A Note on Personal Style

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Me and Cosmo in July 2008

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In a nightclub in Paris wearing my Mum’s old Missoni scarf as a top – fun story, we rented a flat in Le Marais after our A levels and snuck into a club with fake ID that we’d seen on an episode of The Hills – you know the episode when Lauren goes to Paris? 

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London 2008 – wearing my mum’s Marc Jacobs pea coat over an H&M pinafore dress, my fave over the knee socks, Pierre Hardy for GAP sandals and NARS Empress on the lips.

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Jane Birkin is always amazing inspo – photos from Tumblr. 

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Photo from Chanel Bags and Cigarette Drags Tumblr

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Photo from Song of Style – obsessed with the colour of her dress. 

Everyone dresses the same. Myself included. 2016 seems to be the year where trends have dictated our sartorial choices more than ever from the same and I’ve been left feeling like I want to “find myself” again. I love neutrals, always have, always will. The Summer of ’08 I lived in an old Pineapple buttoned body that used to belong to my mum in the early 90s and a Ghost shift top/dress with white converse and over the knee socks. All black, grey and white – very neutral. However, today neutrals are more trendy than ever and their ease and lack of thought means that we all seem to look the same shade of greige.

It’s August now but I have set myself a wardrobe challenge from now on – to mix up my outfits, to include more colour, to be bolder and to wear what I want when I want. The defining moment came when I was in Monaco with my husband and I was drooling over the girl sat next to us at an outdoor cafe’s dress. It was printed with a pussy bow, and she had overly long hair, bright sunglasses and Aquazurra sandals on – I thought for a second and realised that I probably had very similar items in my wardrobe, but my desire to conform for an Instagram neutrals based theme and to get dressed quickly had suppressed my desire to wear them.

Two days later whilst sat with a bunch of my old school friends on the next leg of our holiday I was discussing my job to some of their newer friends who I had not yet met, and was discussing how I balance my personal taste with what looks best in photos, how I style my outfits in accordance with comfort but also how photogenic they are. To that my friend Izzy blurted out “yeah I’ve noticed that, you’re style at school was better”, she then turned to the newbies and said “Tijan had the best style at school, she was the first to cut all her hair off, she wore over the knee socks every day with red lipstick and didn’t really care about whether it was appropriate or not”. Those two instances on holiday got me to thinking. I trawled through my Facebook archives and found older images of myself circa 2007/08 and loved that whilst I still adopted a semi neutral palette, I played with vintage items, brighter accessories and bolder proportions. So that’s what you’ll be seeing more of on here and on my Instagram – style and outfits that are wearable but a bit bolder and a mix of trends, vintage finds and personal style. I hope you enjoy!

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6 Comments

  1. August 3, 2016 / 12:03 pm

    Oh I love this post! I completely get what you’re saying I find it so hard to stray away from neutrals! I’ve only just introduced blue denim back in to my look as I’m so OCD about not having colour in my wardrobe – at least that’s a step I guess!

    Love, Alexandra
    http://www.styledbymae.com

    • August 11, 2016 / 10:03 pm

      Hahah, good luck with your colour introduction 😉

  2. Tracy
    August 8, 2016 / 11:52 am

    Haha, yes I second seeing old photos. So funny to see how you’ve changed yet not changed. 🙂 I think personal style is fluid. I think most people are instinctively attracted to certain fashions and they return to their preferences again and again, but in the same way we don’t live in a vacuum, our fashion preferences are also influenced by outside factors.

    • August 11, 2016 / 10:02 pm

      So true Tracy. I’ve always been a top and a skirt or a little dress kinda girl, I always repeat a variation of the same look! But it is true, outside trends do come and go as well! x

  3. August 23, 2016 / 12:51 pm

    I totally get you, Tijan. Because of the Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest world we live in these days, almost every decision we make aesthetically is based on what we see in our social media feeds. We’ve strayed a little away from the days where we ascribe to anything and everything that fashion editors feed us, but now digital influencers and Insta-celebs are dictating every fashion choice we make and we’ve all become more comfortable conforming than being ourselves.

    Instead of following the trends set by industry players and carrying around magazines like they’re bibles, it’s all about our feeds. We feel if we don’t look like the girls in the photos online, if we don’t have the things they have, we’re irrelevant, and it’s even subconscious most of the time. Case in point, we’ve lost our desire for individuality, for uniqueness. We want to all have the same look and it’s really such a disservice to ourselves because our true style is so much better than being carbon copies of the girls we see in our feeds.

    I think the problem is finding that line of separation. I think our feeds are great to serve as inspiration, but they shouldn’t dictate our every sartorial decision.

    Either way, I feel that building a minimalist wardrobe (not in terms of size but in terms of a wardrobe that is specifically tailored to your personal style and lifestyle, having only clothes and accessories that you love to wear and exempt your personal style aesthetic but are also functional your your everyday activities) is a great cure for us all looking the same. I’ve written about it in my blog. I think you’ll like it:

    – AB | http://www.thegococollective.com

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