Monday, May 17, 2010

A Road Map to Summer Style

As springtime approaches I am so excited to pack away my winter wardrobe and rediscover my favorite spring and summer pieces. For the next few weeks I'll be doing a series called "A Road map to Summer Style". I'll be walking you through pin pointing your personal style, organization and shopping on a shoe string.
If you are at all like me, many of your purchases have been purely practical and your personal style is not reflected in your closet. I am inviting you to join me for a personal fashion makeover.
Please don't let a small clothing allowance keep you from participating. No matter what you can spend on clothes, this series will boost your spirit and give you the confidence you need to embrace your inner fashionista!
Before we make any big decisions like new purchases or discarding old ones, it is imperative that we make ourselves a road map- so we know where we're going. Our road map will keep us from getting overwhelmed or underwhelmed while preparing our seasonal wardrobes.
We must first define our personal style. Use all the resources available to you. If you are a library regular, look through the magazines while your kids are picking out books. Grab a few fashion books and flip through them when you have some time to yourself. The internet is also a great tool for ideas. Browse your favorite stores' sites and print your favorite looks. Whether or not you can afford to shop at these stores doesn't matter a bit. Remember, we are just pin-pointing our style-not shopping. There is no need to be practical. For example; many of my favorite looks are featured in J Crew, Banana Republic and Ann Taylor. I never shop at any of these stores because I am not willing to spend my entire clothing budget on a single belt! I do however, own several pieces from these stores and some no name brands that accomplish the same look for a fraction of the price.
Your project for this weekend is simple and fun. Identify the clothing styles that you enjoy wearing and make you feel confident. Are you a classic woman who prefers understated elegance like well fitting slacks and skirts with cardigan sweaters? Are you more eclectic and like jeans and t shirts with statement accessories? Are you bohemian chic or trendy? Most of us are a variation of a certain style that has our own unique flavor.
While you gather inspiration for your personal style, make a pie chart that divides your time according to your lifestyle. These options work for most women. Use your pie chart to decide how many pieces you need for a workable rotation within each division of your time.

-Casual (the fun,comfortable facet of your style)
*family activities
*summer barbecues
*shopping w/friends
-Professional (functional,appropriate,tasteful and stylish)
-Evening Social (the best time to show off your personal style and great for statement accessories)
*date night
*drinks w/friends
*evening social gatherings
-Daytime Social (great time for personal style that is feminine, but not too fussy)
*baby/wedding showers
*daytime weddings
-Cocktail (more formal pieces that you love with elegant accessories)
*evening weddings
*holiday parties
-Exercise (well-fitting sportswear for the gym or home workouts)

Your personal pie chart will help you make sure that you are covering all your bases and not over buying for the things you rarely do.

Next Thursday I'll be talking about packing up the winter wardrobe and examining our spring and summer pieces. We'll discard what no longer works and make a list of what we need to feel fabulous this summer!
I will also be posting shopping tips, suggestions, and destinations on Friday the 28th so we can all make the most of what can be a fantastic shopping holiday weekend. Feel free to post questions and comments. I'd love to hear about your style evolutions!

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