How to define your Signature Style in three steps

By 20 November 2018 February 15th, 2019 Style for Speakers

Would you like to know the secret to always looking pulled together and ‘on brand’ no matter what you wear? Would you like to radiate confidence and authenticity from clothes that make you feel and look your best when speaking from stage and beyond?

Defining your signature style will help you to achieve just that. So, what is and isn’t a signature style, and how can you develop one?

A signature style isn’t about wearing a company uniform, or buying the exact same jeans and t-shirt ten times to give you enough identical looks until laundry day (unless of course that works for you and is part of your brand).

Instead, your signature style describes the true essence of who you are as a person through the clothes you are wearing. It is defined by your own personality, your mood / the weather on a particular day and the audience you are likely to encounter. When you have a ‘nothing to wear’ moment, it’s not because your wardrobe has been robbed of its contents. As Caitlin Moran puts it:

“There is nothing here for who I’m supposed to be today”.

Let’s find out what characteristics your clothes need to reflect so that you’ll always feel true to yourself, regardless of the occasion.

How to define Your Style Personality

Think of three words that best describe who you are as a person. Ask yourself:

  • Who-am-IWho am I?
  • What words best define my identity?
  • What style do I love the most?

You could create a mood board with images that you are drawn to, or make a list of ten things in your life that you absolutely love. There will be a common thread linking all the items or images together: that’s your style personality! As these three adjectives are intrinsically you, translating them into pieces for your wardrobe will create consistency for your signature style.

For more detailed help, check out my blog:
“How to find your personal style”

What’s Your Mood Today?

One day we feel bold, the next day we may just want to chill. Naturally, your mood will change from day to day, and that’s okay! Check in with your mood and ask yourself:

  • How do I want to feel in my clothes?
  • What do I need them to do for me today?

Your clothes can match or shift your mood (ie. a power suit and heels can boost your confidence levels significantly), so it’s up to you to decide which clothes will serve you best for how you feel, or how you want to feel. Being true to yourself in this way makes your signature style more authentic.

Who is Your Audience?

Whoever you will encounter today, you can influence what they think and conclude about you within the first 10 seconds, regardless if this is your public speaking audience, a potential client or a hot date. You don’t need a slogan t-shirt to tell your audience who you are and what you stand for. To influence what people will think when they first see you, ask yourself:

  • What-do-I-want-them-to-believe-about-meWhat do I want my audience to believe about me?
  • If I suddenly went mute – would my outfit convey what I wanted to say?

Defining the first impression you want to make rather than leaving this to chance will give your signature style purpose!

For more detailed help, check out my blog:
“How to adapt your personal style for any speaking event”

Now you should have 3 words for each of the three categories. Combined, they are the criteria for your outfit on any given day. As an example, my look today was influenced by these nine characteristics:

  • Style Personality – Timeless, Bold, Structured
  • Mood Today – Casual, Effortless, Breathable (it’s a hot day in London)
  • My Audience’s Perception of me – Professional, Approachable, Memorable

Focus on creating authenticity, consistency and purpose – and voila, you’ve defined your Signature Style!

Style_sudokuTo help you with this, I have prepared an easy to use worksheet for you as part of my free 7 day Signature Style challenge. The first email will give you access to a copy of the style sudoku worksheet! You can use the Style Sudoku to record your nine style words as a reminder of what your clothes have to communicate about your personality, your mood and your audience on any given day.

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