The easy way to create a look you love when a style inspires you
The problem with Pinterest and Instagram is we see inspiration outfits and we struggle to recreate them. When I see them I shriek (on the inside) “Oh I LOVE THAT!” and save it or pin the outfit to my inspiration board. And then I add those exact items to my shopping list. Wait, what?! Do you see the problem here? I ended up with so many clothes in my closet that didn’t necessarily work for me. Nope. Not anymore.
That’s what scrolling on Pinterest for inspiration outfits used to look like for me. I’m a very black and white, literal person. If I want to recreate that outfit, I must have the EXACT SAME ITEMS, at least, that’s what I used to think.
Inspiration outfits are a great way to get new ideas so you can create your own effortless style without having to start from scratch. Nothing gets my creative juices going like a starting point, something to edit, and Pinterest and Instagram are great places to get inspiration outfits.
The trouble was, my Pinterest boards were full of outfits I couldn’t recreate exactly, and my budget and my closet couldn’t sustain the kind of shopping required to acquire everything for every outfit. What’s an inspired girl to do? Figure out a different plan, and it’s actually way, way better.
This article and the video below are taken from the Stunning Style Weekly Style Snack! Join us Wednesdays at 1pm ET on the Stunning Style Facebook page or the FREE Capsule Wardrobes for Classic Style Facebook Group.
Think Outside the Box and Shop Your Closet
Inspiration outfits inspire us for a reason: the style speaks to us. But if we don’t copy them exactly, are we going to get the look we love? You can with a few tips! The best part is, the inspiration outfit will look like you instead of someone else, and that’s part of effortless style. Fashion is what we’re sold, style is what you do with it.
Part of my Pinterest problem was I hadn’t figured out my signature style, so I was searching and trying on other people’s style, and my inspiration board was very eclectic and very…not me. Or maybe part of the outfit was very me, and part of it wasn’t. On top of that, what looks good on one body or coloring doesn’t flatter another, and the results of an exact duplicate can be disappointing on that front as well.
Now that I know exactly what I love and what suits me, it’s rare I see an outfit I would copy exactly. Instead of trying to recreate the outfit exactly, now the first thing I do is examine the elements of the outfit, figure out what it is that I’m drawn to, and come up with something perfect for me by shopping my closet. And by starting with inspiration, I can create stylish outfits pretty effortlessly!
Think Outside the Box and Shop Your Closet
Many style bloggers have a revolving closet door, constantly bringing in new pieces to style, but I don’t. It doesn’t appeal to me at all because I’m so content with my wardrobe. Even though I create the Classic Wardrobe Guide every season, the truth is, I only pick a few pieces from each one to update my wardrobe.
I also think that the constantly revolving door sets an unfair standard or belief that you have to do the same thing as well, and you can’t be content with what you already own. It’s not sustainable for most of us, and you don’t have to feel pressured to constantly update your wardrobe with the newest trends.
Sometimes there are items I LOVE and want, but if it doesn’t fit my clothing budget, I pass on them. We talk about this at length in the Stunning Style Society as part of the Style Steps. I always advocate shopping your closet before hitting the stores, and I do the same thing myself!
Because all the outfits and pieces in the Guide are Minimal Classic, they can be copied exactly or used as a template. In the shopping portal, each item includes links to extra options categorized by Classic Style Twist, so everyone can get their custom look instead of looking like a clone.
Whether your inspiration comes from an outfit on Pinterest or one of the Stunning Style Wardrobe Guides, these tips to shop your closet will help you get a look that is perfect for you.
Tips to Restyle an Inspiration Outfit
To show you how versatile an inspiration outfit can be, I’m recreating the same outfit several ways by incorporating these tips. This week we’re covering four tips, and next week we’ll cover four more.
This is an outfit from the current Fall wardrobe guide, but it’s something you can also use as inspiration going into winter. There’s a red top, a black jacket, black pants and houndstooth patterned bag and shoes with a silver layered chain and silver hoop earrings.
1. Match Your Lifestyle
This is going to sound super obvious, but you’d be amazed at how many women don’t follow this tip and I was one of them for a long time. As a work-from-home mom of six kids and a dog, most of my lifestyle is casual, but I love when I get to dress up, like for church on Sundays or date nights with my husband. I still use the outfit calendars from the wardrobe guides to inspire me.
One question I get a lot is, “Will the Society work for me? I need to dress up more for work.” It can! Many of our Stunners dress up the inspiration outfits, and as we go through the Style Steps each week, I include examples for both casual and dressy.
Here are couple of examples of how you can adapt this for your lifestyle, either dressed up or dress down. In the first outfit I’ve dressed it down by moving the red to my pants, the black into my top and my bag and the pattern is in my leopard sneakers. I could have worn flat, but I chose the sneakers because it was a day I was going to be on my feet a lot. In the second outfit I’ve dressed it up with heels, I moved the red to my bag and shoes, and I moved the pattern to my dress. The substitutions you make can be a 1 for 1, or you can get more creative. It’s up to you.
2. Match Your Mood
After black, white, and blue, which are the core colors in my closet, red is my very most favorite color, and I always feel comfortable and confident in it. My preferences have moved more towards a deeper oxblood red, but sometimes my body and brain need a break from everything, including color.
I will dial down the color at times, and others I’ll turn it up. On the left, the only red in my outfit is in my lips and nails. I’ve moved the pattern to my top and the rest of my outfit is black and white. On the right I added more color by moving the pattern into my skirt which both increases the amount of pattern and it adds another dose of red. You can amp it up or turn it down, whatever your current mood is indicating.
3. BYOT (Bring Your Own Twist)
While I’m always Minimal Classic first, I always need some edge in my outfit or I feel too tame and too buttoned up, and I also need some softness so it’s not so rigid and hard. And that means adding my Classic Style Twists.
In this first outfit I definitely have my edgy going on by wearing that deeper ruby red. I’ve got on a classic rebel-without-a-cause moto jacket and some really stabby high shine boots. I don’t have a lot of soft going on in this outfit. On the right, I’ve brought the red in again in my sweater, bag and shoes. I brought the white in as a solid color in my top. I have Edgy details in my destroyed jeans and the pattern is in my shoes, bag and belt. The outfit is a little softer because of the cardigan and it’s not as edgy as the jacket.
Ever since I learned how to build a capsule wardrobe, I’ve been moving more toward having an intentional wardrobe. I typically have something similar, or close enough, to what is featured in the Classic Wardrobe Guides that I really love, and I wear that instead. The great thing is, it can show me new ways to combine old favorites. These are pieces that reflect my Classic Style Twists, and they are the key dressing in my signature style. Each season I only buy a few items to update my closet.
4. Patterns May Vary
Maybe the houndstooth pattern in this outfit isn’t for you. Does that mean you can’t recreate this outfit? Definitely not! Pick any pattern you love and substitute it in, whether it’s in the shoe or you move it up to your sweater, like I did with this leopard sweater.
I do love houndstooth but I have much more leopard in my wardrobe. You could switch it out for stripes, polka dots, florals, it can be whatever pattern you love. On the right I chose a diamond pattern in my sweater and stuck with the black leather pants.
These are just a few ways I’ve changed up one outfit, and next week I’ll have four more tips to share. Shopping your closet is so much fun, and you might be thinking you’re not creative enough to do it. I’ve said this about myself and my brother replied that creativity is a muscle, and the more you use ti the better it gets. I hope you give this a try!
Stunner of the Week
Each week we like to feature one of the members of the Stunning Style Society to share more about their journey.
This week we’d love for you to get to know Tandy Dennis from Texas. She became a member of the Society in 2021, and is passionate about finding things to wear in ways she never imagined. When we asked what’s her favorite part about being Stunner she said,