Expressing yourself in style basics, balance & expression

DEstablishing a great wardrobe is all about basics, balance and most importantly, freedom of expression. It’s important that when wearing your clothes, you still feel like you — and that your clothing allows you to tackle every aspect of your life. Tailored suits are a stable, and they allow you to impress at every event, however, your closet must also adapt to fulfill your athletic needs and your playful side. A good wardrobe if anything is versatile.

We’ve curated a few tips to help you discover how to incorporate these crucial aspects into your closet, and to help you maximize the clothes you wear.

Fit

Tailored clothing is crucial in the land of style-consciousness, and just because you are investing in a high ticket item doesn’t mean a great fit is guaranteed. Truth be told, a cheap but fitted garment is often better than an expensive, non-fitted item. Here’s three tips to send you on your way to a fitted wardrobe:

1) Find a clothing label that works for your body type. Every brand is going to tailor their cuts to a certain body type. One may cater to broader shoulders, and another to wider legs. Find one that feels tapered to your body shape and make that store your first look when shopping.

2) Make friends with your tailor. Tailoring seems to be much of a lost trade today, unless you’re buying thousand dollar suits. But tailors can do everything form hemming your everyday pair of jeans to tapering a work button-down shirt. Find one that you love and stick with them.

3) Give it a wall test. We can often assume that shirts or jackets “fit” as long as the sleeves aren’t hanging past our fingertips. When trying one on, stand with your side up against the wall. If the shoulder pad touches the wall first, the top is too big.

Athletic Wear

Gym clothes and fashion aren’t mutually exclusive. Working out is a part of many of our lives, so why shouldn’t gym clothes be as well?

Here are some tips to help you pick up your next set of gym clothes:

1) Black is the new black.
Color is great. But I’d recommend at least one set of all black gym clothes. It no only slims your figure and hides sweat, but it blends well in the social world outside of the gym.

2) Tapered isn’t just for jeans.
Just because the material of gym clothes may need to be different from your other wardrobe doesn’t mean the fit has to be. Don’t compromise on the value of fit, even with your athletic pieces.

3) Gym shoes have personality.
Exploit it. I recommend keeping your clothing fairly monochromatic, but if you want to throw in some color — shoes offer a great place to do so. Rock those bright red Air Max’s. Also… this is the only time that you can be brazen in your clothing brand loyalty and flaunt it without being tacky.

Expression

Socks… they can be so much more. In fact, socks are for expression. Colorful socks can make a personalized and memorable statement. We’ve got to break them out of their drab black/blue/brown prison and allow them to do what they were meant to always do: lend some expression to our wardrobe.

1) Shoes & socks are meant to be friends, not twins.
Before you hit up the Nordstrom sock aisle for the most colorful pair you can find, you have to remember the most important rule: they can match your pants or any other single element of your getup — the tie, the shirt, the blazer — but never, ever your shoes.

2) Shoes only.
Unless at a Grateful Dead concert, socks are never to be worn with sandals.

3) Cleavage optional.
This is more of an anti-rule, but just remember that socks can be a great accent to your outfit. Don’t be afraid to tailor those pants and show some sock cleavage off.

There you have it — be sure to add fitted pieces, athletic fashion and vibrant sock statements to round out your wardrobe. Now go on, express yourself.

Photo & GIF by Charles Edouard Woisselin – Des Gens en Photo. via Vogue.