One of the most frequent comments I receive whenever talking about my fashion business always has to do with how “I could never do that because I know nothing about fashion.” How untrue.
I’m not talking about being the next Ralph Lauren, or Kate Spade, or even one of those picture perfect Instagrammers. In theory, with enough dedication, anyone can make the next big fashion brand. Anyone can easily be a fashion expert.
Why? Because too many times I hear self-deprecating comments about someone’s fashion abilities. Instead, let’s check out these simple principles that can make anyone… and I mean anyone a fashion expert.
Too many times, being unfashionable is an excuse for not bathing. Seriously, anyone with even a mildly tasteful combination of clothing looks hella fashionable compared to the same exact outfit covered in pizza stains and crumpled from sitting on the floor for the past three weeks.
Get your life together. Be clean. You’re 50% of the way there.
Do you ever go into your closet and think: I have nothing to wear? Too many things don’t go together. Too many colors and styles to choose from, yet not enough to make the outfit work together?
Too many clothes and not enough to wear is a telltale sign that you need to get more in touch with your personal style. Hold off when you see that cute top in the store until you can fathom at least 10 ways to wear it with other garments in your closet. If you can’t find a way to wear that rainbow sequin crop top when you live in Vermont and spend 90% of your life hanging out at home with a pair of yoga pants, don’t buy it.
On the other hand, take advantage of nifty borrow and return services like Rent the Runway if you’re only going to wear it once to a New Year’s Eve party in Cancun.
And lastly, if you are the typical man who owns three types of the same outfits that you rotate through on a weekly basis, that is fine too. If you know yourself and know in your heart that this is your style, all the power to you. Just keep those clothes clean and wrinkle-free, and please stop telling me you don’t have a personal style.
Embrace Style, Not Fashion
The main reason I wrote the book Slower Style was to define a movement that was taking place right before me. Too often, we’ve been relying on fast fashion to define our sense of style.
I mean sustainability in the fashion world is a huge problem, but let’s be real about our closets. We want to look good, and the systems of the fast fashion movement have failed our creative sense of expression when it comes to our clothes. What’s the point of having a heaping closet of cheap clothing if we can’t find a way to actually use any of it?
Instead, the best way to be fashionable is to actually stop embracing fashion altogether. Focus on your own personal style and that, in turn, will narrow down the types of clothes you want to wear. Don’t worry about the clothes you think you need to wear. Not every person in the world needs a pair of fish-net leggings, a lime green pencil skirt or even a biker jacket. If that’s you’re style, awesome! Get yourself 5. The rest of us can be happy with developing our own style based on comfort and personal taste.
Fashion is Always Subjective
I’m a firm believer that beauty is not in the eye of the beholder if we are using the word to compare anything. Clearly, some things can be considered objectively more beautiful than others. However, if we are using the word in the sense of appreciation, then the term becomes a lot more personal and thus is in the eye of the beholder.
We’ve been honestly debating this concept of beauty for literally millennia, and even then we can’t come to an agreement. Therefore, how the hell are we supposed to apply this concept to fashion?
So take my advice and simply consider yourself fashionable. The minute you consider yourself a fashion expert, you are. If you don’t, you aren’t. It’s as simple as that.
Though, please don’t tell me you don’t have it in you to be a fashion expert. Anyone does.
And if your thing is wearing sequin crop tops with your fishnet leggings or wearing the same three shirts on rotation, embrace it. Fashion isn’t’ about what you wear. It’s about how you handle yourself.