“SOS! I’m stuck in a fashion rut and I can’t get out!” Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. You look inside your closet as if you have no clothes and you feel like every outfit that you put on is the same. You then think that the solution is shopping for more clothes, but you enter every store overwhelmed and leave every store with a piece almost identical to something you already own. You may feel like you’re stuck forever, but the first step is acknowledging the problem – congrats! Now, it is time to try out some solutions. Join me in achieving these ten style goals that will make every outfit you put on Instagram-worthy.
#1 Take a step back and look at… your closet.
After realizing you are stuck in a fashion rut, don’t be so quick to pull out the credit cards and go on a massive shopping spree. Besides, if it was only that simple, would you even be in a fashion rut in the first place? Have a thorough look inside your closet (an organized closet, that is), and you may be surprised by what you find. At the bottom of your stacks of clothes, you may find a denim jacket that was once way out of style but is now a hot fashion trend. Try putting outfits together using only pieces already in your closet. If you feel like something is missing in a particular outfit, your next step would be to figure out what is worth buying to make the outfit complete.
#2 Know when to let go.
OK, we may not be talking boys here, but clothes come in a close second. I totally get that you wore that sequin skirt two years ago for New Year’s Eve and have some amazing memories attached to it, but that is no reason to let it take up space in your closet if you know you are never going to wear it again. If you just can’t quite figure out a wear to it, is time to say bye-bye. You may have never thought about selling your clothes on eBay, but seriously, try it. Use that cash to amp up your closet, or even put it towards your vacation funds.
#3 Be basic (to an extent).
I have this theory that if you wore the same solid white t-shirt every day for a month within different outfits, no one, besides yourself, would ever notice. OK, maybe you should own two or three in case one is in the wash, but solid colored shirts are so versatile and effortless. Whether it be a classic cotton crewneck or a standard racerback tank top, try collecting as many colors as possible. This not only makes creating outfits so easy, but it also makes the outfit possibilities endless.
#4 Stop making accessories an afterthought.
Accessories can truly make or break an outfit, and we want them to make the outfit. Instead of putting an outfit together with the top and bottom as the base, try picking out an accessory first and go from there. This accessory does not have to be a statement piece, such as a bold colored scarf. It can be as minimal as dainty necklaces layered on top of each other to go perfectly with a plunging neckline top. You can even classify a hairdo as an accessory. If you have been dying to rock the sleek ponytail look, go for it and compliment it with a high collared dress or top.
#5 Give those jeans a break.
Don’t let those drapey joggers or patterned pants intimidate you. Jeans often force you to make your outfits shine through the shirts that you pair them with. By changing up the pants, it will force you to assemble your outfits from the bottom up and add some variety to your style. Something I learned by shopping with my friends is to be unafraid to go for that daring article of clothing, no matter how ridiculous you and your friends may think it looks on display. Almost every time I just went for it and confidently rocked the piece in an outfit the next night at dinner with them, no one could resist asking me to borrow it. Step outside your comfort zone.
#6 Rock those rips.
It is true; everybody’s clothes these days are [intentionally] ripped, whether it be their t-shirts or their jeans (I’ll let this be your excuse to wear jeans). Even if ripped clothing isn’t particularly your style, try it out! You can still look chic and put together while rocking edgy distressed jeans or a distressed shirt.
#7 Avoid black like it’s the plague.
Let’s face it, we all magnetize towards black clothing; it’s sleek, chic, matches with everything, and makes us look thin. However, this magnetic attraction can quickly become a dangerous addiction once we realize that majority of the clothes in our closet are black, or we disregard the other colors that clothes come in while we shop. To stray away from this habit, you must force yourself to avoid wearing black AT ALL COSTS. Soon, you will realize that you do not have to depend on black clothing to feel confident.
#8 Layers. Layers. And more layers.
Coming up with outfits will become second nature to you once you master the art of layering. Especially if you are trying to hold back from spending money on new clothes, layering will be your best friend. There exists so many possibilities even just by using what is available to you behind your closet doors. And don’t cheat yourself by simply plopping a cardigan on top of a tank top! Layering is all about playing with lengths, proportions, and textures. Try out these effortlessly stylish combinations:
- Strappy or lace bralette + Solid t-shirt + Flannel
- Simple knit top + Chunky cardigan + Denim jacket
- Striped top + Lightweight leather jacket + Long sleeve chambray shirt (tied around the waist)
P.S. Don’t forget those accessories.
#9 Get inspiration right at your fingertips.
When I find myself completely lost while trying to assemble an outfit, the first place I turn to is… my phone. It is honestly the most efficient and convenient resource to look up fashion inspiration when I am at the mall just hours before an event trying to find something to wear. Call me an over-exaggerator, but I don’t know where I would be without Pinterest. I also follow dozens of fashion Instagram accounts and make sure to keep track of my favorite celebrities’ street style. Although you may feel pressured when trying out this styling method, don’t feel the need to drop hundreds of dollars to buy the same exact designer shirt that Kendall Jenner is wearing. Chances are, there are dozens of shirts almost identical to it available for way, way cheaper.
#10 Give it all a purpose.
You may be aware you are stuck in a fashion rut, but feel as though you have no reason to make improvements towards your style. Maybe you work from home, or maybe you go to a school where the norm is wearing leggings and a pullover to class. To put it simply, you just have nowhere to wear these trendy outfits too. That is not an excuse! Digging yourself out of a fashion rut is the perfect opportunity to make exciting plans with your friends for a day in the city or a night out on the town. If that may not sound appealing to you, you don’t even need fancy events to change up your look. The next time you go to the mall and are tempted to throw on jeans and your signature t-shirt, opt for putting on a stylish outfit and soon, you will find yourself doing so for everywhere you go.
So, it is time to put an end to being late to everything because you can’t pick out an outfit, or, even worse, bailing on plans because you have nothing to wear. If you feel like you are stuck in a fashion rut and are so close to giving up all hope in your wardrobe, give yourself these ten style goals and gain back the confidence you once had when looking in the mirror.