I don’t know about you, but this is my absolute favourite time of the year. There is nothing I love more than knitwear, boots, scarves, hot chocolate, bonfire night, crisp air and cuddling!
I have been reading a lot recently on the Danish art of living well and keeping cosy called Hygge (pronounced Hoo-gah). Apparently the happiest country in the world, it is basically feeling comforted, safe, warm and happy. Picture a glass of red wine, snuggled up in some cosy cashmere blanket with some candles burning and your loved ones around you. There’s a lot to be said about embracing life’s simple pleasures especially at this time of the year.
Whilst I am on the subject of introducing a daily dose of hygge into your everyday lives, it seems only appropriate that you should reap the same kind of pleasure from what your wardrobe. After all the amount of wardrobes I clear and come across some tatty jumper my client clings onto it replying ‘it’s my chill out slobby stay at home jumper’ im now thinking I need to be looking more into this hygge cosy outfit to snuggle into.
We shop for many reasons, to buy clothing in which we can assert our identity, to demonstrate our allegiance to a ‘tribe’, to showcase our uniqueness and stand out from the crowd, to ‘bag’ a coveted treasure, to be dressed in the height of fashion or latest trend, for a special occasion, our weight/shape has changed or because we’re bored or emotionally driven to do so. We all love the idea of owning something new.
I’ve written down my top tips for finding simplicity and pleasure, and to prevent the anxiety and overload caused by an overstuffed wardrobe,
Find your true style: I always tell my clients only buy items you love, otherwise what’s the point in spending money on them? Look for clothing that ‘speaks’ to you in some way. When you try it on you should immediately love it. Ask yourself if it’s suitable for your lifestyle, what have you already got that goes with it and when will you wear it? I always know with my clients when I look at their facial expressions in the fitting room. A wrinkled up nose means ‘no’, a smile means ‘yes’.
Mix and match: I know it stylists like me harp on about this but it is so satisfying seeing how many outfits you can create by combining a handful of separates. This means staying with a colour palette that you love. For me it’s navy, grey, black, white and nude. I rarely buy pattern but, if I do, it’ll be a check scarf or stripe top to brighten it up a little. You can also pair opposites to create a more funky or dramatic vibe like lace with leather or denim and silk.
Change the look and feel: Swap a high heeled shoe for a chunky biker boot or so on trend trainer can change the entire look of the outfit. If that’s not for you, maybe try sweeping your hair up rather than letting it hang loose is another game changer. I’m into the half head knot on the top of my head at the moment (even though the boy hates it!) or maybe change a nude lipstick for a bright red. This is really about being curious and playing with what you already own. It doesn’t have to be difficult or cost the earth.
Beware of the seasons ‘must have’ items: As my clients will know, a great wardrobe is built on solid good quality basics. Investment pieces that will see you though more than one season. By all means add something on trend and current to update your wardrobe each season, but don’t spend too much money on it. Fashion changes every season, the trick to making it work is to look at what excites you and then see HOW you can adapt it to your own style and wardrobe.
Embrace what works: We all have a kind of uniform, even if we don’t think we have. Individual personality, lifestyle, body shape and budget are all drivers of what you choose. Think about what you want to highlight and what you’d like to hide and dress accordingly no matter what the magazines say we should be wearing. This means buying clothes that suit you and what you stand for. Never be forced into wearing something that makes you feel like someone else.
Return the unwanted: In this world of instant gratification where we all want something immediately, it’s easy to put a new purchase away and hold onto it. If you don’t like it, return it immediately. If you don’t, it will act as a constant reminder of a mistake, bad judgment and your carelessness with money. The amount of items I find in a client’s wardrobe still with tags on is never ending!
Lastly, find real, lasting hygge by having a cosy outfit to snuggle into. For some people, this will be expensive cashmere, a nice tracksuit, some snuggly socks or an oversized fluffy dressing gown. I have all of the mentioned! When I put them on I feel at peace, relaxed, comfy and warm. The stresses of the day eased, now all I need is that glass of red wine and a cuddle!
Make your wardrobe a priority. Life is way too short to not have time for yourself. If it makes you happy, just do it.
Your Fairy Clothes Mother xx