Style Basics You Can Learn!

Many people think style is all about the clothes you wear and the accessories you add. It’s true in part – but there is so much more I’d like to share with you. As a Carmel Image Consultant, I am required to have 24 hours of continuing education every two years. I love that – since I have always thought education and learning is key to staying current and being the best you can be in your career.

Keeping with that requirement, I just completed a 14-hour training in St. Louis, this time focused purely on the basics of style. I reviewed some basic knowledge I had already heard and learned some new spins on some “established” principles of style and image.

Tips From Your Carmel Image Consultant

Carmel Image ConsultantI am going to share some with you now! They are for men or women:

Fit is key. If fashion doesn’t fit you perfectly, it’s not the best outfit for you. Don’t ever assume you can buy a piece off the rack and it fits you perfectly–even if it’s the right size. Most of the time you need alterations. Men have learned this principle and don’t think anything of it. Women, however, are hesitant to add this expense. There are times when alterations make a piece undesirable and something you should not purchase–ever. For instance, if the shoulders of a garment are too tight or pull, leave it on the rack. If pants are too tight and the thighs “pull” leave it on the rack. It’s so much easier to go up a size and tailor down. Simple alterations are pants that are too long–but fit– sleeves that are too long, etc.

Don’t embrace every trend! But stay current when you can. What I mean here is that not every trend is optimal for you. For instance, if yellow is the color of the year and it looks horrible on you — pass on it.

It’s funny when a trend is very wearable, yet most like to keep the older trends they know that are not always flattering. I am talking about skinny jeans that really do not look great on everyone. Yet, the wider leg, more straight jeans that are in now do flatter so many people; yet women will pause before they even try them on. So my main thought here is — Don’t be a victim of fashion!!

Carmel Image Consultant

Eliminate horizontal lines! Why? They widen you. A horizontal line can be stripes that run across the body or a border or design. A belt at the waist is a horizontal line. If your waist is wide, eliminate it. They do make a difference. Jackets that stop at the widest place of your hips are a horizontal line.

Conversely, create vertical lines; these are often present in a third layer. And they are slimming! Slim even more by having a third later such as a cardigan or jacket, and then put a monochromatic outfit underneath such as a grey cashmere sweater and grey pants. This is called column dressing! It works.

A final tip — always look in the back before you dash out the door. I learned this at another styling conference. Afterward, I went out and bought a full-length mirror that is stationed behind my other mirror. I can see the full view. It has saved me many times!

Keep it sassy, Indy.

Beth Divine, MA, AICI-CIC

Carmel Image Consultant and Personal Stylist