Outfit Tutorial: How to Make Your Former Style Feel Like Your Current Style

Have you ever experienced the feeling of outgrowing your style?
I have made the mistake of misinterpreting this sensation as a
declaration that my style is not my style anymore but I think
it’s really this expectation that by now (as in, the time at
which you believe you’ve really reached adulthood), it should be

I have called this “phenomenon” a number of things such as
de facto
outgrowing your style
, evolving into
“thoughtful” personal style
, or mostly recently: streamlined
but all of these pleas have danced around what today I
will call the truth, but which tomorrow I may rescind: my style
isn’t actually changing, it’s just… maturing.

That’s a significant word swap, and I’ll tell you why: when
something changes, it’s no longer the same. When it matures,
however, it is, at its core, still the same thing, it just has more
perspective. It’s expansive. Like us, you know? As we grow up, we
don’t actually change, we just settle more firmly into who we are
and throw away the things that perhaps we have tried, but have
never actually been true of us.

I realized this right before the holiday break when I came to
work in a blouse with a ruffle collar
layered under a cashmere v-neck sweater paired with high waist skinny
and black suede Adidas
. Someone commented that it was funny to see me in
sneakers, which took me by surprise because they’ve been a
relative mainstay of my style for as long as my style has been
conscious. I may not have known the reason for their
presence–that I consistently pursue tension in how I dress (e.g.
formal trousers with casual shoes; fancy footwear with athletic
apparel and so forth), but it occurred to me that I hadn’t worn
sneakers in a very long time. When I dug into why, because, you
know, I love a feckless intellectual investigation (I think some
people call this navel-gazing?), I realized that after I turned 30,
I started to feel like I was trying to act young and hip every time
I put on three kinds of garments that I’d defined as uniquely me
throughout my 20s. Said garments were:

Leggings (see: this
feature image)

Utility jackets (see: same
feature image)


So, mostly, I eschewed them. I’d like to think that
overwearing such items while I was pregnant
contributed to the
shunning, but I think fundamentally, what I wanted, really, was to
be taken more seriously. And because I didn’t honestly believe
that I deserved it, I used clothing (kitten heels and straight-leg
jeans and shirts tucked into them and trousers) to try to make it
be true. Maybe the greatest lesson of my very early 30s has been
this exactly, but lately I have found myself nestling more
comfortably back into the “old me” clothes, just in a new way.
So the good news seems to be that I now believe I deserve to be
taken seriously. The bad news is that you’ve read 534 words, but
I’ve yet to make good on the titular prompt and you still have to
withstand how I’m wearing old me clothes in new ways. I guess you
can leave if you’ve run out of time, but if you’re sticking
around, I’m here toooooooo. No more ado, here for you:


A good question to ask yourself is: what would the most cliche
version of me wear this ballet flats — or better yet: what would
I never wear with ballet flats because it’s too cliche? The
answer for me is an outfit like this one, boasting a very mature
buttery leather brown jacket — back-office brown! — with a silk
blouse underneath it of the same color and a pair of jeans so
tailored and stiff not even the most effusive attempt at a squat
will get me very far. For jingle bells and flair, I have also
included pearl
, wayfarer style
and a bag tiny enough to hold just the essentials of
a self-assured woman.


Same question applies, but the subjects change. The most cliche
way to wear leggings used to be to work out or weekend schlep, but
in 2020, they’re
a closet mainstay
, so maybe this plea is cliche too but for the
purpose of this exercise, I added mary janes with a comfortable
heel, a white Hanes ribbed
and tuxedo jacket so
technically I could be: going to a gala, to work, or, you know, to
weekend schlep. But I don’t look it! Or do I? You decide.

Army jacket

The first utilitarian garment I ever fell in love with:
Army jackets defined
so much of my style through the early to
mid 2010’s and then by the end of them I started to feel like a
parody of myself every time I put one on because I couldn’t shake
the way I used to wear them — with something cutesy like a floral
silk top and high waist denim cut-offs and ankle socks and brogues.
I actually didn’t nail the new me in old army jacket until I was
styling this story and said to myself: Okay, what would I wear on a
Monday to work if I knew I had two meetings out of the office, and
might be going to like, a presidential candidate fundraiser at
night? I landed on this Toteme top styled
over a black turtleneck and
these wool pants I got from a sample sale with black kitten heel
boots then put the jacket over it. So I guess the question part of
this tutorial would read: what would you wear right now for an
event that reflects the “new you,” and can the jacket fit

The spoiler answer is that if you have a flexible enough mind,
it’s always yes.

Sooooooooooo, what are some clothes that are “so you,” but
which could use a resuscitation? Tell me.

Maybe I can help.

Ta ta.

(For now.)

Photos by Sabrina Santiago.

The post Outfit
Tutorial: How to Make Your Former Style Feel Like Your Current
appeared first on Man Repeller.

Source: FS – NY Fashion
Outfit Tutorial: How to Make Your Former Style Feel Like Your Current Style