This photo popped up in my memories today:
I don’t think I’ve ever posted my own initial draping photo on this blog, or on any of my social platforms for that matter. I remember that day so clearly, that mix of excitement, nerves, and skepticism, and the mild shock I felt leaving my analyst’s home with a diagnosis of Dark Winter. I also vividly recall finding that lip color super dark (I think I said “I look like a vampire!”) Oh, how far I have fallen.
My draping photo inspired me to reflect on my journey through color and style analysis. I’ve learned a lot, grown a bit, and done my best to remain as real as possible throughout the process. Below are my biggest takeways from the experience, and the reasons I’m still so enamored with this process.
Far and away, the most helpful aspect of color and style analysis has been getting me to make more intentional shopping choices. I’m no longer buying things just because they’re on sale, and I’m not standing in front of my closet agonizing over what to wear every day. I genuinely enjoy what I bring home from the store, and I know it’s going to work with everything else in my closet. I still buy on impulse occasionally, but at least now I have a solid sense of the things I like to wear and the things that make me feel good. So even though I don’t necessarily need another pair of geometric silver earrings, I know I’ll wear them all the time and I know they’ll work with the rest of my wardrobe.
I’ve had a bit of a rollercoaster relationship with makeup throughout the course of my color analysis journey (more content on that soon!) but, like with clothing, I’m now able to make much more intentional choices when I do buy it. For me, the biggest makeup lesson from color analysis has been what to avoid. I know that, for instance, any lipstick even approaching orange or baby pink needs to stay far, far away from my face, and I know that if I’m going to use bronzer, it’s got to have a fairly taupe tone in order to make sense with my skin. Knowing my season and style is a great starting point when it comes to makeup, but beyond that I’ve really leaned in to my creative side and experimented with different styles and techniques. Clothing is an investment, but makeup washes off!
Nailing down neutrals
Neutrals are the starting point of most wardrobes, and knowing which ones work best for me has led to an extremely cohesive wardrobe. I no longer bother with brown, beige, or white (though the Dark Winter season does have versions of all of those) because I know black, gray, and navy work better for me and my closet. This has really streamlined my shoe game in particular, as I tend to wear a lot of neutral shoes and keep my pops of color to tops and dresses. Black shoes will go with virtually everything in my wardrobe, so unless they come in a killer shade, I can safely stick with black.
Immediately after I was draped, I started buying everything in my season, whether it fit with my lifestyle or not. Through curating my own closet and reflecting on my own life, I realized that no matter how perfectly that pair of strappy silver heeled sandals fit with my aesthetic, I simply wasn’t going to wear them (even if I had the occasion to do it!) I’ve learned that style is about more than the formula – the human element matters even more! I’ve gotten to the point where I can look at potential purchases more critically and pass on items that I just won’t wear, even if they’re beautiful. The upside of this is that I’m able to fill my closet with more of the kinds of items that I do wear, which means less time spent getting dressed. Halle-heckin-lujah!
Knowing when I don’t care
This has always been a bit of a dirty secret of mine as an analyst and style expert. Sometimes I just don’t feel the need to look “together.” Some days, putting on a full face of makeup and a cute outfit makes me feel my best. Some days, like today, yoga clothes, no makeup, and a headband makes me feel my best. It’s okay to feel both. Transitioning my loungewear to that same black and gray palette that I love has been helpful, but even when I’m wearing my last holdouts of non-Dark Winter comfy clothes, I’m okay with it sometimes. If you watch my Instagram stories, you’ll see that every once in a while I have messy hair and a Doctor Who onesie on. That’s me just as much as the perfectly put-together outfit I was wearing the day before. I’ve learned through this color journey that style and color are only a part of who I am, and I’ve learned that I’m extremely okay with that.
Let’s find your aesthetic! Contact me to set up your color and style analysis!