Various style and fashion resources that I’ve found helpful and interesting.
Jump to Blogs
How to build and maintain your own wardrobe
Anuschka Rees’ The Curated Closet
If you want to refine your personal style and curate a wardrobe that reflects it and is appropriate for your lifestyle, I HIGHLY recommend this book. A lot of the content is available for free on the author’s website in the form of various blog posts as well.
Alison Freer’s How to Get Dressed
This is a great practical resource on clothes. It goes over things like how to shop for, maintain, and store different types of clothing as well as various tips on things like dealing with wardrobe malfunctions.
Article: How to assess quality in clothing
Anuschka Rees of The Curated Closet has a very thorough series on how to determine whether any item of clothing is well-made.
This is the handbook form of The Life-changing Magic of Tidying up. The original is heavier on the philosophy and a little lighter on diagrams and tutorials. I’m not sure I’d call it life-changing for myself, but there are lots of handy tips around closet tidying for changing your process of organizing things in order to make it easier in the long term.
The female fashion advice subreddit (/r/ffa for short) has many excellent guides and resources in their sidebar (may not be viewable on the default view in mobile browsers), and recurring threads for Daily Questions and Outfit Advice and Feedback are helpful and the biweekly WAYWT (“what are you wearing today?”) threads are a fun way to see a variety of outfits on real bodies (as opposed to highly styled, sponsored instagram photos).
I’m pretty active here on the WAYWT threads (though not a moderator) and I definitely would not have improved my outfit game as much as I have over the past year without the feedback of this community. I have not been as active in other threads recently because I find all the overall high anxiety and/or snarkiness of comments in of many of the other posts (plus all the repeat questions) tiring.
If you haven’t used reddit before and sign up for an account for this, I recommend not participating in any of the default subreddits. I find that the community within /r/ffa is still generally more welcoming than reddit generally, as long as you follow the community rules (and check the sidebar first). You can also search the subreddit by appending “site:reddit.com/r/femalefashionadvice” to a Google search (reddit’s built in search function is not very good).
Inspiration albums posted to /r/ffa are easily browsable on https://inspo.cc/, a site created and maintained by the reddit user heyzk. This site is also listed in the /r/ffa sidebar. These are of varying quality, especially more recently as the user base of the subreddit has increased, but there are lots of great ones and if you’re looking for some new inspo, still worth a browse.
Blog: Extra Petite
A classic blog by Jean Wang that has lots of resources for petites! The post that comes to mind for me when I think of this blog is the How to Look Older in Casual Attire post from 2010. Some of the items featured there are a bit dated now, but the concepts still apply and I think the post still gets the ideas across very well.
Fashion Industry and History
A 2016 academic book (dry but still plenty readable – it’s not rocket science) exploring the ecosystem that drives fashion trends, from fabric production to WGSN to influencers.
Dana Thomas’ Deluxe: How Luxury Lost Its Luster
“Once luxury was available only to the rarefied and aristocratic world of old money and royalty. It offered a history of tradition, superior quality, and a pampered buying experience. Today, however, luxury is simply a product packaged and sold by multibillion-dollar global corporations focused on growth, visibility, brand awareness, advertising, and, above all, profits. Award-winning journalist Dana Thomas digs deep into the dark side of the luxury industry to uncover all the secrets that Prada, Gucci, and Burberry don?t want us to know. Deluxe is an uncompromising look behind the glossy façade that will enthrall anyone interested in fashion, finance, or culture.”
Dressed Podcast by HowStuffWorks
“Fashion history is about more than pretty clothes. Dressed explores the incredibly rich and complex history behind the clothes we wear.”
A podcast covering various news and topics in the American fashion industry.
Anuschka Rees has a guide to color theory as applied to outfits here.
This video by makoccino is not fashion specific, but a well-produced demonstration of color pairing.
Zoe Hong is a professional fashion illustrator who has a teaching channel on YouTube. She has a lot of videos covering vocabulary for different styles of clothing and clothing features. Learning fashion vocabulary is helpful so that you can search for specific items more easily, e.g. “paper bag midi skirt with patch pockets” or “funnel neck coat”. Her channel is amazingly informative if you’re interested in the fashion design process and industry.
Searching “fashion vocabulary” on Pinterest also pulls up a lot of neat infographics.
The beauty blog Of Faces and Fingers has a really well-illustrated post on how you can tell if you’re warm-toned, cool-toned, etc specifically observing Asian skin tones. Not all Asians are warm toned! I honestly haven’t actually tried this method myself, although I’d guess that I’m somewhere in the warm-neutral spectrum.
It can feel very overwhelming to do a wardrobe overhaul on your own or post daily outfits while figuring out what styles you like. The #redditffa tag on Instagram has a lot of very nice people who post straightforward outfit photos (as in, actual outfits worn to Do Things – not that they’re all of the minimal aesthetic). Here are some accounts I like which are
- have clear photos (no dusty high-angled mirror photos here),
- even if they don’t have a super developed personal style, post thoughts on why they chose to style the outfit how they did or
- if they aren’t verbose, have a strong enough aesthetic that their feed by itself is a good example of a developed personal style / thoughtfully styled outfits incorporating interesting items.
This isn’t comprehensive, so check out the hashtag!