Three Good Reasons NOT to Follow Fashion Advice

You can’t always trust fashion advice, so be careful when considering the source. Here’s why:

1) You think “It looks good on the mannequin. I’ll buy it!”

But, just because it looks good on the mannequin doesn’t mean it’s a winner for you. The retailers are enticing you to buy, by dressing up the mannequin, BUT you probably don’t look like that mannequin! Not many of us do. We have to take into account our own body type, coloring, face shape, facial features skin and hair qualities.

2) “My friend thinks it looks good on me.”

If she can see beyond her own style, coloring and body type, she may be right. Otherwise she could just be imposing her tastes and preferences onto you. Or maybe even unconsciously cloning you into a copy of herself. This is a hard one because, if you can’t see it for yourself, you’ll probably be tempted to follow her blindly. After all, she always looks great, doesn’t she? But you need an objective eye for this. If your own eyes aren’t objective and you don’t know for sure if your friend’s eyes are either, you might want to consider working with a professional who’s been trained to see objectively.

3)It’s in the fashion magazines.” Fashion magazines have two big limitations. They are:

a) Too generic. They can’t possibly cover all of the variables that make up your unique style or look. General guidelines can be somewhat helpful, but they don’t go far enough. Compare that to understanding exactly why something looks great on you, or not.

b) Too limited. They can only show what’s going to be available for that season which has been dictated by the designers. The designers don’t’ know YOU. They’re just playing out their own fantasies and preferences that don’t have anything to do with you. Well, unless you happen to get lucky on occasion!

Sometimes, it all feels too complicated. You may be tempted to just play it safe. So you stick with basics. You don’t know how to accessorize, so you don’t. But playing it safe often translates into boring.

On the other hand, you may throw caution to the winds and buy your clothes on the whim of the moment. You choose a passing fad, a trend that may be on its way out, a cute little something that doesn’t go with anything else in your closet. But, when you do that, too often you end up with a mishmash in your closet and never know what to wear.

Either way you never feel great in your clothes, and that’s a problem!

What to do?

1) Take the time to understand your style, your personal coloring, and your body type.

2) Learn what works best on you, and don’t buy anything unless you know it’s right.

3) If you feel overwhelmed at the thought of taking on that task and don’t feel you can do it successfully, consider getting professional help. Advice from an expert can keep you on the right track, stop you from making mistakes, and save you money in the long run.

Fashion Advice For Women Abounds in Books and Magazines – Available Free at a Public Library

A trip to the public library may not be our first thought when we want fashion advice for women. Here are some good reasons why the library is a fabulous place to research the latest fashion trends.

The more books about fashion you consult, the more likely you are to realize that your unique style starts with you not what designers trumpet.

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Audrey Hepburn, and First Lady Nancy Reagan are known as classy dressers and fashion icons. Yet, as we look at their wardrobe choices over the decades, we see that they updated their fashion style – but did not radically change it.

Body type and face shape will not change much with age. Books with fashion advice for women emphasize creating your look, rather than following the crowd.

Style is about more than wearing the latest fashion. Biographies of fashion icons and designers teach us that glamour and beauty really are an inside job.

Reading about fashion icons introduces us to their lifestyle philosophies. These women not only have fashion style, they have class. Shelly Branch and Sue Callaway report that First Lady Jackie Kennedy used her charm persuasively for donations to refurbish the White House with appropriate antiques. She and second husband Aristotle Onassis famously helped her cousins make livable a dangerously run-down Gray Gardens. She dressed down when she became a book editor, consciously choosing not to flaunt her wealth as she assumed a new role in life. Branch and Callaway share these memorable anecdotes in their entertaining book of much more than fashion advice, What Would Jackie Do?.

The best fashion photography is not available on the Internet.

Absorbing the best fashion photography can be inspiring, unleashing your creativity, as well as offer lessons in fashion cycles. Few of us can afford to purchase these expensive tomes. Take one home and bathe in the visual luxury. By the way, you can find a lot of great books with full-colored photos about home decorating and gardening at your library.

Teach yourself to get creative refurbishing your wardrobe.

Do-it-yourself fashion and craft books abound. The latest fashion may literally be at your fingertips – not at the mall. Get ideas for transforming out-of-style garments into fresh new looks. Crochet or knit yourself a winter muffler and cap. Be more ambitious and tackle a sweater that would cost hundreds of dollars in a specialty store. Add ribbon and buttons to an inexpensive blouse to give it a handmade look. Beading and jewelry-making remain an effective way to create unique accessories. You can even transform old shoes with a glue gun and trim.

Find fashion advice books and magazine articles you cannot get any other way.

Your library will, most likely, be able to order a book that’s not in its collection through InterLibrary Loan (ILL). If you cannot find what you want in the catalog, ask a reference librarian for help.

Articles about the latest fashion and expressing ourselves creatively through style turn up in unusual places. Psychology Today had some articles about fashion and personality in 2008. You can find and read these articles for free on two popular databases that index Psychology Today – EBSCO and ProQuest. A database is an index of articles that have appeared in hundreds of newspapers, magazines, and large-circulation newsletters. The bible of the fashion industry, W for Women’s Wear Daily, may be available if you want to keep up with insider industry trends.

Save money.

Fashion and style magazines and books cost a small fortune. We can glut ourselves on as many as we want at the library, instead of toting home just one guilty pleasure from the magazine rack or bookstore. And think of the money we save by spending a few hours at the library instead of at the mall to scout out the latest fashions. Here are some specific reading suggestions.

In conclusion, the next time you’ve simply got to learn about the latest fashion advice for women, skip shopping and prowl the library. Magazines are designed to persuade us to buy. Fashion books, including fashion advice, basic wardrobe planning, fashion photo collections, and biographies of designers and fashion icons, teach us that the more fashion changes, the more unique, personal fashion style remains the same.

Men’s Fashion Advice – Dress For Success

If you want success, you have to dress for it! Most everyone is familiar with the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” However, hardly anyone seems to follow that advice. People do judge other people by how they look and by what clothing they are wearing.

Quite often, it seems as if the “cover” of the book or our clothing is much more important than the book’s contents. This isn’t fair, of course; however, that’s just the way life is.

The reality is that you are going to be judged based upon what you are wearing.
Your boss, your colleagues, your clients and sometimes even your family and friends – all of these people and more will be looking at what you are wearing and making decisions about you based upon what they see.

Here are some suggestions on how to make sure that your clothing makes a great impression upon everyone who matters:

1. Don’t just buy clothes off the racks at the store – Often, those don’t fit everyone’s body types. Instead, purchase the clothing that fits you best; If you want to go the extra mile here, head to a tailor who can customize the shirts, pants, and jackets to your exact measurements. While you’re at it, have the tailor put cuffs on the pants. This makes the pants hang nicely and keeps them from climbing up your legs as you walk.

2. Wear mostly neutral or dark colors – The main parts of your outfit should be comprised of neutrals or darks; However, you can have a less common accent color as a small part of your outfit. For example: your tie or pocket square (if you wear one) could be an accent color.

3. No “super” flashy patterned ties – Yes, you can wear an accent color on your tie, perhaps with a mild, understated pattern; but, cutesy cartoon ties or loud patterns are not acceptable.

4. Wear dark socks and dark (preferably black) shoes – Brown shoes are acceptable as well with the right outfit, but make sure your socks match it. Your belt should match your shoes – and, yes, always wear a belt…no suspenders, ever.

5. Dress shirts should be white, off-white, or light blue – If you choose any other color, you will find it difficult to find a tie to match; therefore, you will typically wear the same tie every time you wear that shirt. People will notice after awhile, and it will become like a set uniform – you’ll become the Thursday – light-green-shirt-with-the-green-and-brown-tie guy.
Stripes and squares patterns are OK as well, but it should match your outfit and shouldn’t be too dominant.

6. If it’s not “Causal Tuesday” – avoid the Short-sleeved shirts – You don’t want to take off your sports or suit coat and be wearing a short-sleeved shirt. You aren’t going to get too hot in a long sleeved dress shirt – nearly everywhere has air-conditioning these days. However, even if you do get hot, rolled-up sleeves look better than a short-sleeved dress shirt.

7. All of your clothing needs to be neat, clean, and wrinkle-free – You could be wearing a high-end, expensive suit that has been custom-tailored – but, you won’t impress anyone if it has a stain on the pant leg or if the suit jacket looks as if it were slept in. Dry cleaning might be a little expensive sometimes – but it well worth it!