According to a survey by Retailwire.com, one of the top 10 reasons women hate to shop for clothing is: Lack of awareness of what looks good on them. Hard to imagine, isn’t it? What, with so many great styles and options to choose from each season—and new trends popping up every few months.
Perhaps that’s the problem—women feel overwhelmed by all the choices. Shopping becomes a chore and a bore. We can either respond in one of two ways: we just avoid shopping all together and find we have nothing to wear, or we buy everything in sight. And our closets simply explode—becoming bigger and bigger, not better and better. Neither seems a sensible option.
In Quintessential Style: Cultivate and Communicate Your Signature Look, an entire chapter is devoted to shopping. We refer to it as creating your personal collection.
Shopping should be likened to an interviewing process, where you are the boss. You have certain criteria, and if the interviewee doesn’t meet that criterion, the potential candidate is eliminated right away. When there are only a few hopefuls left, you ultimately get to choose the best candidate (garment) for the job.
You can bypass about 95% of the clothing in a store through a simple process of elimination. But there is one caveat. You must know yourself: your best colors, the best styles for your body type, and most importantly, what it is you want to communicate through your appearance for the life you are living TODAY.
Here’s how it works. When you get to the store:
- Locate your size. (Sizes can vary. Don’t get stuck on a number).
- Eliminate all colors that are not flattering.
- Eliminate all prints/patterns that are not flattering.
- Eliminate all styles that are not flattering (for your body type).
- Eliminate anything that doesn’t fit your lifestyle and/or the event you are shopping for.
What’s left? Probably only a handful of garments. And those garments are precisely the items that should look most complementary on you. Go try them on. Don’t waste time on the rejects.
Once you discard the negatives, only the positives remain, and you get to choose. Don’t like any of them? Move on to the next rack or store.
Before you know it, you’ll find that you not only have a collection of garments you love and that go with you, but also a closet full of clothes that go with each other.
The key is knowing yourself and what looks great on you. The better you know yourself, the less shopping mistakes you’ll make, the more time (and money) you’ll save, and the more confident you’ll feel knowing you made the best possible choice for you. That’s quintessential style!
About Janna Beatty
Janna Beatty, owner of one of Texas’ premier makeover studios, is co-author of the book Quintessential Style: Cultivate and Communicate Your Signature Look (www.Qstylethebook.com). She has studied in New York and Paris with some of the most respected advisers in the fashion and beauty industry. A successful business owner for more than 30 years, Beatty speaks to corporations, professional organizations, and women’s groups. She also has been a guest on radio, podcasts, and television.
About Sharon White
Sharon White is an award-winning author who lives and writes in Central Texas. She has written for New York Daily News, Huffington Post, Fashion Bible and other online and print magazines. She publishes a popular lifestyle blog (qstylethebook.com) based on her book, Quintessential Style.