When it comes to style and dressing up, most women have a distinct style type and personality. Hence, it can often be difficult to transition between various outfits for different occasions, especially when there is very little time.
A simple trick to avoid all this hassle is to dress elegantly. Elegance never goes out of style and always comes back stronger than a 90s trend. The best part about dressing elegantly is that it works in all kinds of settings and can also be tailored to suit the situation: workplace, brunch, date night…you name it.
There are a lot of myths and misconceptions about elegant fashion. What comes to mind when you think of the word ‘Elegant’? Quite possibly, the images of Audrey Hepburn, Jackie Kennedy or Grace Kelly. Even though I personally adore their sense of style, I do understand that what they wore can come across as old fashioned, boring or even conservative today. A lot of people even tend to feel that to dress elegantly is to constrict yourself and shed away every ounce of your personally. That’s far from the truth. It’s absolutely possible to dress elegantly while still being yourself.
Elegance is not a monolith. There are different kinds of elegant style personalities. Depending on which one you are, you can select your fashion icons and choose your clothes accordingly. The five types are-
- ELEGANT CLASSIC: This is the most common elegant style personality and the one that most people associate with elegance. As the name suggests, it’s a simple and timeless kind of style. Classic styles usually have discreet cuts and sleek silhouettes, the likes of which you’ll see on politicians, aristocratic families and old Hollywood film stars. Think pencil skirt, a long coat or LBD with pearls. If you’re on the shy, traditional or conservative side, with a love for all things vintage then elegant classic is the way to go.
EXAMPLES: Kate Middleton, Ivanka Trump, Audrey Hepburn
- ELEGANT FLAMBOYANT: Flamboyance isn’t something that is usually associated with elegance or grace. But if done well, flamboyance can also be elegant in its own way.Ladies with this style personality tend to have an eye for unconventional colours [neon, mousse] and enjoy mixing patterns and textures. If you’re unconventional, bold, daring, dominating or ambitious, then this style will be your best friend. However it’s important to note that dressing flamboyantly looks effortless, but requires a lot of work and is always certain to attract attention and set you apart from the rest. Flamboyance requires a lot of risk-taking and it’s definitely not for the faint-hearted. If this isn’t something you imagine yourself in, this may not be right for you.
EXAMPLES: Samantha Jones (Sex and the City), Blair Waldorf (Gossip Girl), Fallon Carrington (Dynasty)
- ELEGANT FASHIONISTA: This is often seen on many celebrities and models. Women who like to follow the latest trends, keep in touch with contemporary styles and habitually shop for high-end, branded clothes fit into this category. You may have observed them in high fashion events and red carpet premieres- the gowns, glittery makeup, printed pantsuits, statement jewellery etc. It’s good for people who like to reinvent themselves and are innovative or non-conforming by nature. Even though this style type is somewhat reserved for women with a large bank balance [not everyone can afford Versace after all], you don’t need to be the richest woman around. If you’ve got a passion for trends and you possess a few basics, it’s very easy to formulate your very own capsule wardrobe fit for a fashionista.
EXAMPLES: Olivia Palermo, Victoria Beckham, Blake Lively
- ELEGANT FEMININE: Even though feminine fashion is in a league of its own, no style list is complete without it. Being elegant feminine means understanding and embracing the very essence of womanliness. Feminine clothes usually have soft prints [floral] and embellishments [frills, ruffles, lace]. Midi skirts, maxi dresses, flowing silhouettes…you get the picture. If you’re a woman who loves to get in touch with her girly side or is just looking to express her femininity, this a great choice for every woman out there, regardless of their age, ethnicity or body type. Bonus points if you can incorporate Reese Witherspoon’s Southern Belle Charm. Just kidding.
EXAMPLES: Reese Witherspoon, Monica Belluci, Julia Berolzheimer
- ELEGANT AVATAR: The elegant avatar is more or less an extension of the elegant feminine archetype. The avatar is elegant and feminine in itself, but it doesn’t come under the typical girly, polished sense of style. Instead, it can be divided into two parts: Casual and Seductive. Casual elegance refers to being laid-back but put together at the same time [Frilly blouse, jeans and heels or a skirt with flats] whereas seductive elegant has an inherent sex appeal- it’s got mystery and sensuality with a hint of eroticism [Red lipstick, High heels, figure hugging clothes]. Both of these are super easy and convenient for the modern woman to recreate, especially in our faced paced lives. If you’re the regular girl- next-door, then the elegant avatar is the one you should consider going with.
- CASUAL AVATAR: Joanna Gaines, Lorelai Gilmore [Gilmore Girls]
- SEDUCTIVE AVATAR: Marilyn Monroe, Sophia Loren
Now all you need to do is take a look at your closet and identify what clothes you like and which ones look good on you. Referring to the descriptions above will help you to identify your Elegant Style Personality and dress accordingly in the future. You’re welcome, elegant lady!