just not eat for a couple of months to look fabulous in that, right?”
“People won’t look in utter horror when I try and rock three styles of the moment in one outfit, right?”
… an insight into my thought process ladies and gents.
I am the absolute worst at doing that thing where I throw half my house deposit on clothes at Westfield, think I absolute LUUUUURVE and desperately need every single item but yet, two days later, I’m staring at my wardrobe, close to tears having a I’ve got nothing to wear tantrum. It’s a hideously repetitive cycle.
I know there are definitely some days / weeks / months where I just feel a little lost in the whole fashion identity malarkey. If you too are struggling and are forever wondering why you don’t look as effortlessly incredible 24/7 compared to all the women you follow on Instagram – well, firstly, that might be a touch unrealistic because even they don't – buuuut we can find a nice middle ground where we’re happy with our personal style and are mixing it up a bit more.
Here are some steps that I tend to tackle, you don’t need to do them all, but try and tackle at least some.
#1 THROW SOME STUFF OUT
Grab those bin bags and get ruthless. I actually try and do a wardrobe clear out fairly regularly to make sure I’m not clogging up my space with stuff I don’t like. My absolute pet peeve is wading through clothes and clothes on my rail that I just despise. The rule of thumb is to get rid of things that you haven’t worn for 6 months – if you really loved or needed it, you will’ve found an excuse to wear it.
My only advice would be don’t fall into the trap of throwing out all your summer clothes when it's like December because it goes without saying that unless you've been jetting off to some exotic island - in which case, darn you - you wouldn't have had the opportunity to wear all your floaty, beachy summery numbers anyway. Store that stuff away somewhere out of sight, so you don't get depressed, and then start going through the rest.
#2 TURN TO PINTEREST / INSTAGRAM
My favourite part of an image re-vamp is definitely the visual part. Start up a general style board and get pinning all your fave outfits and looks – I usually just tend to search ‘street style outfits’ – and start saving outfits you like with the new feature on Instagram so that you can go back and have a clear overview of what you like.
It’s very very VERY easy to get carried away on both platforms and fall in love with so many outfits but please make sure you’re being realistic. Firstly be realistic with your body shape but also with your day-to-day lifestyle. For me, working in the city means that even though I’d love to strut around in bodycon dresses and heels all day and look fabulous, my hour long commute just screams ERRRRRRRRR NO WAY. I now have a realistic vision of what works for my everyday lifestyle which usually consists of a dress, tights and boots or jeans and a nice top.
#3 NOTICE THE TRENDS WHICH APPEAL TO YOU
You’ll quickly notice which styles and trends are appealing to you – whether it be embroidered denim or leather trousers. You can then dwindle it down to the absolute necessities that you know you’ll invest in happily and will work in your everyday wardrobe alongside the rest of your items.
It also means that when you’ve bought said item, you’ll have photos to refer to for styling inspiration and also you’ll feel happier that you haven’t just impulse bought something on whim, you’ve actually taken the time out to think about whether it’s something you really need and want.
#4 TAKE A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE
Spend some time scrolling back through Facebook or your camera roll looking at photos of yourself. You’ll quickly notice what suits you, what you looked mind-blowing amazing in and what, with a little bit of hindsight, probably should never have left the shop with you because ermmmmm… not so great. The latter is most common haha.
Even if some styles have become a bit out-dated since you last posed for a snap, work out which shapes and cuts flatter you. For example, for me, anything that either sucks in or skims over my problem stomach area is an instant winner but then I also know which parts of my body to accentuate.
Are you a midi or mini girl? Boyfriend or skinny jeans? Bodycon or skater dress? Low cut or high neck? Empire line or drop waist? Take some time out to figure that out first so you instantly know what pieces will work for you and which to not even consider.
#5 GET SHOPPIN’
I love online shopping, as my bank account will confirm, but it’s such a pain. I’m such a sucker for falling for the whole 'of course the clothes that the size 6, teeny weeny, long legged gorgeous model is wearing are totally gonna look the same on me' thing. In reality, huge disaster and not even one of my butt cheeks can fit into the dress.
The best way to do a successful shop is to dedicate a full day to shopping and go to a big department store or shopping centre where you know everything is in one area with minimal faffing around and rushing from one shop to another. For me, my go-to is Westfield because it’s clean, well laid out, I know where everything is and also there are a ludicrous amount of restaurants and cafes for when I naturally need a mid-shop snack / meal.
If you can, try and take (or drag) someone along with you. Ideally someone who isn’t your partner because obviously he’s gonna get seriously fed up and bored after shop #2 out of 100. Not what you need. Take someone who’s opinion you trust, who won’t be afraid to be brutal, so either your best pal or your mum.
I’ve made the mistake too many times of snapping away on my iPhone whilst trying stuff on in the changing rooms and sending photos across to my various gal pal groups on whatsapp…. However, rookie mistake because of course I’m not going to stand there looking like a lump; I’m programmed to stand up straight and suck everything in when in reality, as soon as the phone camera goes down, one breath means that my muffin top reappears over my jeans haha. Moral of the story, TAKE A FRIEND (or other) who's gonna be blunt.
Whoever they are paired with your trusty Pinterest / Instagram boards will hopefully mean you leave the shops with items that you not only really love, they’ll suit your shape, work for your everyday style and also work with the rest of the items in your wardrobe.
What more could a girl want?!
I hope this helps some of you that feel like you're in a bit of a style rut because I know what a pain that can be!
Have a fabulous week!