Defining your Style-Part 1

Hello friends,

Today I am so excited to introduce you to my friend Lori of Stylesmarts who is a personal stylist located here in North Vancouver. She helps her clients build their wardrobes and offers several packages depending on the level of service her clients are needing, much like myself!

Lori and I met last year while on vacation in Maui while at the BBQ area of the condo our friends were staying at. We got to chatting and hit it off right away. We discovered that we both live in North Vancouver, we both have our own businesses and blogs and we both provide services to people pertaining to style -Lori with her client’s wardrobes and me with people’s homes.

Once we started hashing out our thoughts and ideas together, we quickly realized that we had so much to share with our readers, we decided to space it out over a few posts.

We thought the best place to start is always at the beginning: in this case – defining your style. This is the basic foundation to the work we do with our clients and I am so excited to collaborate with Lori on this subject!

We are going to break this subject up into two posts so as not to overwhelm you all! Today we want to talk about why we think it’s important to define your style and next week we delve more into how we do this with our clients, sharing some simple steps you can take to help you define your own syle. So let’s jump into today’s post…

Why is it important to Define your Style?

One of the most important aspects of creating a home AND a wardrobe that you love is to figure out your style. I have been figuring out my style, mostly by trial and error, for many years now. Discovering Joanna Gaines and the “modern farmhouse movement” was definitely a defining moment for me. I gravitated to all of the homes designed on Fixer Upper and could have happily moved into any of those houses!  But it wasn’t until I read Emily Henderson’s book “Styled” that I really came to understand how to define personal style and what exactly mine was! I learned that the reason I was so drawn to the modern farmhouse style was because I love things that are vintage and rustic, but also simple and more minimalistic.

Kerri –

Once you define your style, it makes decorating your home and building your wardrobe so much easier! To quote Emily Henderson “”Trying to decorate your house before you understand your style would be like going on a trip to a secluded cabin without any address, directions, or GPS. Sure, you might eventually make it there, but not before some really terrifying things have happened. Most likely you’d just give up!”

So aside from creating a home that you truly love and that feels like a reflection of your personality, another reason it’s important to define your style is that it will end up saving you money.

Have you ever experienced buyer’s remorse? I know I have! It’s one thing when you buy a t-shirt from Target that doesn’t feel totally “you” which you then pass along to your younger, hipper sister (hi Jenn!) But what about when you buy a piece of furniture or some home decor that doesn’t suit your style? Not such an easy mistake to correct, speaking from experience.

Lori-When I am working with clients, one of the major goals identified is the desire to feel pulled together, stylish yet in an efficient and effortless manner.  We all want to look like we tried when getting dressed, but without having to put in too much time! The best place to start is to really hone in on your style aesthetic.  Once you’ve figured this out, your wardrobe will start to feel more cohesive and really reflect who you are and your current stage of life. This is what I like to call: the art of style…It’s the fun part.

“I don’t have a style”

Lori -Many people tell me that they don’t have a natural sense of style when it comes to getting dressed.  Usually, I find this isn’t the case. Most likely, they just haven’t given it much thought or taken the time to figure it out.  We all have likes and dislikes when it comes to clothing as well as unique personalities. The perfect place to start.

Kerri -Both Lori and I have heard this from our clients and we both feel like this is not true. As Emily Henderson says “if you have a personality, you have a style! The other side of the coin is that you might be like me and are drawn to many different styles. It’s one thing to admire a certain style and another thing to love it in your own home. For example I love the look of a coastal boho styled home, but it doesn’t work for me in my personal space. This kitchen from popular decorating blogger Sarah from Life on Virginia Street is gorgeous and I love every detail, especially those counter stools, but I know those don’t work with the current style of my home. 

Now those pendant lights on the other hand, those would look so cute in my kitchen…hmmm…gears turning. The thing to keep in mind is that when you are defining your style, you don’t have to commit to one strict style and forgo everything else. Blending a few styles together is actually my goal when decorating because that is what makes a room really interesting. Take for example this living room from an episode of Fixer Upper…the trimwork, shiplap and built’ins are very traditional while the decor has a mid-century modern/boho vibe.

The key is to know and understand your own personal style to help you edit out clothing and home decor that isn’t totally you.

I think we have covered why defining your style is important as well as the fact that you do have a style, even if you haven’t considered it much before. In our next post we are going to delve into how to define your style. We will share some simple steps and activities to really get a better handle on your style – both in your home and in your wardrobe! In the meantime, here is a list of adjectives to consider to get those creative juices flowing!

Think about your personality and answer the following questions without giving it too much thought.

Am I:

Formal vs. Casual

Modern vs. Vintage

Colorful vs. Neutral

Bold vs. Subtle

Minimal vs. Eclectic

Simple vs. Ornate

Trendy vs. Classic

Preppy vs. Edgy

I hope we have given you some food for thought about why it’s important to define your style! Make sure to check back next week when Lori and I tackle part 2 of our “defining your style” series!

If you have any questions, please leave them for us in the comments below or shoot us an email! Mine is and Lori is

Thanks for reading!