Fashion Vs Style – Why style will always win.

Dr Ruth Quibell is a sociologist who writes articles for publications such as The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald. 

Dr Quibell suggests that we may wish to “… strengthen our social selves, our character, rather than simply letting our uniforms do the talking. To do this, we might avoid fashion for a while – to experiment with style, rather than what’s “now”.”

Amen to that Dr Quibell!

You see, fashion is commercial. It’s ever changing, and no matter how much you try, you’ll never keep up. You’re not meant to keep up. Fashion is an evolutionary art, and certainly not for everyday.

Style however, is innately you. Once you’ve found a way of dressing that feels like you, you need to embrace that. Your style should feel comfortable and easy. It should feel like an extension of your personality.

Your style doesn’t have to be complicated. In fact, the simpler the better!

Personally, my ‘go-to’ most days is a pair of skinny jeans and oversize blouse, shirt or tee. I also love organic cotton tee-shirt dresses, linen pants, leather slides, sandals and espadrilles. In winter I love chunky scarves. I like wearing white, black, grey, navy, blush and beige. There you have it – my style. Simple.

Not everyone’s style needs to be as plain as mine. Some people LOVE red shoes, some wear drop earrings and chunky necklaces and some enjoy high heels.

Style will always win over fashion for the simple reason that fashion is your relationship to the external, whilst your style is your relationship to the internal.

Fashion is simply a trend. You need to purchase the latest fashion item and then match yourself to the clothing. Basically, you need to disregard your intrinsic sense of style in order to constantly wear what is the ‘latest trend’.

Your style, on the other hand, is about wearing clothing that are authentically you. It’s an extension of the internal and something considered, simple and seemingly effortless… when a woman is ‘stylish’, it just works!

You can take advice and tips from a stylist, but only you know what clothes make you truly feel like you.

Once you recognise your style it will feel easy, and there is only one thing left to do – Wear it, own it, shop it, enjoy it!

Be unapologetically you. Always.





3 quick steps to finding your style!

1. What grabs your attention?

You know when you see THAT woman walking down the street? or in the park? The one you look at and think their outfit, or the way they have put themselves together looks fabulous. Well if that is the style that attracts you, then take note!
Next time you see THAT woman take note of her individual items, and how she is wearing them. Go home and make a list of the colours and cuts you liked on other women. Once you have done this for a while, you will see a pattern start to build build…

2. What makes you feel comfortable?

Are you a jeans girl? Dress lover? Skirt wearer? Chances are you know what makes you feel comfortable. My advice? Go with that!

There is absolutely no point trying to wear something you don’t feel comfortable in. When you really sit down and look at what you observed in step one – you will more than likely find that the styles you have been attracted too will often involve clothes that you naturally feel comfortable in.

The key now is to find the cuts, brands and fabrics that will help make those clothes you find so ‘comfortable’ into YOUR STYLE!

3. Practical considerations.

And now for the boring bit – practical considerations.

Are you pregnant? Breastfeeding? or the mother of a toddler? Then you will have some temporary adjustments to make to your wardrobe.

Similarly if there are any reasons you cant wear certain shoes, or you are restricted by vocation or religion, you will have less choice as to the clothes you choose.

So there you have it, simple as one, two, three!

• Observe the looks you like, make a list.
• Observe the types of clothes you feel comfortable in, make a list.
• Consider the practicalities of both lists.
• Sort thorough your existing wardrobe and remove anthing that does not fit with YOUR style!
• Make a list of areas that are missing, research where to buy these items and create a budget.

Finalise for your CAPSULE!

Remember – your style may not change too much over time, but it is always evolving…



Do you ever buy new clothes, but end up wearing your old favourites anyway? Do you go shopping and ‘have to buy something new’, all the time? Is your closet bursting at the seams, yet you feel like you have nothing to wear?

WHAT IF – you could take a step back?

WHAT IF – you could buy less, and have more to wear?

WHAT IF – you LOVED everything in your wardrobe?

WHAT IF – you felt happy and confident in all your clothing?

The Capsule Wardrobe

A capsule wardrobe is a small collection of good quality, timeless clothing that fits well and forms the ‘basis’ of your everyday wear, and can then be altered with a couple of seasonal pieces.

According to Caroline Rector, the authority on the capsule wardrobe, the magic number is 37 pieces. This includes shoes, skirts, dresses, tops, jackets and pants, and excludes active wear, underwear and night wear.

Benefits of a Capsule Wardrobe

The most obvious benefit of a capsule wardrobe is that there is less clothing cluttering up your cupboards. Other big winners are saving money by buying less, and the realisation that you may have some more spare time without shopping so much!

HOWEVER – the biggest benefit of a capsule wardrobe is a newfound sense of confidence. Opening your wardrobe to clothes that fit well, that you enjoy wearing, that are ‘you’, is priceless.

There is less time choosing an outfit, less time getting dressed, less second guessing and there is something very comforting about slipping into clothes you know.

The type of clothing to include

There will be some items of clothing that you will wear all year round – basic white T’s, shirts, jeans, and some shoes. Other items like jackets, scarves and summer dresses will be more seasonal.

Think simple, basic, timeless, effortless. White T’s and long sleeve T’s in a style you enjoy, shirts, jeans, T-shirt dresses and long dresses. Think about things you can dress up with a scarf, or pair back for a lazy weekend at home. Remember, you will also work in your seasonal ‘key pieces’.

Know your style

Before begin the journey of a capsule wardrobe, spend some time considering your style. Stand in front of your wardrobe as it is and look for the clothes that make you feel the most comfortable, the most like ‘you’.

Lay those items out on the bed and look at them. Consider them. What sort of colours are they? What type of clothing? Do you wear certain pieces more often? Why?

Is there a style you admire or you are drawn too? Think about this style. Break it down and look at how this style is put together…. Become comfortable with the idea of you OWNING this style.

THE BIGGEST TIP – Buy clothes that fit

The biggest tip we can give you is to shop for clothes that are the correct size for your body. Not the size you think you should be. Or the size you would like to be. Simply buy clothes that fit you right now!

Hawkins & Co’s 6 step approach to building your own capsule wardrobe.
  1. Decide on your ‘style’. What do you enjoy wearing? What feels good on you? What suits your body size? Shape? Personality?
  2. Take every item in your closet and take a long look at it. Decide on the 37 items that will form your capsule.
  3. Plan to shop for 3-4 ‘key pieces’ for each season. These are items of clothing that add a splash of colour, and some of your personality to the wardrobe. The number of key pieces you buy for each season is up to you, but less is more.
  4. You will end up with 2 capsules – Spring / Summer and Autumn / Winter.
  5. Buy quality. As you need to replace your items, go for a superior quality. Once you have the hang of capsule wardrobes you will find that you are spending less on clothes, and therefore, can look at organic cottons, bamboo and cashmere blends.
  6. Learn how to store your clothes correctly in the season you are not using them. This will ensure longevity and the security of knowing you have fabulous clothes to slip back into each year.
The capsule wardrobe is a GREAT way to simplify your life, and get on with living!!

Pared Back

When I hear the term ‘pared back’ it makes me sit up and listen! It is one of those terms that has me conjuring up images of a glamorous women who has effortlessly stepped into an well fitting pair of blue jeans, a soft and slightly loose white t-shirt and her hair is swept up into a less than perfect arrangement with just enough falling around her face to give her a relaxed vibe and yet command subtle attention at the same time. Do you know the look I mean?

No dangling earrings, long shiny necklace, or bright scarf, no slogans or labels plastered across her chest. Just effortless, elegant, comfortable and functional…

In terms of a formal definition, Pared Back means: An outfit devoid of ornamentation or excessive, extraneous design. Fashion magazines love reporting on the look too: “She was very pared back chic, in a simple black sheath, her hair pulled loosely into a low ponytail and a pair of ballet flats”. Hugely different to saying “She paired her sweater with a cute pair of cut-offs”…

So what is so alluring about the pared back, minimalist look? Why does it leave us so captivated? Is it because we see more of the person straight away and less of the clothes? Or is it that women who tend to master the pared back look, tend to do so with less, and therefore better quality clothes…. The old ‘quality, not quantity’!

Designers, stylists, buyers and avid shoppers all agree that when it comes to shopping and choosing new clothes, solid, classic investment pieces are the best idea around. The trend is catching on too as we become more aware of issues around sustainability, ethics and the fact we are a society drowning in our possessions.

It  has been reported that those women who adopt the pared back principles in their wardrobe choices are discovering more productivity, less stress, less distraction, less expense, and more peace overall. They also show a stronger sense of style and self; which takes us back to the glamorous women I opened with… Maybe we are so taken by her, not because of her clothes at all, but by her air of confidence and more defined sense of who she is.