Can anyone help me sort out my wardrobe/look?

(25 Posts)
RedMapleLeaf Sun 11-Oct-15 20:30:54

Just that. I really don't know where to start, but I would like to feel better about how I look.

pdxs Sun 11-Oct-15 21:06:56

i would look through threads on here, esp re capsule wardrobe, plus info on grooming/updating your look

are there particular areas you are concerned about?

RedMapleLeaf Sun 11-Oct-15 21:10:47

I have done quite a bit of searching on here and on the internet in general today. I'm starting to despair because I really don't know where to start. I've started three questionnaires and the options they give are just so irrelevant.

Main areas of concern? I just wrote out my response and then deleted due to embarrassment. sad

pdxs Sun 11-Oct-15 21:14:50

does this help as a start?

www.wardrobeoxygen.com/2008/07/closet-clean-out-the-woman-in-her-30s.html

RedMapleLeaf Mon 12-Oct-15 09:30:46

I'm sorry to be a bit negative when you've tried to help, but it does't really. I don't own any of the items she mentions apart from a Superdry t-shirt I have with a glittery word on the front blush

During the night I figured that I'd start with the items I'm comfortable with (boots and skinny jeans) and then get a bit more grown-up and adventurous when it comes to the top half.

Does that sound ok?

I think that I need to learn how to wear layers and accessorise with scarves (I don't wear any jewellery).

lucysmam Mon 12-Oct-15 09:41:00

Re-type your reply that you deleted! It might make it easier to help smile.

For starters - how are your brows/hair? Getting them sorted always gives me an instant boost. Also, nails - neat nails look smart.

Then start with clothes.

Do you prefer jeans/skirts? Boots/shoes/trainers?

Do you work or need to dress for a particular environment?

I'm a sahm at the mo & tend to live in Primarni skinnies - they're £7. I replace regularly so they don't start looking worn out or saggy.

For top half; I have a mix of knitted stuff, floaty stuff that I wear to look a bit more 'done' iyswim and a few slob about the house t-shirts that never see the outside of these four walls. And I try to buy a couple of new bits as the seasons change.

The only thing I think drags my look down at the moment are my boots. They're worn and the leather faded & falling to bits in places. I know I'd look better with new ones but can't find any I like that fit my budget.

RedMapleLeaf Mon 12-Oct-15 10:22:03

Thanks Lucy.

My hair is well-maintained - I've found a brilliant hairdressers and it gets a cut and colour regularly. My eyebrows are very fair so I convince myself they don't need shaping, I think that this is something I could try getting done by an expert (I wish my hairdressers offered it).

Nails are clean, healthy and neat and the cuticles are ok. Is it worth getting a mini-manicure with no polish?

Do you prefer jeans/skirts? Jeans!

Boots/shoes/trainers? Boots - either outdoorsy/walking boots or biker boots or very simple ankle boots with a heel.

Do you work or need to dress for a particular environment? I often work from home and am generally very cold.
I really need to sort out what I wear for social stuff like meeting friends for a coffee, going to socials and meals associated with my hobbies, going out to the theatre etc. I would normally wear the walking boots, jeans and hoodie combo for all of these. See what I mean? I'm a bit embarrassed.

For top half; I have a mix of knitted stuff, floaty stuff that I wear to look a bit more 'done' This! This is what I want to be able to do. I just don't know how.

everythingsgoingsouth Mon 12-Oct-15 11:04:13

so, "you" are sorted, you just need a few swaps with the clothessmile

ie. swap the walking boots for smarter trainers/ biker boots/Chelsea boots/ heeled boots

swap the t-shirt for a smarter shirt- maybe cotton/silk mix, not too oversized

swap the hoodie for a little jacket /jersey blazer /cardigan

make sure your jeans are not worn or baggy looking, or have worn away hems

scarves are every where-neutral, toning or clashing

jewellery- simple can be best- thin chain, bracelet, watch, earrings.

have a scoot over to pinterest , loads of looks there smile

everythingsgoingsouth Mon 12-Oct-15 11:10:25

www.pinterest.com/pin/401313016765458279/

www.pinterest.com/pin/81205599506251057/

www.pinterest.com/pin/81205599506251057/

lurkingfromhome Mon 12-Oct-15 11:28:09

It sounds like you need just a more polished and groomed version of what you already wear - there is no point suggesting ballgowns and tiaras if your life isn't structured around loads of dressy-uppy occasions. I too work from home and really feel the cold and don't have loads of occasions where I need to dress up. My wardrobe largely contains the following - maybe you can get some ideas of how to mix and match items to get some outfits you're happy with:

Bottoms: skinny jeans (loads, in various shades of denim, black, white, khaki, some with ankle zips, some coated); couple of pairs boyfriend jeans; pleather leggings; harem pants for wearing at home; a few tube skirts (I wear with thick tights and ankle boots in the winter); good quality jeggings

Footwear (too many but a selection of mine are): Converse in various shades, nice white trainers, burgundy New Balance trainers; Ash hi-tops; ankle boots in black, brown, grey; knee boots; calf-length boots

Tops: blouses in black, navy, cream and various prints (Dorothy Perkins, Primark and Mango have loads of these and they won't break the bank); thin round-neck jumpers, long cardigans (can be worn with a belt). I do buy hoodies, T-shirts and sweatshirts but I make sure I only buy nice (not necessarily expensive) versions (eg a wool hoodie, not fleece, a silky T-shirt) and don't wear them with a really casual bottom half so that I don't feel like too much of a slob.

Dresses: tunic style, mostly, plus a couple of nice shirt dresses

Accessories: scarves are your friend (the right scarf can really pull an outfit together); nice leather gloves in winter

Outerwear: blazer in spring/autumn, knee length coat (ditto), parka in winter (a parka looks great over a dress and need not make you look like a slob at all).

Overall: make sure everything fits really well, is well looked after (washed and ironed properly) and don't keep wearing things that have obviously seen better days. I don't think you need to spend loads to look good but you do need to shop wisely, take care of your clothes properly and never ever say "It'll do".

Maybe look at Susie So So's blog - that woman is a marvel at taking simple clothes (jeans, shirts etc) and making them look totally fantastic.

lurkingfromhome Mon 12-Oct-15 11:33:54

PS: going out to the theatre, I'd wear smart skinnies/pleather leggings with a silk (or one that at least looks like silk!) blouse, ankle boots, a nice blazer, big scarf and nice bag. My blazer and boots are expensive but everything else is high street and pretty inexpensive (I've got a blouse I love that cost a tenner and a bag that was a fiver in the dregs of the sales). So just think about buying a couple of versions of what you have that are a bit dressier.

RedMapleLeaf Mon 12-Oct-15 12:12:45

Ok, this is helpful. I think I'm getting somewhere now.

Ok, so today I'm giving this a go. I'm wearing grey skinnies, pink vest under an oversize blue shirt and a neutral, pink and grey scarf. I'm freezing so whilst I'm at home I've put a... Superdry hoody on.

I've ordered another pair of skinny jeans and a colourful poloneck jumper from Next. My next move will be to find
- some outer layers that I can wear instead of hoodies. I can't see myself wearing blazers but those long cardigans seem to be everywhere at the moment;
- scarves to add character and colour;
- alternatives to t-shirts.

I'm going to check out those pinterest suggestions.

carrie74 Mon 12-Oct-15 12:20:07

Some fantastic suggestions there. I think browsing some Pinterest ideas of people whose look you like helps to decide on items. Think a little bit more about how you're wearing things. Walking boots to me are a completely functional item - for proper country walks only (see also wellies!), so they wouldn't be seen outside the home. Trainers however - well, they're having a resurgence and fashion trainers certainly have their place both in and out of the gym.

Hoodies - good for the gym, but not really acceptable (to me) for anything other than slobbing now. But I feel the cold too, so I try and invest in at least one decent cashmere jumper a year (i rate Gap and John Lewis for High St, also worth digging in TK Maxx for cashmere bargains), and when it gets cold, I will ALWAYS have thermals on underneath my clothes.

I live in skinnies, and because of that, I buy decent ones - cost per wear on something you wear every day, means (again to me) worth a bit of investment. Once you find a brand that works for your shape, then it becomes your go to, but it can be painful finding it. I spent an afternoon at Harvey Nics once having all the different brands brought into me while I tried on. I wear an American brand now (Lucky Brand) that fit me perfectly and I always buy a few pairs when I go to the US.

For your theatre trip example, I'd wear skinnies, possibly a smart blouse (if eating out as well or going onto the pub), and a blazer (I love the Whistles Lena jersey blazers - worth stalking on eBay).

Scarves, well Becks Sondergaard get a good review on here - I have a few, and have to admit to loving them a little bit more than my cheapy market stall ones. Again, worth looking in TK Maxx, but sometimes you can get some great online bargains.

RedMapleLeaf Mon 12-Oct-15 12:24:38

Poor, reliable, beloved walking boots sad

So suggestions above have led me to decide that I should also try out hi top trainers and parka jackets. Any recommendations on bargains for these?

(I did try googling for inspiration yesterday but just didn't know what search terms to put in because I just don't really know what my style is, apart from "outdoorsy" which just isn't cutting it any more).

lucysmam Mon 12-Oct-15 13:03:07

I agree with lurking, you do sound like it's just a more polished and pulled together you that you're after.

I'd ditch the hoodies apart from keeping warm at home (I mooch about in an old one of dp's to keep warm). Have a look for a nice coat or jacket that fits well. And switch the walking boots for the low heeled ankle boot or higher - I avoid ankle boots because even short leg jeans are too long on me & I end up with slouchy skinnies round my ankles. A fitted jumper or floaty top with the skinnies = instant smarter for going out.

Simple jewellery - I wear my engagement ring, watch and earrings every day. Earrings usually in one of the colours I'm wearing - I have lots of earrings. Nothing toooooo big or flashy or I feel all wrong.

Nothing of mine is expensive either. I went to Primarni a couple of weeks ago, came out with 2 jumpers - 1 slouchy and one fitted. I also bought two dense chiffon tops with long sleeves for a tenner each. They're definitely more suited to dressing up a bit more.

I looked at a couple of skirts for less than a tenner each too and may go back for one this week.

I think half of it is knowing when something is past it's best and parting with it rather than trying to make it look or feel better on than it does iyswim.

lucysmam Mon 12-Oct-15 13:06:21

For a bargain parka try Primark - I'm sure I saw some in there last week.

RedMapleLeaf Mon 12-Oct-15 14:42:35

Ok, so I'm going to venture in to TK Maxx and/or Primark. I'm in Birmingham later on this week so will try the Bullring. I've just ordered some Converse Hi Tops from Sports Direct (but a whopping £5 delivery to store).

I don't ever wear jewellery so I'll keep an eye out for what women wear and what I think looks effective.

you do sound like it's just a more polished and pulled together you that you're after this cheered me up!

FreeButtonBee Mon 12-Oct-15 14:50:43

I got a great parka in whistles - got an enormous size so I can zip my ds2 up in it when he is in a sling but I find myself wearing it when he's in the buggy too so I know it was definitely a good buy! Grazia have a 25% off code knocking about. Will link in a minute

FreeButtonBee Mon 12-Oct-15 14:52:02

www.whistles.com/women/clothing/coats-jackets/tyler-parka-20090.html?dwvar_tyler-parka-20090_color=Khaki#start=1 This one - the fur comes off so have removed it from the front but kept it on the hood.

FreeButtonBee Mon 12-Oct-15 14:54:06

Warmth - merino wool is cheaper than cashmere and more hard wearing. Uniqlo do very good stuff. Try the men's too for a more boxy, relaxed shape.

Also thin thermals - I live in uniqlo thermals have scoop neck heattech tops. Seriously I have about 5 or 6 in different colours. They are fine enough to wear underneath other things.

RedMapleLeaf Mon 12-Oct-15 15:03:39

I tend to wear thermals but find that they don't really fit underneath going-out-in-public clothes. Is that just me?

RedMapleLeaf Mon 12-Oct-15 15:05:06

£180 shock - I've found a parka for £25 at George.

lucysmam Mon 12-Oct-15 15:08:57

I tend to wear vests and very long thermal socks, I find 'proper' thermals bulky under my every day clothing. Maybe I'm wearing the wrong type confused.

If you're unsure about accessories, I'd raid Primarni for those too - they're only cheap & you'll soon figure out what you do and don't get on with.

lurkingfromhome Mon 12-Oct-15 18:31:30

There are parkas everywhere at the moment to suit all budgets so while it would be lovely to spend quite a bit on an investment piece that will last you for years, I'm sure you'll be able to find something fab for much less (I popped into New Look earlier and there were loads, ditto Primark). I'm sitting here wrapped in the biggest snuggliest scarf imaginable and it was under £20 from Zara (black, white and grey big checked affair, lovely). Definitely look at Uniqlo for knitwear. They have lovely merino knits at amazing prices. Primark has some great knits at the moment (yes, the quality varies but worth a look - there is a nice sleeveless long grey knit for £16 that would look just the thing with skinnies [also Primark, £11] and a silky blouse/fine-knit jumper underneath).

While you're still working out your style it would probably be safer to buy things at the cheaper end of the scale anyway.

I think you should come back and post some pix of your purchases smile

RedMapleLeaf Mon 12-Oct-15 18:39:22

Yes, I want to try some cheap versions out until I decide I like the look enough to invest!

I've just bought two pairs of Hi Tops this evening (one black pair and one pink pair) and will save parka shopping for later in the week smile

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