Archive of ‘Style Systems’ category

David Kibbe: There Is Only One

One of the things I have on my to-do list is to go through my old blog posts and rewrite the ones that I feel misrepresent David Kibbe’s ideas. Unfortunately, this will not solve the real problem, which is the plethora of misinformation out there that led me to said incorrect ideas in the first place. While Pinterest especially is full of it, one of the major culprits are the stylists who have taken David Kibbe’s work and now make their living typing people themselves. There are people who renamed his types and use his quiz and sometimes even have added some “types” they view as “lacking” in the original; there are people who have excerpts of his book on their professional analyst website with no credit; and there are even “schools” in some countries that offer courses in how to become a Kibbe analyst.

None of these people, of course, can replicate Kibbe’s work. Whenever someone tells me, in a Facebook comment or in the comments to this blog, that they are a “verified TR” (or whatever) and I know they haven’t gone to NYC to see David, I can say that it means absolutely nothing to me in terms of their yin/yang balance and their Kibbe Image ID. Someone who has gone through a long period of self-exploration and who has done their best to understand their yin/yang balance on their own has a far better chance of getting it “right” (i.e., the same thing Kibbe would give you) than one of these analysts, in my observation. I give the latter a 1-in-10 chance of getting it right, only you’ve paid money for the privilege.

Why do they get it so wrong? There are two major factors.

The first is a fundamental misunderstanding of yin/yang balance as Kibbe describes it and how to apply it. They don’t understand the Image IDs themselves, and they don’t understand what yin and yang actually look like in a person in Kibbe’s Metamorphosis framework.

The two most common mistakes, in both celebrities and real-life clients:

a) Someone yang is put in Romantic or Theatrical Romantic.

Someone who is 5’9″ with a cute/pretty face and curves is given Romantic. Someone with wide shoulders, a “dangerous” face, and muscles/taut flesh and who is maybe even 5’6″+ in height is given Theatrical Romantic. Clients and celebrities given TR/an equivalent in other systems have been FN, SN, SD, and FG in Kibbe. Romantics have been FN and SD. The result is that the overall perception of both of these types among the internet community is far more yang than they actually are.

b) Someone youthful and/or funky is given one of the Gamines despite having larger bone structure.

Romantics put into Soft Gamine; FNs/SNs put into Flamboyant Gamine. Since SG is described as wider than TR in the book, and FG is given “broadly angular,” it is understandable how these mistakes are made, but the latest word from David is that a larger bone structure that needs to be accommodated in clothes automatically rules out a gamine type. This also causes a lot of confusion–for a long time, I thought my shoulders were too narrow for FG, but now my sense is that if I did have shoulders as broad as some of the other people who identify as FG, I actually wouldn’t fit into gamine clothes.

Again, your chance of this analyst getting your Image ID correct, if what you’re seeking is your Kibbe Image ID but you can’t afford to see him in NYC, is the same as if you pulled one out of a hat, and maybe not even that good, considering the misconceptions.

The other major factor is a misapplication of the Image Identity itself. An Image ID is not a style. The style comes from you. It’s framework that you use you create a style; it is your guide. It is not a box. So often in the FG group we have women come in who say something like, “I think I’m FG, but I’m a 55 y/o professional with kids in college. How can I dress like Twiggy or a punk?” The perception of FG, to use it as an example, is that it is limited to these specific style inspirations. FG can be sophisticated, glamorous, professional, elegant… It can be whatever you need it to be. I wrote this post over two years ago, and while I’m not sure if I still stand behind all of it, the part about Audrey Hepburn’s and Grace Kelly’s versions of “classic” style still rings true to me. You can express anything you want within your Image ID.

Now, if you like someone’s work, that’s your prerogative if you want to spend your money and get analyzed by them and receive whatever services they offer. But if your goal is to get some kind of confirmation of your Kibbe Image ID, getting “typed” by someone who is using his work (or, as they do in many cases, claims to have “improved” upon his work, “filled in the gaps,” “modernized it,” etc.) will actually do the opposite of what you seek, and will set you back in your Kibbe journey of self-discovery and self-love. Just reading the text in the book accompanying the reveals and the chapter on resistance will do more to lead you to your Image ID than paying someone else several hundred dollars to give you an answer that is, in all likelihood, incorrect if what you really want to know is what David Kibbe would say.

Fantastical Beauty: Iris

As I mentioned, I had placed an order with Kati at Fantastical Beauty. I commissioned a guide for the Iris subtype as an early birthday present for myself. I had written about Iris and why it appeals to me a couple of months ago. Once subtype commissions opened up, I knew that they wouldn’t be available for very long, so I decided to just eat the cost and commission it on my own.

In commissioning Iris, I wasn’t looking for something that perfectly fit the style I already have. When I saw on her Facebook page that Iris would pull from Dragon Princess as an influence, if anything, I knew that it wouldn’t be 100% in line with my tastes and what I already do–and that’s exactly what i wanted. I wanted something that would expand my vision for myself. When I got the Wood Puck guide, it appealed to me, but it didn’t offer me anything new. It contained what I was doing before I ever discovered Kibbe or color analysis.

So I wanted something different, something that would help me stretch my boundaries. I am in love with the story of Iris how Kati sees it, and the color scheme, especially, resonates with me (Iris is the rainbow, so I think you can infer what her colors look like!). Being a bold and bright communicator is as close as you can get to my own mythology.

I think I will still attempt a pure Iris look, mixing it with Cat. But to make it seem more manageable to me, I would like to bring in some different elements, too. To that end, Kati posted the video on Fae and its subtypes a couple of days ago:

Fae was one of the first Fantastical Beauty types I considered, and while my s-curve is on the subtle/moderate line, I don’t think that my face is linear–more balanced/full. The lines of the recs do fit pretty well, but it’s mostly not anything that I can’t get from my Animal Familiar. The imagery of Fae and playing tricks didn’t seem right for me either.,

Puck is a subtype found in all three linear face types. I knew all about Wood Puck from the guide, obviously, but I knew very little about Puck in Fae. Here are the notes I took:

-Artistic, firecracker
-Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream
-Spunky Cupid
-High energy
-Romantic in a sassy/spunky way
-Romantic in a bright way, intensity
-Mischievous
-Lives in the clouds; appearing and disappearing world
-Wings/ability to fly through magic

I found a lot of common ground between Iris and Fae Puck. Both are winged beings living in the clouds, bold and intense, acting as a kind of intermediary between the gods and man. A Midsummer Night’s Dream uses an Ancient Greek setting. In some versions of the myths, Iris is actually Eros’s (Cupid’s) mother. I see a real through line from Iris to Fae Puck, even if it’s not official.

While we don’t have a guide for Fae Puck and we won’t for a while, I can see how adding a little Puck influence can bring Iris to something that suits me perfectly. Short hair, oversized sunglasses, and small touches of sass are just some examples things that Iris is really lacking and a Fae subtype could provide. I think the core would still be Angel/Iris–“duality” and “messenger” are really my key ideas, but I think maybe even a Fae lean would provide the little extra sass and whimsy I need.

Have Kati’s subtype videos given you any clarity on your place in her system?

Fantastical Beauty Animal Familiar: Cat

I know it’s been a long time since my last blog post. I was in the middle of a major move, and my mind was occupied with other things. But now I’m all settled in, and I hope to return to blogging regularly, as well as going through my archived posts and reworking some things so that there isn’t any misinformation about Kibbe’s system or anything else.

Today I’d like to talk about something I commissioned a couple of weeks ago: The Cat Animal Familiar in Fantastical Beauty. If you’re new to this system, I’d suggest going to Kati’s site and signing up for her mailing list so that you can receive the PDF that lays out the different elements of her system. In Fantastical Beauty, your Animal Familiar is the element that covers the particulars of your lines and facial features. It doesn’t have anything to do with vibe or personality.

The best way to figure out your AF, in my opinion, is simply to go through the list and rule out the ones that could not possibly apply to you. Unlike in, say, Kibbe, there’s no wiggle room for things like height. “Looking tall” doesn’t matter; only people who are literally tall will end up in a Tall Animal Familiar. So, for instance, in my process, I knew I wasn’t going to be “Tall” at 5’4″, so I eliminated Hawk, Snake, Panther, Wolf, and Lion immediately. Looking at what was left, it was pretty easy to come up with Cat: medium-short, medium-small, full and sharp mix of features. A collage with the Cat celebrities seemed to prove me right:

cat_collage

Unlike the Fantastical Beauty 9 types, however, since AF is really the literal lines and shapes that suit you, I couldn’t do much with this information. There wasn’t even a Pinterest board. So I decided to commission a guide, along with two other women who split the cost with me. What I wanted to see was how well I fit into the type, and whether it would deviate or replicate the line information I had from Flamboyant Gamine.

You can see the Pinboard that accompanied the guide here, but basically Cat is very similar to Flamboyant Gamine, but the physical description resonates with me more. In the back of my mind, while I couldn’t really see any other Image ID actually working, I had been questioning Flamboyant Gamine, because I have small hands and feet and my length is in my torso, not my legs, my shoulders are tapered, etc. My body lines are too yang for SG, and so is my face, but I wasn’t sure if I was quite yang enough for FG. And SN was always on my mind, since the text of the book description seemed to fit.

I’ve had some realizations in the past few weeks, though. Being inspired to try a more Gamine style has really altered my whole image, and I realized that a lot in the Gamine description fit. I felt secure that wherever I ended up exactly, the Gamine group contained the only Image ID themes that would work for me. This was only compounded by a comment David Kibbe made when I posted a picture of my haircut in the FG group on Facebook, wherein he mentioned Mia Farrow to me:

Mia Farrow
(Source)

Mia is a Kibbe Gamine in the book, and she’s one of the ones he hasn’t yet moved to either SG or FG. I think I could see an argument either way, but looking at a bunch of pictures of her, I think I’d go FG. Anyway, I don’t think he would have brought her up to me if the Gamines weren’t the right Image Identity family for me, so I’m really focusing on making sure that I don’t go too yang, as I am wont to do, as my friend’s very astute husband pointed out, and respecting my own place on the yin/yang scale, where my juxtaposed yin and yang are almost equal, with yang coming out on top just slightly, and being able to pull from a wide spectrum of Gamine ideas. The Cat physical description seems to hit right at that spot, too, so it’s good “custom” guide for me.

Have you checked out Animal Familiars? Have you found a perfect spot for yourself?

Fantastical Beauty: Style Personality Exercises #1 and #2

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Kati has started posting videos on Fantastical Beauty and other style-related topics to her YouTube channel. Two of the videos she’s posted so far are Style Personality exercises:

Since I’ve been deeply involved in my style personality crisis, despite having my own workbook to help me, I decided to do these to help jog my thought process. (I’ve also started a new pinboard, but that’s private for now.) The first exercise is a series a questions about your preferences to help you see patterns. I’m copying my answers here.

1. Favorite movie
Sunset Boulevard,
Sabrina, and Bonjour Tristesse

2. Favorite Book
Harriet the Spy/The Long Secret

3. Favorite Song
Confetti by Cold Cave

4. Favorite Animal
Cats and dogs

5. Favorite Style Icon
Audrey Hepburn, Jean Seberg, Edie Sedgwick

6. Favorite Cake
Funfetti with vanilla icing

7. Three Words That Describe Your Personality
Smart, creative, bossy

8. Three to Five Words That Describe What You Want to Communicate
Edgy, fun, youthful, smart, stylish

Then you are supposed to go back and add some adjectives for each of your answers and look for patterns. What I found is that I had a heavy 50s and 60s influence, with a playful tomboy/gamine slant, but also just a little bit of edge and darkness, which goes along with what I’ve been thinking. In recent years, I’ve really concentrated on this edgy and dark side, and ignored my love for vintage Gamine style. In high school, my style was heavily influenced by this and I wore a lot of nods to the 60s, especially.

The next exercise is to create a Polyvore set of statement pieces: a coat, a pair of shoes, a pair of pants, a statement necklace, and a blouse. When I was thinking about it, I realized that I don’t really like statement necklaces that much, so I chose a cuff, and then the kind of blouse I like is hard to find, so I chose a coat that I could wear indoors as part of an outfit instead.

statement


I don’t know how successful this Polyvore is at conveying this style idea, but it’s a process.

Have you attempted these personality style exercises?

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Fantastical Beauty: Iris Subtype

Watching Bonjour Tristesse led to a shift in how I see my style that I haven’t really fully reconciled yet. In conversations with other people, I’ve realized that I’ve been going too hard in the yang direction, and ignoring my yin. I’m not a Dramatic. I need both, in almost equal amounts, and it’s important to keep that in mind.

I connect with the Jungian archetype of Creator, so I downloaded the Mermaid guide. Some of it appealed to me, but “fun and frothy yet elusive” didn’t really seem to get to the core of who I am. The FB 9, I think, are supposed to really address something deep inside you. Nymph did to a point, with the emphasis on acquiring and dissemninating knowledge, and for a while, I thought Woodland Puck was it. It was a punky version of Nymph. But I still struggled because it seems like that’s what I was doing all along, but there were still pieces that weren’t being addressed. When I started considering Mermaid, I figured that maybe Sea Puck would be it. I concentrated on thinking about Kibbe and DYT, and let Fantastical Beauty go for a while.

A couple of days ago, Kati put up a video, and I hope it becomes a series. In the video, she makes a cocktail and then discusses Angel and its subtypes. (If you’re just interested in the Angel stuff, skip to around 8:30):

I realized that for me, words are the center of what guides me. Writing, translating, communication. Iris, a bolder, more aggressive Angel, with an emphasis on carrying messages, is something that connects to me on a deep level. (Skip to 12:00 in the video for Kati’s description of Iris.)

Iris
(Source)

I’ve even been cast as Iris in a play before, in a rainbow minidress sprayed with glitter.

I see Iris as something that helps to iron out the things I’ve been struggling with, style identity-wise, over the past few months. It’s a reminder to me to address the dark and light, the yin and yang, and to not go too far in either direction, while also remaining myself.

Animal Familiars

Kati has revamped her Fantastical Beauty system, replacing Base 5 (a yin/yang-based system with clear parallels to Kibbe Image IDs) with Animal Familiars, which plays the same role in her system as Base 5 did–accounting for things like height, scale, and line. I’m glad to see that Kati has moved away from something where you can make a one-to-one association with a Kibbe Image ID (i.e., Gamine Linear=Flamboyant Gamine), and has come up with something original that adds to your knowledge of yourself and the lines of your body and face.

The Animal Familiars are fairly straightforward, ranging from the tall and angular Hawk to the short and round Rabbit. Although there is some personalization possible, height isn’t really flexible, so you can immediately dismiss the ones that are out of your height range–I consider myself at 5’4″ to be on the shorter side of medium, so looking at the list, I decided I’d likely be found in either Cat, Ocelot, or Koala:

Cat
Medium-Short, medium-small build, full and sharp mix of features. Large eyes, full mouth, sloping nose, and always up to something.
Alyson Stoner, Claire Boucher, Zayn Malik, Niall Horan.

Ocelot
Short-Medium, narrow build, mixed features with accent touches of sharp/angular. Sleek and sharp in a smaller package.
Kristen Stewart, Ellen Page, Natalie Portman, Daniel Radcliffe.

Koala
Short-Medium, wide/full build, blunt features. Wide spaced features, straighter figure, mix of blunt/full features.
Melissa McCarthy, Lena Dunham, Mila Kunis, Johnny Galecki.

Looking at the rest of the characteristics, I don’t see myself as particularly narrow or wide/full. I feel like you get a different feeling from my face than either the sharp/angular/mix in Ocelot or the blunt/full in Koala. The full and sharp facial features and the build that is on the smaller side without being noticeably narrow seemed to describe me very well, so Cat was the obvious choice.

On Facebook, lots of us have been making collages. Collages are fun and so is discussing, but I really suggest narrowing the list down to which height description is realisitic for you, and then looking at the build and face descriptions. Still, though, when I made a collage, Cat seems like a good fit for me:

cat collag

Not that many materials are available yet–I can’t really do anything with the information that I am a Cat–but there is a Snake Guide, and a few Pinterest boards. Hopefully more guides and boards will be coming soon, though!

I’ve also been looking at the nine Fantastical Beauty types again, and have gotten the Mermaid guide, but that is a blog post for another day…

Have you looked at the Animal Familiars yet? Have you found yourself?

Rethinking My Dressing Your Truth Secondary

While it’s not a system I’ve used consistently over my color and style journey–although I do feel they have upgraded in the style department recently–I figured out my Dressing Your Truth Energy Type relatively quickly. I’m a Type 3, active/reactive.

I’m an introvert in MBTI, though, and I figured that my secondary had to be an introverted Energy Type for this reason. So it was Type 2 or Type 4, and Type 4 was the obvious fit. A lot of my personality and behaviors are Type 4, although my movement is not.

But one thing I’ve seen as I’ve gone back to watching DYT videos is that facial features are super important to determining both your primary and your secondary Energy Type. And as much as I see Type 4 in my behavior, I don’t see it in my face at all. In addition to my Type 3 features (face shape, hairline, eyes, eyebrows, “lump-of-clay” nose), I have apple cheeks, fuller lips, and small, child-like hands. I had a real “a-ha” moment when I was looking at Carol Tuttle’s Facebook page and came across this post. I can see a lot of myself in this woman, and I have always felt like a bit of a fruad when I said I was a 3/4 because I just couldn’t see that 4 in my features.

Part of the purpose of your secondary is to work it into your style, and even while saying I was 3/4, I have definitely been dressing 3/1. When I buy things from the Type 3 store, I go for things that are more fun/animated and a little lighter in feel.

bag/earrings/shoes

Earrings from the DYT store.

For me, I suppose, considering myself 3/4 was more about how I act, versus what I would wear. I am interested to see if committing to dressing 3/1 will have an impact on my behavior or how I feel. I’m also curious whether it is possible to be an introvert in personality and be 3/1–it’s supposed to be the highest Energy combination.

I have been thinking about my introverted qualities, though, and as much as I like to sit at home and work on my projects, I actually do this in a pretty social way. I don’t just get wrapped up in a project–I have to talk about it with other people online. So maybe that’s my way of getting my Type 1 socializing in. And when I’m out with people, I do like to keep it fun and light. People are all different, and just because I don’t express my Type 1 secondary in the same way as another 3/1 doesn’t mean I’m not one.

Have you determined your secondary Energy Type? How do you see it expressed?

Kibbe Soft Dramatic Essence Guide

After something like a year and a half of having it sit unfinished in my drafts folder, I finally finished the guide to the Soft Dramatic Image Identity. I think it took me so long because while of course I know all about these stars, I actually hadn’t seen many of their movies.

But I did it, and I hope to complete one of these a week, going in the order of the book. So the next guide will be to Romantics.

Enjoy!

P.S.: I also finally got an Instagram, so you can follow me there in addition to Facebook.

Breakout Roles: Alexis Bledel

Previously: Natalie Portman

This is occasional series I’ve started where I give my best guess on a celebrity’s Kibbe Image Identity–I look at their roles and image, versus an analysis of their physical features and body type. Last time, I decided that Natalie Portman is SG. This time, I’m going to reach a similar conclusion about an actress who is rather similar to her, with a similar debate about her type.

I’ve never seen Gilmore Girls until recently, when I decided to start binge watching it while laid up in bed with a upper respiratory tract infection. So far, I’m up to season four, and for me, the clues about Alexis’s type come less from what kind of character Rory Gilmore is and more about what other people on the show say about her.

One of the ways David Kibbe characterized gamines in general in our FG Facebook group is that “you can’t be sure if she is a waif under the bridge… Or a princess in waiting!” I think you’d be hard-pressed to find a modern example of an actress that fits this characterization better than Alexis.

paris waif
audrey1
audrey2
audrey3

It is, in fact, easy to put Alexis into Audrey’s roles. The princess out for a day of fun in Roman Holiday, the bookstore intellectual-turned-model in Funny Face… She’d be perfect. She has similar qualities of vulnerability, charm, and intelligence that make her appealing.

After thinking about it, it’s hard for me to understand why her Flamboyant Gamine Image ID isn’t more obvious to people, and I have no idea why she is put into Dramatic Classic and Soft Classic on Pinterest. She is a deer, which huge eyes and a surprisingly long body for her face (5’7″). I could easily seen her as a 1960s teen sensation like Twiggy.

Classics, to me, have a more solid presence on screen. In fact, I think that if Rory Gilmore had been played by a Classic, it would have been too much. Of course the Grace Kelly facsimile got in Harvard, Princeton, and Yale; had every boy fall in love with her at first sight; and had mega-millionaire grandparents! But that little added Gamine charm helps to make her more appealing on screen (not that Classics don’t have enormous appeal, but at some point, there is just too much perfection).

Final Verdict: Flamboyant Gamine

Home Decorating with Flamboyant Gamine, Type 3, and Dark Autumn

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I recently wrote about adding Type 3 to my style mix. In addition to clothing style, however, I am also interested in interior design, and as I look to the next year, I’ve also started thinking about the new room I’ll have after my move. Now, I have no idea how things will work out financially, but I’ve decided that the time has come for me to break up with IKEA.

I would like my space to express my energy type and my individual style. I’ve decided that the things I’ll be looking for are:
-mid-century modernesque lines/modern/art deco (FG)
-rich, saturated color palette (DA, T3)
-texture (T3)
-fun (FG)

Things I’m trying to avoid are cool metals, black, and gray. My preferred metal is brass, but gold is okay too. Textiles are something I’m going to concern myself with later, but so far, this is what I have picked out for my room… provided I somehow end up with thousands of dollars to spend on furniture.

1. Mid-Century Wall Desk, $799, West Elm.
West Elm actually has an entire Mid-Century collection, and while it’s tempting and easy to just get the whole collection, I think taking a more eclectic approach looks more contemporary. But it means that there are shelves that pair perfectly with them, if you have the space (and the cash).
walldeskshelves

2. Dondra Bed, $899, CB2.
I like the textured look of the wood in this bed (very Type 3), as well as the clean lines. I want a bed with a solid headboard, but I don’t like the upholstered ones. I’m a little concerned how this wood would look with the rest of what I picked out, but it’s something I’d have to see in person.

Sanford Chair, $499, Pottery Barn.
This chair reminds me of the kind of a chair you’d find on a very fashionable 1930s film set. It was actually relatively hard to find a chair that was brass instead of silver. I’m not sure how comfortable this would be, and I may have to continue searching for an office chair, but I think this would be great as a chair to sit in and do my makeup at…

4. Memento Mirror Cabinet, $749, CB2.
I love this. As I said, I would use it as a dressing table, but it’s also something that is very flexible, and in the future, when I have an entire house or apartment to decorate, it would go great in an foyer, for example, or it could serve as a liquor cabinet (if you want a mirror above your liquor cabinet, that is…).

5. SAIC Sling Nightstand-Side Table, $249, CB2.
Yes, this has some black, but I think it makes for a very cool nightstand. The brass will pick up the other brass in the room, while also breaking up all the wood. It’s also just such a unique, creative design. There is a desk from the same line that is also unique and cool, but while I’m willing to compromise with a touch of black, so much metal that isn’t brass or gold isn’t happening.

6. Shop Blue Chest, $429, CB2.
This will also break up the wood and add some color. It’s a little small, but buying two and pushing them togehter would work, as you can see in this picture with the Dondra Bed:

shop-blue-chest2

Now, my hope is that this would also look purposefully eclectic, rather than just mismatched… but I guess I’d have to see everything in person to be sure. If not, well, back to the drawing board–not like it’s likely I’ll be getting any of this anytime soon, unless I win the lottery.

A lamp, however, is well within my reach.

These lamps from West Elm are especially cool because they have USB PORTS built into them. No struggling with a wall outlet behind the nightstand, or between the bed and the wall. Technology is amazing.

Anyway, these are my fantasy picks for when I start furnishing a room with “adult” furniture, keeping my various types in mind. How do you furnish your living space? Do you consider your style types?

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