Finding Your Style, Part I: Shape & Silhouette

A deep dive into deciding on your own personal fashion and tailoring your clothes to fit.

Johannes T. Evans

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Introduction

Before I start with the actual meat of this piece, I want to establish what this series of guides is not going to be. These guides are going to be about building and cultivating your wardrobe and accessories for you and your preferences.

I have no interest in and will not be going into how to look good (or revoltingly, how to look “slimmer” or similar), how to be fashionable or trendy, or alternatively, how to look unique or dress differently to everybody you know.

I often get frustrated when pieces about cultivating one’s personal style stumble across my dashboards and they advise the reader to pay attention to the latest trends, to make a moodboard, cultivate a capsule wardrobe, and leave it at that — a moodboard can be helpful if you’re a visual thinker, and there’s nothing wrong with a capsule wardrobe as a tool, however.

I have a particular style of dress, I like to play around with a lot of colours and fabrics, a lot of patterns, and a lot of the people around me tell me I dress well and that they enjoy my style: I have never read a style guide that is envisioning a man who dresses like me, or even a man who dresses even close to the way I dress.

Three pictures of me in different outfits, although all noticeably in the same favourite part of block heels.

When I think of someone’s personal style, I’m talking about aspects of their appearance and the mode in which they clothe and carry themselves that are distinctive to them.

Firstly, this doesn’t mean that they dress uniquely, and like no other person around them.

I know guys who basically dress themselves to match mannequins in particular stores, and they look good for it — when I see them around, even if I haven’t seen those mannequins and don’t shop in the stores they shop from, what makes them distinctive is particular colour palettes, brands, and also a clean-cut, neat style that works really well on a shop mannequin. What they’re wearing obviously isn’t unique, but it is distinctive, and it is a particular visual I associate with them when I see them.

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Johannes T. Evans

Gay trans man writing fantasy fiction, romance, and erotica. Big on LGBTQ and disability themes, plus occasional essays and analysis. He/him.