“True style starts from within and radiates without” SJ
Have you ever looked in the mirror only to be disappointed with what you saw staring back at you? That how you look and feel didn’t match with who you are or deep down who you know you have the potential to become. Have you ever been invited to an event or function but be overcome with frustration as you’re confronted with a wardrobe bursting at the seams yet still feel as though you have absolutely nothing to wear?
I can answer ‘yes’ to every single one of those questions, though admittedly it was a very long time ago. It was after I had my children, I was so entrenched in mummy mode that I had let my wardrobe run down to the point that I had no idea what dress size I wore. I’d put on some weight, I’d let myself go a bit and had lost touch with who I was independently from my children.
For a long while I limped along in mummy mode ignoring the fact that I neither recognised nor aligned with the woman I was faced with in the mirror. As I crawled up to the big 40, I knew I had to reinvent myself – that involved finding my groove again and transforming myself from the inside out.
Like many people, especially those with young families, I didn’t have the time, energy or resources to pour into myself but what I did have was years of prior knowledge of how clothing and styling works. For a long while it felt easier to ignore how I was feeling then as desperation crept in, I set the wheels in motion to become my own styling project – Finding and embracing a new version of me and overtime curating a wardrobe that reflected that became my mission!
I’m not going to tell you that it was easy or quick because it wasn’t. It took much patience and commitment to drag myself into the place I needed to be to feel confident about myself again, but the results have been lasting and are still evident for all to see.
So how did I do it? Well there were three main strands to my strategy: Self-prioritisation, self-reflection (lots of it) and a major wardrobe audit.
Self-prioritisation largely entailed dedicating time to myself on finding things to do that I enjoyed independently from other people and roles. This in fact led to me being reintroduced to the loves of my life – sewing and designing and the passion this ignited in turn led to me starting my business and brand, Urbanized Neckwear – a story I would love to share with you in another blog.
My major wardrobe audit was equally a life changing experience that was and has been heavily entwined with my self-reflection. This strand of my strategy relied on my brutal honesty. I had to turn myself inside out – delving into myself to explore who I am, my lifestyle, influences, preferences, my confidence boosters, my confidence killers, my self-destructive habits. I spent time learning to love my body; its unique shape and all its gifts, flaws, curves, lumps and bumps.
With great discipline, I carefully went through my wardrobe to assess every single last item of clothing, pair of shoes and accessory to determine if they warranted a place in the wardrobe of the new me. Would it match the vibe I wanted to give off to the world about who I am evolving to become? Did it flatter and fit the body that I am learning to embrace? Did I really need it and did it fit my lifestyle? Would it work hard for me and compliment other items in my newly curated wardrobe? These were just some of my criteria for marking each and every single item I owned and was applied to any newly purchased items too. Literally everything was scrutinised against the new standards I had set for myself.
Overtime my approach became easier. My wardrobe slowly began to align with who I was evolving into and converted from a mish mash of disjointed items, to a well thought through co-ordinated collection filled with signature items. I no longer wasted money on poor purchases but instead ensured that everything fit into and earned its place within my overall look. Regardless of how much I’d spent on an item, where I got it from or indeed if I’d made it myself, I fully understood what shape, colour, cut and style worked well for me and what role that piece would play.
Last year, as the world was forced to stop, I observed in real time and online that more and more women felt like I did all those years ago. There seemed to be a turning away from looking to celebrities for inspiration and guidance and a move towards seeking realness and authenticity from relatable everyday people. And in the stillness of the times, I realised that I had all of the answers that these women needed that would help make their shift to authenticity and ‘true’ personal style much quicker and easier than mine.
Finding your authentic personal style doesn’t happen overnight; it takes commitment, honesty and a level of know how. The result however is fruitful and rewarding. Whilst back then I didn’t have anyone to guide me, I have used my experience, knowledge and skill to create ‘Step into your Authentic Personal Style’ as a complete guide to help others to feel more confident every time they open their wardrobe and empower them with the know-how of putting the perfect outfit together that reflects their authentic style. As an Authentic Personal Style Coach I am here to show others the formula for how to find their authentic groove and radiate their new found inner confidence outwardly through their personal style… Let me show you how!
Click here to find out about my Personal Style Coaching Programme
For useful insight into my personal style coaching formula, you might also like to check out the following articles…