The 3-Step Wardrobe Workout: Define Your Personal Style

The 3-Step Wardrobe Workout: Define Your Personal Style

Anuschka Rees
Sep 16, 2016
(Image credit: Anuschka Rees)

Whether your closet needs a total overhaul or just a quick update, September (the January of fashion, basically) is the perfect time for a little sartorial reinvention. We tapped Anuschka Rees of the uberchic style blog Into Mind to share her expert knowledge (she wrote the book on curated really, she actually did, and you can pre-order it here) and advice to help you finally get the wardrobe you've always wanted.

A better closet translates into more confidence, a quicker morning routine, easy packing for travel, and perhaps most importantly, no more money wasted on clothes you'll never wear. Even if you don't consider yourself to be someone who cares about fashion, those are pretty good reasons to invest a little time getting your closet in shape, am I right?

Here's a quick preview of what we'll be covering:

  • Step 1 (this post) is all about getting to know your personal style, or in other, less fancy terms, figuring out what type of clothes make you feel confident and comfortable.
  • Step 2 is closet detox time! The goal here is to get a clear overview of what you already own and what's missing.
  • And finally, in Step 3, you'll be ready to hit the shops! We'll talk about how to find pieces that you'll want to wear for years to come, how to prevent impulse buys and how to write a truly helpful shopping list.

But before we start, wanna know the secret behind building a great wardrobe, one that makes getting dressed every day a quick, fun and easy thing, rather than a huge source of frustration? Building a wardrobe like that doesn't require whittling your closet down to a certain number of pieces or having plenty of cash to spend on designer clothes. It all comes down to one thing: making your closet fit your personal style.

Personal style has nothing to do with trends, your age or your body type. It has nothing to do with what you should wear. It's all about what you want to wear. All the colors, cuts and fabrics that make you feel your best. Whether that's brights and bold patterns only, or jeans and a T-shirt all day, every day.

Defining your personal style takes a bit of creative research. Grab something to write down your notes, then complete these next three exercises.

(Image credit: Anuschka Rees)

First, take a look at your current favorites

What type of pieces do you find yourself reaching for all the time and what separates them from the rest of your wardrobe? Is it the color, the cut, the fabric, the pattern? Are all of your favorite tops V-necks? Can you not live without your go-to pair of high-waisted jeans? Do you always wear that one blazer whenever you want to feel extra confident at work, because you love the fitted, slightly longer cut? Write it all down. Your goal is to end up with a big list of things (like colors, types of pieces, materials and so on) that are all your style.

(Image credit: Anuschka Rees)

Once you have your list, collect style inspiration from blogs and magazines

Next, browse your favorite style blogs, online magazines and online shops for more inspiration. Whenever you see an outfit that you could see yourself wearing, save it in a folder on your computer or simply add it to a new board on Pinterest. For each image, ask yourself: What is it about this outfit that I like? Is it a specific detail or the color combination? Add everything to your list.

(Image credit: Anuschka Rees)

Lastly, cull your list

Once you have completed these last two steps, go over your list again and cross out anything that doesn't appeal to you anymore or that seems less important than other elements. Et voila… you've just created a recipe for your personal style. Over the next two posts, we'll focus on shifting your closet a little closer to that style.

Bonus: What your home can teach you about your ideal closet

Just like your clothes, the way you decorate your home is an expression of your style. In fact, many people actually find it easier to express their style through their home rather than through their clothes for various reasons (including dress codes and body image issues). Either way, if you are currently happier with the state of your living space than the state of your closet, definitely have a closer look at your go-to decorating strategy for extra style clues!

What is the overall vibe of your home? What are the dominant colors? Are you a minimalist or a maximalist when it comes to decorating? Not everything will translate one-to-one (you may love bold floral patterns on pillows, but prefer smaller-scale florals on yourself), but your at-home style will definitely give you some important clues that you can use to define your fashion style.

That's it for today, have fun getting creative this weekend!

When you're ready for Step 2 → The 3-Step Wardrobe Workout: Detox Your Closet

Pre-order "The Curated Closet" ($24.99 US/ $33.99 CAN by Ten Speed Press) before its official release on September 20 and receive a free 8-week closet revamp plan that you can use alongside the book to keep track of your progress.

More posts in The 3-Step Wardrobe Workout
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