Posts Tagged ‘flamboyant gamine’

Combining Kibbe and Dressing Your Truth

I’ve never been someone who looks at one style system at a time. I have always worked with multiple style systems. My approach to doing so has evolved over the years. In my systematic way, I used to think that you can just write out a list of recommendations for each, and see where they differ and where they overlap. I no longer endorse this approach. This is partially because I now know that “recommendations” aren’t the correct way to go about using David’s work, and partially because I am interested in a cohesive look, and I feel that picking some elements, but not others, could result in something that just looks like a mishmash. I plan to go more in depth in my new workbook, but until then, I will share how I combine the two systems I use in my daily life: Kibbe and DYT.

Color

Color is easy: I stick to Type 4 colors. As I’ve said before, I feel the most like myself in these colors. I deeply appreciate David’s feedback, and maybe if I saw him in NYC and he could style me, I could see how Bright Spring or Gentle Autumn could be me, too. I don’t think mixing multiple palettes in one outfit works, and while I thought that perhaps I would have entirely Spring or Autumn head-to-toes, it just doesn’t appeal to me and I don’t seem to ever do it.

Style

Style I would describe as Flamboyant Gamine being a kind of operating system or framework running underneath, almost subconsciously, in a way. From knowing that I’m FG, I know where my star power lies. I know which clothes will accommodate my particular body, and what is best left to someone else. DYT I can use in a more concrete way, with the particular patterns, textures, etc. that go along with it, and how to balance something that maybe isn’t 100% T4 (although it always is in color!). I don’t carry around a list of recommendations. I can look at things and determine whether, when paired together, an outfit will meet both the requirements of juxtaposed yin and yang with more yang (Kibbe FG) and yin-yang-yang-yang (DYT 4/3). When used together, even in my casual days (which, as a grad student, most are), I am able to feel 100% myself and confident in my choices.

Is It Easy?

For me, it is very easy to make the two work together. My personal T4 style keywords are “Bold, Structured, and Edgy,” and it’s easy to see how FG would fit into that (although of course you could be an entirely different Image ID and those keywords would still work for you!). But sometimes, the options you get from different systems don’t really seem to coalesce. In my case, that would be the season/color palette aspect. I’m sure there are colors on the Spring and Autumn palettes that would fit into T4, but I wouldn’t get my black and white. Trying to satisfy both would leave me with very limited options. In that case, I just had to make an executive decision in terms of which I would choose.

What has been your experience with trying to merge different style systems into one wardrobe?

Dressing For Yourself

I am still firmly entrenched in my Dressing Your Truth experience. Being a 4/3 is natural and effortless for me. There is still some conflict, however.

I still love Kibbe’s work, and remain actively involved in it. I know, however, that he would never place me in a season that gets black and white. The crux of David’s work is to look at yourself with enlightened subjectivity, and to accept yourself as you are. It is easy for me to accept myself as a Flamboyant Gamine. My coloring, however, is a little more complicated in that regard.

I know that based on online photos, he sees me as a Spring or Autumn. In real life, he may switch to Summer, but Winter would just never happen, based on his color theory. But shopping for Spring and Autumn clothes, I’ve discovered, just does not bring me the joy that the T4 saturated hues do. I am happy to open my closet and see bold, high contrast colors.

So here is the conundrum: is it lacking self-acceptance to not wear the season your coloring dictates, or is better to match your inner self, which DYT T4 does for me? With style, it is easy: once you accept your Image ID, you can now express yourself in any way you’d like. But with color, it doesn’t really work that way. You can express a certain mood with any of the palettes, but some things will just not exist for you–like black for anyone but a Winter.

While the T4 palette also limits what is available, it limits to me what is already speaking to me. It expresses my inner self.

So there is a conflict here between what my coloring is dictating, at least according to David’s theory, and what my inner self is satisfied by. So far, the inner self is winning out, because it is just so much more fun for me to dress in T4 colors every day. But again, I have to wonder if it is the best presentation of my physical self.

How do you deal with conflicts in different systems? In the meantime, I have these VERY 4/3 glasses on my wishlist!

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:

audrey_sweater
(Source)

…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)?

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?

Style Transitions

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As I’ve been working on the mini “create your own archetype” workbook, I’ve been struggling a bit because I’ve realized I’m in a bit of a transitional phase with my own style. Ever since I saw Bonjour Tristesse, I’ve found myself drawn to more traditional Gamine looks. I’ve been looking at places I’ve eschewed for years, like JCrew. Since it’s an archetype workbook, it’s led me to wonder whether the Archetype I’ve been working with since I wrote the original workbook almost two years ago, “Grown-up Punk,” is going to continue to work for me.

I think we all go through these periods of transition with our style. Things that once felt authentic now feel off as we move through different stages in our lives. Perhaps this is what is happening to me right now.

Basically, I know that Flamboyant Gamine is where I want to stay, and I want to do it better. But I’m torn between combining that with Type 3 and trying to support my energy type, and taking it in a more vintage-inspired/classic direction. A leopard-print leather cuff isn’t necessarily going to go very well with cute Bonjour Tristesse-inspired outfits.

I don’t know which feels better to me right now. Type 3 is probably closer to the direction I’ve been moving in since I started this color and style journey–“grown-up punk,” edgy, supportive of who I am. But I also find myself drawn to this other side of FG, one that is less reliant on these aspects and is more of a timeless style. A friend’s husband, who is very perceptive about all things Kibbe, said I need to respect my yin more. I think this is true. I tend to forget that FG is almost half yin. I have probably gone too far in the “punk” direction at times. I don’t know if this is what is really expressing who I am anymore. I’m no longer in my twenties; I’m on the precipice of some major life changes.

There are two solutions I see. One is to utilize head-to-toe, and to just have separate outfits entirely. This way, I can experiment and see which feels authentic. Some days I can wear a lot of leather jewelry and leopard print and substance, and in others I can wear things that are more tailored and a little lighter in feel (always keeping FG in mind, though!). The other solution is to try to find a way to combine them in a way that doesn’t look disjointed.

One way to do this is to find pieces like these shoes, which do a good job of pulling these two style ideas together:

Campbell Fringed Heels

Campbell Fringed Heels, Boden, $200-$230

(Yes, I did buy these. They were expensive, but sometimes you see something and it sticks in your mind and you end up on the Boden website at 4am…)

Perhaps this is the key for me–a personal style that brings together the classic vintage gamine that inspires me while also retaining the elements that I need to feel true to myself. Will “Grown-up Punk” still be the archetype I’ll use to guide my fashion choices? I’m not sure yet, but luckily I’m in the middle of writing a new workbook that will help me explore this question in a deeper way… Regardless, now that I’ve sort of found my spot in systems (Zyla notwithstanding; I think I’ll have to see the man in person for that), apart from historical and theoretrical posts, my blog will move from working on finding my Syntax to working on refining my style.

Have you gotten to a similar transitional stage in your own style journey?

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?

Three Levels of Dress: Kimono Blouse Two Ways

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As I’ve mentioned here before, I have some issues with Level Two in my wardrobe: I don’t really have any. Basically, I have formal dresses, and then jeans and sweatshirts.

There are several reasons for this, but the main one is that at the moment, dressing up is not required for my job. I am rarely in a situation where Level Two is required. I don’t usually want to allocate my not-so-sizable resources to clothes I won’t wear as often.

I’ve realized that this problem can be solved by just adding certain pieces to my wardrobe than can be dressed up or down. At the moment, getting a cute little FG pantsuit isn’t the most practical option for me. But adding things like sweaters and blouses that can be worn with many kinds of bottoms is a different matter.

I actually didn’t really own any blouses. I picked up my first one today. It’s a little out of my comfort zone, but I fell in love with it because it looks like Dark Autumns’s candlelight white to me, and I’ve been into floral prints lately. While I often have trouble with unstructured pieces, I decided that the cropped and boxy fit made it okay for Flamboyant Gamine. I came up with two outfits based around this piece, one for Level One and one for Level Two. I’ll walk you through these two outfits and my thought process.

The star of this post is, of course, this Floral Print Kimono Top from Zara. For a crop top like this, high-waisted skinny jeans, which are flattering on me, probably because I’m long-waisted and it balances me out, are an obvious choice. I went with a waxed version in merlot, because the floral print has some dark red in it and it’s more interesting than basic black. I also picked up the merlot in a studded wrap bracelet for a Fitbit Flex. I think this is a really cool piece, even though I don’t have a Fitbit. Part of why I don’t have one is that I don’t like accessories that look more like tech than accessories, so this is a fun, casual piece of jewelry to disguise it, if you do have one. I did select black for the shoes because I wanted to include the Wild Diva shoes from Amazon. These are fake Valentino Rockstuds, and they come in a huge range of styles, colors, and finishes, and they’re insanely cheap. I have them in the leopard-print, sueded, ballet-slipper version, which I also considered for this outfit, and I might do that in real life, because I’m going to be more limited in terms of my shoe collection, but I felt there wasn’t a true connection to the rest. Instead, I went with shiny black, which calls back to the black outline of the print on the top. I just found some fun ear jackets for the earrings.

I think that for some people, this skirt wouldn’t really seem like Level Two. But since my legs are short, it would look as short on me, and I think the rocker edge it has brings it where I need my Level Two to go. While I don’t think the Fitbit cuff would be inappropriate for Level Two–I’m sure people wear their Fitbits to work; otherwise, what’s the point?–I wanted to glam it up and a little more, and added a cuff that I liked so much, I bought it for myself–the danger of doing these posts, I guess! The black stones, again, pick up the black in the shirt’s print. With the
shoes, I switched to a heel, which I think goes better with the skirt, but if you can’t wear high heels, maybe some kind of bootie would work. The sueded version is a little more subdued, especially on Dark Autumn, although this exact one is currently sold out. Wild Diva is sold by several Amazon sellers, so you may find it somewhere else if you look for it. They do have a burgundy sueded version right now, which would also be a good option, although I generally don’t like to match my bottoms to my shoes. The earrings have spikes, but they are even more sparkly than the ones in the first outfit.

What I like about these two outfits is, apart from the jeans, since in my personal definition of the Three Levels, Level One is the only one that gets jeans, these pieces all work for both levels; it’s just all in how you style it. The accessories are basically interchangeable, as are the shoes; I could wear the heels with the jeans instead to add a little more to my first outfit, or I could exchange the blouse for a cropped t-shirt to bring the second outfit down a level. If you have a limited budget like I do, making sure your pieces are versatile is key. I’m planning on releasing my Three Levels of Dress workbook early next year, but until then, I hope to do more posts like this to give you an idea of how to work with them.

What something you’ve been lately that could work for multiples levels and situations?

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The Three Levels of Dress: Flamboyant Gamine Casual with Athletic Wear

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One of the chapters in the workbook is about something I call “The Three Levels of Dress.” The basic premise is that there are three general levels of formality, and it’s important to know how to dress true to your style for each. You don’t stop dressing Theatrical Romantic because you’re in casual wear, and you don’t skip out on formalwear because you have a Natural base.

I’ll do more posts in the future talking about specific types and what the different levels look like for them, but today I’m going to focus on my own type and one way to approach casual dress if you’re also a Flamboyant Gamine.

While Flamboyant Gamine isn’t exactly challenging for casual wear, since as a type, it has low level of formality in general, it still can be a bit intimidating when you look at Pinterest. It can seem a little out there, or like you’d need the body of an 18-year-old runway model to pull it off.

fg_mini
(Source)
Typical FG Pinterest example… No one needs to see that much of my legs!

One approach that I really like, and something I do in my own life, is mainly getting my casual clothes from two places: the “basics” section of stores like H&M, and athletic brands. The latter is something I’ve done for a long time, before I had even heard of Kibbe.

Now, if you’re picturing the Real Housewives of Orange County going out to lunch in their gym gear, that’s not what I’m talking about. Athletic brands are actually a great source of clothes that tick essential FG boxes: asymmetry, boxiness, bolder choices in color and pattern than most “street” clothes, and pieces that can provide the narrow base FG is built on. Put in a different context, they’ll look like more interesting versions of a sweatshirt, t-shirt, leggings, whatever, rather than you looking you were too lazy to put on real clothes.

I got a little end-of-year bonus yesterday, and since I’ve found myself with only two sweaters to my name, I decided to invest in some sweatshirts.

NIKE-TECH-FLEECE-CAPE-684928_696_A_PREM

Nike Tech Fleece Cape. I’m not sure why this is called a “cape,” since it’s really a hoodie/jacket. Number one for me here is the asymmetry, obviously. But I also love how the hood is oversized, and since this hoodie long in the back, it means I can wear it with leggings. Definitely something I can wear all year long–as a sweater layer in the winter, over another sweater when it’s really cold, and as a jacket in the spring/summer.

ctopped_sweatshirt

T/F Cropped Crew. Here we encounter one of the problems with every single model being FN 🙂 I promise you that this looks boxy on me! Cropped, boxy sweatshirt + bodycon tunic + leggings/skinny jeans are one of my uniforms, and the old sweatshirts I have, a gray leopard-print one and one in the elusive DA yellow, are from Forever 21 and thus can’t really be worn and washed for more than a season. I hope that this sweatshirt–mine has black accents, not silver–will last a little longer. Plus it was on sale.

Athletic wear is also a great place to find pieces you need to put together FG’s narrow base layer.

NIKE-LEGENDARY-ENG-LATCE-TIGHT-694373_065_A_PREM

These Legendary Engineered Lattice Tights could be paired with an oversized, boxy sweater.

AA8815_21_model

Stella McCartney’s Adidas line is one that I shop from when I can afford it, and the Essentials Short Tights would look very cute with a boxy t-shirt or sweatshirt.

AA7058_21_model
The color selection is also more varied than we usually find in these styles. If you’re a soft season FG, it can be hard to find clothes… but this Running Essentials Graphic Tee would definitely work.

hmprod
Brands like Nike and Adidas are expensive, and I can’t imagine buying these clothes just to sweat in them. When I buy clothes for exercise, I always go to H&M. But their clothes are actually just as cute, and while I haven’t gone to the gym in like a year, the clothes I bought to go to the gym are things I wear on a weekly basis. This Sports Top I picture paired with skinny jeans in a neon color and a statement necklace, or a tight miniskirt.

The athletic wear department is an easy place for FGs to find their asymmetrical, cropped/boxy + narrow silhouette in a variety of colors. Plus it’s super comfortable. If you mix it up with non-athletic clothing, it will definitely not look like you were too lazy to change after the gym.

Is there an unexpected source of clothing that is a goldmine for your type? How do you do casual?

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Know your type in several systems but having trouble putting it all together? My workbook can help.

Type, Essence, and Style

One of the things I love about our style and color community on Facebook is that even when my ideas are challenged and I disagree with someone, it usually leads to a better and deeper understanding of the Kibbe system. Recent discussions have led me to crystallize what I see as important parts of the Kibbe system.

The way I see it now (and I emphasize “I”; I know some will disagree with me), your Kibbe and the way it works on you specifically is made up of three parts: line, essence, and style. I know that I have come across as anti-essence before, but I think I really just didn’t understand what essence was, even though in the post I linked to, you can kind of see how I’m dancing around it.

Line is your body lines and facial features. Look at the examples in the book and try to see what the women he placed in one type have in common. Is the vertical line long or short? What is the shape of their torso? And so on. This is how type is decided. What recommendations will suit you is determined by what belongs on your face and your body.

Essence is the impression that these lines create. It is what creates the personality stereotype Kibbe discusses in the description, which may or may not apply to you. What essence does is create something akin to a seasonal color palette. It is easy to understand that what looks high contrast on a Soft Summer person would look low contrast on a Bright Winter person. Image Identities work the same way. What looks normal and casual on a Natural type would look sloppy on a Classic type. What looks normal and casual on a Romantic type would look formal and fussy on a Natural type.

Style is taking your personality, preferences, and the look you want to achieve, and understanding how to express it within the parameters of your Kibbe Image Identity. So let’s say that you, like a commenter on my last post, are an SD who wants to be comfortable and a bit boho, and you don’t want to wear heels all the time. You would feel more comfortable in FN, but understand that you are an SD and look fabulous in it. So what do you do?

casual_sd
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Here’s what I would do. What’s SD’s version of a jeans-and-a-t-shirt look? Probably one of your draped tunics, in a comfortable fabric like jersey (ignore the necklace in the example in the Polyvore set). I’d do it in your dark neutral for maximum drama. Then I’d continue the line with leggings (or another comfy SD pant of your choosing) in the same color or a similar one. I’d take the ultimate lazy shoe, the flip flop, and find one in patent level with a snakeskin print, bringing it to the SD level of chic drama. I’d take Natural’s perfect gem, turquoise, and find a statement bib necklace with turquoise-colored stones cut to be faceted. I would then take one of SD’s favorite motifs, snake jewelry, and find that in turquoise as well. Lastly, I would wear your version of a red lip, because if you don’t want to bother with a full SD makeup look, a good bold lip, some mascara, and as much brow drama as you can wear and still look normal should be enough.

This is just as comfortable as a Natural look, and has some Natural elements, but it is done through the parameters of the SD style “palette.” I even think an FN could wear that necklace. But they wouldn’t wear it to the park or the grocery store, like an SD. They’d wear it to a nice dinner or a formal event. The FN style parameters are different, and if a certain piece works, it’ll still look totally different on them.

One last example. Many were surprised when Audrey Hepburn was revealed to be Flamboyant Gamine. Visually, to me she fits perfectly, even if she is a bit taller than average. But she is seen as one of the icons of classic, chic dressing of the 20th century. How could she be a zany FG, the Image Identity often associated with punks?

Let’s look at one of her looks from the movie Sabrina. Givenchy did an amazing job of creating Flamboyant Gamine looks that are chic and sophisticated and classic, yet still FG (even if Edith Head took all the credit).

Here she is when she makes her big debut upon returning from Paris. Spoiler alert: William Holden falls in love with her immediately when he sees her.

Audrey-Hepburns-style-in-Sabrina-3

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Does she look impossibly chic? Absolutely. But try to imagine Grace Kelly in a turban, big hoop earrings, huge eyebrows… It would look ridiculous on a classic person.

640px-Kelly,_Grace_(Rear_Window)

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You can express any kind of style you want using Kibbe. You just have to do it in a way that is in harmony with the eseence of your Image Identity. What reads as classic on FG Audrey is entirely different than what reads as classic on actual Classic Grace, and her classic would look stuffy on Audrey. But the actual effect of these two women’s versions of classic is basically the same.

In the book, Kibbe says we can express the infinite (our selves, our personalities) through the finite (our type). That is where essence comes in. It defines the boundaries of what will make sense on you, and how styles will be perceived. It defines your type’s palette. I don’t think it is the gestures we make, or the way we speak. There is always a wide variety in any type–Shirley MacLaine and Cindy Crawford are very different women, but they are both just as FN. Essence is simply the style version of the hue/value/saturation levels in our palettes.

How do you manage to express yourself within your Kibbe Image Identity?

Flamboyant Gamine “Curves”

This is basically more or less on the same subject as my last post, but I thought it was important to give it a separate post because of my other posts on the subject.

To recap, before, I thought that, if you were curvy, the difference between Flamboyant Gamine and Soft Gamine was in the face. I think you’ll still see a difference in the face, but there’s a difference in the body, too.

The SGs and the FGs have a much more similar shape than we usually think of them as having. The main difference seems to be that FG will have angles and an SG will have a curve.

Let’s look at Brigitte Bardot (SG) and Audrey Hepburn (FG). Brigitte’s measurements at one point in her career, according to this website, were 36-20-35. Audrey’s were 34-20-34. So relatively similar–Audrey is technically an hourglass, and Brigitte was a slightly top-heavy hourglass and just a little bit curvier by the numbers.
Brigitte-Bardot-
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alittleblackdress3
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Their shapes are incredibly similar… yet it’s clearly evident that the extra Romantic in SG has given a little bit of a curvy shape, and the extra Dramatic in FG has resulted in a shape composed entirely of angles.

SG’s curve is not as dramatically curved as a Romantic’s, such as Elizabeth Taylor (36-21-36, so not too far off from our G women above). But you can still see the curve vs. angularity in FG.
annex_-_taylor_elizabeth_18
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So what makes a “curvy” FG instead of a Soft Gamine? Angles instead of curves. I think you’d still be able to tell from the face, but it may be easier to see in body shape.

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