Wardrobe Building: Knowing Your Style

Most people have trouble defining their style so this post highlights traits, common stores/brands, and style icons for various fashion styles. Let’s dive in and get to know your signature style!

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Whether working with a stylist or outfit planning for yourself, it can be very helpful to know three things prior to creating an outfit.

  1. The style you seek.
    • Classic – the workhorse foundation pieces of any wardrobe
    • Minimalist – harder to pull off than you’d think
    • Edgy – popular choice to keep classic from being to basic
    • Bohemian – an easy-going, modern hippie look
    • Romantic – the girly-girl look
  2. How far you want to take that style.
    • 1: a hint of the look
    • 2: moderate
    • 3: full-on version
  3. The environment for which you are dressing.
    • Casual
    • Professional/Corporate
    • Evening/Dressy

I love to work from a primarily classic wardrobe and then adapt looks to a level 1 or 2 of a different style by using either one clothing piece OR a couple accessories (for level one) or a clothing piece AND a couple of accessories (for level two).  Using this formula keeps me from getting bored but allows to me to maintain a wardrobe that consists of primarily good quality, classic pieces.  Level 3 looks require a bit more commitment to the style as your signature.

Knowing Your Style


  • Quality fabrics: wool, silk, cashmere
  • Neutral colors but can go into more saturated brights
  • Stripes, herringbone, tweed
  • Tailored, non-exaggerated shapes
  • Kate Middleton
  • Jenna Lyons


  • Neutral colors
  • No patterns
  • Simple lines with dramatic or exaggerated shapes
  • Tilda Swinton
  • Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy


  • Leather
  • Heavy use of black
  • Hard details like spikes, studs, chain
  • Kristen Stewart
  • Elizabeth Hurley


  • Natural fabrics and accents (cotton, leather, stone, wood)
  • Floral or ethnic patterns
  • Flared trousers, flowing skirts, wedge shoes
  • Fringe, woven or embroidery details
  • Olsen Twins
  • Siena Miller


  • Floral prints, lace
  • Pastels, whites, creams
  • Flowy silhouettes, flared skirts
  • Feminine accents like ruffles and bows
  • Lauren Conrad
  • Florence Welch

Did you find this post on knowing your style helpful? If so, I’d love for you to share it with a friend or on your social media by using the sharing buttons at the bottom of the post. Thanks for stopping by and be sure to check out other posts in the Wardrobe Building Series.

Author: Betsy Ramsey

Betsy Ramsey is the author of Natty Gal. Born and raised in Northeast Ohio, she now lives there with her husband and Bichon-Frise, Dolce. A mindful fashion & capsule wardrobe enthusiast, she travels extensively, visiting 56 countries to date. Betsy is committed to helping others live their most fulfilling life!

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