Thursday, May 28, 2009

The look - achieving great outfits

Anytime I have a big occasion to go to, I like to think ahead about what I will wear. Actually, it's more like I go into a panic attack until I think I have the perfect outfit sorted. A comment made by a friend got me thinking about this conundrum again recently. She described an outfit she had planned to wear to lead worship at our church on Sunday, but when the day rolled around, she turned up in something altogether different. I questioned her about the original outfit and she said "It seemed like it would work in my head but when I put it on, it looked all wrong!"

So many times when I'm outfit planning, I run into the same situation. I think about the event and feel I'd like to try and pull off a particular look, then I try to assemble said look from the pieces of my wardrobe. Sometimes it works, fairly often I'm left at the last minute with a pile of discarded clothes and a different outfit on me.

Recent outfit attempts (preferably with a nod to at least one of this season's fashion trends):
*Timelessly graceful (a wedding outfit)
*Thrown together but actually super well dressed ("this old thing? I just threw it on")
*Sporty yummy mummy (lots of days)
*Classy but understated (this look requires clothes with a great fit and cut)
*Girls night out (maybe a bit more girly than usual)

My most successful outfits are definitely those that I've preplanned and tried on before the event, complete with accessories, shoes, etc. to make sure the whole thing works. I advocate having a few pieces (more if you can afford it) of well cut classic clothing that works any time you need it! That way you can be confident you look good, even if you're not completely on trend.

Some Wardrobe Essentials
*Black trousers - correct length, flattering shape
*White blouse - perfect with jeans, trousers, skirts, under dresses, vests etc
*Dark jeans - whatever cut suits your body shape - bootlegs for me!
*Knee high boots - essential winter wear, great under skirts, dresses, winter shorts
*Tights - opaque in matching shoe colours for optimum leg length
*Fitted jacket - whatever style is flattering for your figure, dresses up jeans and down trousers
*Accessories - the easiest and cheapest way to be on trend

It goes without saying that items of clothing I've worn and had good comments about go into higher rotation, and those items that annoy me or are not quite right are less likely to see the light of day again, at least until I forget about last time! If you have a wardrobe of clothes you really love wearing, I think your life is made easier. Flattering clothes that make you feel good are the best starting point for fabulous outfits!

A great reminder is to photograph an outfit once you're really happy with it (I tend to forget what went so well with those pants last time!). I've never actually photographed an outfit but I'm willing to give it a shot the next time I put together a winner.

My favourite style is boho chic - lots of layers, flowing and pretty, the more on the merrier (to a point!)... A boho chic outfit on me looks like a knee length flowy skirt in cord or similar, a long-sleeved tee under a vest then a jacket, scarf and hat, also tights and knee-length slouchy boots. I'm also quite partial to sporty chic although pulling this off well requires a few key label items to show your sporty 'credentials' (understated cool shoes - think Converse, add a little Lorna Jane tee and mix with Esprit cargos).

I'd love to hear about your outfit triumphs and flops!

1 comment:

  1. This season I bought a "must have" cream knitted sleeveless jacket, thinking I would just be the cat's pajamas, and it would be the sort of thing I could throw on over anything and look stylish. It's been a dismal failure! My 12 y.o. daughter's comment summed it up best ... "That looks like a granny jumper Mum"! Ooops!