Why I’m Experimenting With My Style

Dominique Baker walking down Sussex Street with Cheetah Faux Fur Coat Silver Boots Celine Mini Trapeze Bag

A couple of weeks ago, I walked into my closet and was pleased with what I saw…for the first time in a long time. Four years of “fashion blogging” gave me a lot of insight into my own style of dressing. In addition, meeting some killer fashionistas, stylists and photographers along the way really helped me pinpoint my own personal style.

My personal style is pretty classic, but I like to rock a few trends here and there. I’m also a sucker for soft neutral colours and perfect fit…and don’t venture too far from that aesthetic. Every now and then though, I manage to tote home a pimpin’ cheetah coat.

Dominique Baker sitting down at Headquarters cafe in Ottawa holding Contigo water bottle

Thanks to my recent collaborations with some style powerhouses like www.trendsavvy.com and Nordstrom Rack Canada, I’ve managed to add a few pieces to my wardrobe that while out of my comfort zone, I adore. This fueled my desire to move away a little from very safe head to toe neutrals, and try being adventurous…hence these silver boots. So far, so good. Don’t feel like a fashion victim…nor do I feel like I’m wearing a costume.

Recently, a friend gave me some feedback on my personal style, and somewhat gently suggested I add more colour, always wear red lipstick, and try some different fits. Regarding fit, I am 5’8″ and pretty slender with a small waist. God also “blessed me” with boobs. Those two blessings are a curse on most days, as they transform many outfits from “fine for day wear” to “extra on the set of Dr. Dre’s The Next Episode” video.

Dominique Baker walking down Sussex Street with Cheetah Faux Fur Coat Silver Boots Celine Mini Trapeze Bag

OUTFIT DETAILS

Cheetah Coat – Aritzia (similar here) |Chambray Shirt – J.Crew | Flannel Chalk Stripe Pants – Aritzia (similar here) | Silver Boots – Aldo (similar here) Céline Mini Belt Bag |Lipstick – Maison Kitsuné x Shu Uemura

She meant well, but that wasn’t really me…and after some reflection, I realized I need to guide my own style transition and feel comfortable about it. So, I hit up Pinterest for some inspiration and started saving looks that really resonated with me. Couple that with advice from people I trust, “New Dom” was coming to fruition.

Alyssa, a great friend of mine with the most informative eco-fashion YouTube channel, gave me some tips on how to shop my closet. Her advice really got me to thinking about styling items I really have to give them new life, and fire up my styling love without the need to re-mortgage my house to buy a new wardrobe (OVER IT!).

I then enlisted my stylist friend Lorella to help me put together outfits. She came over, edited my closet, and took a hatchet to it Kanye-style. Now I know how Kim felt. Lorella did me a huge service though by making me see that the stuff I was hanging on to was frankly, terrible. Her measure for getting rid of clothing was asking me “when was the last time I wore that lace skirt that’s four sizes too big” or “How do you wear this oversized Hawaiian, neon orange shirt, Dom?” Her gentle shaming propelled me forward.

Dominique Baker sitting down at Headquarters cafe in Ottawa holding Contigo water bottle

Six garbage bags later (we are consigning many of the items and donating the rest), my closet was totally organized and I personally felt so much lighter! I could actually see what was in my closet. Gone were the crap that doesn’t fit, items not worth repairing, junky accessories and terrible shoes. We also had a chat about it being ok to hold onto some clothing and accessories that you don’t wear but are sentimental.

Next, Lorella showed me styling tricks – things that I never really cared about before or even knew about…like how to tuck in a sweater without making you look like you’re wearing a diaper under your jeans. She also showed me some sorcery like how to properly wear a blanket scarf, how to keep pushed up sleeves pushed up (wrap a hair elastic around the sleeve then push it up) and how to rock a fanny pack the cool way.

Then there were the simple things that she pressed me to do more often like cuffing and pushing up your sleeves to make an outfit more interesting. Layering is one of Lo’s favourite things to do and she taught me how to do so in a comfortable way (less bulk, more effortless). Lastly, she had me to try everything on, think outside the box and wear some pieces together that I would never think to pair.

All this to say that I’m loving the new Dom who is gaining a new appreciation for her closet. I’ve also started playing around in my closet, putting outfits together on weekends to try out during the week – and this has proven to be the best styling education of all (with Lo’s guidance of course). With this, I’ve fallen back in love with my clothes and I’m frequently surprised at how good I feel in this new aesthetic I’m trying out.

What do you think? Leave me a note in the comments. And let me know if you’ve ever overhauled your own look. How did you feel afterwards?

*Photography courtesy of Salt ‘n Streets Photography. Styling: Lorella Ciccone.

5 Comments

  1. Dorcas
    November 27, 2019 / 3:02 pm

    Wow!! Hope to see more of the “New Dom.” I easily get bored with my wardrobe, so I always arrange and rearrange it. Since taking online courses with DRESSING YOUR TRUTH, I have been more conscious about how I shop to upgrade my wardrobe. If it calls me, I buy it; trendy or not. And, I have grown the confidence to try out textures, patterns, and colors since then.

    • Dominique
      Author
      November 27, 2019 / 3:28 pm

      Oh wow, Dorcas! Look at you!! Checking out Dress Your Truth right now! As always, thanks for reading…your support is much appreciated.

  2. Lo
    November 27, 2019 / 3:32 pm

    Not so much New Dom as you are “more aware” Dom—and the fashion icon I’ve always known you to be deep inside.
    Love your style, open mindedness to try new things and the way you rock it so effortlessly!!!
    Brava!!!

    • Dominique
      Author
      November 27, 2019 / 3:39 pm

      Grazie, My Lorella! Thank you SO MUCH. I can’t believe how two of your sessions have greatly increased the love of my closet, my curiosity to try new looks…and how it’s frankly, boosted my confidence. For that, I’m forever grateful. When are you coming over next? LOL! xo

    • Dominique
      Author
      November 27, 2019 / 3:39 pm

      And I corrected the post. It should have started off with “A couple of weeks ago…”

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