Personal Style + Identity

personal style and identity.jpg


Personal style + Identity


If you think this is a post about fashion… You’re wrong.

What I am about to share with you, I learned about 4 years ago. In my early twenties I was a chameleon when it came to my personal style. When going uptown I dressed preppy – head to toe in Lilly Pulitzer and Vineyard Vines. When downtown I’d wear dirty converse sneakers and beanies, always beanies.

When I went overseas during my one year long mission trip I was not privy to a large closet of clothing. I had to wear whatever was in my backpack – and it had to be easy to clean and durable. To be honest, I thought this was just a practicality of my trip. Little did I know this was a teaching lesson about my identity.

personal style

When I came back to NYC in 2011 I had to define what my personal style was. What clothing did I like to wear? Again, I thought this was just part of the process of acclimating back into normal society. Little did I know that much of my identity came from fitting in, the approval of others, and the “value and worth” attributed to wearing certain designer items.

Over the last few years, I have noticed a significant correlation between personal style and Identity. Most of the people that I mentor that walk through discovering their identity represent this change through their choice of clothing – how they want to represent themselves. I’ve also realized that someone that changes their “style” dependent on their surroundings and who they are hanging out with – has a deeper heart issue that needs to be discussed.

Obviously there are occasions and circumstances that you need to dress differently. If you’re style consists of jeans and t-shirt normally, you most likely will need to dress up a bit for a wedding.

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So, what’s the point? Well, to be honest – discovering my own style and not being at the whim of others opinions was a completely liberating process. I told my friend Janelle last week that I love how much she loves silver, jewels and hot pink. I mean the girl LOVES hot pink and wears it often. I love that she is comfortable with herself to wear the things that SHE likes and not swayed by the opinions of others.

A few questions that may help you figure out your style + more about your identity:

1. If you could only have 20 items in your closet, what would they be?
2. What do you wear that makes you feel the most you?
3. Does your style get a 180 degree makeover every few months?
4. Are you dressing exactly like everyone you hang out with?
5. Where do you find your value and worth?

I think these questions will help you discover a little bit more about yourself. Please do not be mistaken – this is not about materialism. We all need to wear clothing – and 50% of the things I own are under $40. This is about helping you discover more about you. What things YOU like.


How would you describe your personal style?


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  1. I love this as well! To be honest, Pinterest has helped me define my personal style better than any other tool. I had someone explain it to me well when they said that Pinterest is great because you have no one around you telling you that what you pinned was cool or wasn’t cool. You are in the comfort of your home, pinning things you are drawn to. When I first started on Pinterest, I pinned things I thought others would like more than myself (I have since deleted those pins). It slowly transitioned to my taste and now I can look at my boards and see my personal style, right there on a page. My closet is more “me” than ever. Last night I wore black jeans, black booties, a white tee and chambray to an event and everyone else was wearing bright colors for spring. I’m just loving black right now (and may not be able to give up my booties this summer). It’s sometimes scary, but so liberating being so uniquely you and not caring what anyone else thinks about it. I think people are drawn to you more when you’re comfortable in your own skin and style as well.

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