I don’t want to look outdated – do I have to follow fashion?

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November 2020 News

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"One week he's in polka-dots, the next week he's in stripes
'Cause he's a dedicated follower of fashion" The Kinks - Dedicated Follower of Fashion 1973

Why do I have to update my look every season?

The short answer is that you don’t! Unless you want to, of course.

Each season, the fashion industry provides us with new styles and designs and it is very easy to get attracted (or distracted) by these new shiny things to help us to feel better. We can also get drawn into wanting to be fashionable and therefore being seen to be modern and relevant. After all, no-one wants to look frumpy or outdated.

If we don’t continually refresh our wardrobes, we can look outdated - as though we are stuck in a previous decade! So, unless you are particularly cultivating a vintage look, it is good to update what you wear. (I’m loving the fact that the 1970s look is in this season, so I can adapt clothes I already own and make it my own).

But! And this is a big but ….

Do it your way

You need to do it your way and not just follow what the fashion houses are putting out each season. After all, they have their own agendas and may have decided that a particular colour or style is in vogue this year, but that is their take and not necessarily yours. Those styles may not work for you. And how are you going to afford to buy a completely new set of clothes each year unless you are royalty or work in the fashion industry yourself?

Many of us can get caught up in a negative self-image and it is tempting to try something new to feel good about ourselves. We then buy something because it is trendy, but then find that it doesn’t work, which can have the opposite effect and makes us feel worse.

So this blog is to give you a few tips and hints so that you can stay on trend without it costing the earth (literally, as the fashion industry is one of the greatest polluters on the planet. But that is another blog).

1.       Be firm in your resolution when you go shopping!

Stick with what suits you! For example, if you know that you need neat, fitted and fun clothing, then don’t get waylaid by the floaty midi skirts or side-tracked by the balloon-sleeved blouses which are in this season. If you buy them, you will have on-trend items, but they will be wearing you, and we shall see the clothes before we see you. Steer clear of what doesn’t suit you, no matter how current it might be.

2.       Think of the most stylish person that you know when you are out shopping

If you stop and think about the really stylish people you know – they may be famous or they may be your best friend - you will soon realise that they bend fashion to suit themselves. They don’t just slavishly follow what is ‘in’ at the time. They will have their own ‘signature style’ which is recognisably them, and you will see them tweak it year on year without drastically changing it. Even someone whose style is ‘far out’ - such as designer Vivienne Westwood - is always recognisable by the drama and the pattern clashes that she goes for. It is her look. But it may not be yours – so don’t copy it! Instead copy their adherence to their own style.

3.       Have a few key pieces in your wardrobe that you love

Work your wardrobe around some key pieces – there don’t even need to be many. You can add accessories to them, or change the colour of the jacket or cardigan you wear with them. Mix up your shoes and change the look with boots or sandals. If you love those clothes you have already you will wear them more and feel great as soon as you put them on. A new item bought on a whim might give you pleasure when you first wear it, but if it’s wrong for you, you will hang it back up and not pull it out again. Buy your new items to go with what you already have.

4.       Buy items pre-loved

Sometimes you cannot find what you know suits you. For example, a few years back I tried in vain to buy skirts. It was in a period when only trousers or dresses were on sale, and I had lots of tops and blouses that I wanted to wear with a skirt and nothing to wear them with.

I tried the local charity shops and eBay and found things which were not only my style, but were also different from what others were wearing. I was able to make my own fashion statement by doing that. And I knew that they suited me, fitted me and hadn’t cost me very much.

5.       Buy some on-trend accessories

Your budget might be too tight to enable you to bring your entire look up-to-date but check out something small that will bring you on trend without breaking the bank. Jewellery is an easy way to do that – and costume jewellery isn’t expensive - just buying some in your colours and size would give you a current look without spending much money.

This season is all about historical flounces, rich fabrics and bows and pearls. If you can’t do large-scale flounces, then try a bow or two that you can sew or clip on to existing items and then remove. Or buy some pearls or sparkly clips to put on your shoes, or handbags, to add a touch of decadence without paying for the crown jewels. As I said earlier, those who manage to look striking and stylish have always mastered ways of making fashion their own – you will see them alter what they have already using vintage jewellery, pieces of fabric, or completely repurposing items.

Make the clothes in your wardrobe recognisably yours

So, go on – have a play! Make sure that the heart of your wardrobe really reflects you in all your essence, then add a little bit here and there each season to give a nod to the latest trends without breaking the bank.

If you need any help to get your look more current or to identify what core items will work best for you, your lifestyle and budget, then please get in touch. It’s what I love to do!

Tel: 07790 653669 Email: linda.clark@houseofcolour.co.uk Instagram: lindaclark_yourpersonalstylist