Prior to joining Who What Wear in 2014, I had zero fashion-industry experience. At the time, everything I knew was pretty much instinctual, and I had to quickly figure out how to articulate myself in my stories. Now, five years later, I've written thousands of stories, and I'd like to think that I've picked up more than a few tips along the way. (I'm better at fashion than math, but my calculations put me at nearly 3500 stories. No wonder the letters on my keyboard are rubbing off.)
With fashion, it can be hard to practice what you preach 100% of the time, as everyone's style, career, and budgets are different. I try to provide style information that appeals to as many readers as possible, but there are some tips that I've definitely come to realize are useful across the board since being immersed in the fashion world these past five years. That said, I truthfully put off deciding on my five tips, assuming it would be quite difficult to narrow it down, but much to my surprise, I quickly chose the tips below.
These five tips are ones that I practice on a daily basis in my own life and that save me time and money and have ultimately lead me to a better wardrobe. I rarely take more than five minutes choosing what I'm going to wear, and I think that's due in part to these holy-grail tips, so let's just say that I stand by them. Thanks for reading, and I hope to provide you with plenty more style tips via my faded keyboard.
Tip #1: You can wear an It item without looking like everyone else.
It's natural to have hesitation about buying an oversaturated It item. I certainly do. But if you really love something, you can still make that item that seemingly everyone has your own. How you style a piece could make it look completely different than it did on that girl you saw on Instagram. For example, my By Far Rachel bag in the below photo wasn't the most under-the-radar fashion find, but after seeing how versatile it was and how useful it would be in my wardrobe, I bought it anyway.
So many celebrities have worn these beauties recently.
Tip #2: Think outside the jeans box.
I wear jeans a lot, but before I became a fashion editor, I wore them even more. I used to mindlessly reach for them on a daily basis, but diversifying the options in my wardrobe (with skirts, jumpsuits, trousers, etc.) has made my style more interesting. And now, when I do wear jeans, it feels like more of a treat.
Tip #3: Don't spend a lot of money on passing trends.
I'm certainly guilty of falling in love with a trend and spending more of my budget on it than I should, only to see the trend quickly fade away the next season. So unless I see that a beloved trend is staying power (i.e., it's all over the next season's runways), I find it on the cheap. And it can always be found on the cheap.
Amazon is an excellent source for accessory trends like these pearl clips.
Tip #4: It's okay to invest in "boring" things.
I learned the hard way that forgoing purchasing basics for fun and exciting pieces does not a well-rounded wardrobe make. Before realizing this, I often felt like I had nothing to wear because my closet was seriously lacking in staples to wear with the fun pieces. Now I regularly invest in quality basics, and I never complain about having nothing to wear anymore.
These pleated jeans are so polished. (I also love this pair.)
Tip #5: When in doubt, size up.
I order all of my clothes online, so I've dealt with a lot of sizing trial and error over the years. I try to find reviews that speak to the fit first, but especially if I'm trying a new brand or an item looks more slim-fitting, I almost always size up now. You can always get something tailored to fit perfectly, but I've also found that things often look cooler when they're a bit slouchier (especially things like jeans and blazers). Oh, and pro tip: Go up a half size with mules to avoid toe overhang.