5 ways to end your season in style...

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One great way to re-energize your look toward the end of the season is with ONE great item you can wear now and wear later, as well. This necklace would work in a range of situations and with a range of outfits. Love it!

Have a listen to the rest of my suggestions for getting through the end of a season looking (and feeling) your best.

Your closet CAN work for you...

I’m delighted to welcome my friend Rachel Strisik to the Wardrobe Workshop. I first met Rachel when she was working with Stacy London on the rollout of Style for Hire, and I was a participant in the first-ever Style for Hire training. We went our separate ways and reconnected last year through a fabulous DC networking group called Her Corner. She’s a stylish, warm person who can take charge of pretty much anything. Here she shares her wisdom about closets, one of my favorite topics.

Guest post by Rachel Strisik of Rachel and Company

Not all closets in the world are created equally and I don’t know about you but I have dreams about my “some-day” closet. It is big, totally organized and absolutely gorgeous in its design. However, until I get that ideal closet, I am

Fancycloset

working with the closet I have and I am doing the best that I can to maximize it’s efficiency so that I am able to enjoy getting dressed in the morning, put away my laundry and honestly, just see the clothing that I do love to wear. Are you (more…)

The joyful closet...

Taking the mystery out of getting dressed

We visit our closets once, twice, maybe even three times a day to assemble outfits that represent our best self, but it’s a space that is easy to neglect. After all, in most cases, you can (and do) just shut the door on it! But getting dressed in the morning would be a lot more pleasant (and lead to more stylish and confidence-building results) if the closet you are standing in front of were orderly and attractive.

Does your closet rebuke and depress you — is it filled with things that don’t fit or that you even don’t like? Or does it inspire you and support your style and self-expression, align with your personal professional goals, and give you a sense of confidence in yourself, and even joy?

Yes, it can and should do all of that!

Here are five ways to beautify your closet.

Remove

The first step to decluttering your closet is to remove all those plastic dry-cleaning bags. Next get rid of the

mismatched hangers. Choose a single hanger style that suits you and looks good in your soon-to-be-pretty

The pile of discards, ready to be given to a friend

A pile of discards

closet. (I recommend Slimline hangers in Camel.) Finally, find a different home for anything that doesn’t relate directly to the act of getting dressed (skis, old clothes, or other people’s belongings or clothes).

Redecorate

Let’s start with color. Over the years closet walls may get a little banged up and maybe even look dingy. Give your closet a lift by taking everything out and repainting. Choose a basic white that can go with a standard white or

PamCloset

This client loves her freshly painted pink closet.

take a favorite color of yours and use a lighter hue to adorn the walls. (My friend and decorator extraordinaire Annie Elliott of bossy color recommends Benjamin Moore 2052-60 China Blue and 2086-40 Deep Carnation.) After the paint dries, check out the lighting. If it’s too dim, install fixtures so you can clearly see every piece you own.

Reorganize

Your closet is your own private boutique – and it should look every bit as nice as a regular boutique. When you

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Scarves and shawls at the ready.

walk into your closest and see all the possibilities, getting dressed is easier and fun. Keep everything as displayed as possible:

  • Sweaters, jeans and t-shirts folded on open shelves.
  • You’ll wear more of your accessories if they’re on display as well, so shop for a jewelry stand or add hooks to the wall for necklaces.
  • Display bags on pretty hooks along a wall high, enough to be out of the way but low enough so you can swap them out without a lot of trouble, and
  • Scarf and belt racks will make it easy you see what you have.

Redefine

Depending on the size of your closet, you may have room to decorate with inspirational photos or quotations. Getting small frames and filling them with looks you like or sayings that make you feel good is a great way to add a personal touch to your closet. A full-length mirror may be a great place to write (with a washable pen) a weekly goal or a reminder to wear a particular piece of clothing or an accessory. Or it’s a great place to put an affirmation that is meaningful to you.

Relax!

A lovely way to enjoy the space you get dressed in is to add a wonderful scent that you enjoy. Lavender sachets

sachets

will help keep your closet and drawers smelling fresh. Or a gardenia floating in a clear bowl on your dresser looks and smells beautiful.

Keeping track of outfits with Cloth, the...

 

ClothApp2

In my one-on-one work with clients, what they say they love the most is the outfits I create for them.

Well, there’s no app for that, unfortunately, although certainly there are tons of sources of inspiration and how-to information.

But I did just discover a fabulous app for documenting the outfits, which is part two of the process in my individual work. First we create the outfit (sometimes it takes a few tries to get it just right) and then we record the details. I used to write down all the elements on a beautifully designed template. Now, though, most my clients prefer a quick snapshot.

That’s all well and good, but then you have pictures of your outfits mixed with pictures of your kids and of your latest vacation and the flower you spotted on a run last week.

ClothApp

With Cloth, however (and no, I am not working for them), you can keep a record of outfits you like in their own app. You can tag them by occasion and even use a special in-app weather feature to sort them according to the day’s temp.

It was extremely easy to use and I will be using it with all my clients from now on. Give it a try!

(Ketura Persellin is an image consultant, stylist, writer, and public speaker in Washington, DC, and surrounding suburbs. Contact her for a complimentary get-acquainted session.)

Bringing on the bling...

JcrewTortoiseIt’s no secret to my friends and clients that I simply adore jewelry. ADORE. Always have. I love the sparkle, the quality of different stones, the architectural genius of certain designs.

My love for jewelry infuses my work as an image consultant, too. I love it because of the way a change of arrow_pinjewelry (and, okay, maybe a switcheroo of the bag and shoes) can COMPLETELY change an outfit. So … one black dress, and three changes of jewelry and you have three outfits. (Here are some famous examples of the power of a pin … or a necklace ….)

How great is that?! It makes it easier to spend money on things that can be worn more often. It makes it easier to pack. It makes it easier to, yes, look more stylish. (And isn’t that what we all want?!)

But many of my clients find jewelry to be overwhelming and confusing.

Does jewelry confuse YOU?

hmprodIt doesn’t have to. Whether you have overflowing jewelry box or an empty one, intimidation at the jewelry counter or lack of confidence in your decisionmaking, it’s time to get over these common jewelry concerns.

What do I do with jewelry I already have but don’t wear?

Guess what? Just like your clothing wardrobe, your jewelry “wardrobe” need purging and editing, because it can accumulate over the years, too. You likely have jewelry that’s broken, has lost its meaning to you, or no

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longer suits your style (if it ever did). Take an afternoon and go through your jewelry. Keep what you love and discard or donate what’s broken or out of style. Your discards would be welcomed at women’s shelters, Dress for Success—type organizations, or consignment stores.

I’ve spent so much money on clothes, why would I spend money on jewelry?

Your outfits look more polished and stylish when you wear jewelry. It also adds more depth, definition, and interest to what you’re wearing. Jewelry expresses your style and individuality. Another plus for spending money on jewelry is that it expands your clothing investment, often by a LOT. Adding or changing the jewelry you’re wearing transforms simple, classic clothing pieces.

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There’s so much to choose from, how can I possibly know what to buy?

Pay attention to three things: color, proportion, and personal appeal. If you buy higher-end fashion or costume jewelry that mirrors your own coloring, you’ve made a good investment. So, for instance, if your coloring is warm, look for warm metals (gold, brass, copper) and warmer shades of stones, gemstones, or colored beads. If your coloring is cool, go for cooler shades in jewelry and you’ll be able to wear them all the time.

In addition, look at the scale of your features and bones to understand proportion. If you have large bones, chances are that bigger-scale pieces will look better on you. If you have small facial features, more delicate pieces will be better on you. If you have a mix of small and large features, you’ll be able to mix large -scale items with smaller-scale ones. Or if you’re working with large scaled proportion but like delicate necklaces, try clustering multiple layers of them to create a bigger impact.

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Jewelry pieces generally stay with us a lot longer than clothing pieces do. Be sure the ones you collect are ones you really look forward to wearing. If you love it, you’ll wear it and enjoy it.

Is it okay to wear the same jewelry pieces every day?

There are many examples in fashion history as well as modern times where a woman was known for signature jewelry that she wore everyday. It could be an arm full of bangles, multiple strands of pearls or large rings. (Think Coco Chanel.)

But you may not be satisfied with a signature jewelry look, and that’s fine. Most people change their jewelry according to their activities – what you wear to the soccer game isn’t what you wear to work or the theater. This is why you may want or need a variety of jewelry just like you have more than one outfit.

How do I fit accessorizing into my schedule when I’m already late in the morning?

Spend some time during the weekend creating a few outfits to wear for the following week. When you’re not stressed out, it’s easier to finish an outfit from head to toe, paying closer attention to the jewelry details. Either write down all the pieces of the outfit, including the jewelry, hang each look together, or take a picture. You can even put the jewelry you’ll need for each outfit into a separate Ziploc bag and hang it with the clothing pieces. Then create a section of your closet for these grab-and-go outfits. Just think how stress-free you’ll be when Monday rolls around! (Need inspiration? Take a look here.)

 

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