Redefining My Personal Style Journey

Personal Style Personal Branding

As we are developing, growing,

and changing in our lives,

our style should develop, grow,

and align with us!

In the process of changing my business to exclusively serve entrepreneurs, creatives, and professionals (see my last blog post for reference), I’ve taken a closer look at my wardrobe and realized I need to practice what I preach. I need to be Styled by Serena. Let me explain.

Helping my clients explore and define their fashion goals is an important first step in the styling process. I ask questions like: what do you want to feel when wearing your clothes? What do you want your style to be, to exude? What are your style words?

Some common responses to these questions are:

“I want to feel sexy again.”

“I want to feel stylish.”

“I want to feel put together.”

Each of these statements reveal how often my clients feel unaligned to their desires and how often our clothes wear us and don’t reflect our true feelings. You may put on an amazing dress, one which garners you loads of compliments, and yet you still feel unsatisfied or maybe even self-conscious. Why?

  1. Because you lack self-confidence (which is a blog post, or several, in and of itself) and/or
  2. Your clothes don’t match how you feel and don’t reflect your goals and journey.

As I head into a new season of niching my audience and shifting my business, I’ve had a light bulb moment. I noticed my wardrobe did not reflect my future self. I envision myself being known as the go-to Brand Style Expert. I plan on being on podcasts and in magazines helping women align their personal style with their brands and businesses. I took an inventory of my closet and saw that some pieces matched my vision and some did not. Some pieces had elements that I loved, but when I put them on, something still felt off. 

I was in the midst of the struggle I’ve seen with my clients time and time again: my wardrobe was not aligned with my desires and goals--many of the pieces in my closet were not ones that served my future self.  Clothes can either propel you forward or hold you back on your path to becoming the person you’re meant to be, and I realized some of my clothes might be holding me back. I knew it was time to roll up my sleeves and re-evaluate my wardrobe and my life.

Just as some of us choose a word-of-the-year, I have chosen new style words for 2021. These words encompass, define, and affirm my future self. My 2021 wardrobe is:

COLORFUL - I want and need more color in my life! I want to show women how to best utilize the color wheel, and so I need to illustrate that concept in my own wardrobe.

EDGY - I have an inner rock star. I will allow her to shine through in details like leather and ripped jeans.

REFINED - This word pushes me a bit, but I want to look like an expert and therefore my style must be polished. Refinement speaks not only to my clothes but other areas of my life, presentation, and personhood as well.

UNIQUE - I have spent countless hours perusing thrift and consignment stores, and I love supporting local artists, which has helped me develop an eye for truly one-of-a-kind pieces. I want to challenge myself in 2021 to wear something extraordinary with each outfit--whether as small as a local-crafted ring or as statement-y as a trench coat in a popping, unexpected color.

AUTHENTIC - In my experience, striving for authenticity seems to be overlooked and a bit of a struggle within my industry. I sometimes see fashion influencers pushed about on the waves of trends and sponsorships, wearing anything and everything, and I wonder if these influencers know their own true, unique selves and styles. Although my job as a stylist is to be fluent in a variety of styles and influences, I want my personal style to be consistent and authentic to me. My friends should be able to pick up a top off a rack or see a skirt on a mannequin and say, “That’s Serena.” This is something I strive for my clients to experience as well. I have a knack for pinpointing that ineffable thing, of seeing a piece and saying, “Now that’s Monica,” or “that’s sooo Jess!” I want my clients to have their personal styles so refined and clear that family members, friends, and industry-members like me can say, “That’s so you.” And I want this for myself as well.

I encourage any of my friends reading this to take an inventory, draw a map to your future selves, and ask: What are my plans for 2021? What are my goals? What are my priorities? Now take a look at your closet. Does your wardrobe reflect your answers to those questions? Do some pieces need to go? Don’t let your emotional attachment to those old ill-fitting jeans hold you back from a new pair that better align with your future self. Style is a reflection of who you are. Do your clothes tell your story?

Talk to you soon,

styled by serena

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