Bright Bees Masthead

The Key to Ageless Style

Fiona Keary

We all have it – a sense of style. But it can be tricky to translate that into our everyday wardrobe.

Instead many of us find ourselves the owners of a mish-mash of colours, styles and clothes that have hardly seen the light of day. So, how do you create a wardrobe that you love?

This Mother’s Day, have a think about your mum’s style. What is her aesthetic? What’s her style personality? Recognising the way your mum dresses and why is the key to finding her a thoughtful gift each time, and to help her re-create or add to her wardrobe at any age.

It comes down to three key factors: style personality, wearing colours that you love and understanding your body. If you nail these, everything else falls into place. We asked Jenny Weire, Jenny Carr and Chris Johnson — all residents of The Central at Goodwin — to demonstrate ageless style.

Style Personality

The key to creating a wardrobe that you love comes down to defining your style. It’s the most important step in putting together a wardrobe that is not only fabulous but also reflects you. If you’re not clear on what your style is you can often feel a little lost, confused and uncomfortable with what’s sitting in your wardrobe. Leading to the dreaded cry ‘I have nothing to wear!’ Actually you do, but you just don’t like what you have or how it goes together.

The easiest way to define your style is to identify those pieces in your wardrobe that you absolutely love – that make you feel great. How would you define them? Are they classic, elegant, feminine or are they edgy, creative or sultry. Look for the common themes. It’s also really useful to look at those pieces that you never wear, taking note and avoiding similar styles in the future.

Don’t get concerned if don’t fit neatly into one category, you’re style will usually be a combination of two or three. Your style personality can also change over time depending on your lifestyle, so I highly recommend revisiting it every so often.

Here’s a snapshot of the most common style personalities. Which one are you?

The Natural

Relaxed and effortless. They prefer natural fibres and neutral colours. Naturals love nothing more than pulling on a pair of jeans, cargoes or linen pants and teaming it with a tee and flats. The look is all about comfort and practicality.

The Feminine

Soft and romantic look. They prefer draping or flowing fabrics, including ruffles and frills. Feminines love to wear dresses, embracing florals and other softly rounded patterns.

The Classic

I like to call it the suited and booted look but being classic doesn’t necessarily mean that you only wear suits. Classics prefer timeless pieces in neutral colours. Pieces are usually semi-fitted and always appropriate.

The Elegant

Very similar to a classic in the sense that pieces are timeless, structured and streamlined. The difference is that they use richer colours such as purples, deep blues and reds. The look is polished and everything looks expensive (it doesn’t mean that it is, but it looks that way).

The Sultry

Oozes glamour and sex appeal. Sultrys love body contouring clothing and bold colours. They love attention and would never leave the house without their hair and makeup done. They also have a fondness for animal print (insert leopard purr).

The Dramatic

It’s all about the look rather than comfort. Highly stylised and always on trend (or creating them) dramatics love structure and colour. They wouldn’t think twice about doing the groceries in stilettos but let’s be honest they have probably outsourced this chore. These ladies are confident.

The Creative

Quirky and fun, Creatives make up their own rules. They are known for their use of unexpected colour combinations (that just work). They use an eclectic mix of styles and shapes and love motifs on jumpers and T-shirts.

Colour

Another important factor is colour. Not only because wearing the right colours will make you look refreshed, glowing and healthy – there’s an even more exciting benefit. By sticking to a warm (yellow based colours) or cool (blue based) colour palette everything in your wardrobe will mix and match. That means you can do so much more with less.

Again, take a look in your wardrobe. What colours are you most attracted to? Are there particular colours you wear that attract lots of compliments? If so you’re on the right track.

Body shape 

Our bodies continually change, however our body architecture (or proportions) generally stay the same. When we talk about body shape we’re not talking about size, size doesn’t matter when creating a great silhouette. Proportions count and creating balance is a matter of wearing styles of clothing that enhance those parts of the body that we love. That may also include creating width to parts of our bodies.

For example, if you have a triangle body shape (your bust is proportionately smaller than your hips, and you have a well-defined waist), the easiest way to create balance is by visually widening the upper body: bust and shoulder line. One way to do this is to wear tops or jackets that are brighter or lighter in colour, patterned or with horizontal stripes.

So the key to ageless style is understanding what works for you. Embrace your style and remember every day is an excuse to dress up.

My top tips:

  • Have fun with fashion – it’s a way to express yourself. When you’ve nailed your sense of style you never have to follow trends, you just update your wardrobe every season with pieces that you love.
  • Shop anywhere and everywhere. Don’t limit yourself, you never know what you’ll find at your grand daughter’s favourite store. Check out Forever New – you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
  • Get the basics right. Invest in underwear and staple pieces such as pants, skirts and jackets.
  • Layering is key. If done properly you can wear most of your wardrobe year round.
  • Don’t forget accessories. Great basics will see you through from season to season but accessories will add interest and change an outfit completely.

 

GoodwinGoodLifeFlatLay

Blue Illusion, Kallista Knitted Schoolboy Hat, $39.99

Blue Illusion, The Caroline 7/8 Zip Detail Jean, $199.99

Trenery, Holly Pebble Gusset Boot in Tan, $199.00

Trenery, Juniper Pebble Satchel in Powder Blue, $299

Trenery, Oversized Tweed Roll Jumper in Charcoal, $169

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Target, Leopard Woven Scarf, $10

Seed Heritage (available at Myer), Swing Top in Caramel, $129.95

Seed Heritage (available at Myer), Knit Skirt in Chocolate, $99.95

Trenery, Pebble Loafer in Tan, $159

Glasses, Model’s own

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Target, Lace T-shirt Dress in Black/Nude, $99

Diana Ferrari, Beckett Black Patent Wedge, $139.95

Diana Ferrari, Felicity Clutch in Black, $69.95

Jewellery, Model’s own

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Target, Clean Break Hobo Bag, $40

Trenery, Minimal Puffer Vest in Light Grey, $179

Trenery, Spot Curved Hem Jumper in Cream, $119

Blue Illusion, The Caroline 7/8  Zip Detail Jean $199.99

Diana Ferrari, Andi Navy and Bone Suede Trainer, $129.95

Photography by Martin Ollman. Shot on location at The Central by Goodwin.

Fiona Keary

Image Consultant Fiona Keary loves fashion. In fact she lives it. But most of all she loves helping others to find their way through the maze of do’s and don’ts to achieve a look that suits their personality and lifestyle. After training with Toshiko Kobatake and working as an Image Consultant in London for a number of years, Fiona has returned to Canberra to help her clients look and feel great whilst still remaining true to themselves. More about the Author