In an earlier post, I wrote about the progress and general ideas for moving forward with my business, as well as a few personal goals. One of the goals was to continue honing my wardrobe. I realize that this project, my friends, deserves its own blog post (and maybe even series of blog posts!
For the last year, I've been in a weird wardrobe lull. I've been thinking about different strategies for curating and improving my wardrobe so that it feels more me and now in a way I can't quite articulate. I've perused the Colette Wardrobe Architect series (even did a few of the exercises but never published them) and the 333 project, among others. I've developed a few of my own strategies and always find myself reflecting on my style every few years.
I've learned a few things about my style this year:
1. I like earth tones. I know as an 'adult woman', I'm supposed to like black, grey, neutrals, etc, but it's just not my jam. I do wear these colors, but more often than not, paired with colors like paprika or chartreuse. Also, while I love prints, I don't really like to wear them. I like to stick to simple, geometric things and things like dots, stripes, and checks. Plaids sometime even feel like a bit much for me. I'm a big fan of texture.
Here's a little work up of my color palette:
2. I have started to figure out the shapes, or silhouettes, that I prefer to wear. Some are styles I know to be flattering to my body type and some I think look great regardless of what 'the experts' say (ie: high-waisted cigarette leg pants). This process is much harder than you would think.
I've narrowed it down to things I do like and some I'm unsure about. The big winners: Straight or cigarette leg pants, mid-high rise, Straight or pencil skirts, slightly a-line or gored skirts both mid calf length. For tops, pullover sweaters both fitted and loose, sometimes even over sized, casual button down shirts with and without collars (like Colette's Aster), drape-y woven shirts (like Cabin or the True Bias Sutton Blouse), and boxy or dolman sleeve knit tops. Outerwear, I like traditional button down cardigans, drape-y long type cardigans (New for me! Like Straight Stitch Designs' Laurelhurst), and oversized pullover sweaters. I also figured out that I like sweater vests.
I'm very eclectic style wise, so exercises that focus on 'core style' never quite produce anything useful for me. What tends to be most important to stay eclectic but look put together is thinking in terms of shapes and shades. SO this year, I'm going to focus on paring down my wardrobe to different shapes and shades - items that work together and that I like to wear. And of course, I plan to sew new things with these in mind! Since we need an exciting tag of both the blog and hash variety, let's call this Shapes & Shades 2016 (#shapesandshades2016 ;) )
Oddly enough, one of the driving forces behind this project is functionality. For example, I have lots of cute tops, but often cover them up with sweaters in winter. So I need more collared shirts to show under pullovers and maybe wool hand-knit tops I can wear on their own as shirts.
Another big concept I've been thinking about is balance. Loose on top + fitted on the bottom, light on top + dark on the bottom, print on the bottom + solid on top.
I'm also going to start documenting some of my favorite outfits that fit these new parameters so that I can build off of what works. I'm not much of a fashion blogger, but I do love seeing other outfit posts, so I thought I might share some of mine! To kick off this project, here's my first #ootd!
- Handknit slouch beanie (own pattern, Madelinetosh ASAP in Optic)
- Thrifted long sleeve button down shirt (which I realize looks like a fanny pack sticking out of the sweater vest)
- Handknit sweater vest (own pattern, mystery yarn from a friend)
- Handknit Caridgan (Cedarwood by Alicia Plummer for Brooklyn Tweed knit with Malabrigo Rios in Sandbank)
- Knit Pencil Skirt (own pattern, basically a tube in a great french terry cotton/modal blend from Girlcharlee)
- Boots by El Naturalista (my favorite shoe company)
- Ceramic bead necklace (from a lady at the farmer's market)