Mind & Body by Samantha Nichole

Mind & Body by Samantha Nichole

Saturday, December 9, 2017

A Signature Style: 7 Years in the Making

Thinking back to my younger teen and tween years, my style was influenced by music and dance. I would strive to be relevant with what was popular at the time, but I loved alternative music, specifically punk, and dancing was a hobby that I took very seriously. These two worlds, diverse within themselves, were opposite in terms of style. I'm pleased with the end result.

The year I started college was when I became a professional dancer within sports entertainment. My sense of style improved, thanks to the influence of my peers and coaches, and I learned what looked good on me; however, 7 years and 2 children later, I have developed a style that I think is my best yet. I’m not perfect, but I can dress my body correctly for its shape and size, and I’m much more conscientious of where my clothing comes from. I’m willing to dig at any thrift store to find the perfect staple piece at a bargain price, and I’m willing to spend money if it’s the right thing to do.

Before I go into my wardrobe, let’s talk about the other stuff.

Signature Piece Number One: Bangs

My high school class reunion was three months ago. When reminiscing with an old friend, she said, “I was just talking about your bangs!” I laughed and said we shouldn’t talk about it. Two months later, I decided to cut my bangs. Bangs are a part of my signature style, but I agree that I made some heinous mistakes when I rocked them in 2001. (Well, some wouldn’t say these were mistakes, they were just a different style. I know several people who wear them very short--think pinup girl--and they work, but that’s not me right now.)

I like to style my bangs now very little heat and effort. A quick blow dry is important, and keeping up with trimming is essential. I enjoy an effortless side swept look, but my favorite is when I wear them as full in front. I’m glad I cut bangs again--they’re a classic necessity for anyone who can give them the attention they need.

A few tips from me, a non-professional who has had bangs her whole life, are...

  • Always cut them dry and straightened, if possible.
  • Use your eyebrows as a guide to determine how far from right and left to cut.
  • At first, cut them longer than you think you want. You can always trim more, but time is the only thing that will fix bangs cut too short.

If you like bangs, or classic style, check out Violet Grey. It seems to me that two of her favorite style icons are Brigitte Bardot and Jane Birkin. Her way of trimming bangs is a little unusual compared to the professional way of doing things, but check out her video.I love it. (If you want a more recommended approach to cutting bangs, check out this video: https://youtu.be/zPdLdsCz40c )

Signature Piece Number Two: Cat Eyes

Nine months ago I started experimenting with the cat eye. Like my bangs, they’re a classic look. The rest of my makeup is very minimal with tinted moisturizer, translucent powder, subtle eye shadow, and a touch of blush or bronzer on my cheeks. I complete the look with a matte lip during the day for work, but if I’m going out at night (which is admittedly not often) I make the cat eye bolder and put on lipstick of a deep red shade.

Here's a tutorial on how to perfect the cat eye.

Signature Piece Number Three: Scarves

I have a ridiculous amount of scarves. I recently donated some, and it didn’t make a dent. I love scarves. They add class and comfort to every outfit.

The Glue of my Signature Style: My Wardrobe

More than two years ago I tossed around the idea of minimalism and a capsule wardrobe. I have come a long way, I’m proud to say that the majority of my closet is secondhand, and I love the way everything looks on me. Success.

I don’t know how many articles of clothing I have. I heard it helps some people to keep a certain number of clothes, but I don’t want to restrict myself because I think my closet is easy to manage as it is. When I do bring in more inventory, I check to see if there’s anything I have been neglecting. If so, I donate it.

My main colors for fall and winter are black, white, navy, and red. I have a little bit of pink--that’s a new development. I generally don’t like pink. The majority of these colors are interchangeable with each other, so I rarely run out of combinations to wear. I don’t enjoy animal print, or words on my clothing--I’m not Lorelai Gilmore; I like plain tops and low-key patterns, such as horizontal white stripes, maybe a touch of argyle, or small polka dots. (I don’t think I own any argyle, but now I want something with it.)

Most of my pants are plain black, and I have one pair of navy. I don't own white pants, but they're on my wish list. I have three pair of jeans; two are denim blue jeans, one is skinny and the other is high-rise and flared. The black jeans of mine are skinny. Since I cannot wear denim to work, only having three options hasn’t been an issue for me.

Skirts and dresses are important to me. I love wearing them, and I want more options for fall and winter!

For shoes, I mostly wear flats, although I own a few pair of heels, and I love boots. My shoes are either brown/cream-colored or black. I usually wear flats to work but have been attempting heels recently. The added height assists my confidence in any situation.  

Below are some pictures of my favorite outfits.

shoes, pants, top, and scarf are secondhand. all black, minus the scarf. 

shoes (Prada), pants, top, and sweater are secondhand. this is one of my favorite blouses. it's pink!

sweater is from Target, circa 2008; dress is Forever21, and the belt belonged on a dress purchased in Texas at a dance conference. boots and leggings are secondhand. the pearls were my grandma's.

the wedges were a new purchase from Kohl's, but the rest of the outfit is secondhand. the striped top is my favorite at the moment.

A signature style is something that evolves and builds over time. Right now, I like the direction I'm headed. I don't put much money into my look, but I put in a lot of thought and effort. That's what it takes.

Until next time,

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