Book Review: The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees

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I was recently asked about what my next workbook would be. I plan to do an expanded version of the style personality section of the first workbook, since that is the area where people seem to have the most trouble, and I hope to put it out during the first half of 2018.

In a similar vein to the work I’ve done in wardrobe planning and rebuilding is Anuschka Rees’s work, which she has on a site that used to be called Into Mind and is now just under her name. Last year, she published a book called The Curated Closet: A Simple System for Discovering Your Personal Style and Building Your Dream Wardrobe, which guides you through the process of developing your personal style, going through and restocking your wardrobe, and then maintaining and updating it.

The book is full of helpful exercises and step-by-step processes to help you achieve a wardrobe that fits your style and that serves you in all the different areas of your life. I will say, however, that I personally have some major philosophical differences with Rees. While she used to have information about seasonal analysis and perhaps other systems on her site–I can’t remember now–she is now against what she calls “style typologies.” Of course, my entire site is about these style typologies. She sees them as limiting; I see them as freeing–as long as they are applied correctly. The internet is full of people who treat Kibbe Image IDs as stereotypes, and some of these people are making a comfortable living doing it, but in the end you can express any style with any Kibbe Image ID; the Image ID just makes it easier. When it comes to colors, too, I think it’s not the best idea to seemingly completely leave out the seasonal concept, especially when you’re telling people to make their limited palettes of main colors, neutrals, and accents. You have to have either a background in art or an excellent innate color sensibility to come up with a workable palette that has harmony if you don’t have the tools of color seasons.

Another area where we differ is capsule wardrobes–she dedicates a fair amount of space to them, and I think that it is best to concentrate on full, head-to-toe outfits. I think capsule wardrobes lead to generic outfits, even if you stock that capsule with statement pieces. An outfit that tells an entire story generally requires thought, not mix and match.

Despite these major disagreements, I still think the book has practical and even fun advice for people who are looking to define their style and create a wardrobe that works for their life. I haven’t done any of the exercises from the book yet, since I’m in a place with my wardrobe where I feel like it has a cohesive style and it has what I need, but I will likely turn to it for inspiration next time I feel like it’s time for an overhaul and I want to tweak some things.

The Curated Closet: A Simple System for Discovering Your Personal Style and Building Your Dream Wardrobe, Anuschka Rees, Ten Speed Press, 2016. $15.99 (Kindle Edition)/$17.21 (paperback).

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Book Review: Your Beauty Mark By Dita Von Teese

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This morning, I woke up to an email from Amazon alerting me to the fact that the price of the Kindle Edition of Dita Von Teese’s book had been marked down to mere $1.99, the price of a download of a mindless reality show. So of course, I bought it immediately.

Dita Von Teese is a person who comes up fairly frequently in discussions in the color and style community. She is someone who is viewed as successfully changing her entire look, even her season. She may be the only natural blonde that David Zyla has let into Vital Spring, and this is due to her fastidiousness at keeping up her jet black hair and porcelain skin, despite what she started with.

At first glance, this approach to beauty and style may seem like the very opposite of the kind of thing I like to espouse, and what the analysts I admire also try to do. But I actually found her overall message to be very similar. To become the person you want to be, you need to look the part, and you need to dedicate the time to achieving it. Bring it into all aspects of your life, whether you’re lounging at home, going to Pilates, or appearing on stage in front of thousands of people. She has tons of tips in the book for how to do this, many of which are very inexpensive and achievable. Just taking the proper time when it comes to personal grooming makes a huge difference in terms of how the world sees you. As she points out, she can do her basic look in ten minutes and it actually doesn’t take any more time than less pulled-together looks.

Of course, the book is full of her beauty tips and what she does, so if you are after a similar aesthetic, this book will be incredibly useful to you. It’s not my personal taste for myself, but I still found it to be an inspiring read. She describes how she has taken bits and pieces from the 1920s through the 1950s, and the looks of various movie stars of the period, and combined them into a signature style that is all her own. What it inspired me to do is the do the same with the things that I love, and surround myself and adorn myself with these things. Again, it isn’t faster or cheaper to have things that you don’t love or to dress in a way that is completely banal. We can all achieve our own kind of glamour in our lives, one that speaks to our own aesthetic.

Your Beauty Mark: The Ultimate Guide to Eccentric Glamour, Dita Von Teese, Dey Street Books, 2015. $1.99 (Kindle Edition).

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An Alternative to “Trying On” an Image ID

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Most people try to figure out their Kibbe Image Identity in the dressing room. This seems logical–it is a style system, after all. But after studying Kibbe for several years now, I’ve come to the conclusion that this doesn’t really work.

This may seem disheartening, and somewhat frustrating. But I have come to believe that it really is an internal process. It is about coming to grips with your physical self. In other words, we come to this process basically knowing the answer, and we cycle through types as an attempt to deal with this, or we have a distorted view of ourselves to begin with and this process forces us to see ourselves as we actually are, perhaps for the first time.

For many, it’s probably a combination of both. When I first started looking at Kibbe, I looked at yin types, because I knew what my actual measurements were and every online calculator had given me the “hourglass” body type designation. Nevermind that the issues that “hourglass” dressing guides were supposed to correct weren’t things I’d personally ever dealt with. The measuring tape gave me this result, so I could never look at yang types.

On the other hand, I also knew that I wasn’t really a curvy person. I had to rid myself of the perception created by numbers and see myself how I actually was, which was someone who actually had a straighter shape, made straighter by torso elongation.

The other issue is, of course, the misperceptions surrounding what women in the Image IDs actually look like. For instance, many of the celebrities labeled as, say, TR on Pinterest are actually FN. For the longest time, I had lingering doubts about FG because many of the women in the FG Facebook group had a broad shoulder line, and I did not. But then David joined and told us that FG is unequivocally narrow, and began redirecting women to SN and SD and other IDs.

So why doesn’t putting together outfits work? Because whatever you put on, you look like the Image ID you are, not what you’re trying on. An SC silhouette isn’t going to look SC on an FN. It will just look like an FN in an outfit that doesn’t match her yin/yang balance. And then there are so many limiting and flat-out incorrect ideas about what a head-to-toe outfit for a certain Image ID is going to look like anyway.

Many of you may be feeling like you might as well just throw in the towel at this point, since if you can’t try on outfits and if most of the information out there is inaccurate, how can you ever figure out your yin/yang balance?

There are only two things you need: The Book and yourself. And maybe access to YouTube/Netflix/Turner Classic Movies/etc, as a bonus.

The excerpts on the internet don’t do Metamorphosis justice. A lot was cut out of the descriptions of the Image IDs when they were typed up and posted. David shows you the experience of having a certain yin/yang balance, and he tells you how to dress it, even before you get to the concrete recommendations, which are just a jumping off point and which can be hit or miss, since clothing construction has changed so much in the past 30 years. But if you read the book over and over, you start to get an intuitive sense of the Image IDs.

And then by looking at the classic celebrities, you start to get a feeling for what links these women all together, and which group of women you would fit into. Most likely, there is something you have had a sense about for most of your life. I latched onto Audrey Hepburn at a young age, for instance, because I related to her shape and to her mix of facial features. Marilyn and Liz resided on a distant planet. Audrey felt familiar. The clothes she wore were clothes that I could wear, since they didn’t require a bust or a voluptuous shape.

I literally keep The Book on my nightstand, and refer to it all the time. Reading the book and absorbing it, and exploring the pantheon of stars mentioned, will do more to reveal your Image ID to you than trying out every piece of clothing at H&M. You may get a sense for what works and what doesn’t, but it won’t show you who you are. Only by really going inward and being honest to yourself about your experience of your physicality will you figure out your Image ID.

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Dressing Your Truth Is Now FREE

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On November 2nd, Carol Tuttle announced that Dressing Your Truth is now free.

What this means is that Dressing Your course videos are now free, and then for $49, you can purchase an optional Before & After Support Kit, which includes the four style guides, wallet-sized style guides, and Facebook group membership that you used to get when you bought the old course, and then the new pattern guides and a copy of It’s Just My Nature!. So basically, the videos are now accessible to all, and then the rest of the benefits of being a course owner are now available for half the price of the usual sale price of the course, which was $99.

I think DYT is one of the first systems many of us encounter when we first start looking into style systems. It has a large online community and corporation behind it. At the time I started studying these different systems, DYT looked a lot different, and while some of the essential elements of the system resonated with me, I have to say that the results did not. I recognized that I was a 3/4 pretty quickly, but I didn’t like T3 clothes, for the most part. I have to say that they have upped their style game across the board in recent years–even the color palette for T3 looks completely different than it did when I first found the system. And I have always enjoyed the video content they produce.

I’ve actually started using the T3 palette as my primary palette–it feels like restrictive than Dark Autumn, and easier to work with. And I don’t think that Flamboyant Gamine is wholly incompatible with T3; my T3 just looks different than the stereotype, and that’s totally fine. And since I am in a phase of life where I am really working on myself, that aspect of Carol’s work has been very helpful to me. I’ve even found things in Remembering Wholeness: A Personal Handbook for Thriving in the 21st Century that have been helpful to me, even though I’m not a religious person at all and this book has much more religion-based content than her other books.

Dressing Your Truth is a system that I think a lot of people find and then abandon once they discover things like Kibbe and Zyla, but there is definitely some good content in it. Are you going to take the course now that it’s free? Do you work Dressing Your Truth into your own style philosophy?

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Sephora VIB Sale, November 2017: My Makeup Picks

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As I mentioned in my last post, Sephora‘s VIB Sale is going on now (for Rouges at least), and I would like to share some of my favorite makeup products with you–some of which I already own and use, some of which I plan to pick up myself.


Tom Ford Boys & Girls Lip Color, $36 ($29.80 with 20% discount, $30.60 with 15% discount)

I was almost upset the first time I wore one of these lipsticks (Grace) because I wore it through a sample sale and brunch and it didn’t budge, while also remaining comfortable to wear. Why does such a great formula have to be more expensive? These are significantly cheaper than the full-size TF lipstick ($54), but they’re still expensive. I am thinking of getting Ines, which is like a darker version of Hot Tahiti and thus perfect for winter.


Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance Eye Shadow Palette, $42 ($33.60 with 20% discount, $35.70 with 15% discount)

Analyst Cate Linden has called this the ultimate Dark Autumn palette somewhere on her Facebook page, and I would have to agree. If I could have just one eyeshadow palette, it would be this one. You can do all kinds of looks, and all of the colors have that DA warmth and depth. I also have Subculture, which adds some variety and interest in terms of color, and I’m considering whether Prism is necessary. I love that neon yellow-green!


Clinique Cheek Pop, $23 ($18.40 with 20% discount, $20.30 with 15% discount)

Cheek Pop is my favorite blush formula–it’s pigmented and, most of all, it doesn’t contain anything that irritates my skin. I have a horrible time with blush and highlighter, because most of the powder formulas out there seem to contain bismuth oxychloride, which gives me hives. Clinique’s formulas do not. I am planning to get Cola Pop this time around–I already have Fig Pop.

I haven’t been wearing as much makeup as I have in the past, and there are quite a few things on my vanity that I haven’t even tried yet, so I’m going to hold off on recommending anything else. What makeup items are you getting at the sale?

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Sephora VIB Sale, November 2017: My Skincare Picks

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The biannual Sephora VIB Sale (20% for VIB Rouge November 3rd-6th, 20% off for VIB Rouge and VIB November 10th-15th, and 15% off for Beauty Insider November 10th-15th) is second only to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale in terms of how important it is to me. I don’t go in much for holidays, but massive sales always have a special place on my calendar. This year, I am going to share my skincare and makeup picks–I don’t buy hair products at Sephora–some of which I will buy at the sale myself, and some of which I already own and would recommend. I’m going to start with skincare.

Skincare is a major passion of mine, but one I have avoided talking about on this blog since I’m not sure if it really fits the rubric of this blog. Let me know if you want more posts on this topic, but for now, I’m just going to write a post about it every once in a while. While many color analysts will argue that wearing the right colors will render your skin imperfections more or less invisible, I still believe in taking care of your skin, versus trusting your color choices to do all the heavy lifting. And things like foundation and concealer and even eye makeup just won’t sit correctly if the canvas beneath it is damaged. Figuring out what works for my skin has made a huge difference in terms of what I can do with makeup and how I feel. Before I fixed things like my undereye area, I felt that sometimes I looked better before I put the makeup on. Anyway, basically I just love skincare and I feel like writing about it, even if it is not necessarily a direct component of style systems.

So here are the things that I would get from Sephora in the skincare department.


Tata Harper Glow for It Kit, $60 ($48 with 20% discount, $51 with 15% discount)

The main reason I’m recommending this is because I got a sample of the Resurfacing Mask, and it is amazing. The description says:

This award-winning glow mask is formulated with two natural sources of BHA that gently exfoliate and clear the way for fruit enzymes and botanical extracts to cleanse skin and refine pores for a noticeably vibrant, instantly radiant complexion. Antioxidant-rich beet extract promotes hydration to improve skin tone and boost glow, while willowbark and meadowsweet—natural sources of salicylic acid—slough off dead skins cells like a traditional peel without irritation (which is perfect for normal and sensitive skin). Bergamot essential oil provides a sweet citrus scent.

All I know is that it made my skin feel really, really smooth without it being dried or irritated, and I now look forward to masking with it once a week. On its own, it costs $58, so this means that you get two small sizes of other products for $1 each. I haven’t tried the other products, which are the Regenerating Cleanser and the Reparative Moisturizer, but if they are the same quality as the mask, they’re worth trying. I just don’t want to like them too much, because I’m not prepared to spend $105 on moisturizer.


Sunday Riley Good Genes All-In-One Lactic Acid Treatment, ($158 for 1.7 oz, $126.40 with 20% discount, $134.30 with 15% discount; $105 for 1 oz, $84 with 20% discount, $89.25 with 15% discount)

Clearly, the VIB sale is the logical time to pick up an extremely expensive product like this. I tried it in this kit. In case you don’t watch skincare gurus on YouTube ever, here’s the description:

Good Genes All-In-One Lactic Acid Treatment is formulated with high potency, purified grade lactic acid that immediately exfoliates dull, pore-clogging dead skin cells, revealing smoother, fresher, younger-looking skin. Fine lines appear visually plumped while the skin looks more radiant. With continued use, the appearance of stubborn hyperpigmentation and the visible signs of aging are reduced for a healthier-looking complexion. Perfect for all skin types and all ages, this treatment is enhanced with licorice for brightening, Good Genes clarifies, smooths, and retexturizes for instant radiance.

What I like about this product over going with something like one of The Ordinary.’s Lactic Acids is that it has all of these extra ingredients that make it less irritating to your skin. I tend to be on the more sensitive side, and I definitely purged during the first week or so of using this. Some people prefer the Drunk Elephant T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum, which also comes in a reasonably priced set, so it’s worth trying both to see which your skin prefers.


Supergoop! Everyday Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50 ($19 for 2.4 oz, $15.20 with 20% discount, $16.15 with %15; $32 for 7.5 oz, $25.60 with 20% discount, $27.20 with 15% discount; $48 for 18 oz, $38.40 with 20% discount, $40.80 with 15% discount)

This sunscreen doesn’t break me out and is moisturizing enough to double as a moisturizer, since it has hyaluronic acid.

This broad-spectrum SPF 50, high-performance, water-resistant sunscreen provides protection for face and body in a skin nourishing lotion that is truly meant to be worn every day. Powered by potent antioxidant-rich Cellular Response Technology™, it protects from UVA, UVB, and IRA rays, while a unique oat beta-glucan—proven to deliver better long-term moisturization than hyaluronic acid—helps combat the skin dehydrating effects of sun exposure. Natural extracts of lemon, orange, basil, and bois de rose provide a subtle scent with no unpleasant sunscreen smell.

Basically, if you’re not using a good sunscreen, all of your other skincare is useless. I’ve gotten the Sephora sample kits and tried a whole bunch, but they either broke me out or left a white cast. This one feels like a moisturizer, but is SPF50 and does its job. It does make me a little shiny though, so I do have to use powder on my chin and forehead.


NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer Broad Spectrum SPF30 ($45, $36 with 20% discount, $38.25 with 15% off)

What I do 90% of the time is mix this tinted moisturizer with the sunscreen above. I don’t think that sunscreen in makeup or a moisturizer is ever really enough–you would generally have to put on a LOT to get the advertised SPF. I’ve written about it before, but here’s the product description:

Infused with lush, naturally-derived ingredients, this lightweight tinted moisturizer immediately helps thirsty skin feel hydrated. It has been proven to help reduce the appearance of discoloration and dark spots caused by hyperpigmentation for a clearer and brighter complexion in as little as four weeks. Oil-free and luxurious, it obscures the appearance of lines, wrinkles, pores, and other imperfections while broad spectrum SPF 30 protects skin.

Basically, tinted moisturizers are rarely light enough for me, and this one is. It was the only tinted moisturizer at Ulta that didn’t make it look like I was wearing self tanner.

What skincare are you planning on picking up at the sale?

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Resistance: The Key to Unlocking Your Image ID?

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Every once in a while, I’ll get a comment on this blog from someone who is borderline irate because, for instance, at 5’10”, they are too tall for Theatrical Romantic. They will insist that these are the clothes that look best on them, and David Kibbe is wrong when he says that someone who is 5’5″ has too much yang for Theatrical Romantic.

A lot of this stems from fundamental misunderstandings of how the system itself works, of course, but another part of it lies in resistance to your Image ID. There is an entire chapter on this topic in Metamorphosis, and part of it has been transcribed here. (Missing are the parts relevant to gamines, unfortunately!) I believe that rather than the “Kibbe Quiz,” this chapter may be the best place to start if you are trying to find your Image ID.

The reason for this is that, barring body image issues that lead us to see ourselves not as we actually are, we know what we look like and what we are. We know what issues we have dealt with our entire lives in terms of self-image. I’ve always known that I wasn’t a curvy girl, that I was on the shorter side, that my facial features were unusual. The idea that I even considered Theatrical Romantic based on a self-assessment is thus patently ridiculous. The only thing that fit is being short. Likewise, I am generally a narrow person and there are no real wider parts on my body, so I shouldn’t have spent so long thinking that I may be a Soft Natural instead of a Flamboyant Gamine because I simply don’t have the bone structure to support the clothes.

Sometimes, this process isn’t pleasant. It can be very hard to hear that you are “too” something or “not enough” of something else. It brings up these exact feelings of inadequacy that are created by feeling like you are “too” something or “not enough” of something else. This is why we often see women who see themselves are more yin than they are or vice versa–as David says in the chapter, the grass is always greener. Never mind that the person who would be your opposite in terms of yin/yang balance is looking at you and feeling just as envious–these feelings are something we all go through.

The right Image ID will shift your thinking. You will recognize that everything you thought of as your faults are actually your strengths, and what makes you a unique beauty. You will look at the celebrities in the book and recognize yourself in them, and feel proud to have entered such a pantheon of beautiful women. Your type should never make you feel inadequate. You shouldn’t watch a movie with one of the celebrities and feel like you would need to change something about yourself. You should feel buoyed by the fact that there is a woman like you on screen, one who dealt with all of the same insecurities as you and turned them into her strengths.

So if you are confused about where you would fit, think about what you are insecure about. Turn them into “I love statements” (i.e..–“I hate my broad shoulders”>”I love my broad shoulders that provide a beautiful frame for clothes”) and see where that leads you. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

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Mid-Fall Haul

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I haven’t had as much time to think about style systems as I would like, but I have done a fair amount of shopping, both out of necessity and out of the fact that I get so many tempting emails every day advertising some kind of deal. I am currently in the middle of a weight loss journey, and I have lost around 20 pounds so far–which means that my old clothes don’t really fit anymore, obviously, so I have had to get some new things.

First, let’s look at what I’ve gotten from Boden. Boden is a brand that really speaks to the aesthetic that has appealed to me for the last six months or so–50s/60s gamine. I have managed to find several things there with the specific collar I love–rolled boatneck.

This is a dress I have been eyeing for a long time, and I love this purple. I finally broke down and ordered it when I got a notification that Boden was having a 20% off sale. I haven’t received it yet, but I have another similar dress from Boden, and I find this sort of structured shape to be very flattering on me. This is a dress that I got for Level Two occasions (you can read about the Three Levels of Dress in my workbook), and it is definitely an area of my wardrobe where I have long been lacking.

I bought this at the same time as the dress above. As you can see, it has the collar I keep on talking about. I almost got the ivory instead of the yellow because it is just so Breakfast at Tiffany’s casual:


…But I already have a top in this color that is similar, which I’ll get to shortly. Yellow is what I would choose for my Zyla tranquil, and I love a yellow sweater/sweatshirt in winter.

I also had exactly zero pants in my wardrobe that weren’t jeans or leggings.

So I got these, and I’m on the fence about how they look on me. I was going to wear them with the top I mentioned above, the one kind of like Audrey’s, and I just didn’t like the combination. I do love the color, though–a beautiful T3 peacock.

The top is from Banana Republic. It’s something I see as my answer to the button-down shirt because, as much as I love a crisp white shirt on Audrey, as David Kibbe, genius that he is, astutely pointed out, that’s not really “me.” And he’s right–every time I’ve bought a long-sleeved button down, it has just sat in my closet, unworn. This shirt I feel like I should have sized down a little, maybe, but I’ll see how it looks with other pants.

Then I just happened to be in JCrew one day and saw this on the new arrivals rack.

Leopard is like catnip to me (sorry). So of course I had to buy this, and I’ve worn it a lot. I really hate the way JCrew styled it here, though–I think the collared shirt underneath detracts from the boatneck.

Lastly, I really like Target’s A New Day line, and I basically jumped into the car as soon as I saw that this jacket existed.

I think that every Autumn Gamine needs this jacket. It’s so cute! I don’t know if you can really see it in the picture, but it actually has gold threads running through it.

Now that my credit card has been locked in a safe, I’m working on putting together head to toes and figuring out how to make sure that I don’t lose the important elements of my personal style by going too far in this vintage-inspired direction. I need to retain my wild side, too.

What have you picked up this fall (or spring, if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere)?

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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.

Book Review: Fictionally Fabulous by Anne Keenan Higgins

This post contains affiliate links.

book cover
I picked up Fictionally Fabulous: The Characters Who Created the Looks We Love randomly while browsing in Barnes and Noble, and it seemed like it was made for me. It is a book with illustrations of iconic outfits from iconic characters, and it had too many of my favorites to pass it up: Lauren Bacall in The Big Sleep, Jean Seberg in Breathless, Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Funny Face, Catherine Deneuve in Belle de Jour… So many of my absolute favorites and ones that have had a huge impact on my fashion consciousness.

Basically, there are a bunch of fashionable female characters, ranging from Louise Brooks as Lulu to Taraji P. Henson as Cookie Lyon. There is a description of the movie, the character, and her wardrobe in the movie, an illustration of one outfit, and then some characters get an additional two- or three-page spread with wardrobe items. When I flipped through the book I didn’t realize that not everyone got a full spread. I was especially sad to see that Jean Seberg’s Patricia Franchini did not.

But still, it’s a fun little book to have if you’re like me and spend a lot of your movie-watching time distracted by what the characters are wearing. The fact that I now have many of my favorites in illustrated form made it worth it to me.

Fictionally Fabulous: The Characters Who Created the Looks We Love, Anne Keenan Higgins, Running Press, 2017. $18.00 (hardcover). is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

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