Friday, January 18, 2019

An Evolution of Personal Style [1998 - Today]


Today's post is going to be interesting.

I'm looking to do an exercise in looking back at the evolution of my personal style in fashion over the years.  Oh boy.


Middle School and before (Age 8-13)

Overall, I have always been picky about what I wanted to wear.  I think that over the course of my childhood I went through a lot of phases of being really picky or not caring about what I wore.  I remember having a few favorite dresses when I was younger, I remember "stretch pants" (AKA Leggings) being a thing in fourth grade, etc.

But I would say that the most significant shift that I can remember (and perhaps this is just because it is more recent than my elementary school fashion choices) was in middle school going into high school.

I think on the whole there was a large range of style in my wardrobe, but I very clearly remember starting to be interested in specific styles at this age.  Primarily, I was inspired by the character of Tawny Dean on Even Stevens.  I watched almost every episode of Even Stevens in middle school, and I was obsessed with Tawny's wardrobe.  I would sketch out outfits and try to recreate them or sew similar ones for myself.  I didn't have a ton of shopping outlets back then, so I mostly tried to sew things.  I'm not sure how successful they really were, but none the less I tried.  I even modeled my 8th grade dance dress off of a beautiful dress I saw the actress wear in a magazine.  Mostly I was drawn to black, grey and red because that was what her character wore.  But on the whole other than this interest I think my wardrobe was kind of all over the place.  One other significant thing I remember was that most of my classmates liked wearing jeans, and I distinctly disliked them.  I always found them to be uncomfortable and I preferred black dress pants for day to day pant choices.




High School (Age 14-18)

I think in high school I became slightly more aware of my fashion choices, but also had somewhat all over the place style.  I retained the kind of 'emo' look of Tawny but it transitioned as I found other sources of style inspirations through the years.  I remember looking up to an upperclassman who loved vintage, but I also loved Panic! at the Disco and all the style that comes from that band.  So my style varied a lot.  I mostly shopped at Kohl's or found vintage things.  In my senior year I got a pixie cut and I think that might actually be the first drastic/ distinctive style choice I really made.  It was fun, and I liked having fluffy hair.   I ranged from wearing black clothing and emo pins on my bag, to the next day wearing a 60's style shift dress with tights and character shoes.



University (Age 18-23)

In college I think was a real development point for me wardrobe wise.  I entered into art school, so that was an immersion into art and style that was pretty omni-present.  I collected more vintage things and was influenced by tons of different art and styles.  I'm not sure that it immediately and drastically changed by wardrobe, but my school of thought changed; I changed.  My world view shifted, and gradually I think this leaked into my wardrobe. I think my day to day looks shifted, but I also did a great deal of fashion photo work that I pulled wardrobe for.  Often these would be bolder styles than I would wear regularly, but it definitely influenced my style.  More elevated pieces started creeping their way into my wardrobe: ruffled dresses and lace high waist shorts, floral brooches and vintage hats.  I also made a bunch of handmade hats during college.  I went back and forth with my hair a bunch while I was in school, going from pixie cut to mid-length and then back to a pixie again.




Beginning Blogging (Age 23-24)

The first few years of my blogging was when I realized that I loved pulling wardrobe for my photo work in school, and I wanted to continue pulling outfits.  I started making conscious choices to add things to my wardrobe and try new styles.  I think in some ways before this point, I was totally unaware of most current trends in fashion.  So this was an explosion of knowledge, concurrently fueled with the beginning of my merchandising career with Forever 21.   I was excited to try tons of trends, and be open to everything, while also mixing in a bit of vintage.




Moving to the City (Age 25 -26)

June of 2014 we moved up to the suburb we live in currently.  This shift from college town to urban suburb also had a considerable shift on my style, in conjunction with settling into my career as a merchandiser and having a few months to really get acquainted with the industry.  My knowledge was expanding, but I still felt I was in a little bit of an experimental stage.  I also wanted to make sure to mix in smaller brands and vintage in my wardrobe to have a good mix of old and new.




City Livin' (Age 26 - 27)

A little before I started working in the city proper I started to notice significant shifts in my style.  I felt more confident, and I think I started really embracing the trends I loved the most.  I kept my little bits of grunge with small accents (a cuff earring here, dark eyeliner there), and I really embraced an interest in the southwest details, and more unique accessories.  I also started embracing some more feminine trends that maybe I had been afraid to pull off in the past.  I started dyeing my hair red, and I had some of the best day to day outfits that I think I'd ever had.  On the whole I felt confident and creative with my style.  I felt like I was finally hitting a groove, and then burnout hit.


2017 Blog Break (Age 27)

2017 was a lot of things for me.  It was growth and frustration and more growth, and working very hard, falling, and getting back up again.  I had some great outfits that year, and a lot of growth and learning happened, but it was all mostly off line, at least fashion-wise.  Here are just a few snaps of some styles that happened that year for me.  I started loving cropped denim jackets, gingham, and I started to balayage my hair.






Current Mood (Age 28)

Around about summer time, I started to get my mojo back for blogging.  I threw myself back into shooting, styling for me, and taking time to document.  I made a conscious effort to slow down and live each day, not rushing to get to the next one.  I've done a lot of texture mixing recently that I'm loving a lot, and I've been trying to incorporate items I've thrifted or are vintage mixed with more recent buys.   I also did a massive closet purge this year, so I'm honing in on the items that make me happiest, and that I am inspired by when I'm choosing an outfit.  I feel like my style is becoming more nuanced this year, and I'm excited by that.  I love having a lot going on, but yet not feeling like an outfit is all over the place.

This is actually the first time I've done this where I've laid out images of my outfits over such a large period of time and looked at the growth and changes.  I feel like I've gone through a shift from just being drawn to individual pieces to understanding how they work in my wardrobe as a whole, and that wardrobe has been slowly molding itself into something cohesive.   I'm loving my clothes everyday and how I can express myself through them and how I wear them.  This was a lot of fun for me to do, and I hope it's a fun read for you as well!

Until Next Time,

- The Lovely Red Fox

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