I believe that our “outer style” conveys a powerful, non-verbal message about our “inner style”. The way in which we present ourselves has the power to convey a great deal about our personality, outlook and self-image.
As a stylist with a background in psychology, I’ve thought a lot about what I would like my personal style to say about me. After all, anyone can buy fashion, but style you have to own. So I aspire to communicate the following qualities through the way that I dress:
- Modern: I am urban. I like to try new things, have a contemporary outlook on life and strive to have an open mind. I express these attributes by being an early fashion adopter, wearing daring colour combinations and sporting a contemporary haircut and current pair of specs.
- Trendy: I love fashion and enjoy putting my ensembles together in new and creative ways.
- Professional: It’s very important to me that I am credible and authoritative in the field of style and fashion. Looking polished, sophisticated, fresh and tidy conveys that I am an organized, disciplined and efficient professional. I’m also a bit of a neat freak, so it makes perfect sense that this comes through in my style.
- Fun: I’m a cheerful and enthusiastic person who is passionate about life. This is why I like to wear happy colours and make bold fashion statements.
- Modest: I deliberately never wear revealing clothing (I scored zero for bombshell in my style profile). I am exuberant, but I have a private, earnest and serious side to me. Keeping my attire modest feels right.
- Practical: Adding a practical and unflashy dimension to my style not only suits me because I’m a practical person by nature, but also conveys that I am approachable and down to earth.
An important aspect of your individual style is the way you balance these different elements. For example, if I go overboard on the fun dimension I probably won’t convey that I am a professional. Of course, the balance also depends on the occasion. Professional, modest and practical will be more evident if I’m dressing for a sober meeting with business partners. Modern and trendy will come out more when I am meeting with other fashion industry professionals. But the elements are always there to some degree, contributing to a recognizable, signature style.
The beauty of an individual style is that it can evolve as we evolve. I often have clients seeking my services when they want to express something new about themselves through the way they put themselves together. This is one of the most fun parts of my job because I love helping people find a style that matches their personality and aesthetic preferences.
Now over to you. What would you like to express about yourself through your style and how successful have you been at conveying that unwritten message?