No matter how much you love fashion, life gets in the way. Right? Well, it doesn’t have to. True, things crop up that make it more difficult to keep up with current trends. Starting a family is a big one. When you’re running after kids, time and money become a little harder to come by. But that doesn’t mean that you have to abandon fashion entirely.
So, here are some tips to help you to stay elegant, even with just a few wardrobe-essentials. Whether you’re building your wardrobe from scratch or working with what you have, you’re sure to find some helpful advice here.
Form and Function
There’s nothing worse than feeling uncomfortable all day. Admittedly, there are always sacrifices that may come with certain looks. For example, if you’re attending a formal event, then you can’t expect your outfit to be as comfortable as the clothes you wear when you’re slumming it around the house. Even if you’re an old hand (or foot) when it comes to wearing heels, they aren’t the same as wearing slippers.
However, this doesn’t mean that you have to be uncomfortable to be fashionable. If you’re planning to wear something throughout a busy day, then even if it looks fantastic, you need to consider how practical it is. You can’t look elegant when you’re clearly in pain, or if you’re sweating through a fabulous fur coat on a summer day.
Being comfortable also applies to being happy with what you’re wearing. Rather than feeling pressured to follow every trend going, find a style that you like and stick to it. Timeless, classic clothing never really goes out of style.
Speaking of comfortable clothing, one painfully common mistake that many people make is to wear clothes that don’t fit properly. If something is too small, you run the risk of not being able to put it on in the first place. If you manage to get it on, then it will likely be unflattering, not to mention uncomfortable. Clothes that are too small dig in at all the wrong places.
It’s easier to get away with clothes that are too big for you, as long as you wear them with bagginess in mind. However, it’s often best to wear clothes that are much too big and this is a decidedly casual look. Baggy sweaters and t-shirts work best. If your pants or jeans are too big for you, then they’ll spend their time succumbing to gravity. Dresses might stay on, but they often look wrong, especially if they should be a fitted style.
However, perfectly fitting clothes tend to look stylish with very little effort. Even a simple get-up can look very nice if it fits well. The best way to manage this is to have your clothes made to fit. This is expensive and time-consuming, so most people have to make do with the sizes on the rail.
Before you go clothes shopping, take your measurements with a measuring tape. It’s the most reliable way to get your current size, and some clothes include their measurements on the label. You should also try on clothes before wearing them.
As you’re probably aware, the size on the label sometimes doesn’t mean a great deal. You might be a size 4 in one garment, then a size 8 in the next. Different styles tend to sit differently on one build than they do on another. Taking your measurements will also help you to determine your body shape. When you have your body shape, you can determine what styles work best or what styles might need to be purchased in a different size.
Another option is to adjust your clothing. This is a great way to practice your sewing skills and revitalize older clothing that doesn’t fit properly anymore. As you’d expect, it’s easier to bring a larger size in to fit you better, but you can sometimes buy out a dress size or two from smaller clothes. If you aren’t sure of your abilities, don’t be afraid to seek out a local seamstress or tailor who can help.
No matter where you live, your clothes will have to match the season. The good news is that your wardrobe doesn’t have to grow too much. You can still wear the essentials all year round, you just need to add a few nods to the temperature.
True, you probably won’t be wearing most of the same clothes in summer as in winter, but layering and clever use of clothing can be your friend. Let’s break it down.
No matter what your style is or what time of year it is, you’ll want to keep some essentials handy all year round.
To start with, you have your foundation clothes. The simple white t-shirt can work with so many casual looks. It can be worn underneath warmer clothes in winter or used to tie a summer outfit together. Vest tops have a similar function, but you can’t go wrong with a t-shirt.
Layering clothes are also useful throughout the year. These include a classy button-up shirt that can be used in casual, smart-casual, and business attire alike. You can also add a cardigan or jacket to this list, as they go with pretty much everything.
You should also keep some dresses or skirts in your basic wardrobe. These can be paired with your layering clothes to create different outfits depending on the situation. The little black dress is a classic option, but a wrap dress or a knee-length skirt can also make versatile additions to your wardrobe.
As for pants, you can’t go wrong with dark wash denim or a simple black pair of pants. You should also keep some shoes around that will work around the year. Simple flats, ankle boots, sneakers, and pumps cover most scenarios.
Finally, you have accessories. Some accessories are dependent on the weather, but jewelry works no matter what. Pick out your favorites and include some workhorse pieces that can be worn to most events. Consider keeping a light cotton scarf around, which you can wear in different ways, ranging from a headscarf to a light shawl, to a scarf.
Some people go crazy when the sun first comes out in spring, but it usually isn’t too warm yet. Keep your jackets and cardigans around, but consider pairing them with dresses on the sunnier days.
Spring fashion usually welcomes floral patterns and a burst of brightness to celebrate the coming warmth. Other than that, your basic wardrobe should work fairly well.
Some people love it and some people hate it, but summer brings the heat. Usually, this means showing off a bit of skin. Long pants give way to shorts and sundresses. These STAUD minis are a gorgeous way to celebrate the warmth of the sun, cute and classic all at once.
If you’re a hat person, then wear something that protects your face and eyes from the sun. Big floppy hats are always good, but some prefer the more sporty baseball cap instead.
It’s time for warm tones and sweaters to come out of the closet, but you don’t need to break out the winter coats and gloves yet. Boots and scarves are more than welcome, as are cozy beanies and similar hats.
Again, winter isn’t for everyone, but fashion doesn’t have to retreat with the sun. Embrace your winter coats, gloves, and tall boots. You can go modern with puffy coats or choose more classic styles like the ever-stylish tweed jackets, fur coats, or greatcoats.