That title is slightly misleading because this post really includes TWO months’ worth of style challenges. Or one month’s worth of two challenges per day… either way you look at it, there are LOTS of challenges.
First up, Anuschka at Into Mind has a 30 Day Closet Confidence Challenge meant to help you develop your personal style and love your wardrobe (and yourself!) more. There’s a different prompt/task for each day of the month; if you’re Type A you can hurry up and do the first 4 today and then follow the rest of the prompts one per day for the rest of November. (Or you could start today with #4 and do #1-3 the first 3 days of December. Or do them all out of order!! Crazy.)
Some of the ones I find personally most helpful for building my style are: wear an outfit 10% outside your comfort zone; write a list of everything that is NOT your style; analyze what exactly you like about your five most-worn items (or in my case a silhouette from another season). Which sound appealing to you?
If you prefer a little surprise challenge every day, Nicole over at The Spirited Thrifter has adapted a local friend’s minimalism challenge into the Closet Minimalism Game. You need to check her posts on Instagram (no account necessary) to get the prompts, but it’s worth it: her writing is funny and the photos of how she fulfilled each prompt are great inspiration. Plus, if you need some positive peer pressure, you’ll enjoy knowing there’s a whole community out there, complete with hashtag, playing along.
Happy weekend, Thrifters!
PS This weekend is your LAST CHANCE to take the ThriftShop Chic Reader Survey and help improve your blog experience! Under 10 questions in less than 2 minutes. Many thanks to those who have already taken the survey – y’all have some great post ideas I can’t wait to tackle!
Anuschka at Into Mind wrote a great post on thinking about your closet not just a collection of cute outfits but as a cohesive wardrobe, and using those lovely, stylized images of capsule wardrobes we talked about the other week to help evaluate your own closet.
She’s also got an example of said visual inspiration for summer. It’s a great demonstration of how to do a unified closet with more color and polish than the neutrals/casual basics vibe we so often see in capsules, so if you love color or need a more work-appropriate look, check it out. Bonus: the broad terms she uses (chic work top, fun work top, accent pants) help you think of your closet in terms of categories that work together instead of making you lust after specific pieces some blogger loved.
Last but not least, 5 Ways to Build a More Ethical Closet tackles ethical dressing from a broader perspective than the oft-touted “save up to buy Everlane even if you don’t love grey t-shirts.” Anuschka outlines 5 different approaches to curating a more ethical closet that remind us not to “let perfect be the enemy of good.” Approach #4 is “shop secondhand or vintage” – yay!
Happy Weekend, Thrifters!
I didn’t get to a Friday reblog last week (life…work…toddlers…you know), but I found a great blog post over the weekend so I thought I’d share it today.
Making a list of what constitutes your style can be really helpful as you’re piecing together a wardrobe. But Anuschka at Into Mind flips the concept on its head – make a list of things that aren’t your style to help weed out what doesn’t work. I particularly liked her idea to make a subcategory for “love it on other people, not for me” as those items can be distracting and disappointing when honing your own style (“I LOVE this, but I never wear it…” “This looks great on my friend, why doesn’t it work for me??”).
A “not my style” list is even more helpful when you’re thrifting a large portion of your closet. If you’re not rock solid on what constitutes your personal brand of style, sweet prices, the scarcity-based feeling that there are only so many secondhand clothes to go around, and the sheer smorgasboard of styles can combine to make you splash out on a great piece that isn’t really you.
So let’s make a list. Here’s mine:
Great on others, not for me:
-skinny jeans (I keep trying these on, they keep refusing to let my circulation move freely)
-button down shirts
-dresses with short hems
-button down cardigans
-superoversized sweaters (I have one, I wear it at home or while pregnant)
-anything sheer (I’m not prudish but I’m definitely lazy and don’t want to add another layer to make sheer work appropriate)
I just don’t like them (even if they’re on-trend):
-military parkas/utility jackets – always look too casual/busy with doodads and add-ons. Also I’m not in the military or going fly fishing anytime soon.
-super wide-legged pants
-twinsets (although one of my coworkers absolutely ROCKS these…shoutout to Patti!)
-faux suits – dressing all in one color when it’s not a suit (apologies to Janice of The Vivienne Files, and my mother-in-law). I need more variety!
I’m sure the list could be longer but it’s late and my brain just overdosed on dulce de leche cheesecake.
Alright, Thrifters, let’s see YOUR “Not My Style” lists in the comments! And tell me – do you think this is a helpful concept?
On Tuesday I talked about where to put your prints, arguing that the simplest way to a streamlined closet was to pick just one place for your patterns.
Where’s the fun in that, you say??
Well, if you’re a print lover (or you want to be), this post is for you.
Tips for Mixing Prints (from dipping a toe in to daring)
- Mix subtle and bold. As mentioned Tuesday, a pinstripe, tiny polkadot, glen paid, very faded/light print, or even a seersucker stripe will read neutral when paired with a larger, bolder print.
- Use texture as a print. Like the subtle prints mentioned above, lace, tweed, cable knit, etc. all walk the line between full-blown pattern and solid and will help ease you into the world of print mixing.
- Break it up. Use a wide, solid belt or a color-block top with solid on the bottom and pattern up top to create visual interest without visual overload. My favorite way to do this is with fun shoes on the bottom, a solid pant, and a printed top:
- Stay in the same color family. If the main background colors of your prints are pretty close, it’ll read as a variation on a theme instead of competing narratives. Likewise, think about whether your prints are generally the same warmth/coolness* or saturation – layering neons over rich autumnal colors is just gonna make everyone queasy.
(Check out these two Into Mind posts for an intro to color theory – e.g. what the heck is saturation? – and examples of harmonious color palettes for your wardrobe.)
- Mix two different genres. Floral + stripe. Stripe + animal. Polkadot + tweed. Monochrome check + bold cartoon colors.
Speaking of monochrome…
- Black & white + color. There’s enough of a contrast between black-and-white and colors that our eyes tend to read them as background + foreground (or vice versa). For your colors, stick to bold and bright, more saturated hues if you don’t want to muddy things up (i.e. navy is probably not a great idea here, nor are super-soft pastels, unless you tone down the black in your monochrome to a correspondingly soft grey).
I have very little black in my wardrobe so I have no outfit examples to show you, but the graphic at the top of the post is a good illustration of how well this works.
What are your tips for mixing prints? Do you love to live on the leopard/zebra/tiger stripe wild side, or are you print-mixing shy?
*Apologies to artists everywhere. Saying more blue/yellow/red instead of warmer/cooler is pretty confusing for us non-artists.