Put wardrobe ideas on your mood board first

By Ally Champagne

I recently bought the new fashion book by Nicky Hilton called 365 Style. I absolutely love how she thinks.
She states: “It isn’t merely about collecting! It’s about selecting. Identifying your own personal style and knowing the essential pieces are key to not only looking the part, but actually having it all, without letting your closet burst at the seams.”
To seriously improve your shopping experience, she suggests using a mood board, which resembles a vision board, but it’s sole focus is fashion-related.
Inspiration can come from various arenas, some as obvious as fashion magazines, television, fashion shows, or shopping and taking pics of something you feel is speaking to you while you are out at a store. I find poring through home decor magazines or watching home renovation shows equally stimulating for my own creativity pot.
A mood board provides us with a larger canvas to explore and experience colour, textures and textiles on a much grander scale. You can use various boards for this – paper, cardboard, mirrors, picture frames, or even a dry eraser board.
The mood board is all about you: your preferences, tastes, and your exploration of possible new styles. You can tear or cut your chosen pics with fancy scissors, then assemble the pieces onto the board like a collage, or in groups according to your taste.
As an example, you might find a colour you really love, and look for pictures which include all types of clothing and accessories in this hue. The point is to create a look which encourages you to develop your personal style.
Once you have various hot items in your favourite new shade pinned on your board, don’t stop there. Look for accessories such as necklaces, scarves, earrings, shoes, and great handbags.
Do not limit yourself: pick out several possibilities, even if a part of you might feel it’s a little outrageous, pin them to your board. This board gives you the freedom to put together items you might generally never try on in a boutique, but you just might go for it and be pleasantly surprised with the outcome.
You can try making more than one mood board at a time – one for your wish list items, one for a specific item for a special occasion such as a Christmas party, and one for your top picks which would enhance the essential pieces you already have in your closet. As you already know, accessories can completely change the look of an outfit, so try even filling a board with just those.
You might also find the mood board a great way to juggle the pros and cons of future purchases. If you find a bedazzling pair of boots and catch yourself thinking and thinking about them, add a pic of the item to your mood board. Then explore how many ways they might enhance your wardrobe.
Stick any items like this you are not sure about on there, and look at them periodically for a week. This process may help you avoid needless pitfalls in regards to impulsive buying. And it may also keep your budget intact (always an important factor in my books).
One last suggestion: do not censor anything you find appealing just because it is being modelled by someone who doesn’t have your shape, height, or hair colour.
When your board has reached a point where you are confident that it defines you, you are ready for the exciting next step: buying the item you covet most. So happy collaging! And may your board speak to the world about the creative, unique, and wonderful person you are.

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