When it comes to my personal style, I am set in my ways. My color palette pretty much consists of black, white, gray, tan and brown. If I am wearing a bold color, there is a reason. My luggage got lost, it is mandatory (orange is not my color), it was a gift, I am in the holiday spirit and last, but not least – my Mother made me.

Don’t get me wrong; I am a firm believer in accessorizing with the right colors to take an outfit to the next level. A statement piece of jewelry, belt, scarf, shoes or handbag all work to add a pop of color. This is my personal preference, I am a tall woman and I love to wear heels, so if I came waltzing through the door in some head-to-toe bright green ensemble I can pretty much guarantee my nickname for the evening would be Gumby.

When it comes to trends, I have never been a big follower. Maybe when I was younger and felt the need to fit in I would hit the mall and purchase the latest “must have” of the season. But, over time glancing across a room of cookie-cutter clones enlightened me. Why in the world would I want to look like everyone else? I embraced my style and I own it. I believe in dressing for your body type, accentuating your curves and standing out. I go for the classic styles and add an edge.

My closet consists of the following:

  • Boots, boots and more boots… ankle, knee high, cowboy, it doesn’t matter. Boots are a staple in my wardrobe and I wear them with everything from skirts to jeans. They can be dressed up or down and they work for me.
  • Jeans… I wear them 90% of the time.
  • Like I said before, I love heels… I am very specific about them though, the toe has to be perfect, as does the heel. Many people are surprised when they walk into my closet and take a look at my shoe collection (or lack thereof). I am not a “shoe addict”.
  • Flats are for runs to the grocery store.
  • Tennis shoes are for tennis, and I don’t play tennis. Now, I do have a few pair for those, “I’m gonna get healthy!!” moments and decide for a week (or two) to hit the treadmill… I walk my dog in my Ugg’s.
  • Blazers, Jackets and Trench Coats… I need therapy for those. They are my year round go-to for everyday. I throw one on with a black tank, jeans, boots and a few accessories and I am good to go.
  • Sweats…. Not yoga pants, true blue elastic waist, bulky sweats. I cannot get my clothes off fast enough once I walk in my door. I like to be comfortable in my own home.
  • Hats…The top of my closet is lined with every size, shape and style of chapeau available. From cowboy hats to fedoras, I am a fan.
  • Pantsuits… I am a sucker for a tailored pantsuit. I will splurge if I see something unique. They are my weakness.

While I love fashion and look forward to the newest collections hitting the racks for the upcoming season, it takes more than a sheath dress to open my wallet. I shop on a budget and refuse to break the bank for a label. Many times, if I have a specific design in mind I will pick my fabrics, draw it out and have it made. Believe it or not, I own some of the most amazing custom outfits that cost me less than $300.00. Either way, I have my staples covered and it is rare for me to expand my wardrobe. When I do, I admire designers that think out of the box, take risks and truly appreciate and respect the form of a woman in their creations. I am impressed when I see someone take the LBD (little black dress) and transform it into something unexpected.

So, for those looking to update their look or embrace a complete overhaul, my advice to you is know your body, strengths and weaknesses (we all have them), focus on the strengths and minimize the weaknesses. I will cover many tips in future articles, but for now, I wanted to introduce myself and let you know where I stood in regards to my personal style. If we connected, great! I hope you come back and enjoy my upcoming bits of advice. If not, we will also have other contributing writers that focus on the many aspects of fashion that surround us daily.

Kelly Ann Stafford

If I can leave you with one thing it would be this, just because everyone is wearing it, does not make it the right choice for you. Stand out – don’t be a wallflower. We want to be memorable in a positive way, keep it classy and wear your looks with confidence.

All the Best!

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