I Love your Style

by Leandra Medine
November 10, 2012
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But what does it all mean?

Profoundly interesting layering tactics as shot by Tommy Ton and told by personal style visionary, Taylor Tomasi Hill. I can’t make out who figure B is, (below) wearing Proenza Schouler, Chanel and really good denim but I imagine those of you far more informed than I am will help sort that technicality very quickly and I therefore thank you in advance. You’re an identification wizard.

Due to a writing assignment for a magazine that has prompted I define capital S-Style drawing from personal life experiences, I’ve been toying a lot with whether or not the aforementioned can ever successfully find an accurate definition. Style is an extensive melting pot choc full of different hues of grey. When stirred together they render indistinguishable beyond the obvious, which is to say that this is pot and that color inside of it is grey.

Maybe that’s alright though, and seeking an explanation for a topic as broad as style is too ambitious and simultaneously narrow. Or maybe it’s not. Diablo Cody once said that she has always been good at assuming new identity and as a result of that very honest, self-aware statement, the best I’ve mustered to define style rests in its ability to act as a window to identity.

Subjectively, the simplest way to start to do that is to connect style with fashion (Merriam-Webster did it first,) and then to recognize fashion (esoterically) as a portal of self discovery. Where does that leave style? Where does it leave us?

It’s interesting that something so familiar, so present in our habitual lives could render so conceivably difficult to define. Personally, I’m still thinking through this. I really wanted to start a conversation about it though because, well, you have great opinions. So, please, discuss.

REPLIES
  • s

    Great take on style. I definitely thing ones style is an outer reflection of who they are or at least who they want to be.

    xx

    http://spoonfulofdiamonds.blogspot.com

  • http://twitter.com/EileenieWang Eileen Wang

    It’s definitely identity-defining. I use Pinterest for a fashion, a lot, and sometimes I’d look back at the pieces I pinned and think, is this who I am/want to be? Some friends of mine who read by blog also takes cues from it for things to get me for birthday/christmas.

    Also, if you put all your posts together in a book, I’d buy it. xoxo

  • Yesiree

    I read something good today – ‘you can buy fashion, you can’t buy style’. It’s innate self-expression and it evolves. Whatever style is – it’s not a fashion victim. The Sartorialist blog does a great job of seeing style beyond whatever the catwalk throws up.

    • asipoffashionbaby.blogspot.it

      amazing phrase!!

    • Carelia

      I couldn’t agree more with your post!!!!

    • Genevieve

      Such a great, simple quote!

  • http://www.fashiondenis.com/ Denisa

    Really great post and pics. I thing that style show us.. Who is that parson. Have a great weekend.

    http://www.fashiondenis.com/

  • http://twitter.com/HotchoSunshine HotChocolateSunshine

    I think style can be defined in different other ways than just fashion. Personally, I think you can put the exact same outfit on two different people yet it is their “style” of wearing it that makes the bigger difference, the spark that gets peoples attention. The clothing is just what is visible to the eyes but the actual style that we are more attracted to is how the person wears it. If one feels super comfortable and loves every pieces they wear. On the other hand if one does not feel comfortable, unsure or even unhappy with their look, they could wear the newest collection of the most famous designers I think I wouldn’t notice them when they walked passed me.

  • mckenzie.collins

    Love the second outfit, I think style can have so many definitions, it is hard to define or put it under just one topic – that’s one of the reasons I love it!

    http://currentlylovingblog.blogspot.com/

  • athousandhappythoughts

    the jacket on the second pic is adorable!

    http://athousandhappythoughts.blogspot.com

  • lapka

    Capital-S “Style” is so much more than what we wear. To me, It’s how we carry ourselves: how we act, how we talk. Style reflects how we perceive ourselves & the degree to which are (or arent) self-aware.

    Isnt it funny how two people could be wearing identical outfits, yet one can pull it off while the other – for whatever reason – just cannot.

    So, to me, Style isnt about fashion, or designers, or money: it has more to do with the personality and attitude of the person than anything else ….

    • moiminnie

      Agreed!! I recently touched upon the subject of corelation between style and fashion and bloggers who claim to have both but unfortunately, don’t have neither. Feel free to check it out if you wish :) xx

    • Hannah.X

      Agree! That fashion all about! It’s the culture and the personality

    • oh suzi

      hit the nail on the head! I think it’s why some people pull off vintage so well, they are dressed in thrifted finds but it reflects their own personality and it just works. It’s something that can’t be taught. http://www.ohsuzi.com

    • Eva

      Totally agree with you! Can’t think of a way to better describe it! xx

      http://www.creativityandchocolate.blogspot.com

    • Allie S
  • Nico

    Like the second outfit. Style is an instrument to express our self, our mood and our ideas!

    http://lowbudget-lowcost.blogspot.it/

  • Laura Dang-Van-Sung

    Taylor Tomasi Hill always has such a perfect style!

    http://www.laurablogmode.com

  • maria barrajon

    Style is related to personality or attitude!

    MIAMI in http://cravingforbarneys.com

  • Athens

    Give me a woman with a healthy dose of self confidence and value of self, and watch her work a burlap sack and some motorcycle boots as the next big thing; style is a way of “being”, not solely a way of “dressing”.

  • Moshi

    Style is personal its who you are unless you have been styled then its reflective, right? It’s repetition in how you dress and should evoke a sense of personality. It’s not about bring “on trend, but incorporating trend to tell your story.

  • http://twitter.com/elenavasilieva Elena Vasilieva

    Taylor is just a star, always loved her

    http://www.vasilievablog.com

  • silvia lousa

    The Spanish designer Pertegaz once said «La elegancia es algo que emana de la persona, pero quien se atavía con uno de mis vestidos, tiene mucho ganado». It means something like: “elegance is inside a person, but those who wear my dresses are in a great place to start”

  • lavieenliz

    I love Taylor Hill…my favorite will always be Mira Duma! I love her style so much!

    http://lavieenliz.com

  • Rose

    Maybe this article could help. I always think of it when trying to define personal style. http://www.wmagazine.com/fashion/2011/04/carol_edgarian_personal_style

  • Theresa

    I love Taylor Tomasi Hill! Interesting topic for discussion! I’m interested in hearing about this, too!

    Theresa

    http://bomamma.blogspot.com

  • Inherent Style LA

    I always think of style as separate from fashion. Fashion is fleeting and has more to do with something dictated by someone else. Style is enduring and personal. I really see it that simply. And I’ll take style over fashion any day!

    http://www.inherentstylela.com/

  • asipoffashionbaby.blogspot.it

    “from the way one is dressed you can understand what kind of person he is”. this is written in the bible and, like you know, it’s not a book about style!! anyway i’m agree with this phrase. and you?

  • http://twitter.com/FOY080711 Rola’s FOY

    Very stylish pics!

  • Catherine and Greer

    Damn Diablo Cody. I’m on your side. Defining yourself with such a statement is quite an inner struggle for some reason. It’d be much easier for me to say something about you and you to say something about me that for us both to say something about ourselves. Follow?

    http://girl-hunting.blogspot.com.au

  • http://www.facebook.com/renee.luzuriaga Renee Luzuriaga

    Style- The ability to make people stop and admire no matter what your wearing. It’s not in “who” your wearing, but how you put together and wear whatever you like. Style comes from within and manefests outward. Smooches!!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/laura.a.tucciarone Laura Anne Tucciarone

    It’s simple really, fashion is the clothes everyone’s wearing, and style is how one wears them. You’re an obvious queen of this, I mean, these looks you have created are put together by clothes that in theory, were made to be bought. And are we an army of socialist monkeys who have to buy government clothing? No, we buy the clothes and we style them in our own ways, trying out new silhouettes that we learn to love. Fashion is meant to be interpreted, and those who are good at both languages, are deemed the envious word “stylish”.

    I’d like to make one more comparison, and it’s to another highly blogged about topic, baking. Think of how cupcakes were deemed trendy, and then think of how many different and fun cupcake concoctions were created in response to the seemingly international love of cupcakes.

    The point I’m presumably failing at making is that fashion is the cupcakes, but the concoctions, the delicious things you’d look at on blogs, is style.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1383570478 Kesly Winona Gunawan

    These photos are all inspiration for me! Yeah, I totally agree that our style totally reflects our own personality… Fashion is one way to express it!

  • http://pilanaandcompany.blogspot.com.ar/ Constanza

    Well, to me…
    Fashion is what publicity, which it may be an obvious publicity or a very
    hidden one, wants us to buy. Though I enjoy Fashion very much, it’s all about
    what are they wearing, who and how. And the more you see it, the more closer it
    gets to being fashionable! Then you have style, which we could refer as for
    example, that one jacket you’ll always wear, even if it’s trendy or not that
    season, because you love it and you don’t care what anybody else would say
    about it, but in a strange way you always make it ‘Trendy’ because you have the
    right attitude or the right ‘Style’. As well I think that the Style is that
    thing that’s going to make us decide whether you pull out the look or not, it’s
    the tiny part of yourself you give to an outfit. And well, Identity it’s just
    that, who we are. And you cannot Discover someone else identity just by looking
    at the fashionable clothes he’s wearing, because they’re all over the place. But
    maybe by his style, yes, you can.

    Therefore,
    I must say it’s not about what or who you’re wearing but how you’re wearing it.

    http://pilanaandcompany.blogspot.com.ar/

  • monkeyshines

    stunning jackets!

    Bises,
    monkeyshines

    http://monkeyshines-monkeyshines.blogspot.com/

  • Sketch42

    It’s a combination of surprise and attitude. Well thats what I think, at least.

    Like laughter.

  • Amalie Espeland

    Well, style isn’t only about what clothes you wear. but how you wear them, and they reflect you as a person. attitude also is an important factor. anyhow, i like your style ;) asl?
    xxxx

  • Marfa4Life

    “B” is FIONA GREEN of Flare Magazine in Toronto, Canada.

  • Gabrielle Pedriani

    I think the material is the what, “style” is the how and why, and fashion is what you get when it all comes together.

    Fashion w/ a capital “F” is a whole ‘nother shebang.

  • The Urban Promeneur

    Indiviudal style is the creation of youself. I guess this is the most important, the key factor indeed, not wearing just something but creating a character. And this is not what the piece is making out of you but what amount of yourself you are ready and able to give to the piece you are wearing. Just like you do.

  • Jennifer

    I don’t think one can actually define style – the definition is different from one person to the next. But maybe that’s the definition! lol

    xo Jennifer

    http://seekingstyleblog.wordpress.com

  • Grace

    It’s Fiona Green who is the Assistant Fashion Editor at Flare Magazine in Toronto

  • Alena

    epiphany of style was Edith Bouvier Beale – this woman lived style, and even today it is hard to copy, because it was her own creation … create your own style, rather than be dictated to by fashion.

    cheers

    Alena

  • Ena of The Silk Stiletto

    I share your difficulty in accurately defining style, it’s such a fleeting concept in a way. If I had to try for my own definition of it, I think it would have to take a lot into consideration attitude and the personality shining through – it’s happened to me more than once to see people dressed in a way I did not particularly appreciate, but who I had to admit were oozing style.

    http://thesilkstiletto.blogspot.com/

  • http://www.lollihearts.tumblr.com Lollihearts
  • http://dipitblack.com/ Dip It Black

    Ah! That first jacket is beautiful!

    X
    http://dipitblack.com

  • MouthfulofStyle

    I think you hit the nail on the head. Style defined as a “window to one’s identity.” It is completely subjective which makes it a fun, exciting and even daring word. I should probably get a grasp on a nice definition as well seeing as I am a “mouthful of style.” Ha.

    Style insights and fashion business learnings: http://www.mouthfulofstyle.blogspot.com

  • B.

    quite a difficult question… For me style is having good taste and knowing what suits you

    http://www.tripsandtreasures.net

  • style-squared by z&m

    taylor tomasi hill has been my style crush for a long time now!the b*tch couldn’t get it wrong even if she wanted to…;)))

    http://style-squared.blogspot.ca/

  • laima hareer

    layering done right

    herpersona.blogspot.com/

  • vittoria gallacci

    Love the Chanel Boy bag!

    Vittoria

    http://vittoriafiveinthemorning.blogspot.it/

  • peninsuladetail

    Great post. I ask that question frequently. What is style? What is my style? Why do I do this? What or how goes this explain me? Frankly, the questions get me dizzy with no answers. Maybe my next outfit will help explain.

  • http://www.redshoesnoknickers.com/ Red shoes No knickers

    As most people have written here I believe that fashion is a fleeting manufactured concept that I never really fully understand whereas style is what turns the head. Being told your ‘fasionable’ perplexes me as every time I receive this so called compliment it feels like I’m being told I’ve been shopping – a lot – recently and bought whatever’s seen in the windows. Again, like everyone seems to be saying here, when it comes to style and clothes {as opposed to fashion} it’s how someone puts pieces together and how they wear them. For me, I don’t know whether I would find Taylor Tomasi Hill half as interesting if she weren’t a fabulous redhead who is addicted to orange nail varnish. Her layering and bold clothing choices mixed with a stunning shock of red hair make her, to me, stylish. Also how you hold yourself, speak, your manners, how you deck out your house, what books you read, what flowers you buy are again all factors I think that add to one’s style.

  • Lace and chiffon
  • Nathan Moy

    Now this is what a call a Man Repeller well-written article. Yes I do love Taylor’s style, she’s epic nuff’ said. Btw, I recently did an outfit post in an underground garage; I’m a guy
    and I’d be featuring crochet shorts and a floral blazer, but I made it
    sporty, you’ve gotta’ check it out! I promise it’s trendy not tranny
    lol.

    xx The Provoker
    http://www.the-provoker.com/2012/11/the-i-in-team.html

  • Bonnie, Clyde + Marni
  • Dirty Little Notions

    Unrelated to style with a capital S: I have come to your blog for humor, down-to-earth ‘posing’, style inspiration and more, but one thing I haven’t realized, which I do now is what a good writer you are. I aspire to write as creatively as you. You truly are the next generation’s version of Carrie (with a capital C).

    http://www.dirtylittlenotions.blogspot.com

    • Monique

      I completely feel the same way you do! It’s refreshing to read something that delves deeper into our fashion culture.

      As for style, I think it comes from within. And by that I mean it is a person’s innate ability to fully express themselves confidently (not just through their sartorial choices, but also in other facets of their personality/lifestyle). It’s not about wearing the latest trends or buying something simply because ten other people have it.

  • Marla Vender

    Speaking of style… TT has a pic of an Hermes bag with writing on it. Don’t know if the owner did it or if Hermes offers the service, but it looks great. I want to try it but don’t have a steady hand.

  • betoJ

    I agree aswell, you just said the right words.

  • Betsy

    man repeller just turned into a rhetorical precis on style….please dont make me relive highschool

  • http://twitter.com/KatieeeeeeCat Katie Watson

    Style can be a window to identity. Great style is achieved when one successfully channels an innermost inspiration so that it melds with one’s being and becomes to the world something confident and commanding.

  • leslie

    my philosophy, which will probably be argued by somebody: if someone’s appearance seems as though they put a lot of effort into it, they haven’t found their personal style. style is effortlessness. i mean that in more of a sense of, they look uncomfortable / something doesn’t “flow,” be it their look with their personality or whatever. Someone may be naturally inclined to dress in fancy doll clothes, while someone else looks far more at ease / feels better in athletic clothes. Taylor looks awesome in oversized comme des garcons dresses and strange rick owens harnesses etc. — she’s found her style. she would look bizarre in an Anna Wintour ensemble, like she was trying too hard. Anna, on the other hand, would look kind of insane / seem contrived if she tried dressing how Taylor does.

  • Sydney
  • Belén Cavas Hernández

    I just think that fashion is a form of expression and as a consequence of this is art.

    http://iwanttobeavoguette.blogspot.com.es/2012/11/an-evening-at-museum.html

  • http://moonrivertravels.blogspot.com/ Maki | Moon River Travels

    “Style is the image of character” Edward Gibbon.

  • Izabela

    Taylor is actually a star! LOVE her, and love reading all the comments here. Very interesting! xo

    http://www.blogprimadonna.blogspot.com

    http://www.blogprimadonna.blogspot.com

  • http://www.notebrooke.com/ Brooke

    Gore Vidal was famously quoted as saying, “Style is knowing who you are, and what you want to say, and not giving a damn.” I actually wrote about this quote on my very first blog post (NoteBrooke.com) because I thought it was so interesting. In keeping with this line of thinking, I think that style should be a projection of oneself. As people, we change and evolve on a daily basis, which is why style can vary and encompass so much. One day, for example, I’m feeling way more badass than usual, and I’m dressed in studded denim, moto boots, leather leggings, etc. The next day I’m back to myself, which means polished with a twist. Whatever hat I’m wearing (Sorry, couldn’t resist the pun), its fundamentally centered upon knowing who I am, projecting that to the world, and releasing any apprehension about what other people will think while doing this. Some people might love a look; others might hate it, but as long as its an authentic representation of who I am, then that’s style. Best of luck with this article ;)

    http://www.NoteBrooke.com

  • kayla

    at the end of the day, it’s just clothes. style does not and should not define. it’s superfluous, and that’s why it’s so goddamn fun. which is precisely why your blog is so fun to read– style is not serious. and you don’t take it too seriously. because at the end of the day, people aren’t what they wear, people are how many facebook photos they have tagged to them.

    x
    kayla

    http://www.nearlyoldfriends.com

  • Cynthia Brizuela

    Style is the visual representation of your cosmovision, the gathering of all the cultural manifestations that have approached you in life, the knowledge you have, your passions, likes, studies, EVERYTHING, therefore to really be into fashion and know it we have to learn from it and be aware of the garments that are covering our body, otherwise we aren’t loving fashion or having style, we are just fashion victims.

  • Lucie B

    Perhaps someone’s already said it, but my favorite (broad) definition of style comes from Jean Cocteau: “Style is a simple way of saying complicated things.”

  • Shai

    Fashion is a vital gateway unto the majestic realm of style. Thoughtfully employing the variety of accouterments with which we garnish ourselves intimately, we credit our sartorial eye to our confidence, man repelling potency, and sense of identity. However, abide a further exploration into your heart and soul & you’ll discover style’s affable impression on your character and subsequently an elevated state of consciousness. Self-awareness is only the beginning, gestures become adroit reflexes, speech becomes melodic and the simple nuances of our personality dance under the eternal moon light of.. er you get the point. At times style humors trends, the zeitgeist which was the 80s, effort, designers, and our tentative embodiment of (questionable) sub-cultural movements; but one thing remains constant, our demeanor. Style is abundantly more than the way we carry ourselves, style is the way in which fashion, identity, culture and our highly complex whishy-washy psyche interact and persuade our every move. That being said, you can’t feign phenomenal style which is why we love those who sport it.

  • http://wolfwhistle.org/ Amy

    That first one is ace. Style is too hard to define – too subjective!

    ▲ WOLF WHISTLE ▲

  • http://twitter.com/bplusstyle Brad Whitehouse

    Style is dressing with authority.

    • http://twitter.com/bplusstyle Brad Whitehouse

      Or, depending on how far you want to go, living with authority.

  • wow. muppie.wow

    Agree!! Fashion is about personality…

  • Erin

    Style is how one feels and their ability to express that through clothing.

  • http://twitter.com/HeroineChicGirl Hannah Hayes

    I am sure you’ve read this article on BoF towards the “bastardization” of fashion through mass-market collabs, but here is an excerpt that jumped out at me and reminded me of this post:

    “Real style is a matter of taste. And taste is a matter of experience. Just like one’s tastes in music, art or books, taste in clothes forms over time. It takes effort and knowledge. Buying into a style, quickly and cheaply, inevitably leads to the disposability of style. It’s like reading the Cliff’s Notes instead of the book.”

    The first four sentences are exactly what I say when someone asks me what “style” means.

    via http://www.businessoffashion.com/2012/11/op-ed-making-the-case-against-fast-fashion-collaborations.html

  • Sara N.

    This is the same question I’ve been wondering as I’ve just begun writing about fashion and style as well!! Like, when do I use the word ‘style’ vs. ‘fasion’? But I think I think of Style to be the vehicle by which a person expresses his/her own view on fashion, and that Style is an individual’s expression of their own personal aesthetic, attitude – and I agree, too, that Style is ultimately a window to identity. But I think what needs to be said is that style is a window to expression of your entire, all-encompassing identity – so not just your personality or attitude or mannerisms or taste, but also your background and life experiences (the circumstances that brought you to appreciate certain aesthetic values, or not at all). And Fashion is essentially the artistic (though some may not call it ‘artistic’) form from which which individuals derive their own Style through various perspectives, shaped by their own life stories. So I think that the magazine prompted you to define Style based on your life experiences is in itself an answer to your question in a way. But honestly, who knows if any of this made sense though – I’m sleepy and this ended up being absurdly long.

    http://stylesaranwrapped.tumblr.com/

  • http://newbornfanatic.wordpress.com/ Linda

    hrmm…i’m not sure but I think style is being able to portray what it is that we believe in and the ability to be confident about it.

    http://newbornfanatic.wordpress.com/

  • http://www.facebook.com/kathleen.longano Kathleen Butler Longano

    “esoterically” of course! Im impressed my sweet daughter Julie Anne! love Mommy <3

  • Mihaela

    Fashion is the business, style is the introspection

    http://www.shtoica.com

  • JULIANAALMEIDAPR

    I loved it!

    I’m posting looks from L.A. and accessories:

    http://www.thegavlaks.com

  • http://www.facebook.com/flo.labrado Flo LaBrado

    Style is a way of being. That’s all.

  • Hannah A H

    Personal style has so much to do with the concept of ‘owning it’, right? When someone is uncomfortable in their own clothing, it’s palpable. As for what a person with great style actually wears- to my mind, that ability to develop style requires a certain intuition, an inborn understanding, especially in the case of style legends and genuine originals. The same is true for any art form, I suppose.

    Asking the hard-hitting questions indeed, MR, nice one ;)

    http://wayfaringgypsy.wordpress.com/

  • GiuliaG

    I believe style is our very personal take on what we wear. What we pick to dress is influenced by many factors: personal aestethic taste (I’ll never wear purple), current mood, the pictures we see on the web, movies, art, fictional characters, weather, even fashion, family back ground and so and so on. Style is the way we represent all this things by simply wearing something.

  • Noelle Pallais

    Fashion directs innovations, artistic creations and conducts a sense of everlasting change in this industry but style..style, is the uttermost form of individual expression that gives us a sense of unique differentiation with an effortless confidence in putting oneself together according to ones mood and what one wants to project..without having to speak one word. (out of breath – that was a long one! )

    In the sturdy union between our personality and clothes, there is a rich give and take between who we are and what we’re wearing. Agreeing with Coco , “fashions change, but style endures”.

    For some, style comes naturally – using our instincts as personal stylish compasses..but for others not so much…
    The ability (which you have – duh) to create an invention every time is an ultimate a test of
    knowing exactly who you are, which comes from a long timeline of fashion victim
    “oopsies – what the hell was I thinking” flashback friday’s.

    Finally, style only enriches with time in our focused journey of self discovery.

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