One of the key components of having a capsule wardrobe, or really just making the best use of your wardrobe whatever size it is, involves understanding your personal style.
That’s often easier said than done. It’s totally normal for your style to change over the years. And if you’re like me, and not an expert on trends or names of styles, it can be challenging to define.
So here are 3 steps to go about finding your personal style…
1. Establish a Color Palette
Some capsule wardrobes are very neutral-toned. If that’s your preference, that’s fine. But don’t feel like a minimalist wardrobe can only include black, white, and gray.
When it comes to choosing what colors are your style, there are two key factors at play: skin tone/undertone and personal choice.
I am extremely pale with cool undertones. Anything beige, camel, blush, etc. totally blends in with my skin and makes me look like I’m wearing nothing. Not a flattering choice at all!
I’ve found that deeper (if that’s the right word) colors suit me better than pastels.
Royal blue. Navy blue. Purple. Hot Pink.
These colors “pop” and really suit my coloring well.
People with different undertones look absolutely incredible in orange, yellow, pastels, and camel. I’ve just found these colors don’t flatter me.
While you can definitely go by what colors are recommended for your complexion, honestly the best colors for you are the ones you feel the most comfortable in.
Hunter green is one of the “recommended colors” for my undertone and I think it looks amazing on people with a similar cool undertone. But it’s not a color I enjoy wearing. I’ve never been a fan of green and just choose to avoid it.
Chances are, you already have a pretty good idea of what colors you like and the ones you’d rather not wear.
Having a color palette can help you obtain a more cohesive wardrobe.
My wardrobe primarily consists of blue, pink, and purple. Some other colors I like to incorporate (but less) include black, gray, red, and white. I also like brown and nude for shoes.
2. Realize Your Material Preferences
Finding colors you enjoy wearing is a great start to discovering your style, but another key component is finding the materials that suit you best.
How do you feel about ironing and dry-cleaning? Materials that wrinkle easily or require dry cleaning can be time-consuming and costly. If you are able to handle it, that’s great. But for someone like me who dreads ironing and doesn’t have a budget for dry-cleaning, I prefer to avoid clothing that requires either of those things.
Also, be aware of how you react to certain materials. I’ve heard of people being allergic to velvet, latex, and wool. If a certain material causes you irritation, it’s best to avoid it.
The right material goes hand-in-hand with making your wardrobe weather appropriate.
Since I tend to get hot easily, I try to avoid thicker, heavy materials. I’d prefer to have multiple layers to put on or remove, than one 100-degree sweater.
My go-to materials are light-weight. Rayon, silk, some types of cotton, etc. Anything that feels “breezier”, for lack of a better word.
But if you tend to get cold easier, maybe your approach would be the exact opposite.
3. Determine Your Structure Preferences
There are many articles and videos about what cuts and styles of clothing best flatter your body shape. While that’s a great place to start, again, I think personal preference plays a huge role.
A good place to start is with your current closet. What clothes do you always reach for? Do they share any similarities?
My favorite tops usually have a slight v-neck or scoop neck and definition at the waist (usually a tie-knot detail).
My ideal dresses are knee-length and I prefer tops and dresses that are cap-sleeve length.
Honestly, the best way to determine your preferences is to eliminate what you don’t like.
I’ve never been a fan of turtlenecks (I get too claustrophobic!), so if I see one in the store, I don’t even bother to try it on. I also prefer longer shirts, so crop tops are a no-go for me.
There’s nothing wrong with trying out new styles, but when you have a few key elements in mind (ideal neck, ideal length, etc.), that can make your shopping more focused and your wardrobe fuller of items you love.
What tips do you have for finding your personal style? Feel free to comment below and thanks so much for reading!
~ RaeAnn Jent