The words of Yves Saint Laurent ring true – “Fashion fades, style is eternal.” Style encompasses many aspects of one’s personality, including clothing, makeup, hair and even the way we speak. Having a signature personal style enables us to stand out from the crowd. But how do we find our unique style? The first step is to define it. Establishing a description of how you’d like to be perceived by the people in your life can serve as the foundation for your style. Words that come to mind might include powerful, compassionate and sophisticated. These can then be used to guide you in creating the image you wish to project to the world.
In order to develop a clear definition of style, it is helpful to understand how it differs from fashion. Fashion is a mode of appearance that is current and popular. It can change and adapt to new trends. Style, on the other hand, is a characteristic that defines and distinguishes the work of an author from others of its kind. A style of writing that is distinctive and individual, with a strong character of its own, is what makes an author or work of literature truly stand out.
There is an element of whimsy in the concept of style that lends it some flexibility as well. Some of the most famous examples of style are those that seem to defy categorization, such as a particular theatrical style or the style of a painting. Similarly, many styles are described by their expressiveness, with adjectives like “passionate,” “quirky” and “smooth” being used to describe musical or written expression.
In addition to expressiveness, other characteristics of style can be rooted in the tradition and history of a group. For example, there are certain societies that will tend to resist change and favor the traditional, while there are other cultures that may embrace innovation and see it as a form of style. This can be seen in the way that different nations and eras have adopted their own style of dress or language.
A final aspect of style involves the way in which an individual communicates, whether in speech or in writing. In speech, this is often defined by the choice of vocabulary and pronunciation that is used as well as the way in which ideas are conveyed. In writing, it is the manner in which the information is presented and the use of literary devices that can give a piece of writing its own distinctive style.
Finding your own style can take some time and experimentation, but it is certainly worth the effort. Conducting a closet clean out can help to streamline your wardrobe and make it easier for you to identify your style. It is also helpful to create a style wish list or scrapbook that you can refer to when shopping. This will help you avoid making impulsive purchases that don’t align with your personal style. Finally, don’t be afraid to try out some new looks and experiment with accessories. A few key pieces can transform your entire look.