Category Archives: fashion

What does your body armour look like?

I think we all have outfits that make us feel AWESOME. But let’s take it up to the next level, shall we? When getting dressed there are elements that make us feel protected, safe, and warm. There is the kind of outfit you wear to work on a tough day, or out with friends when you’re feeling shy about meeting new people. This is your body armour. And while it might not look like the same thing a knight would wear, it’ll make you feel just as protected.

My “armour” is soft with an edge. I wrap myself in soft layers so that it practically feels like I’m wearing a blanket. And then I accessorise with spikes and leather. It gives me an edge and makes me feel bad-ass.

What do you wear when you need that little extra OOMPH added to your day?


How Can You Tell if You Have Signature Style?

After seeing Amy Schumer dress up as Anna Wintour, it made me realize something:

If I can’t dress up as you for Halloween, then you don’t have signature style.

Anna Wintour is a lovely example, because it is rare for you to see her without her dark sunglasses, colourful colette necklaces, and cap-sleeved shift dress. Even Kim Kardashian has dressed up as Ms. Wintour.

Think of all the examples that support my theory: superheros and anyone else in a uniform are very easy to imitate. Beyond that, people in the public eye who are known for their fashion are very easy to emulate. (That’s also how trends get started.) These folks are easy to mimic, precisely because their sense of style is so finely tuned. Think of Audrey Hepburn, Steve Jobs, Marilyn Monroe, and other iconic celebrities.

This is now my new threshold. I will know I have achieved a specific, authentic-to-me look if I know it would be easy to dress up as me for Halloween.

Do you think this is awesome, or boring? Is it great to have a streamlined look, or do you prefer to have more variety?

Photo from Vanity Fair.

Parisian Style 101

I’ve read so many excellent posts on what makes Parisian style. I’ve come to the conclusion that while I have no idea what real Parisians actually wear, I’m quite in love with the North-American interpretation of Paris fashion. Here’s the quick and easy version:

  • Be comfortable.
    • This means wearing flats not heels, and clothing that is fitted but not so tight it looks painted on.
  • Look effortless.
    • Your hair is not teased within an inch of its life – it is in loose waves or a casual up-do. If you have highlights or colour your hair it all, it looks natural. You never look overdone or obsessed with yourself. It is the perfect white shirt with the perfect pair of skinny jeans.
  • Neutrals are your friend.
    • Black, beige, white, navy, cream, nude, grey, and sometimes red. You wear solids, not prints, with the exception of navy-and-white stripes.
  • High-quality materials are a must.
    • Your fabrics should be made of natural fibers (silk, cashmere, 100% cotton) instead of synthetics (polyester, rayon, etc.) Your boots should be leather, not pleather.
  • Wear items that will be in style for decades, not months.
    • No fast fashion for the Parisian look! You wear classics. The things that will be in style for decades. Take a look at Audrey Hepburn – her style is still going strong.
  • Less is more.
    • Chanel famously decreed: “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off.” Do this. Less accessories, less make-up. Less fuss. Your look should be natural and easy. Stick with the basics and let your presence speak more loudly than your clothes.


This is what I’ve picked up from my research. What do you think? Am I missing anything?

Photo of beautiful Olivia Palermo from here.

Say Goodbye to Must-Have Capsule Wardrobe Items

I’m constantly honing my capsule wardrobe. It’s a labour of love and an ongoing project. My goal is to have a super-minimalist and re-mixable selection of clothing. I read a lot about fashion in order to get inspiration, and to discover if my small collection of clothing has any gaps. In general, the key components of capsule wardrobes tend to be basically consistent, with a few changes (example from The Capsule Project):


As much as I love getting ideas, I’ll admit – it drives me crazy whenever I see a “must-have” item that I really actually hate to wear. Examples:

  • Trench coat (like the J.Crew one posted above)
  • Leather jacket
  • Black heels
  • White t-shirt
  • Skinny jeans

know these are fashion staples. Objectively, I agree that they will suit most people and work in most capsule wardrobes. But that does not mean that I have to like them. I hate trench coats because they make me feel like Inspector Gadget, I hate leather jackets because I’m so fair-skinned and a leather jacket makes me feel like a wannabe bad-ass, I can’t walk in heels for very long and they turn me into a 6-foot-tall giant, white t-shirts never stay white for long, and skinny jeans hurt my calves.

So guess what? I find other options. I find staples that work with my body and my own personal style. I’ve shut out the voices that say I need this/that/or the other. It’s empowering.

I love the post on Into-Mind about not dressing for your body type. I want to take the independent thinking a step further: stop feeling like you have to buy so-called wardrobe staples. Buy what you like. Leave the rest. Done.

The Secret to Buying Anything is Cost-Per-Wear

Sometimes I get things for free. But most of the time, I’m shelling out my hard-earned cash for clothing items I desire.

As a minimalist, I try to buy quality because it is usually long-lasting – but sometimes quality = expensive. Worry not! There is a way you can buy anything you want, as long as you follow this one rule:

Aim for the cost-per-wear to be $2.

If you feel strongly you can achieve that, then go ahead and buy anything from a diamond ring that costs $2000 (cost-per-wear is $2 in less than three years) or a designer bag that costs $300, like this Rebecca Minkoff satchel:


As long as I use that bag once a week for six years, I’m good to go!

Sherry, from Save. Spend. Splurge. has been using the Stylebook Closet App to track the cost-per-wear of her purchases:


Photo from Save. Spend. Splurge.

I love having a way to justify my expensive desires, however infrequent. I find it very useful to shop with this strategy and it’s perfect for my minimalist needs.

Do you ever calculate cost-per-wear? What’s your number? Is $2-per-wear a good goal?