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Basic Style Tips You Should Know

Personality Development

From the one item every woman (and man) needs to have in their closet to knowing if a garment is top-quality, our style sensibilities have been built from 30 simple tips. After all, looking good isn't just about trends -- it's about looking good and feeling confident in your style basics.

Add a few of these tips to your daily getting-dressed routine, and looking sartorially savvy will be a breeze.

Here are our 30 basic style tips:
Alter Your Clothing: It's important when you're investing in articles of clothing that become staples, like blazers and pants, that you have them tailored. It will ensure your money is well-spent, will make the piece that much more special and will make you feel great every time you wear it. After all, it only fits you.

Resole Shoes That You Love: If you have a pair of adored shoes you have worn straight into the ground, why not spend some money getting them fixed rather than finding another pair that will never be quite the same? Naturally, this is more important when you have spent more money on the shoes initially, rather than a cheap pair of flats from Forever 21 or something similar.

Invest In Staples: Coats, blazers, heels et al. These are the pieces that don't fall into the trends of the season, but will instead last you forever. It's better to spend more on one item then have to re-buy it multiple times due to poor quality.

Dress For Women, Not For Men: The Man Repeller once told us that if women dressed for men, we'd all be wearing bodycon miniskirts and dresses. This is why we have to dress with other women in mind. It actually makes getting dressed easier when you're dressing for style, not for sex, and your confidence will shine through because you'll be more comfortable in what you're wearing.

Denim Is Your Best Friend: A good pair of jeans can change everything. As can a denim button-up or denim jacket. It is the best staple to have hanging in your closet, making any outfit casual (in the best possible way). A perfect pair of skinny jeans can take any top and make it look awesome, an easy way to look pulled together in an instant.

Don't Buy Trends That Don't Suit Your Body Type: There are trends that we say 'I could never wear that' because it's too bold or daring, but there are also trends that we see and instantly know that they aren't for our body type. No matter what people say about being able to pull anything off if you have confidence, if you see something and don't think it will work for you, it probably won't.

Take Care Of Leather: Real leather is expensive, so it makes sense to take care of it. But often this is one thing we overlook. Soon our favourite boots are destroyed and have salt stains from the dreaded winter. It only takes a few extra minutes to get our prized leather goods ready for bad weather so it's something to start doing … now.

High Heels Can Change A Whole Look: We know they can be painful, and we know we've been warned they aren't good for our feet, but heels really can take a look that we're bored with and turn it into something we feel awesome about. Oh, the power of accessories.

Watches Are Timeless: Sometimes the thought of throwing on an arm party first thing in the morning can be intimidating, which is why watches are awesome. They are classic and can represent your personality. And if you invest in a good one, it could last you a lifetime.

Little Black Dress: This is a duh tip. But having that dress hanging in the closet waiting for a special moment is a comforting thought and a style saver when you're scrambling to find something to wear.

If You Find A Look That Works, Stick With It: Michael Kors has found his signature look of T-shirts and jeans with sunglasses, and it works for him. So if you find yourself in an outfit that you go-to day after day, why not make it your signature look?

Don't Pretend It Fits: We've all been there, standing in the dressing room and convincing ourselves that the button will magically stay closed when we get home (and then, of course, it doesn't). These are the times where we have to accept that our bodies have changed in one way or another, and buy clothes that fit. Because you know what happens to the clothes that don't fit (cue garbage bags being dropped off at Goodwill here).

Pay Attention To Washing Labels: Remember that time you threw two 'delicate' shirts in the washer and they came out the size of a Cabbage Patch Doll's wardrobe? Yeah, oops. We can avoid that by following the instructions that they apply on our clothing to keeps them the size we started with.

If Your Weight Changes A Lot, Update Your Wardrobe: This goes back to the point of not pretending things fit when they don't. It's important to make sure our clothing fits, and though it's hard to admit that you've gained weight (trust us, we struggle with this) or when you've lost weight, you can ignore the fact and stick with the same baggy clothes. Either way, it's kind of a fun reason to update your wardrobe.

Wear Sunglasses: You only have one set of eyes, so why not protect them in style?

Colourful Umbrellas: We love to whine about the rain, but if you have a stylin' umbrella, poor weather won't seem that bad at all! Plus, the brighter and bolder the umbrella, the better chance for compliments, right?

Clean Out Your Closet: Those items that just seem to hang in our closet season after season -- or even year after year -- that we always say we'll wear, but don't, need to get tossed at some point. Donate them or do a clothing swap! You'll be making room for new clothes, which is always good. Better yet, incorporate the 'one in, one out' philosophy into your closet -- when something new comes home, something old gets permanently loaned to a friend.

Think Strategically: Assess your closet before hitting the mall. Figure out what pieces your closet is seriously lacking for the next season and attack the shops accordingly. If you really want to stay on track, make a list.

Work Clothes Need Not Be Frumpy: Just because you have to dress office casual doesn't mean you have to sacrifice style. Find well-tailored pieces and incorporate accessories and colour to create a more exciting look.

Dress Like You're Going To Run Into An Ex: It's always the days you run out the door to grab a coffee in your sweats or stained tee that you run into someone you don't want to see. This is why we should always dress like we're going to be seen by someone. This doesn't mean ballgowns in public, but a simple (clean) t-shirt and jeans will suffice.

If You Feel Uncomfortable, You Probably Look Uncomfortable: Your confidence is affected by what you're wearing, as sad of a thought as that might be. So if you're feeling self-conscious about your outfit, you're likely to be tugging at it or double-checking that everything is in place all day and night.

Invest In Good Underwear: Wearing nice underwear every day will make you feel special. Sure, not everyone gets to be so lucky and see how nice your underwear is, but you'll know. Also, be sure to get your bras fitted -- often. It will make your clothes hang better and be infinitely more comfortable.

Steal From Boys: Guys have it so easy. Their recipe to looking good involves a simple button-up and a nice pair of pants, so why don't we also wear this look from time to time? Even better if you can take your boyfriend's shirt and make it look like a part of your own wardrobe. Try wearing a button-up as a tube top for bonus points!

When In Doubt, Overdress: There's nothing worse than showing up an event underdressed. Maybe the invite didn't specify or involved the word 'casual' -- but everyone else dressed up not so casually. If you don't know what the dress code is, overdress. There's no harm in looking too pulled together, but you'll feel uncomfortable if you think you look out of place.

The Easiest Way To Update A Wardrobe Is Accessories: A statement necklace or a chunky bangle bracelet will reinvent an entire look. Updating your closet need not be difficult!

Learn Basic Sewing Skills: If you can mend hems or resew buttons, life will be so much easier. You'll never have to pay for little fixes ever again.

Don't Overdo Belts: The belt is meant to give you a waist or hold your pants up. There are times however, the belt should be left at home. If an outfit is already fitted, there is no need for a belt. If you are wearing pants but feeling like belting the shirt, it looks a little odd. Use belts sparingly rather than often.

Know Your Neckline: Making note of what works for you and what doesn't is key and neckline plays a huge roll in this. The neckline is the part that shows off your pretty face, so be sure to get it right!

You Have To Want It: If there's a look you like and want to wear, go for it. Just make sure you execute the outfit with confidence and no one will ever second guess it.

Sarah Kelsey

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