The relentless holiday hype at year end can lead to some fashion fatigue in the new year. Heavily discounted retail stores are clearing end of season stock to make room for Spring collections, so merchandise is for the most part uninspiring. After a frenzy of holiday spending, budgets are tight. And to top it all off, the weather is likely to be cold, wet, grey, and quite depressing if you live in the Northern hemisphere.
I certainly feel the January Blues, and so do many of my friends and clients. But I don’t let it get the better of me. In fact, over the years I’ve come to welcome January as a time to reflect and recharge. Here are some strategies that have helped me to beat my own January fashion fatigue.
1. Wear Your Style
The best part of fashion and style is creating outfits and wearing your wardrobe items, not shopping for them. So enjoy your current wardrobe. Wear the heck out of your fabulous stuff and don’t go shopping unless something really tickles your fancy.
2. Look Forward to New Collections
Patience is a virtue. If you’re trying to shop but can’t find anything you like — WAIT. Spring collections will be in full swing by the end of February, and chances are high you’ll be more inspired then. Runway shows for Fall 2015 also begin in February, and are another source of inspiration.
3. Focus on Basics
Basics like underwear, sleepwear, socks, hosiery, loungewear and workout wear might not be all that exciting to shop for, but they deserve your attention at least once a year. Use the January lull to replenish this part of your wardrobe instead of shopping for the more fashionable and visual parts of your style.
4. Refresh Your Grooming Regimen
January brings a feeling of renewal and can be a good time to assess and refresh your skincare, haircare, nailcare and make-up regimes. Change your hairstyle or hair colour. Change up the colour of your nail polish or lipstick. Create a more dramatic brow line by dying light-coloured brows, or fill them in with eyebrow pencil.
5. Have a Mega Outfit Creation Session
Turn up the music and spend a morning or afternoon creating all sorts of outfits by shopping your closet. Invite a friend and have a ball doing it together, and then reciprocate the favour by doing the same in her closet another time. Record the outfits you create so that you don’t forget them.
6. Analyse Your Style
Analysis can be lots of fun. For some, even more fun than shopping or wearing their wardrobe items. Do some introspection about your style needs, set flexible style goals for the year, set a monthly budget, and think up systems to track the items and combinations you wear.
7. Set Style Challenges
This is a fun way to get those creative juices flowing. For example, try going a whole week without wearing dark neutral clothing. Try wearing non-neutrals for two days in a row. Try to wear the same item three days in a row in different outfits. Wear a skirt or dress twice a week. Wear wardrobe orphans for seven consecutive days. Choose a painting and create outfits inspired by the painting. Whatever floats your boat.
8. Find Another Creative Outlet
And if anything to do with fashion and style is just too much for you at the moment, take a complete break by finding another creative outlet. Return to fashion and style when it once again inspires you.
Some of my friends have had style swap parties at this time of year, while others prefer to abandon fashion for a while and hit the slopes for ski holidays instead. Either way, remember that fashion and style should never boss you around. It’s there for you to enjoy if and when that’s what you want to do.