Ladies, today is the day you start to get your wardrobe in order!
Whether you work in or out of the home, have little kids at your ankles or grown adult children, are getting back in the workforce, or are blissfully retired and focusing on your passions, you want to look and feel great during whatever your season of life.
This four-week series is designed to help real-life women, of all shapes and sizes, with any lifestyle, within just about any budget discover their authentic style, where to find it, and how to wear it.
Be sure to go through every challenge, in order. This process was designed to build up each week.
So, who am I?
If you are new to our site – welcome! This Wardrobe Challenge is truly the cornerstone of our community. Before we dive in, a little about me so you can better understand the perspective I bring to my work.
I was a wardrobe stylist for the better part of my career. I started my first company Kristel Closets, Inc, in 2007, which, at its peak, had three offices and a team of stylists on the East Coast.
After more than a decade, I moved on to focus on building our online business. But the experience of working with thousands of clients continues to influence my fashion and style posts today.
I take great pride in being a practical voice of fashion reason on the internet. All of the advice I share, especially in this wardrobe challenge, is based on proven tips and techniques I created to help our clients define their style, organize their closets, and build a wardrobe that feels like them.
I’m also heavily influenced by real life. I’m a working mom to three amazing little girls. I get how busy and overwhelming life can be, how time is limited, budgets are stretched, and “me time” feels like an indulgence.
I’m 41, so I’m not looking to dress like a kid. Instead, I gravitate toward a sophisticated, classic style that works for my grown-up body and busy life.
I navigate life happier and more confidently when I look and feel my best. Sometimes just putting on a pretty outfit or painting your nails can make a crummy day a little better.
It’s About You
Women want to look stylish and feel beautiful. But not everyone can clearly define their personal style or understand how to pull a look together.
I encourage you to use the next four weeks to focus on YOU. When this challenge is over, my goal is for you to have a clearer understanding of what you like and what will work for you, so shopping and getting dressed is easier.
Here’s How the Wardrobe Challenge Works:
Every Friday post for the next four weeks (starting today!) I will share a series of challenges to help you build a better wardrobe.
Take your time with each challenge. It’s great to do them in a week, but don’t worry if you can’t.
Be sure to finish each challenge in order before you move to the next.
You can follow along with the group (join our private women-only Facebook group to interact one-on-one), or go at your own pace. You can also see more tips and videos on Instagram.
These posts will live on this site for you to reference whenever you like.
Trust the process, commit to the journey, and do this for yourself!
In the early years of Kristel Closets, I would arrive at an initial appointment, which took place in our client’s closet. We started by talking about her challenges, likes, and dislikes. Almost every client would have trouble describing her style.
It didn’t take long for me to realize that we needed a visual to articulate each client’s unique personal style.
So I created a series of pre-work for them to complete before our first appointment, designed to help the process move smoothly and efficiently.
I was always aware of our private clients’ investment when they chose to work with us, so this was a way to make sure we got on the same page as quickly as possible and spoke the same language.
Pull Inspiration Pictures
A big part of this pre-work was to pull inspiration pictures. I can tell you that the clients who took the time to complete this task had the most success.
Many of you are looking to streamline and simplify your wardrobe; others mentioned that they recognize style in others but have difficulty translating for themselves. And an overwhelming majority of participants say they have too much in their closets.
Without a clear understanding of your style, it will be a challenge to edit your wardrobe correctly.
By organizing inspiration pictures, we can create a filter that will help you purge your closet and shop better.
We recommend Pinterest to help organize these images, especially for this challenge. It’s a great place to search for and share ideas. Past participants have set up a board just for outfit inspiration.
If you’re not on Pinterest, no worries. You can use magazines or catalogs. I like InStyle and Oprah magazine for this exercise. You’ll need them for next week’s challenge. So pour yourself a glass of wine or have a cup of tea and pull as many pictures as you like but have at least 20.
For now, do not think about your body type, budget, or whether it’s appropriate for your life. You are just getting a sense of what you like.
Our lives are continually evolving, but our wardrobes tend to stay the same.
If you have changed jobs, got married or divorced, had a baby, had another baby, left the workforce, or are just getting back into it, retired, or any number of lifestyle changes, this exercise will help you get clear on your needs.
Define your Lifestyle
To get a visual of how and where you spend your time, create a Lifestyle Diagram. It’s easy; draw a circle on a piece of paper to use as a pie chart. Now, break down your life according to percentages totaling 100%.
Include work, activities, travel, date nights, anything you spend time doing. It’s essential to see how you are spending your time.
You might find you’re buying a lot for work but have nothing to wear to your kid’s soccer game. When I first did this exercise, I didn’t have enough options for social outings and date nights. Today, I need more sporty, casual pieces for a life lived close to home with lots of kids.
Tip!: We have had some participants take this very seriously! They went so far as to create an Excel spreadsheet and pie chart to capture their percentages. Do what works for you! Of course, a spreadsheet makes my Type-A heart happy.
Here’s a sample:
Again, post your charts in our Facebook group for everyone to see! It’s always fun to see the categories we forget about.
Complete both of these challenges before you start the next round of challenges.
I’m looking forward to connecting with all of you and walking through this process together!
Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers
Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers.
Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail.
Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.
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