August 15, 2011

30 Things I have Learned about Fashion, Style and the Art of Dressing

I turned 30 over the weekend and had a few (just a few) realizations as I contemplated my life so far. I reflected back on how far I have come and thought about where I hope to be in the next few years.  I wonder what my 10-year-old, day dreamy, starry-eyed self would think of me.  Would she be shocked to find out that I don’t have my own place, I still live at home, I am not a fashion designer or a singer or an actor and I don’t know everything, sigh. Perhaps she would, hopefully though she would see how much I have learned.  So what have I learned? Well since this is a fashion blog and I am not that philosophical, I will keep my remarks to what I have learned about fashion, style and the art of dressing oneself.

1) Every morning, no matter how you feel, get dressed, comb your hair and put on some lipstick.  The act of getting dressed and made up invigorates you to move forward into the day, even if it’s just to the kitchen.

2) When you adapt fashions to you, it becomes style. I don’t care how trendy it is, if it doesn’t look well on you it is not serving a purpose.

3) Spend more on classic pieces and less on trends, the classics will last, while the trends come and go.

4) When you find a picture of a model or movie star, public figure anyone’s style you admire,  that you are drawn to, save it.  The picture will help to flesh out your personal style.

5) Keep an inspiration board by your dressing area, it will give you ideas when getting dressed or help you decide what you would like to add to your closet.

6) Occasionally indulge your inner 10 year old, wear sparkles, tights or bright colors.

7) When you get dressed and throw on any old thing, you feel haphazard the whole day. Also if something needs to be ironed just do it, you will look and feel 100 times better. 

8) Dress to please yourself first and foremost, don’t wear labels to impress or tight clothes to get attention, wear the things that make you feel comfortable, confident and happy.

9) Find out what styles work on your figure, not the stick thin model or the voluptuous actress, what works on you.  Even if it means an hour in the dressing room, once you find what works stick with it, own it, that will be your trademark. 

10) Go to the store to buy clothes, online shopping is convenient but you may end up with a lot of things that don’t work.  Go to the store and try things on then if you want to find it online for less you know what size and style to get.

11) Buy your favorite color in bulk.  When feeling drab throw on a bright colorful piece as an accent, it will brighten your whole demeanor.

12) Have one nice, well fitting dress for each season, it’s an easy one-piece solution to getting dressed and looking sharp.

13) If you feel ridiculous in an outfit, it probably looks ridiculous as well.

14) Always buy well-made shoes even if it means only having a couple of pairs.  Cheap shoes may be cute, but I have never found a pair that was comfortable.

15) Follow the directions on the clothing labels to help your clothing last, even if it means a trip to the dry cleaners.  It is not worth taking shortcuts if it means ruining a great piece.

16) Have your good footwear resoled every couple of years to elongate its life.

17) Make sure your undergarments stay just that, under your clothing. They should be invisible.

18) Don’t obsess or feel badly about your flaws, find ways to cover, conceal, elongate and slim through the use of fabric, color and construction.

19) Do a little research when attending an event or function, find out the venue, time of day and cost.  This will determine the formality and style of dress.

20) It is always, I repeat always, better to be overdressed than underdressed.

21) Keep stain removers in your bag (especially if you are prone to spills like me), it makes a big difference when you are able to treat a stain right away.

22) Don’t get stuck in a shopping rut by frequenting the same stores. Try to shop at new and different locations; boutiques, thrift stores, and vintage shops.

23) Have an ample supply of accessories, jewelry, scarves, hats, and belts.  Accessories have the power to elevate the most mundane outfit into something special.

24) Accept hand-me-downs with open arms.  Someone’s trash is someone else’s treasure.  Also before you get rid of something think if any of your friends would want it.

25) Before getting rid of a piece ask yourself, can it be repaired or reworked to make it into something new.  If not, out it goes.

26) Proper storage of clothes (ahem to 15 year old self), shoes and accessories is vital to keeping them looking like new.

27) Buying clothes is fun, but don’t let it get out of hand (ahem to 18 year old self).  Only buy what you know you will wear and can afford.  Maxing out credit cards to look stylish only ever looks stupid.  Make sure to save some of that money for other things; a car, vacations, concerts, housing to name a few.

28) Don’t hang on to clothes that you might wear someday, wear them now or donate them, they’re just taking up space sitting in a closet not being worn.

29) Keep safety pins in your bag just in case.

30) You are the fashion editor of your wardrobe, you decide what stays, what goes, what you want and what you really need.  Getting dressed is about you, expressing who you are to the world, and how you wish to be seen.

...and one more for good luck.

31) My style will evolve and change just like my personality and interests have changed.  I will be open to trying new styles, and I won’t say I will never wear... because when it comes to fashion you never know.

Best of everything to you all,


Thanks for reading, lets swap fashion secrets now.  I want to know what are some of the fashion lessons you have learned in your life? Share your tips in the comments section and I will pick the best advice from the group to share in an upcoming post.

I will always choose cake over  fitting into smaller pants.


  1. Happy birthday! I loved to read your list and I completely agree with on everything you say! Especially number one! No matter how you feel in the morning if you look good you always feel at least a little bit better!


  2. Thanks Plami! Yes the first one is a real game changer, it's amazing how a little makeup and a change of clothes can boost your metal outlook. Thanks for reading.


  3. You must have been born to be "all about fashion". I agree that you should always take pride in your appearance. One thing I have learned about fashion is that no matter how low the price, if it doesn't look good on you then don't buy it. When you wear a well fitting outfit, not only do you feel better about your appearance, you probably will receive many compliments as well. I've also learned to add color to my wardrobe instead of the old drab pieces.


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