Defining Personal Style: 3 steps to Audacity

After my sleep was rudely interrupted by a guitar playing/singing house co-inhabitant, I lay wide awake in bed for hours fuming. I questioned her audacity, but then it hit me – she was utterly clueless. She had no idea that her noise was disturbing me down the hall. Then, I thought about personal style and how most people fall into two categories: being completely audacious or completely clueless. I think about Cher in Clueless – how ironic – she was clueless but she was audacious when it came to her style.

I have a friend who claims to have no fashion sense and does not think about what to wear, yet to me, he stands out through interesting fabric choices, well fitted jackets and vintage (looking) aviators. Is he clueless or does his audacious girlfriend dress him? I have another friend who appears to have studied and passed the GQ magazine style exam. From his well placed cuff, to fitted jackets to sweater-collar combinations – his outfits work so well, it’s like he spends an hour styling each day or perhaps coordinates his outfits on Sundays? Is he audacious or playing it too safe? There is also those that point blank refuse to try a bowtie – for absolutely no logical reason – perhaps he feels his neck is too fat?

I feel like my style has evolved from jogging pants and $5 tank tops to now – bespoke tailored suits. I must say, I awkwardly made the transition and lately I have completely veered off course. With my style muscles flexed, one day I had the audacity to steal my brother’s white shirt which was displayed on my studio mannequin and start wearing it in my weekly rotation. Later that week, I became obsessed with fedoras and now wear one almost every day.

How did I get to this place of complete audacity – well it wasn’t easy. You must be a person who has no qualms or care of what others may think of you. Here are my 3 steps to audacity.

  1. Find a style mentor that is in your industry. The person should be of the same height and body type and most importantly is someone that you admire in style. You may look to family, friends or someone in your company. Choosing a model in a magazine or celebrity is unrealistic so stay away from that. This is an important step as it will build your confidence.
  2. Shop Vintage! Some of my most treasured  (and audacious) items are vintage – such as my leather laptop bag, my brother’s Dior tie, and my beloved pink check tweed blazer. These will very much make you stand out from the crowd.
  3. Start small. Don’t go overboard on your first trip to audacity. Things to try are a colourful pocket square, a tie clip, a blazer with jeans and shocking white shoes, or a bowtie with a t-shirt. Of course, these small steps all depend on your industry and your style mentor – the point is to trust your gut and not be afraid – let your inner style instinct guide you.

When someone looks at you with a bit of a raised eyebrow or an incredulous look – than you know they are thinking how can you have the audacity to wear what you are wearing – then you know you are on the right track.


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