Fallen into a style rut? Here are 5 tips for trying a new style and refreshing your look.
You’re looking at yourself in your last 10 years of photographs when suddenly it dawns on you — you’re wearing exactly the same styles today that you were wearing when the “Macarena” was popular. Somehow you’ve fallen into a style rut and it’s definitely time to find your way out.
1. Be Open to Change
The first step on the road to a new you is deciding what it is about your wardrobe that you want to change. Pull out three outfits that make you feel fabulous, three more that you’re not sure about and decide which ones you want to keep — the ones that show off your best features — and which ones it’s time to toss. Next, decide how you can apply the successful elements to new ensembles.
2. Do Your Research
If you tend to buy the same styles over and over, you’re probably on autopilot and haven’t given much thought to how to apply current trends to your own look. Invest in a stack of fashion magazines and cut out the images that instinctively appeal to your style sense.
Then do a second pass, focusing on the pieces that accentuate the features you’re most proud of and comfortable with that you identified in the first stage.
Finally, go through the magazines a third time and pull out a few wild-card styles that you think you’d never wear. If you try them on in the stores, you might surprise yourself by finding something completely different that looks great. Now that you’re armed with a plan, it’s time to shop.
3. Go For Patterns
Patterns are a great way of refreshing your wardrobe. If you’re accustomed to wearing plain colors, a pattern can make your usual style look dramatically different. If you’re not used to wearing patterns, you should choose something bold on a garment that is easy to wear, such as a shirt, or you can test a pattern out with a less obvious accessory such as a dramatic hair band.
4. Don’t Overdo It
Ease yourself into any changes by choosing something that is an extension of a style that you know already works for you. If you live in knee-length skirts, play with styles a couple of inches shorter, or go for a knee-length dress in a completely new color or fabric.
Similarly, if your summer wardrobe is all about shorts and T-shirts, as the weather cools in autumn and winter, wear pants that are looser to maintain that free-and-easy summertime shorts feel, and top the T-shirt with a well-cut jacket.
Accessories are key to making any new clothing style work. Don’t be afraid of economizing on your clothes and allocating more of your budget on accessories. You can snap up a dress for less and spend more on a fancy belt to create a stunning outfit. You’ll be surprised just how much mileage you will get out of a fantastic necklace or belt—and they will often hold their own through several fashion seasons, too.