I’ve come to realization that the workbook I had available on this site, which was last updated over three years ago, does not represent my current ideas. For this reason, I have decided to stop selling it until the next edition is ready. I have created a Google form for those interested to fill out, so I can email them when it’s available. I will be offering a discount for people who purchased the first one that will basically amount to you paying just for the new sections. It will include more information/focus on personalizing your style. I hope that this is something that I will be able to make a reality very soon! Thank you for your patience.
I had some free time finally, so I wandered into what is (for me) the darkest corner of the internet… the place where people outside of the Strictly Kibbe world discuss Kibbe. And I found that, to my surprise, three weeks ago, Merriam Style decided to distance what she does from David.
On the one hand, I definitely applaud this move! Just by poking around the aforementioned dark corner, and seeing what people who come to our Facebook group from her work say, I know that what she teaches is very, very different from what he does–height not mattering to the point where the tallest of women can be put into the shortest of types, etc.
I can see that she gets it, to an extent, and this is partially what spurred her to no longer use his work the way she has been doing. David is a “highly intuitive” person. He has a gift of seeing people. And he can help you see yourself.
On the other hand, however, the post just made it even clearer for me that fundamentally, there is a disconnect between what David actually teaches, and what people who haven’t learned from David directly believe about this system.
From her post:
But going back to this difference between personality and body type: Even in one of my first videos on my channel that I’ve ever made, on the Soft Gamine, I say that Soft Gamines don’t have to be cute or fun. They can also be sexy or elegant or badass.
And herein lies the humongous problem. David would absolutely agree that SGs can be sexy, elegant, and badass. All Image IDs have their own ways of being these things.
Anyone who spends time with David, virtually or otherwise, knows that he believes that we are all unique individuals who can be any way we want to be, and understanding our Image ID is just the way to be the most ourselves and to achieve our fullest potential, freeing us from what we think we have to be and giving ourselves permission and freedom to be how we are. I know that the advice he has given me as a presumptive FG is totally different from the advice he has given other presumptive FGs. He doesn’t give everyone the advice to wear the wild and edgy things he tells me to look for, for instance.
So when I see things like this, from the same blog post:
At that time, I didn’t realize the gravity of this ‘discovery’ so to speak, or just how fundamentally different this is from other approaches, and potentially even David’s approach.
…it frustrates me to no end. This is not a “discovery.” It’s not David’s approach at all to use the Image ID as a box, not only for someone’s style, but even worse, their personality. It’s something that many have promoted, but it has nothing to do with David’s work. And even if his system were so limited, going back to the book, the SG was not at all merely cute and innocent. SGs are “Spitfire Chic”! How people get “cute and innocent” out of “spitfire,” I have no idea. It is clear the lineage of the current crop of Kibbe “instructors,” on YouTube and elsewhere, can be traced not to David, but those who came before and briefly made some cash and got hits on their sites from taking David’s work and turning it into something fit for Pinterest and video compilations and discernible from photos or a video call, if someone has hundreds of dollars to spare.
So while I applaud Merriam Style for discontinuing the use of David’s lexicon in her work, the fundamental misunderstandings present in her “farewell to Kibbe” blog post show that really, she should not have been “teaching” his work in the first place.
I have gotten some comments, both here and on Facebook in the Kibbe groups I run, frequently rather rude, on why I am so, for lack of a better word, dismissive of all of the various analysts on YouTube and blogs who claim to be able to teach Kibbe to others, and charge for typings, and send out PDFs with various information, and so on. Generally, they point out that this or that person has helped them a lot with understanding themselves and their style, and the materials that I provide here and that David himself provides in groups and on his own blog are less clear and less helpful.
The best analogy I can come up with is if you were learning a language, and it was hard. You came across someone who promised to teach it to you “the easy way,” and you followed their materials and yes, it was easier and less ambiguous to you. But they were teaching you a grammar based on your native language, and the wrong vocabulary. The relationship between the actual language and what you learned is minimal at best. You learned faster and it was easier, but was it really worth it?
Some people may say that this is a bad metaphor because they actually got something that helped them from these other people. But unfortunately, they accomplish the exact opposite of what David teaches. The only thing they share with his work is (some) terminology, even when they have used his book, or parts of it, as their source material.
And yes, the material that David puts out and that I follow is not as easy to follow. That’s because the point of view is completely different. As I have been able to learn from David Kibbe, I now understand that a gallery or “outfit ideas” or “coats” for a specific Image ID are not helpful. What is important for people to do is develop an understanding of their own yin/yang balance and to put together outfits thinking of them as a whole, not parts. Trying to teach people to see in a new way is not as easy or as popular as simply showing a bunch of visual aids. But the latter is simply not how David works in 2019.
So yes, I use my platform to speak out against misinterpretations of David’s work and the people who profit from them. I also do not allow these misinterpretations in any of the Kibbe-focused spaces I run. I understand that not everyone is going to like it–some people prefer the “easy” way, and there’s nothing I can really do about it except continue to set the record straight in the spaces I do have control over.
There are many, many people on the Internet posing as Kibbe “experts,” whether they’re making videos, writing blog posts, charging for typings, offering advice on forums, or some combination of the above. I do not consider myself a Kibbe expert as in, “I can ‘type’ you just as well as David can!” But I have had the privilege of being able to work with David for the past few years managing online communities with his participation and blessing, so when I see people spreading incorrect information, it is very frustrating for me. I thought I would share some signs that will help you distinguish people who have an understanding of how David’s system works in 2019, versus people whose understanding of the system reflects the long line of misapplications and misinterpretations of his work.
Now, I will also say that in the early years of this blog, I may have committed some of these “sins,” because we simply didn’t have the information and access to David Kibbe that we have now. (If you see a post that seems like it reflects these ideas and doesn’t have a note saying it’s outdated, please let me know so I can add one!)
1. They use Classic, Gamine, and Natural.
We have known for years that David no longer puts people in these Image IDs. Everyone is either a little more yin or a little more yang. If someone is making content and using these IDs, they are either unaware of how David works now, or they are including them knowing that David doesn’t use them, which is worse, because they are knowingly spreading out-of-date information.
2. They use the terms “body type” or “Image Archetype/IA.”
These are not terms David uses. “Body type” implies that each Image ID has to look a particular way, when there are as many ways to get to a certain yin/yang balance as there are people within that yin/yang balance. I don’t expect another FG to be my body twin; we share a juxtaposition of yin and yang with a little more yang, not a particular shape. And “Image Archetype” comes from a copycat system and it’s a sign that the way they are more familiar with what they’re calling Kibbe doesn’t actually primarily come from David’s work.
3. They have galleries and Pinterest boards of “[clothing item] for the types.”
This is looking at David’s work in a prescripitivist way, and it’s not the way he works at all. Yes, the book has recommendations, but over 30 years have passed, and the way clothes are made now is very different. In addition, the recommendations in the book were never meant to limit you, but to paint a picture. In 2019 Kibbe, you think about an outfit from head to toe and how to make it work with your yin/yang balance. When people from the Facebook groups started going to see David in person, it was amazing just how much different the way he actually styles people in particular Image IDs is from the image we held in our heads. And frequently what people are positing as a suggestion for an Image ID doesn’t make sense, like dresses that clearly require a strong shoulderline to hang correctly being suggested for a Romantic, or they’re very limited, like SN=90s movie art teacher (which is so bizarre to me, considering that the SN combo of strong-but-sensual is the kind of beauty I see most honored in our current culture).
4. They use “masculine” and “feminine.”
In the 1920s, Belle Northrup specifically selected “yin” and “yang” to avoid the feminine/masculine dichotomy. Your Image ID reveals your special kind of feminine beauty, if that is how you wish you to be seen. Many women held up as a paradigm of feminine beauty are, in fact, in Image IDs that are not yin at all.
5. Their information contradicts David’s.
They say celebrities are in different Image IDs than David has said, or they tell you that you can be tall and still be a Theatrical Romantic if you “look short.” If you’re new to Kibbe, though, you may not be able to sift through what is in line with what David says and what isn’t.
6. They use the quiz.
The quiz as a tool is no longer necessary, and is in fact discouraged because you are looking at features in isolation, not the gestalt of your yin/yang balance. And David has written a series of exercises, which are a far better means of getting to your Image ID than trying to figure out if your legs and arms are short or slightly short.
7. They type you.
Even if I have an idea of someone’s Image ID, I would never tell them. It is their journey to find out. If someone places themselves in an Image ID that they are clearly not, like the tall TR example mentioned above, then I would mention that, or I will respond to questions in comments based on how someone is describing themselves. But I would never look at someone’s pictures and tell them what Image ID I think they are, and I would definitely never accept money for this. People who understand Kibbe understand that David can’t teach you to see the way he does, and that’s okay. He can help you see yourself, but being able to “type” your friends and family isn’t the point. He is not like Carol Tuttle, who puts out content to teach you how to type other people. The only people who can really tell you your Image ID are a) David and b) yourself.
This is really just the beginning, but these are some of the clearest and most common tells that someone is not giving you the correct information about David Kibbe’s work. I also have a Kibbe FAQ, and David Kibbe’s new website is a great way to get an understanding of how he actually works.
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I think one of the biggest differences since really settling into 4/3 is that I enjoy shopping again. Since I started looking at color and style systems, it’s felt like a bit of a slog, because I wasn’t going for what I loved; I was settling for what I thought was allowed. Black, white, bold, and neon are truly what I’m drawn to, and now they’re mine.
I go back to school in three weeks, and even though I’m now in my thirties, I still feel like I need new shoes and a new bag when a new school year starts. Neither of these items has arrived yet, but I’m very excited about my purchases, so I thought I’d share them.
The first are these Nike sneakers. I really love them for 4/3 because they’re bold and substantial, and the hue-on-hue has the stillness T4 needs. I have been wearing a lot of black-on-black lately, so my idea would be to wear all-black clothing with fuschia lipstick and earrings, once the DYT store brings back jewelry in September. (I have had a really hard time sourcing T4 jewelry on my own, unfortunately.)
Next, I found this tote from Rebecca Minkoff on Nordstrom Rack. It’s already sold out everywhere, even though I just ordered it last week and it should get here tomorrow, so I can’t link it. 🙁
As I wrote in blog post, I feel like myself now. I didn’t for the majority of this color and style journey. Spring and Autumn colors don’t express me. The bold hues of T4 are what feels right to me.
What have you bought for the upcoming season?
Even when we settle into a type, we can still experience doubt. I encounter this sometimes–the question of whether you’re enough for a type can remain, even when you have lived in it for years. I feel this both with FG and with 4/3.
I think it’s important to understand the reasons why you feel doubt, and there are several different kinds of doubt.
1. Old stuff is popping up.
This is the one that comes up the most for me with 4/3. This is the “self-doubt” portion of doubt. I think especially when you love the type, you can have a hard time believing you’re good enough for it. This was the case for both T4 and FG, because if I could choose any types to be in their respective systems, it would be these. And I had a belief running that I just couldn’t be what I wanted to be. I also felt that I just couldn’t be T4, because I was…
2. Misinterpreting the information.
I had problems seeing myself as a T4 for the same reasons a lot of T4s do: when Carol says “symmetrical,” in our black-and-white way, we interpret it as something that you can measure by calipers, and if one little thing is off, we don’t qualify. A T4 might try to see how well their face fits the Golden Ratio… but these are not things Carol actually teaches. Symmetry seems to mean more something more like not having a crooked smile (I recommend the face profiling videos on her YouTube channel). But that is just not the way a T4 would think when they hear “symmetry.” Similarly, you can have issues if you are…
3. Going by other people’s definitions.
There are two ways this can occur:
a) You are in a community with other self-typed people, and you compare yourselves to them. This happened to me with FG. I was in the FG group, before Kibbe joined the Facebook community, and all of the FGs were much more yang than I was, because the impression of FG at the time was that it was a “small Dramatic” or a “small Flamboyant Natural,” rather than its own thing and that small Ds and FNs are just… Ds and FNs. So my idea of FG was not that it was a pretty equal split between yin and yang and just a little more yang, even though I knew that intellectually from reading the book. So while I felt like FG was the best place for me, it was hard for me to see how I fit with the other women in this group. And part of the reason for this was due to other people…
4. Listening to other sources.
This is the second way that you end up using someone else’s definition.
b) Kibbe imitators are truly a dime a dozen on the internet. Where there once were “analysts” peddling their Kibbe misinformation, now it’s people on YouTube. I don’t see it as much with other systems, but it still exists–for instance, in unauthorized DYT groups. If you go through the materials provided by the system creator, and then the groupthink you find in communities seems to contradict what you’ve learned from the source–don’t worry about it. Trust your own instincts and interpretation. Don’t let people making a fast buck off of Kibbe or anyone else by charging people hundreds of dollars by doing the quiz from the book (or the equivalent) lead you astray. Don’t pay any attention to what they say, because I can tell you, I have never seen anyone who actually gets it right. And neither has David, as he says on his brand-new website!
What should you do? Once you’ve figured out why you have doubt, it’s time to look into solutions.
1. Think of the ways you clearly are the type you think you are.
Sometimes I wonder if I was correct in flipping my primary and secondary type… but I know that T3s cannot wear their hair as short as I do. Also, T3 is just too much movement on me. I never fully dressed it because I knew it wouldn’t look good. Also, you’re not meant to fit 100% of your type’s description. It’s okay to have a heavier foot plant as a 4/3, for example. It doesn’t outweigh everything else.
2. Ignore bad sources.
Just don’t pay attention to people who don’t know what they’re talking about, and don’t let them get into their head. If what they are saying contradicts what the creator of a system is saying… definitely don’t listen to them. Don’t let other people get inside your head.
3. If you’ve gotten feedback from the system creator, remember it.
I have been fortunate enough to have gotten feedback from both David and Carol that seems to confirm my own thoughts about myself. It is a good reminder that I am on the right track.
Sometimes, though, your doubts are correct. I could sense that T3 was wrong for me, for example. If your process is being guided by learning more about the system or seeing yourself more clearly, this is something worth exploring.
If your doubts are coming from outside sources, however, I would say trust yourself. In the end, you will end up in the correct place for you if you stick with any of these systems. And if you are wrong for a time, that is just part of your learning process.
Do you doubt your typing in a system? How do you deal with it?
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Not only are systems based on different criteria, but they also provide you with different things. Sometimes, people take issue with systems because they are looking for something a particular system doesn’t provide.
I’m only going to be talking about the Big Three here: Kibbe, Dressing Your Truth, and Zyla. There are other systems out there, but these are the ones I focus on in this blog. (I am also interested in Fantastical Beauty, but it’s newer and I’m not quite sure how it fits.)
So I’m going to go over what I see these systems providing their users/clients/customers, and the pros and cons. These are based on my own experiences and observations, having been an active participant in online communities focusing on these groups and knowing people who have received services from all three providers.
1. David Kibbe’s Metamorphosis
If you read the book, David talks about creating the “total look,” i.e., the image that a studio would come up with for a star, back in the day (which is why contemporary celebrities aren’t that great for inspiration in this system–they don’t really do this in the same way anymore):
Legions of artists were employed to create the special and specific image of the star that would identify each star to the public…By viewing an image that was based one each star’s special and unique essence, the audience was able to easily identify and understand the star in a complete and unconscious way…This is as important for you as it is for any Hollywood movie star! A large part of your success in life…is predicated on how effectively you are able to communicate your unique identity to others…Discovering your Image Identity is the first step, for it allows to utilize everything you are–both physically and innately–so that you can integrate your essential uniqueness into your own total look.
David Kibbe, Metamorphosis, pp. 6-7
So as you can see, his intentions are very high concept. It is not simply, “look a little better and have an easier time getting dressed.” It is meant to enable you to become the star of the motion picture that is Your Life. If you see something on the internet along the lines of, “Capsule Summer Wardrobe for the Soft Dramatic Body Type!,” this person has missed the point completely. I am pretty sure David Kibbe is allergic to capsule wardrobes. You need to have separate, fabulous outfits for all of your fabulous occasions. It is not “How to Dress for Your Body.” I think this misconception exists because the parts of the book that made it online were sections like the quiz and the recommendations that are in the book. The more theoretical side of David’s work did not make it.
David’s work is meant to bring your life to a higher level by enabling you to move through the world as a STAR. He is not thinking about how you can look a little more pulled together when you’re making your Target run (although you can be, as a result of following his work). He is thinking about your receiving an award on stage, in recognition of your fabulousness. If you’re not looking for anything except maybe which skirt shape is most flattering on you, it’s probably not the system for you.
It is perhaps the most intensive in terms of “workload.” You not only have to break through seeing yourself for who you are, but but you basically have to relearn how to think about clothing. Especially with the changes in fashion in recent decades, it is a very different way to approach dressing. I have seen absolutely amazing results from friends who have stuck with it, though, even without going to see him in person.
Cost: Going to see him in NYC is very expensive. David, however, is an active participant in Facebook groups and has come up with a series of exercises to help you land on your Image ID, and he will give advice to people as well–all for free.
It’s the system for you if: You’ve ever watched an old movie on TCM and wanted Edith Head to design you an outfit for each scene of your life.
2. David Zyla
David Zyla is fairly similar. He gives you your unique version of an Archetype, and your unique color palette. Both Davids come from working with actors, so to me, the idea of what your starring role would be figures prominently in both.
Zyla gives much more concrete advice. (It is not that Kibbe doesn’t; but it’s more like an idea with limitless possibilities, whereas the advice Zyla gives is very specific.) Your colors are going to exact matches when you buy items with them out in the wild and his recommendations are very specific. He has additional services, such as an extended color palette and the Ultimate Styling Session, where he sketches outfits for you based on a specific need or event (some people do this with him multiple times). He will go shopping with you and consult with you on interior decoration, and more.
There are some people who go and work with Zyla many, many times. Some people can only ever afford the initial consultation. I know people who love what they got and I know people who don’t. The biggest problem I see is that he gets so specific that people aren’t sure what to do when they see something they like, but it isn’t something that they have gotten a definite “yes” or “no” from Zyla about. Some people seem to love what they have for quite some time, and then feel the need to go outside of it.
If you want very clear recommendations and a tight color palette, I think Zyla would be a great stylist to go to. It seems to be the most difficult to DIY to me, even with a book. It is just so much about his vision for you.
Cost: The initial consult is under a thousand, and the subsequent services vary. He travels, both in the U.S. and in Europe. He has a book (still in print, so much cheaper than Kibbe’s!), and while the book has a DIY process and I have seen people get close, it can’t give you the custom look seeing him in person does.
It’s the system for you if: you want a vision of yourself from an Emmy-winning stylist, and could potentially pay for several sessions to really develop your style with him.
Dressing Your Truth
Dressing Your Truth is the one I would recommend most to people who just want to look more pulled together, and can’t either dedicate a ton of time or drop a large sum of cash at once. If you want to introduce your friends and family to something, this would be it. Carol’s system is definitely meant for busy people with practical needs. You can send someone the new Beginner’s Guide and they would be well on their way.
Dressing Your Truth also has a ton of content to help you in their Lifestyle program. They release new content pieces almost every weekday, and I find them fun to watch. If you want to put together a capsule wardrobe with items you can mix and match, this is definitely the system I would choose. It is easily the most accessible of the three. Once you’re a Lifestyle member, there are a ton of informative content pieces on helping you develop your style, and there are two shopping guides posted per type per week in their StyleInspire feature.
In addition, the style work is just part of it, and there is a lot of personal development content that is also valuable, in my opinion.
Cost: The Beginner’s Course is free, Lifestyle is $12.95/month or $7.95 if you pay a whole year, and the style kit is $99 when it’s not sale, but it frequently is.
It’s the system for you if: You want to look better and more pulled together and have a capsule wardrobe, clear guidelines, accessible information, etc. You are interested in personal development systems like MBTI or Enneagram.
What I Use
I don’t use Zyla, because I haven’t seen him. I use a combination of Kibbe and DYT. Flamboyant Gamine always figures prominently in my mind, because it just is what I am. I don’t use a list of recommendations (he doesn’t anymore either!), but I have a general idea of how to work with my yin/yang balance, both how Kibbe means it and how Carol means it (they both use this terminology, but in different ways). I use my DYT T4 color palette exclusively now, but otherwise I find that they can inform one another and my outfits are all both FG and 4/3.
Which system(s) do you use? Do you find that what I have written above to be true, in your experience?
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I mistyped myself for about five years. While it took me a long time, there were signs all along that Type Three was wrong.
1. I didn’t like the clothes.
The idea of doing the 30-day challenge didn’t appeal to me at all. I was never inspired by the OOTDs in the T3 Facebook group. The only T3 pattern I liked was leopard. I ordered a handful of things from the DYT store, back when they still sold clothing and accessories, and none of the clothing ever made it out of the bag. The jewelry didn’t fare much better, and a lot of time, it was literally too big for my ears, especially stud earrings. I didn’t know it was possible for jewelry to not fit, but it happened.
2. I felt like I looked different from other T3s.
I always felt like there was just something different in the way I looked. I could see some T3 features, like the lump of clay nose, but the overall quality of my bone structure and skin seemed different. I thought maybe finding my secondary would help, but I didn’t look like the 3/4s and I couldn’t see myself being 3/1 and being the highest energy on the planet.
3. I never felt shamed for what I saw as my T3 qualities.
When I read The Child Whisperer, I thought that I must have been raised very true to my nature, because I related to nothing regarding shaming of a T3 child. (The T4 child? Very much so).
4. I was not a T3 child.
Going from that, when I was very, very young, I barely moved. I sat in a chair and observed the world. I had no need to be physical in the world. I preferred to read and write, once I was old enough, and do my own thing. When it comes to being competitive, the only place I could identify being competitive was… reading. I wanted to read more books than my peers. When it came to sports, however, I would do everything I could to get out of it.
5. Being physical and active didn’t support me.
After about four years of this, it came to a point where I felt very out of sorts. I thought that I wasn’t doing enough to support my T3, that I needed to extrovert myself more (in the way Carol uses it, to describe a quality of movement, versus being more social). But I don’t support myself by getting things done and connecting with the outdoors. I support myself by making sure to give myself time to go within.
Of course, there were many ways I was living true to my nature as a Type Four, even when I thought I was a Type Three. About a year before I realized I was a T4, I got a Type Four haircut. My clothes were basically T4 in T3 colors. And about six months before I realized I was a T4, I started getting up an hour earlier in the morning to have some time to intellectually connect with my interests before my day started, because I was working retail and that required a lot of extroversion. I still do this and I find it to be the single most important change I’ve made in my life, because it allows me to start my day off in a way that supports me. This is the first time in my life that I feel like I’m not underachieving in school, and I think it’s because I have learned how to support my T4 energy in a way that allows me to live up to my potential.
So these were all the glaring signs that I had misprofiled myself. Now, I think that someone could have one or two of these present, and it could be wounding, or that they haven’t found their way of living in their type yet. But I had so many things showing me that T3 was not my primary that it just couldn’t be right. When I realized I was T4, I couldn’t wait to buy all the things, and I related so much to everything Carol says about the T4 child, and I saw how Big Picture Thinking is my way of operating in the world. I like to get things done, but I like to come up with the perfect solution to a problem, not just do things for the sake of doing things.
Even if you’re not interested in DYT, I still think we show signs of when we have put ourselves in the wrong place in any system. What have been some signs that you placed yourself wrong somewhere?
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Back when I started this site, my belief was that we each had a combination of lines and coloring (our “syntax”), and then we could personalize our look within these boundaries (“style”). At the time, the conventional wisdom within the nascent color and style community was that your lines would be determined by your Kibbe “archetype,” and then your true coloring would be revealed through a Sci\ART draping.
But as the years have worn on, I have seen color gurus of equal respectability give completely different palettes to the same person. Even people trained in the same system can see different things in a single individual. As such, I no longer believe that there is one true answer for either aspect.
What I think matters most is how you feel. Do you love your style? Do you love the fact that you get to wake up and wear your lines and colors and express yourself?
I can say that when my color journey led me to Dark Autumn and then four-season Autumn and Spring, I didn’t feel that way. Everything was just okay. I always felt like I was holding myself back from what I actually wished I could wear.
So when I had the realization I was actually a Type Four (update since that post: I have since realized I am a 4/3), I was a little afraid. Type Four’s colors were the colors I had told myself were off-limits to me. At first, I thought I would just do it some of the time, and have a wardrobe with different outfits for different moods.
But I also realized as a Type Four, I don’t really have that in my personality. I’m more constant. It just doesn’t happen that I’d rather wear Spring or Autumn colors over bold hues, neon, and black and white. I don’t need the choice. I need to allow myself to be myself.
So if you have conflicting results in different style systems–that’s okay. You may not even be happiest in the one that is “objectively the best” on you. Go with what makes you the happiest to get dressed in the morning. For me, letting go of forcing myself to choose made it very clear which one I actually liked best. You may, in fact, like having choice, and always have a wardrobe with different “moods.” This is also fine! Let you wardrobe serve you, and don’t feel like you have to restrict yourself to some edict that comes from outside of you.
This is something I see a lot, in the comments here and elsewhere: people say that they were analyzed in Kibbe by someone. Sometimes, I even get emails asking me to do this, although of course I never agree to do so.
The fact is, however, that there is only one person you can pay to find out your Kibbe Image ID: David Kibbe. Anybody claiming to have been trained by him, or posing as an expert, or even, in some cases, offering courses that teach you how to “type” people in Kibbe will bring you no closer to knowing what David Kibbe would type you as if you went to see him.
I have never seen anyone who claims to type people in Kibbe actually possess an understanding of yin and yang the way David uses it. I used to say that an analyst claiming to type people in Kibbe has a one-in-ten chance in getting it right (since there are ten Image IDs), but now I believe that their chances of getting it correct are even lower, because they are not applying yin and yang correctly.
There are only two ways to figure out your Image ID: going to see David, or doing the work yourself. Kibbe’s system isn’t a checklist of body parts. The quiz is meant to give a general idea, but you can’t use it as a checklist, or assign each question a point value (the way some people who take money for this do). My belief is that we all can read David’s work and intrinsically know who we are, but we have resistance that keeps us from allowing ourselves to see it. I have always understood what kind of woman I am, physically, but when I discovered Kibbe, I thought I could magically be something different and looked at SN, SD, TR, etc. But living in my body my entire life, knowing what worked for me, and knowing what women on screen and in magazines “felt like me” and which seemed “different”–there is nothing I could be apart from one of the Gamines. And I think for most people, it’s the same. We know who we are.
The point of David’s work isn’t to give you a box to fit into, with a prescription of clothing to wear–especially now that clothes have stretch and fit around the body, rather than imposing a shape onto the body. It is to enable you to let go of what you are not and accept and love who you are.
Putting you into something that isn’t what you are and giving you a list of clothes to wear accomplishes the opposite of what David does. It puts you into a box that isn’t even your own. David’s work is supposed to set you free, not cage you.
So if you see someone offering a shortcut to finding your Kibbe “type,” don’t fall for it. You don’t need them to tell you who you are! And they will just get it wrong anyway.
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