Before I understood style and discovered that fashion was more than trends or what I saw in magazines, I tried everything. As in whatever I saw in the store and liked — I bought. No rhyme, no reason, just vibes. It meant that I had a magpie’s closet worth of crap that I tried to make work. But I’ll be honest it was really hard to feel good about my closet for longer than a few months at a time. And that my lovelies is no way to get dressed. Constant frustration with my wardrobe made getting dressed difficult, stressful, and ultimately, not fun. Especially for a person who supposedly loves style and fashion. It took a lot of years but I have managed to change that by building a wardrobe that works. Do you want getting dressed to be easier? Use these 3 simple rules!
I wish I understood long ago that style isn’t about keeping up with every trend that drops. That’s a sure fire way to ensure that your closet is in constant need of a shape up. Now when I shop, I take a few things into consideration. I’ve found that by incorporating these three rules into my shopping habits, I only buy what I need and love. Some folks think having a uniform equates to being a bore but I beg to differ. My kids wear uniforms to school and it’s amazing because they never have to worry about what they’re going to wear. It provides some relief. Think about jobs that require a uniform, knowing exactly what to expect everyday gives you more time in the morning. The minutes you would have put toward figuring out an outfit can now be spent enjoying more sleep, having a real breakfast, or just simply taking your time.
To me, a uniform means peace and that’s the greatest gift. Here’s the three rules that have made getting dresser easier for me.
Rule No. 1 – Choose A Color Palette To Build On
What color looks best on you? What color do you get complimented most in? These kinds of questions are what can help you settle on which colors you want your wardrobe to be built on. For me, neutrals reign supreme. Black, white, and variations of brown are what thrive the most in my closet. I love this base because it pairs well with most colors and each is worn well alone. Choosing a color palette gives your clothing and shopping direction. By having a system in place before you venture out to the store or window shop online you won’t be as inclined to make impulse purchases.
That’s what really used to set me back. By not sticking to a color palette I ended up with a rainbow of pieces that didn’t pair well together. A myriad of patterned tops and bright colored dresses that I would wear once. The purpose of a wardrobe is to be a collection of clothing that you can mix and match to create looks. Here’s a better way to gauge if your wardrobe is working. Do you have to get a new outfit every time an occasion arises? If the answer is yes, then friend it’s time to do better. Rule number one, choose a palette of three colors. This is what every outfit in your closet is built upon. All the time. One base, one neutral, and a pop. Let these colors be the only colors you purchase clothes in. As you build up your pieces you’ll start to find that every thing in your closet can work together. Thus taking the stress out of figuring out what to wear. This takes us to our next rule.
Rule No. 2 – Pick 3 Items You Love Wearing And Build Outfits Around Them
I’m a jeans and t-shirt kind of girl. The simplicity of the combo that can be elevated or made casual with a few easy swaps is what I love. Some people prefer dresses. Others may be skirt and top kind of people. Either way we all have things that we opt for that make us feel most comfortable. This rule helps you build the base of your closet so that it is working for you and not against you. If you don’t like wearing skirts, why would you have a closet full of them? Hate denim? Stop buying jeans. You can wear what you love and make it work in every situation.
Let’s break it down using my three items: Jeans, a t-shirt, and a jacket. I enjoy dresses but they wouldn’t be my first choice. Skirts are hard for me because I’m short. I lean toward mini skirts, those look best, but they can’t be worn year round. Shorts too, can be weird. Narrowing down your options to pieces you will wear makes getting dressed easier because your closet is full of things you like. Check out the graphic below you’ll see how this works for me.
Don’t get boggled down thinking this means I never wear dresses or don’t switch out my pants because I do. Jeans doesn’t just limit me to denim, it simply means that I opt for pants over anything else. Jeans can be trousers, sweats, leggings, etc. But the formula doesn’t change. Pants + top + jacket = outfit for me. This guide makes shopping a breeze too. But because I follow rule number one and don’t deviate from the color palette everything still always works together. The goal here is to build a closet that can take you everywhere at anytime. Which leads me to our next rule.
Rule No. 3 – Let Your Accessories Bring The Fun
This is where I play when it comes to fashion. Accessories is where you can shine. For me that means fun sneakers, fly handbags, and always sunglasses. For you maybe that’s jewelry, hats, or heels. Whatever your thing is let it come to life. Because I don’t wear a lot of bold colors in my clothing, I use my accessories to bring color to all of my looks. I’m not afraid to buy a bright pink Telfar bag because paired with sepia toned trousers and a white sweater it brings some razzle dazzle to the look. The pair of silver glitter Golden Goose sneakers with the leopard star would seem like a bit much with a really colorful outfit but paired with an all black one? They pop.
Knowing that my closet is comprised of three main colors, around three items, the accessories is where I throw in excitement. And, that’s rule number 3. Have fun with fashion. If you aren’t having fun when you get dressed then it’s time to fire those clothes, they’re failing you. This is the place where you let your style come through. If red, black, and gold is your color palette grab something green to balance your look. If you aren’t sure what colors will coordinate with the palette you’ve chosen, check out a color wheel. A color wheel can show you what colors complement others and that can guide you on how to build a look.
These three rules have helped me go from crying in front of my closet out of frustration to now being able to pull an outfit together in less than 15 minutes. My color palette helps direct me on what to purchase. Knowing what three items I have as a base and using my accessories to bring together makes it so that getting dressed has never been easier. If you’ve been having trouble figuring out what your style is, how to shop, or how to get dressed; try these three rules and let me know if they work for you!
Photography: Kaye McCoy
Building a wardrobe doesn’t have to be intimidating, looking HAUTE is as easy as 1, 2, 3.