A letter that urges you to dig deeper into your style.

Hey you,

This is a sincere note to you from a nobody in fashion who feels incredibly passionate (anger me enough and I could cry), about it.

Fashion for me is not just about pretty clothes on hangers. As you may have figured if you’ve been reading my blog. It’s more about your personality being interwoven with those pretty clothes on hangers.

Let me explain.

I am not drop dead gorgeous. Neither do I own much designer. I have a rickety cupboard instead of a walk-in closet, and roadside kolhapuris instead of Jimmy Choo’s. I wear dresses handmade from my mother’s dupattas and have clothes as old as 15 years in my daily wardrobe. I am not a size zero, neither am I a curvy model. I don’t wear heels, I don’t like pants and I don’t wear base. I may not be the visual embodiment of fashion but strongly I feel about an interestingly paired look, or a creatively conceptualised ensemble.

To know more about my style and how I choose my clothes, click here.
In a gingham mini dress and gold kolhapuri slippers | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan
Dress | Blue Cherry, Bangkok

Streetstyle pictures from fashion weeks around the world hold more interest for me than Page 3 columns. And I’d credit a stylist over a celebrity any day. Unique dress sense even to the point of bad taste has more charm in my opinion than a clearly copied top-to-toe look . In other words, individuality is key even when borrowed from an ongoing trend.

Two dangling earrings in a row | Chai High is an Indian Fashion Blog started by Shivani Krishan
I tried wearing my danglers in a row

However, all the individuality in the world can’t save you if you look uncomfortable in what you’re wearing. And all the copying can’t bring you down if you wear your look with effortless ease. Which means, the most important thing to remember in this equation is comfort. For with comfort, comes effortlessness. And therefore confidence.

Not comfort, in the traditional sense of the word. Comfort in the mind.

A pair of high heels are most definitely not the definition of comfort, yet there are women who feel not themselves in flats. On the other hand, there’s me, who may feel wonderful in a baggy t-shirt and pyjamas but won’t be “comfortable” going to work in it.

The idea being, in our quest to discover our unique style sense, we need to understand our bodies and minds. We need to know and recognise our “happy” clothes – clothes that make us feel great.

And recognise the “other” clothes too. Those that look supreme on a hanger, and may even look flattering on you; but you’re somehow not comfortable in them and as a result you’re not “you” in them. My advice – avoid those clothes. No matter how hot a pair of tight jeans may look on you and on everybody you know – if you don’t feel great in them – there’s no reason you should wear them on an ordinary day. Of course, there will be days when you feel like testing yourself – reserve these additions for those rare days.

On the other hand, don’t limit yourself to what you’re comfortable with. Take small steps in experimenting with different trends. Buy a piece, see how your mind and body reacts to this, and then slowly integrate it into your personal style, depending on your findings. For instance, the off shoulder neckline, the choker and the slip dress are hot this moment. Dabble in something that’s out of your comfort zone every once in a while and see how it goes.

And if you want to avoid spending money on a trend you’re not sure about, try renting. Flyrobe is one Indian website that lets you rent the best for less. Try it and see.

I for once, go on an experimenting spree every once in a while. I walk to my wardrobe and mull over last-season separates and see how I can layer them to match today’s trends. The slip dress worn with edgy sneakers and boots are very right-now. So, I pick up my strappy 2012 maxi dress and treat it like a slip dress – with boots and an edgy vest.

To read more on how to layer like a pro, click here.

Most of the time, the answers lie not in the stores but in your wardrobes and trunks. Rummage into the old suitcases and mamma’s cupboard this weekend. You never know – your individuality may be lying crumpled between a saree and a moth eaten cardigan.

Wear your heart on your sleeve – be it rainbow colours or floral dresses, giant logos or baggy tees, torn denims or distressed boots, salwar-kurtas or leather skirts. Wear your clothes to add to your personality. To pick up from where your mind left off… To continue the conversation you’re having with the world around you. To express and empower your vulnerabilities. Choose your looks with all the seriousness and lightheartedness of a child out on an adventure. And one last thing, remember to have fun. Otherwise, what’s the point?

P.S: And if you’re just not interested in fashion, well that’s OK too. As long as you’re being you and oiling the machinery of your beaming personality.

 

 

 

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