Day 5: New Tools and Techniques with Sigrid McCarthy and Faye De Lanty
Today, let's talk about some new tools and techniques to elevate our style
There are various tools and techniques we can employ when determining our style, many of which I explore in my book, today however we will touch on just two:
Technique #1 Develop a Signature Style
A signature style is actually quite similar to your signature itself. It belongs to you and you alone. You define what it looks like, and by using it consistently, people can now also identify you by it.
A signature style can also be referred to as a uniform – not the classic white shirt, tartan skirt and matching tie – but an outfit formula if you will.
“All you need is a go-to signature style.
Once you have your look down, you can build a wardrobe that embodies your signature style – and also edit out the pieces that don’t complement your fashion personae."
~ Rachel Zoe ~
Just to confuse things, I’m going to now use your school uniform as an analogy – assuming you had one. Cast your mind back to when you were about to start the school year. First stop would be the uniform store where you would stock up on your:
Formal uniform for special occasions
Your summer and winter uniforms might have had a couple of different versions, interchanging a skirt for trousers, socks for stockings, short for long-sleeved shirts. Several key pieces exhibiting the school logo, for example a tie or sweater, may have remained the same throughout the seasons. The school blazer may have been added for formal events.
If you adopt this ‘uniform’ technique again all these years later, your aim will be to repeat your habits formed in school and create a few outfit formulas that you can wear on a regular basis, saving time and hassle.
“I’m a uniform dresser.
I would wear the same thing to work as I would on a plane or a play date.
it very quick and easy for me to get dressed every morning...
I only look for a few things each season and I invest in pieces I love,
then I wear them all the time and they become part of me.”
~ Lara Worthington ~
Technique #2 The finishing touches
Style is not just about your clothes; it is so much more than that. Style includes everything from your choice of fragrance through to how you apply your makeup; from which style shoe you slip into, to the way you tie your scarf.
In my book we look at various elements that you could choose to adopt and tweak, using them to assist you in pulling your overall look together – regardless of the vibe you want to project. We venture from head to heel, touching on hats through to shoes, but today we are going to focus our attention on accessories.
Accessories can act as a woman’s armour. Think about Wonder Woman, with her amazing red go-go boots, chic gold cuffs and tiara. And what about Cleopatra, who was known for adorning herself with opulent accessories like headdresses with gold cobras and precious scarabs – all the while convincing Egypt that she was a divine goddess.
Further to acting as a woman's armour, accessories can really transform a tired wardrobe and change up an outfit.
And the task for today...
Choose one of the techniques above and head to the corresponding page in your style guide.
Signature Style - head to page 26 of your style guide.
When defining your signature style, my advice is to firstly look at what you are already wearing... remember your 'style sweet spot' that you found on Day 3? this is a great place to start.
Once you have realised the outfit formulas you gravitate towards, it’s time to refine. Think about your new-found knowledge, in particular your body shape and desired silhouette – does your outfit formula marry up well?
Refer back to your lifestyle pie chart and calculate how many outfits you need per segment. You may like three uniforms for work and two for the weekend. Or if your work is rather casual, you may just like four in total. For now, hone in on your favourite uniforms; you can always add more at a later date.
Finishing Touches - head to page 27 and 28 of your style guide.
There are an abundance of open ended questions waiting for you in your Style Guide PLUS I want you to experiment. Give yourself space to play dress-ups for an hour, trying on your accessories, mixing and matching items you normally wouldn't. And when shops reopen, accept Fayes challenge and visit a thrift store and head to the counter to pick yourself up some unique and character filled accessories.
Don't forget to jump onto our Facebook group to share your findings with us.