This post is sponsored by Nordstrom — what a dream to finally partner with them! I’ve been a devoted customer of Nordstrom for over 10 years. Their customer service, free shipping and returns, and generous return policy won me over, plus they carry some of my favorite brands like Reformation and Madewell. Shop new arrivals here.
Now onto the post…
Spring has arrived at last, and I’m thrilled for the longer days and warmer temperatures!
However, this change in season is throwing my sartorial senses for a loop — especially since my classic cold-weather style is quite different from my beachy, prairie-inspired, warm-weather style. Readjusting my style to a new season can feel kind of like learning to ride a bike again — seemingly easy, but awkward and wobbly at first.
So as we take our first steps into spring, I’m looking to an old concept to help stabilize my style as I move into a new season:
WHAT IS A UNIFORM?
When I first learned about uniform dressing in 2014 my first thought was, “A uniform? As in, wearing the same thing over and over again? Won’t I get tired of that?”
But like most things, the idea is completely open to interpretation, and a uniform doesn’t have to be as repetitive as it sounds.
To me, a uniform is a general outfit formula that you can always fall back on.
I still have days where I just can’t figure out what I want to wear. On those days, it sure is nice to have a uniform as a starting point.
HOW TO CREATE A UNIFORM
Instead of looking on Pinterest or Instagram for inspiration, start by simply noticing what you’ve already been reaching for.
Stick to the three or four basic elements — tops, bottoms, shoes, and maybe outer layers — and ask yourself:
- What kinds of tops am I drawn to right now? (colorful, neutral, fitted, oversized, etc.)
- What kinds of bottoms? (skinny leg, wide leg, high rise, low rise, etc)
- What kinds of shoes? (flats, heels, wedges, etc)
- If needed, what kinds of outer layers? (loose, fitted, long, cropped, etc.)
In my opinion, it’s best to leave your uniform open-ended and general. For example, the uniform I’m wearing in this post — high rise bottoms, oversized top, flat shoes — is one I can tailor to any season because it’s not too specific.
(If you see something you like, you can shop it and support my blog at the same time by using the affiliate links below.)
So here’s my current uniform: high rise bottoms, oversized top, and flat shoes. And here’s why it works in this specific case:
1 | HIGH RISE BOTTOMS | I love a high rise, but it’s got to be comfortable. So, these paper bag shorts with a glorious elastic waist have become my go-to for spring.
2 | OVERSIZED TOP | A white tee may be a plain wardrobe staple, but when its generously oversized like this one, it becomes a little statement all on its own.
3 | FLAT SHOES | Also available in brown | My neutral style can feel a little bit predictable at times, so I’m switching things up with a transparent sandal. It’s interesting, yet subtle, and I love it so much more than I expected! Going to be wearing these constantly. (Note: If you get a pair, they have a nearly invisible plastic lining on the sole that makes them very slippery — make sure to peel it off before wearing them!)
TO UNIFORM, OR NOT?
Depending on your current vibe, uniforms can be practical and time-saving, or they can feel a little limiting and uninspiring.
As a person who regularly drifts from one side to the other, I can say it feels so good to just go with the flow instead of trying to force an idea that’s good in general, but not good at this particular moment.
If it doesn’t meet a need in your life, if it doesn’t fit with where you are right now, let yourself off the hook.
No need to smother yourself with “shoulds”.
• • •
And there you have it!
What about you? Do you ever feel a little unsteady, style-wise, when a new season begins? Are you drawn to the simplicity of uniform dressing, or do you prefer whimsy over simplicity? Have your preferences changed over the years? I’d love to continue the conversation in the comments below.