What You Need to Know to Build a Signature Wardrobe That Makes You Look Good and Feel Confident
The relentless cycle of seasonal wardrobe swaps, frantic searches for new Pantone colours and fashion essentials, is upon us again. This year, why not try something different – plan to shop strategically for the long-term, not just tactically for the season?
How can you buy for the long-term when you only see seasonal clothes in store? Alexandria Blaelock wrote Build Your Signature Wardrobe (BlueMere Books, 2015, now in paperback ISBN: 978-0-9944415-1-5, MSRP US$24.95) to help you assess your life and plan a signature wardrobe reflecting who you are all year round.
“It’s easy to spend too much money on clothes you don’t wear, and not enough on those you do,” Alexandria said. “My problem with “fashion essentials,” is that they aren’t essential. Only space suits are essential. Maybe aqualungs. The rest is just telling you something you won’t wear is more important than new underpants.”
Drawing on the wisdom your grandmothers and great-grandmothers perfected across decades of hardship, Build Your Signature Wardrobe explains how to shop with a three to five-year wardrobe plan. You’ll learn how to create a signature look, pick quality clothes that fit well, and care for them properly.
During an international career in some of the world’s largest companies, Alexandria saw that people judge your abilities by how you dress in all areas of your life. After her kidney transplant, she dropped two dress sizes and was “lucky” enough to have to replace all her clothes. Following fashion advice led to one bad buy (for her) after another, but she thought she was the problem, not the clothes. So she started researching what people did in the Great Depression and World Wars when you had no choice but to plan ahead.
Ms Blaelock shares these five tips for looking good and feeling more confident.
1. Remember it’s not you, it’s your clothes.
Clothes are made in the smallest number of sizes to fit the largest number of people. You are unlikely to find even one mass-produced garment that fits you perfectly.
2. Set your budget.
Knowing how much you can spend gives you instant decision-making control. You can decide whether those sky-high heels you can’t walk in are worth it.
3. Determine what’s appropriate for you.
Don’t buy clothes for places you don’t go and things you don’t do. You probably don’t need fur in the tropics or a very formal suit in a tiny village.
4. Establish your style.
Your style is just the combination of what you think is beautiful with what you think is appropriate. Be warned: if you don’t work it out yourself, someone else will do it for you and you won’t like it.
5. Decide what you need.
In 1935, the “ideal” wardrobe contained nine pieces, but by 2008, it had gone up to 40. You might work from home and only need nine, or you might work with animals and need 40. But you definitely need underpants.
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