I’ve written many times about personal style, most recently in last year’s popular post, Whose Style is it Anyway, and the previous year in the post Fiercely You in 2018. It requires bravery to be yourself through your personal image. However, as the old saying goes, “Be yourself, everyone else is taken.”
Orson Welles described style in this way: “Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say and not giving a damn.”
The last part of his quote is what gives you the courage to show yourself to the world through your personal style. We wonder what others will think. Remember, others might be wondering what you think. I don’t believe we think of others’ style choices that much. I don’t. If I, the image consultant, isn’t thinking much about others’ styles, what makes you think anyone else is giving it much thought? So, let’s not allow this idea to hold us back in our style choices.
I’ve previously quoted Simon Doonan on this, but it is worth repeating because it is spot on: “As you experiment with your appearance, you must remember that by feeling self-conscious you are merely indulging yourself. Nobody is judging you… People are much too busy worrying about their own lives to ask why you are dressed like Wolf Blitzer.”
Your style inspires
I get some of my best ideas from the street, drawing inspiration from how someone has styled themselves. You have a unique point of view. Your life isn’t like anyone else’s. Your experiences are different from mine. The things you’ve done and the people you’ve spent time with mold you into who you are today. You are the only you we’ve got.
As Carol Edgarian puts it, “Style – It’s all the places you’ve been to and the people and moments you’ve known: the parts you’ve adopted, to keep forever, and transformed. We wear our history in our hearts and on our backs.”
A person with style naturally draws eyes. That said, this is why some opt out of making a style statement: they prefer to not be noticed. That’s fine except your image makes a statement whether you like it or not, even if you are less noticeable than the person with style. The “hoping to blend in” style says things I’d rather not type. Just know it speaks and not in a good way. The person with style has an undeniable energy. They are uplifting and magnetic. We move a little closer to them to learn what they know.
Style moves beyond rules
In a world of opposing and confusing messages, your style very clearly says, “This is me.” You are the special sauce. You make your clothing cool. Style is knowing yourself, tuning into what you love and bringing those things into your look. Style can’t be graphed, charted or rigidly planned. Rather, your personal style begins when you walk away from rote style rules to embrace your unique way of doing things.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? … as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”~Marianne Williamson