I've always had an interest in fashion. Even when I was very young, I loved the concept of having 'style.' I believe you can tell a lot about a person by the way they dress. It gives you a peek into how they view the world and even what they think of themselves. While I have certain styles that appeal to me more than others, I don't put myself in a box and I dress more for the season I'm in, the things I have to do and the places I have to go. I like to be creative and take risks but I don't always have the time or funds to get as creative as I would like. But, I think I've learned how to at least make sure I always look 'put together.'
When I get compliments from others, the one I get most often is 'You always look so put together!' This concept, I believe, was influenced by my mother and my Southern roots. Growing up, it was ingrained in me to always leave the house looking presentable. My mom would always say 'you never know who you are going to meet.' Looking presentable is different for everyone but I thought I would compile a short list of the main things that make me feel put together.
1. Neutrals, Neutrals and Black.
To me, neutral colors are the following: white, black, grey, creme, olive and navy blue. You can do head to toe looks with each of these colors and you can easily pair them with each other.This is something I adopted recently due to a need for work/life balance in my wardrobe. At this point in time, it just doesn't make any sense for me to purchase clothes that I can't wear to the office and on the weekends. I am at the office for sometimes more than 40 hours a week and there are many weekends where I barely leave the house. By wearing neutrals, I can easily mix and match, swap things out, dress up and dress down items and I don't waste money on clothes that I only wear once. My personal go to colors are creme, white and black. A white button down for example, can be worn with jeans and over the knee boots to brunch on Saturday and then to the office with pinstripe slacks and pumps on Monday. When in doubt, I purchase things in black. You just can't lose, it's slimming, it's professional and it's easy.
2.Keep My Nails and Hair Done.
This is easier said than done and manifests differently for everyone. When I say I keep my hair 'done', I mean that I do what works for me. I know which styles require the least amount of effort, I make wash day a priority and when I'm having a bad hair day, I have a backup style ready. For some who don't do their own hair, this could mean having a standing hair appointment, for others it could mean getting to work early so you can get home in time to spend the evening 'adjusting your crown.' My mom made me learn how to do my own nails at a very young age, a couple of decades later, I've gotten pretty good at it. I have all the tools needed at home in order to give myself and simple manicure and polish. While I love going to the nail salon, for me, it's more of a treat and I make it more of a priority in the warmer months. When I don't have the energy to commit to either of these things then I put my hair in a bun and shape up my nails, making sure to apply a quick clear coat. Go with the flow, keep it simple and remember you are beautiful just as you are.
3.Staples and Statements
These two things go hand in hand with number one. Even when I was a broke college student, I made sure I had staple pieces that could always be repeated and always look good. The photos in this post highlight some of my key staples items. A black leather jacket and black skinny jeans. A few other items I love include, white tops, chunky cardigans and simple studs. For me, staple items are ones that I can wear in multiple seasons and can easily coordinate with different outfits. Pairing staples and neutrals can get boring which is where statement pieces come in. I love pops of color added to an otherwise monochromatic ensemble. In the photos featured in this blog post, my turquoise necklace provides a small pop of color while my bag gives the outfit some dimension and fun. My belt is a more subtle statement but provides a bit of interest in the event that I'm not wearing the bag. With my current 'uniform' I have, I'm open to all things statement; outerwear, jewelry, scarves, bags. The key is to have fun with it and choose things that add flare to a simple outfit.
I hope these tips help you out. Remember, be who you are, don't be afraid to take risks and have fun with it! Comment below on what you like to do to look and feel put together.