March 2018 archive

Image Identity vs. Image Archetype

Whenever I’m in a Kibbe Facebook group and I see someone use the term “Image Archetype” in place of “Image Identity,” I always correct them. To some, this may seem pedantic. But to me, they mean very, very different things.

Image ID is the term David always uses. Image Archetype, or IA, is used by Rachel Nachmias. I’m not going to get into the whole thing in this blog post, but I want to point out a key area where they differ.

An Image ID is who you are. I like the definition from Dictionary.com: “the condition of being oneself or itself, and not another.” You simply are what you are. Your Image ID is a framework, and you place your own style on top of it. Kibbe’s Metamorphosis is about accepting your physicality and essence for what they are and stopping feeling like the grass is greener. Image IDs don’t place a limit on your self-expression.

An Image Archetype, however, is something else entirely. The word “archetype” infers a pattern, whether that’s in unconscious thought as in Jung or simply meaning a prototype more generally. The focus isn’t on who you are; rather, the focus is on how well you represent a certain idea. In her book The Face of the Business, Rachel lays out the style stereotypes that are supposed to suit each Image Archetype. So if you’re a Pixie (what she calls FG in this book), and you don’t relate to flapper, punk, or mod–you’re out of luck.

This is why people say that a Kibbe Image ID can feel limited, or that they wish they could be X because they want to wear certain clothes, but unfortunately, they’re Y. They are coming from the Image Archetype idea, and not Image ID. As David says, the Image ID is supposed to set you free–not box you in.

To give one example, I will often hear people say, “Well, I’m an Audrey type of FG.” By this, they mean that they don’t want to dress like the stereotype (Kelly Osbourne, perhaps) and prefer simpler, more elegant clothes.


There is nothing wrong with admiring Audrey’s clothes–she is an icon for a reason. It’s the idea that she is somehow an anomaly that I have a problem with, as well as the idea that style is static and that your mood today will be your mood forever. We all evolve. Our yin/yang balance doesn’t change, but we do.


David does say that FGs “have trendy in their DNA,” but that doesn’t mean that FGs have to dress wild all the time. FGs can dress however they want, as long as they respect their yin/yang balance. The same goes for all Image IDs. And this is why I’m so picky about the usage of the correct term: you are who you are as an individual; you are not just one of many made from the same mold.

Like Style Syntax on Facebook for updates.

Why I Stopped Dressing My Truth

This post uses affiliate links.

Before I begin, I think some people who are really into DYT would say that I never did in the first place. And they may be right–I never went full-on on what would be a recognizable T3 look.

And there’s a couple of reasons for that. The first is that some of it just isn’t my style. I knew from past experience that some things wouldn’t flatter me, and some of it, I just don’t care for the aesthetic. The other is that some things, like the jewelry, are literally too big and heavy for me. I have tiny earlobes, small wrists. I have ordered a couple of pairs of studs from the DYT store, and they are always larger than I expected when I receive them. They show the earrings on a ear on the website, but my ears are just that much smaller.

I don’t think I’ve typed myself incorrectly. My movement is very Type 3. But T3 fashion doesn’t necessarily express what I want to express. While theoretically, it should be a looser framework into which you can inject your personal style, T3 generally looks earthier than I go.

Whenever I look at other systems, I have to say that I just always come back to Kibbe. Whatever else I’m thinking about with style at the time (and I’m writing about this right now for the new workbook), Flamboyant Gamine is always the sun that any other style system floats around. If a system isn’t compatible with FG, it isn’t going to work for me.

I tried to combine them for a while… judging both the yin/yang balance of an item on me and whether or not it fit the T3 keywords. But in the end, this just felt too stifling. In addition, my style has started to shift to where “edgy” has taken a less prominent role. So while I previously liked the edgy aspects of T3, it no longer feels like who I am. I could definitely not wear T3 jewelry, and I don’t want to cut my hair short in a T3 way; I like my current haircut, which is probably a 1/4 or a 4/1 cut.

I still really appreciate the self-exploration aspects of Energy Profiling. I just no longer feel like the aesthetic aspects of it fit who I am. I feel like Flamboyant Gamine expresses my essence really well, and I am happier dressing that way than I am when I try to add T3 into the mix.

For instance, this dress is on my list… there’s no way it would fit T3. But it would be a dress I would feel comfortable and confident in.

Martha Dress, Boden, $150

Martha Dress, Boden, $150

Have you tried Dressing Your Truth? Do you find that your energy type’s clothing suits you, or have you found that other style systems work better for you?

Like Style Syntax on Facebook for updates and extra content!

Privacy Preference Center

Necessary

Advertising

Analytics

Other