Defining Your Style – How to curate a closet full of clothes you love in 4 easy steps.

-Quote by Lauren Hutton  So Important to me to feel comfortable.
-Quote by Lauren Hutton

There is a man who works at our local convenience store who some may label as a bit of an odd duck. Despite whatever song is being played on the speakers of the in store radio, he can often be found humming or even quietly singing a different song altogether. Talk about marching to the tune of a different drummer, he literally has his own soundtrack. There is something wonderfully brilliant about being able to turn off all the other noises and just be able to hear what you want. Sort of like flipping though the radio stations until you hear the song you like. Imagine if we got in our cars and there was one station and one station only? Maybe sometimes it played something we liked but what if it was just forcing us to listen to something we didn’t want to? How awesome is it that we can remedy this issue by simply changing the channel? In high school and college I would spend hours making mix tapes. Why feel forced to listen to the what the d.j. or radio station wanted me to hear, when I had the power to create my own playlist?

Personal style is no different than choosing a radio station or making our own mix tape.  The issue now, with both fashion is music, is that sometimes we are faced with an avalanche of options. It can become overwhelming and exhausting to constantly try to weed through the noise and the clutter to find something we actually like. When faced with going into a mall, shoppers often end up leaving with a couple randomly selected pieces, or even nothing at all. No one really has the time, or the patience, to go through the choices at each and every store. Online options are getting equally as crowded. Think of how many emails we routinely get in our inbox with headlines like “Sale!”, ” New Markdowns!”, “Get It Before It’s Gone!” Inevitably we find ourselves clicking onto these sites, mindlessly scrolling through pages and pages of options. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good sale and I love having choices, but the problem again becomes that we are hearing 100 different types of music being played at once, with no way to discern what we actually like or truly love.

It’s not always easy to figure it out on your own. Just like how you can do a workout plan on your own at home, but it is much more helpful to have an in-home personal trainer. That’s what I do. We talk through the process and I help. Together we figure out what YOU like, even more important what you LOVE.

Step 1 – Get into your closet. (or in front of,  whatever, wherever it is, just go there)

This the easy part.

Color organization.
image via suziegaffney wardrobe consulting

Step 2 – Go shopping (in your closet).

Pretend it’s a store. Don’t worry about if you have worn it a little or a lot. The question is do you like it? Do you love it? Would you buy it again, RIGHT NOW? And don’t worry about the price, because often client’s tell me that maybe they would buy it again if it was “On Sale.” That’s settling. That’s like listening to a radio station with music you don’t really like just because it has good reception. It’s still noise and clutter that we wouldn’t choose, so don’t feel forced to keep that in your wardrobe.

image via suziegaffney wardrobe consulting

Step 3 – What did you (re) buy?

Look at your selected pieces. Why do you like them? Is it the fabric? the fit? the color? Don’t worry about if there is a theme. That’s the best part about clothing. There doesn’t have to be any kind of theme. If some things feel preppy, some things rocker and others sporty that’s okay. It’s the same as liking different types of music. For exercise motivation?   Linkin Park and Jay-Z ‘s Collision Course album will keep me motivated. If I want to wind down and chill? Nora Jones and Jack Johnson. In the mood for Summertime beach music? That’s Grateful Dead and Bob Marley.

Also don’t worry about if anyone else likes it. That’s someone else’s opinion. Noone else is wearing your clothes on your body but you, not your husband, not your children and not your best friend. It’s you and your body. It’s simply not fair for others to have an opinion. Would you ever tell anyone what type of music to like? What type of food to eat or not eat? If you like, then it you like it, it’s that simple. With music and clothing, there is something to fit all of our moods and all the different pieces of our personalities. It’s a beautiful thing when we can figure out how to listen to what we want , and to wear what we want, as opposed to what everyone else is selecting for us.

image via suziegaffney wardrobe consulting

Step 4 – Stay true…and break the rules.

Look at your favorites and take some mental notes. There will be some common themes to your choices, like not buying anything in the color yellow, no sleeveless tops, or that you prefer pants to skirts. It’s helpful to know what our go-to choices are because it can save us time and help us to find what we like even faster. If you know you will always get plenty of use out of a new pair of jeans then by all means buy them. Just make sure to get rid of any old or outdated denim to make room for the new. If Taylor Swift puts out a new album it’s a pretty safe bet that I am going to like it. Shameful, yes, but her songs are addicting and catchy, and my daughter and I love to sing them in the car. It’s a no-fail kind of purchase. I do make sure to make room on our music library by deleting the old Hannah Montana songs we used to sing in the car together, because well let’s face it, she’s gone, Miley pretty much killed off her alter ego when she straddled a wrecking ball in her undies.

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image via suziegaffney wardrobe consulting

On the flip side,  don’t be afraid to try something different. Maybe you swore off the color yellow because long ago someone somewhere told you it’s “not your color.” It doesn’t hurt to give things another try. Maybe your hair color has changed since then, or maybe you just had the wrong shade of yellow. This is just like when we tell ourselves that we dislike a certain type of music. I have always proclaimed that I couldn’t stand country music, but this summer, like much of the country, I found myself singing along with my kids to Florida Georgia Line’s “Cruise” song. You  know what? It was a great summer song.  True country music fans may say that song was more pop than country, buy hey, it made me realize I had been very acting very narrow-minded for a very long time. It also made me want a Chevy pickup and a Miller Lite, all good things!

image via suziegaffney wardrobe consulting

*Insider Tip – Control the noise

I have to give credit to one of my fabulous clients for this tip. Jenni Brand of Bastille Marketing  knows her you-know-what when it comes to managing her internet data. It is important for her to stay both informed and organized. When we worked on her closet we discussed shopping habits and she has a great tip. Whenever she shops, either online or in a store, and she is asked to provide an email address, she gives them an email address that is dedicated completely to retail , something like  I would relate it to something like Pandora music streaming, where you let them know some of your favorite artists and songs, then they can tailor the music stream to your tastes. This keeps Jenni’s personal and work inbox free of distracting clutter from stores and retailers. If she wants to take the time to see what is new, or if she needs a promo sale code, she just goes to her other “shopping” email account. She put herself in control of filtering all of the noise to better fit her needs. So smart!!

my friend and client, Jenni Brand image via suziegaffney wardrobe consulting

Thanks for reading!


P.S. Moving into our new “old” home is quite a process but we are head over heels in love. A very sweet client of mine (Thanks Liz!) just dropped off flowers and I was explaining how unpacking and decorating is very similar to the act of taking everything out of your closet and only putting back what you love. Somethings from are old home won’t work here, but I am also opening up my mind to some different types of colors and patterns than I am used to. Below is a sneak peek, thank you again for letting me share our journey into our new home and I hope to post some  more pics of our progress soon!

image via suziegaffney wardrobe consulting

Published by suziegaffney

owner at Suzie Gaffney Styling

3 thoughts on “Defining Your Style – How to curate a closet full of clothes you love in 4 easy steps.

  1. thanks for sharing one of my efficiency hacks, Suzie! I’m so delighted to have been featured. I hope it helps someone else turn down the noise a bit. Another great read as always! Keep up the great blogging. I always learn something new!

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