Getting Personal: Developing Your Own Style

By Sharon Mosley

December 31, 2019 6 min read

We may not make any resolutions when the beginning of a new year rolls around, but most of us do feel the need for a fresh start. Why not take a few moments to reflect on making some changes that will make you not only feel better but also look better?

But before you even think about cleaning out your closet and all those overflowing drawers, take a few minutes to think about your whole outlook on getting dressed every day. Do you like how your clothes make you feel? If you don't, think about concentrating on developing your own personal style. Here are a few tips from fashion expert Jill Martin and stylist Dana Ravich, authors of "I Have Nothing to Wear!"

"A big reason you've been having trouble coordinating outfits is that your closet has too many style options," says Martin. "We totally understand how it got that way. It's very easy to get pulled in a million directions. You're looking through magazines, watching what celebrities are wearing, listening to salespeople at a variety of shops. All the advice on what to wear and how to wear it can get very confusing, which leads to frustration, which leads to fashion overload, which inevitably leads to 'I have nothing to wear.'"

It's critical to find your own personal style. "Knowing your style will streamline your choices so that's it's easy to mix, match, and let your personality shine," says Martin. She and Ravich have defined six fashion styles that have their own trademark vibes. See what style works for you.

The Classic Girl — This fashion personality's wardrobe is filled with basics that stand the test of time. Her wardrobe is mostly neutral in color: navy, white, black and tan. Think Jackie O. with sunglasses and a printed silk scarf around your neck or purse, diamond stud earrings, a white button-down shirt tucked into dark jeans, a structured purse and ballet flats. You might dress it all up for dinner with a fitted black blazer, high-heeled pumps and a clutch.

The Bohemian Girl — OK, so this is the other side of the style spectrum from The Classic Girl, whose wardrobe is much more structured and tailored. The Bohemian Girl's look is romantic and carefree, soft and flowing. Think boyfriend or flared-leg jeans and a peasant top with gladiator sandals and a slouchy, oversize hobo bag. White is one of your favorite colors, along with denim, metallic and anything in the tan/brown family. Your jewelry tends to look earthy and natural, perhaps an armful of gold bangles and long, delicate chains around your neck.

The Preppy Girl — Structured but casual, this wardrobe is colorful and full of pattern. The preppy girl might wear a pink polo shirt with white jeans, a ribbon belt, Jack Rogers sandals and a canvas boat tote. Your favorite color is usually pink, Kelly green or navy blue. Colors are mixed and matched with one another and teamed with neutrals like khaki and white. Madras, seersucker and cable knit are preppy staples. Pearl stud earrings as well as pearl necklaces and diamond tennis bracelets are also favorites.

The Fashionista — This is the trendsetter who loves to wear the latest looks. But you are not a fashion victim. You pull your looks together from a variety of trends, but you always make sure you wear only what works for you. When the shape of handbags changes, you update your bag; when toe shapes change, your shoes change. When larger costume jewelry is in style, you incorporate it into your wardrobe.

The Surfer Chick — You may not necessarily be riding the waves, but you do like to be outdoors if you're this fashion personality. An athletic-inspired wardrobe filled with bright colors is key. You love Ugg boots and flip-flops. Jewelry is minimal. Nothing gets in the way ... just a cool, chunky silver ring or cuff bracelet if you are dressing up.

The Soccer Mom — This fashion personality loves functional, comfortable clothes for life on the go. Stylish jeans, flattering sweaters and tops, flats and large totes are your go-tos. You may have a few pieces of fine jewelry, too, but nothing that gets in the way of your busy lifestyle with kids.

"No matter what your career, age, body type, marital status, or location, your personality needs to shine through, and your clothing needs to accommodate your lifestyle and make you feel like your best self," says Martin. Make this your year to find your own personal style. Now that's a great New Year's resolution.

Find your personal style in the new year. The Bohemian look is reflected in the Johnny Was collection of breezy romantic tops mixed with relaxed denim.
Find your personal style in the new year. The Bohemian look is reflected in the Johnny Was collection of breezy romantic tops mixed with relaxed denim.

To find out more about Sharon Mosley and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at

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