How to categorise your wardrobe
Wardrobe feeling more zero than hero
There are 4 S’s in my updated Project Fab! Framework:
• Style - what your style says about you
• Shades – how to wear colours that suit you best
• Shape – understanding your body shape and figure flattering styling
• Sustainable – techniques to make your wardrobe work long term
One of the topics I cover in the Sustainable element is ‘Hero’ garments. In this email I’m going to explain how to make the most of hero garments within your wardrobe and expand the topic by bringing in villains and the supporting cast. If your wardrobe is currently feeling more zero than hero read on.
I feel like I've got nothing to wear
Every good story has a hero, a villain and the supporting characters. Your wardrobe is the same, you just might not have recognised the players yet. Dividing your wardrobe up into the following characters might help you make sense of why you it’s crammed full, but you never feel like you’ve got anything to wear. You could do this in your head by going through the contents and making a mental checklist or you could do it physically by setting aside some time to do a wardrobe audit.
• What is a hero?
A wardrobe hero has enough interest to draw attention and make outfit exciting
• What are the supporting acts?
The supporting acts hold your wardrobe together and helps the heroes shine
• What is a villain?
The villains drag you down, are not flattering and are often past their sell by date.
So, you can see how easy it is to feel in a style rut if your wardrobe consists primarily of villains and/or supporting acts. Also, how tricky it can be if you have a load of heroes without a supporting cast. Your wardrobe can seem very fragmented. Nothing goes with anything else, and you have that NOTHING TO WEAR feeling. Quite often this is when you end up going shopping to buy more stuff to add to the already stuffed wardrobe. Without the balance of heroes and a solid supporting cast you’re on a hiding to nowhere.
Think of a hero as being the star of the show. It has enough interest to draw attention and make outfit exciting. It’s best to keep to just one per outfit unless you’re a totally dramatic or eclectic style personality.
It could be a statement piece with built in interesting details like a patterned top, a jacket with an unusual hemline or details that create a focal point, a pair of colourful shoes etc. If you are like me and love a pair of coloured shoes remember to repeat the colour somewhere else in your outfit to create the visual colour loop and not have all the attention on your feet.
TIP – if you’re using a patterned fabric as your hero think about matching your scale to the pattern size. Large frame = large scale pattern, medium frame = medium scale pattern and small frame = small scale pattern.
TIP – consider the background colour of the pattern too – best to match the value contrast of your hair for this. Dark hair = dark background, medium hair = medium background and light hair = light background. This stops the pattern from wearing you rather than you wearing it.
It could be jewellery, a pair of statement earrings, a statement necklace (or 2) or a stack of bangles for example. Multiples of layered jewellery are a great way to make a statement. Think Iris Apfel – she’s the queen of this!
Things to consider when buying a hero
• Is it comfortable?
• Does it suit your style personality?
• Does it mix and match with at least 3 things you already own?
• Could you create a capsule collection around it?
• Is it a workhorse? Could you dress it up or down?
• Do you have a little *stylegasm when you try it on?
* stylegasm (Yes, it's another of my made-up words.)
It’s what happens when you find garment or outfit that makes you want to twirl around and keep looking at yourself in the mirror when you try it on. You squeal with excitement and can't stop smiling 😁 You look and feel a million dollars and it ticks ALL the boxes.
Versatile wardrobe basics
These are the basics in your wardrobe that aren’t particularly exciting or even noticeable, but you couldn’t really get dressed without them. They hold your wardrobe together and helps the heroes shine They are versatile staples and can be worn in lots of ways with other items.
Things in this category might be:
• Camisole tops
• Plain t shirts
• Basic knitwear – plain cardis or jumpers
• Neutral bottoms – skirts/trousers
• Simple dresses that can be dressed up or down
• Versatile (workhorse) jackets
TIP – build up your supporting act collection in your signature colours i.e., Replicate the colours within your hair & eyes. That way your outfits will look well put together.
These are the things that you know you should probably get rid of. They might be old and bobbly and are past their sell by date. It could be the shapeless stuff that drags you down, does nothing for you and are not flattering. Or it could be stuff that you bought on a whim, emergency purchases that you’ve only worn once or just things that you know you’ll never wear and could be passed on to the charity shop.
TIP – think about getting together with friends and having a swapping session if you have loads of nearly new villains – they could be heroes for them.
Wardrobe that works for your lifestyle
There you have it - heroes, supporting cast and villains – what proportion of your wardrobe is which? Hopefully, that’s helped you identify where the gaps are and what you should focus on as you work your way to an all singing, all dancing WTF (wardrobe that’s fabulous).
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