Sincerely You

One question I get asked quite often is this: how did I find my personal style? And I'll admit, it’s been a hard one for me to answer. The reason I’m in this industry of fashion blogging at all is that I have loved and appreciated clothes since I could tie my own shoes. I’ve had pieces in my life over the years that became a part of me. When I was three, it was a pink pinstriped dress with baseball buttons. When I was nine, it was a bright green plaid cotton button-up, which I called my camp shirt, and wore with absolutely everything. Red, orange, blue—nothing clashed with it if you asked me. I’ve cared about my wardrobe as long as I could remember.

In high school, I tried a lot of different looks. In ninth grade, everyone on campus called me the poster child for Hollister & Co. because I tried to own every variety of t-shirt that had their name splashed across the front. Let me be the first to say I spent my hard-earned money on those clothes and did not happen to be blessed with endless funds for school clothes from my parents—that was a very conscious decision of mine to be decked out in those tragically memorable pieces.

I took college classes junior and senior year, so the mood switched from high school campus to college campus and suddenly I decided that I needed to try a lot harder to impress the older kids. Lucky for me, I quickly realized the key was confidence. Then I started to have fun.

Long skirts, short pants, fringe boots, ripped leggings, denim jackets, layers and layers of patterns and scarves—my only staple was my favorite skinny jeans. I went through phases of copying Miley Cyrus’s bohemian years and Ashley Tisdale’s edgy-glam coffee run years (Not familiar? Just Jared Jr.’s 2009 and 2010 archives. You’ll feel me) and trying to insert my own sense of style into their favorite pieces.

It wasn’t until I started reading fashion blogs that I began to narrow down what I liked and didn’t like, and even what looked good on me and what didn’t work. Some of the first blogs that I followed were Kendi Everyday, Eat Sleep Wear, and Cupcakes and Cashmere, all ladies that were significantly older than me and had thoroughly developed their sense of style before their blogs even came to be. It instilled somewhat of an older mindset toward my closet, and I realized that whatever I ended up curating would be “My Style.” It would be “My Closet” and I would have “A Look.”

These days, my key closet words are classic, edgy, timeless, neutral-toned, and a little whimsical. I avoid bright reds that clash with my complexion and I look for longer shirts that flow over my hips and create length for my torso and legs. I layer patterns that are similar sizes and pair brown with black and I know what works for my body and what works in front of a camera. I had fun with my wardrobe in high school, and now I have substance in my wardrobe.

Study the archives of your favorite fashion bloggers. Research the pages of your favorite fashion magazines. Dive in and start learning how others dress themselves, then apply it to your life. I know from talking to a lot of you that it feels daunting, like you have to start from scratch and have nothing to go on and how is this ever going to be possible and, and, and, and…but trust me. There are a thousand people out there in the fashion world that have done the research for you. You just need to do the homework.