how to find your personal style

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I recently had a reader email me asking how I found my personal style (great question!). And I very clearly remember having this same thought a long time ago (and many times since) so I thought I would touch on the subject here on the blog.

First of all, let me say that it took years for me to develop my own style (and I’m still working on it). It totally depends on what you like, what you’re doing in your life (i.e. corporate job, something creative) and what makes you feel good. Style is an external expression of the person inside, and believe me, it can be hard to figure out who you are. Finding yourself will begin to shape your style, but let yourself experiment along the way. And give yourself a break; fashion is supposed to be fun!

1. Put together a Pinterest board with all your favourite pieces and styles. What is the common factor? Is it mostly black and white? Colour? What are the shapes + proportions like?

2. Answer these questions on paper (or with Pinterest): Who are your favourite style icons (and you don’t have to pick just one)? What do they have in common? Why do you admire them?

3. Play to your strengths: What are your favourite pieces to wear? What makes you feel good about yourself and your body? Is there something that people compliment you on repeatedly? Keep that in mind when buying new items.

4. Choose a signature piece: It can be anything from a moto jacket (a personal favourite), to a pair of shoes or a piece of jewelry, but it’s something that you know looks good on you and that you feel amazing in.

5. Shop smart: Before you buy a new piece, make sure it will work with at least 3 other pieces in your closet. That way you won’t end up having to buy another new item to make it work with your wardrobe. This is a great way to identify what you have in your wardrobe that you like and what you can add that will work well.

6. Purge: Donate or sell pieces that you haven’t worn in a year. Those items obviously don’t speak to your style or make you feel good about yourself. Next!

7. Don’t be afraid of experimenting! Sure, you may look back and say, “Why did I wear that?!” but you’ll honestly never know if you don’t try 🙂

I hope this was helpful to you guys! I’d love to know if you have any other personal style advice. Email me or let me know in the comments!

Zara striped shirt | Black culottes | Stuart Weitzman Nudist sandals | Camelia Roma nude bucket bag | Leah Alexandra jewelry

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10 Comments

  1. 09.16.2016 / 9:29 am

    The Pinterest thing helped me a lot when I was trying to describe my style in words two years ago. Now the challenge I have is having the clothing so that I can actually dress the way I want to all the time. My preferences skew office chic or would preferably always incorporate something you’d see in the office. So let’s say I’m wearing a casual sweater, I’d prefer to pair it with a sleek trouser or pant than a jean. Or I may like to add a blazer to an outfit to elevate it or heel. But alas, I have few of those things. I care about quality so that makes it even slower for me to add those items to my wardrobe and build my inventory. I purged my closet two years ago and now it’s super small. Kind of depressing lmao. I agree on your wardrobe being affected by lifestyle though. I’m not working in an office right now – in fact I’m going back to school. So a lot of it is more on the casual side. I just wish I had more items to elevate a casual look. A super casual look is not me. I like the elevation + practicality of the situation 🙂

    http://www.dressupchowdown.com

  2. 09.16.2016 / 12:36 pm

    These are great tips! I work part time in a business-casual setting so when I shop I try and make sure they can work for my job, but also when I’m not at work as well.

    http://www.insearchofsheila.com

    • August Diaries
      09.17.2016 / 4:25 pm

      Thanks Sheila!

      xx Jill

    • August Diaries
      09.18.2016 / 10:07 pm

      Thank you beauty 🙂

      xx Jill

  3. 09.17.2016 / 10:38 am

    Actually I opened my blog because I was looking for my own style, and I’m working hard on it. I did some things that are on your list. I think these advices are great. I’m still trying different styles. I think it’s important to be brave and try different things we would never try before. Thank you for sharing this with us!

    • August Diaries
      09.18.2016 / 10:07 pm

      That’s great, congrats! It’s a great way to find yourself + your style 🙂

      xx Jill

  4. 09.18.2016 / 1:12 pm

    This is such a fabulous & relevant post, Jill. I agree with everything you’ve said here. Pinterest is such a source of inspo for me. I have loved it from the first time I got lost in it. Pinterest helped me pinpoint the qualities I’m always drawn to in beauty and fashion… the natural, striking beauty that is a result of a healthy lifestyle and quiet confidence. Simple outfits made up of high quality basics that are adored by the woman who is wearing them. There is no striving or imitation…rather, it is true beauty & individual style at its best.

    You have all of this, and I think that is why your blog and style is such an inspiration to me. You always look striking even in jeans and a tee. I feel like you are the kind of woman that makes people stop and, if they take the time to think about it,…realize that beauty and style come from within. It can’t be achieved through acquiring the most high end clothing or the right make up or an overflowing closet. This, of course, is so refreshing because society and so many bloggers seems to be sending the opposite message so much of the time.
    So, thanks for being you…thanks for sharing your genuine beauty with us. You stand out in the best way, girl!
    XO! Gina

    • August Diaries
      09.18.2016 / 10:06 pm

      Gina, as always, you have the sweetest and best comments! Thank you so much for your support, I am so lucky to call you a reader 🙂

      xx Jill

  5. 09.19.2016 / 1:15 am

    What a great topic! Loved reading your tips – And you’re right, It really does take years to develop and also understand who we are and how to deliver and express that in the way we dress.

    Xxx Belle (Gabriella Bjersland)

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