The point of doing all this introspection about your current style and the style you aspire to achieve, the style you do NOT aspire to achieve, and analyzing your favourite outfits is to compile a set of style goals. These goals will perch on your shoulder like a nice nagging nanny, keeping your thoughts and actions focused as you work through your style renewal or refresher.
Whether you write these goals down or keep them in mind as a reference, you will constantly refer back to them as you edit your closet, shop for new wardrobe items, and create daily outfits. The goals will keep you focused in a fashion and style world that is at best quite overwhelming, especially when you have multiple fashion personas.
It is important to keep your style goals flexible. While it’s effective to have a plan that keeps you on the straight and narrow, it’s perfectly possible that some of your goals won’t work out. For example, your goal might be to add bright coloured clothing into your wardrobe mix. You really like the look of brights on others so you’re game to give it a bash. So you purchase a few bright pieces and are feeling most delighted that you achieved this style goal. But upon putting these brights through their daily paces, they just don’t make you feel fabulous. You feel infinitely more confident in neutrals and muted colours no matter what. Lesson learned. Adjust that goal by either scrapping it completely, or trying brights in the form of accessories and footwear instead of clothing.
You can have just a few style goals, or a long list of them. Your goals can capture absolutely any part of your style, shopping routine, dressing routine or grooming routine. Your goals can be general and high level, like practicing positive body image and purchasing for your lifestyle, or they can be simple and specific, like adding a midi dress in emerald green.
Wearing your beautiful clothes can be a goal, because some have closets full of killer pieces that they just don’t wear. Purchasing the correct clothing size can be a goal. Adding a bohemian or sophisticated edge to your look can be a goal. Sticking to your monthly budget can be a goal. Experimenting with belts and hosiery can be a goal. Wearing more skirts and dresses can be a goal. Upping the style quotient of your work ensembles can be a goal. Pattern mixing can be a goal. Dressing up can be a goal. Wearing trendy items can be a goal. Keeping your closet tidy can be a goal. Taking pictures of your outfits can be a goal. I’m sure you get the idea.
As an illustration, here is my own list of style goals:
- To marry my favourite fashion personas, Modern Classic, Punk and Androgynous, into a cohesive style that is age appropriate and attractive
- To wear simple outfits that are crisp, clean, modern and bold
- To add even more colour to my wardrobe
- To leave off most accessories
- To wear ultra trendy pieces with a classic support act
- To NOT purchase cardigans and knitted tops because they become closet orphans no matter what.
- To NOT over purchase for Spring and Summer. As much as I love soft blouses and sleeveless clothing, I like them best when they are worn on their own. This calls for warm weather which is not a slam-dunk here in Seattle.
- To NOT purchase items with too much design detail because I become bored of the aesthetic.
- To continue mixing high end pieces with low end pieces in one outfit
- To continue exploring the world of trousers
- To buy up midis while they are trending
- To find a killer pair of dressy flat loafers
These goals are always in the back of my mind, assisting me with my wardrobe purchasing decisions and daily outfit combinations. I was really thankful that they did their nagging job the other day when a gorgeous citron cardigan almost followed me home. I was so taken by the colour that for a moment I conveniently forgot that I just don’t wear cardigans. I also bypassed several colourful blazers because the designs were too intricate for the look that I’m going for.
I formally set style goals with all my clients and the process is very worthwhile. It helps both my client and me remember why they wanted a style renewal or refresher in the first place. It’s easy to be overwhelmed by merchandise, seduced by sale prices, and end up settling for items that are okay but not killer. With a set of flexible style goals in place, you’re off to a more organized and effective start. In the end, you’ll save both time and money, which is in itself a great life goal.