Style for 2023

Last year, I began a thorough closet edit, which is ongoing. I also replaced my worn undies at the NAS as well as some key essentials like white shorts, jeans, and a sleeveless summer top. As always, I replaced worn footwear. 

Feeling that I was in a bit of a style rut, I started the process of renewing my style by revisiting my moniker. I came up with a new one: laid-back luminous garçonne, which is not so far from my old one (urban prince), but which nods to the more casual reality of my current living situation while also reminding me to shine. :) 

My goals for the year ahead are few and simple. The first is all business (my practical side); the second is conceptual. the third gives me a destination to pursue those ideas. 

  1. Continue major edit of closet. I've now retired 46 items, a substantial number, but when I revisit the spring items in storage, I know I'll be sending a few more out to pasture. 
  2.  Tell a fashion story.  I'm much inspired by Brooklyn's approach here and the consideration she gives to the mood she hopes to establish for each season. To this end, I may adopt Bijou's wise suggestion to modify my moniker by season. For example, I like to wear dresses and skirts in summer. Does a garçonne wear dresses? Well, yes, in fact (think of those flappers) but for the sake of cohesion and clarity, it might help to establish the feeling I want my clothes to convey, which might differ to a degree, season to season. Looking at some of the spring collections might offer inspiration here, and I might adjust my moniker to remind myself of the specific mood I want to embody. 
  3. Visit local consignment shops in search of statement items that reinforce my style persona. In Vancouver I found good statements and replacement essentials on consignment. But I haven't explored these shops in Victoria. It should be a fun adventure. 


In this thread, I came up with a shopping list. I started working on it right away and have met with some success -- Finds below. 

  1. Belt. 
  2. Indoor loafers. (Might even get a second pair if I can find some on sale!)
  3. Oversized pullover. (Got one oversized sweater, sent several back because they went too far in that direction.) 
  4. Knit (?) suit or knit jacket. (Liverpool).
  5. White shirt, slightly oversized or interesting structure. (Boden).

Other shopping goals, including HEWIs

  • Bottoms in interesting shapes — wide leg or barrel leg.  (Got one pair). 
  • A dressy midi coat (to wear with and longer skirts)
  • New sleeved "dressy" dress to replace several that I've retired.
  • Structured bag, probably crossbody. 
  • Puffer jacket packable (this is a need if my current one can't be fixed -- needs new zipper).
  • Interesting chunky yet refined silver jewellery

I feel like the outfit I wore yesterday is a good representation of where I want to be -- the pants are loose and current, so is the top, which has some texture, and the belt and boots add interest and shine. At the same time it's not precious -- all these items are completely washable and waterproof and I actually went on a 7 km walk wearing this exact outfit except I switched out the boots for my more casual white ones for the walk. 

Thanks for reading if you got this far and if you have additional ideas, I am all ears! 

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • Cardiff girl replied 1 year ago

    I love your thought processes when it comes to planning your wardrobe and thank you for sharing them.Its been really helpful to read yours and others thoughts on wardrobe management.The fact that you keep it real for your lifestyle but still look so good is inspirational and proof  that whatever you are doing ,keep on doing it!A big yay for all things washable as well.

  • April replied 1 year ago

    Highly recommend an aubergine color Burberry midi coat...  ;)  (I'm just being obnoxious, not sure it's a midi even on short-legged me.)

    I'm with you on skirts and dresses in summer.  And I do think a garconne wears dresses - thinking of that gamine look that Mia Farrow had in the late '60s.  She balanced a garcon haircut with lots of dresses.

  • Dee replied 1 year ago

    Yesterday’s outfit was perfect on you and represented a very current but true to you style. 
    I also like the idea of conveying a certain “feeling” with clothes, that would be a different approach when making purchases and putting outfits together.

  • Angie replied 1 year ago

    NICE :)

    KILLER cute casual look. LOVE you in white! 

    I echo Cardiff Girl. 

    Suz, you've found your way, and things are falling into place. WELL DONE! You are replacing, refining, and elevating your wardrobe and style in ways that work for the day to day, and honing in on what feels right. Good intuition! 

    It's interesting that you're going to try a multi-moniker and seasonal mood story. Why not!  Tanya does this successfully too, and maybe she'll share her process. Whatever makes fashion fun and meaningful to you - go for it :)

  • slim cat replied 1 year ago

    Seasonal "mood" sounds like great idea - would love to try it too ( if I can follow through with it ;) ). 
    "Renewing" style - that's conveys the feeling of new beginning, ending the challenging year and hoping for a better one - love that!

  • Jonesy replied 1 year ago

    Excellent reflections and goals, and you are looking fabulously luminous in that all-white-with-snakeskin-accents outfit!

  • lyn67 replied 1 year ago

    Fab and up to date non precious winter white outfit!!! I could never  find a moniker for summing up all my style (and life:-)) together, so great personal approach on the moniker thema splitting it up seasonaly (just like your idea halving seasons for wardrobe capsules from the past) so inspiring - may be much easier to implement for me...

  • Style Fan replied 1 year ago

    That white outfit was fabulous, Suz!  I like goal #2.  Brooklyn does this so well.  I am interested in seeing how this unfolds.

  • Irina replied 1 year ago

    Great analysis, Suz. I’m surprised to see an oversized sweater on your list since you sent back the one with stripes. I’m interested to see what you will choose. Overall, your shopping list looks very cohesive. 

  • SarahD8 replied 1 year ago

    Well, you know I LOVE the "Tell a fashion story" goal! I can relate to the idea of one's moniker or persona shifting with the seasons. I think I have different shadow personas that kind of wink in and out with the seasons. Autumn is the purest iteration of "Girl on the Moors." Deep winter is "Circumpolar Fairy Princess" but also "Goth Girl on the Moors" or maybe "Goth Girl Visits Stockholm." Spring is probably the purest iteration of my alternative moniker "Modern Land Girl." Summer is kinda "Modern Land Girl on Holiday in the South of France" (I guess this is a postwar narrative huh?). It sounds overcomplicated, maybe it is, but it all makes sense in my brain! I am not as good as Brooklyn at really carrying these ideas out but, well, who is?

    It is truly THRILLING to see how well your plans and projects are coming together these last few weeks! I'll be reading along and hoping some of it rubs off on me.

  • Suz replied 1 year ago

    Sarah, thank you -- and I love the various iterations of your theme! I don't know how I'll feel about a shadow persona popping out seasonally, but we shall see. And maybe it won't be that substantial a shift...we'll see. Regardless, thinking of it all in terms of a story and character should help me with purchases. 

    Irina, I sent back the Boden oversized sweater but kept the BR one, and the top I'm wearing in this photo is also boxy and oversized. The Boden one was just too big and too warm, in the end, and too similar to a boxy cotton J. Crew sweater I've had for years that is oversized but not to that degree. 

    Thanks, Style Fan

    Lyn, you have a good memory! In my new location, I don't need to split the seasons quite as much, except for spring, which definitely has its cold and warmer parts, but spring is overall much, much longer. 

    Thank you, Jonesy, Slim Cat, Angie, Dee, April, Cardiff Girl! 

    April, I laughed at your comment re the coat. Sent you a message on that thread. 


  • Runcarla replied 1 year ago

    Ha!  Your style direction as described is so close to mine for 2023. I, too, am struggling with my long held (and much loved) ‘Tomboy’ moniker because I’ve let my hair get long, and I’m fancying a dress heavy high summer wardrobe!  

    I’m using contemporary (instead of modern or trendy) as one of my 3 words, since it allows for fluid vs oversized, clever architectural tailoring vs unstructured, and a focus on fit!*

    Don’t be surprised if I ‘lemming’ some of your finds!  The Liverpool suit is already in rotation, and I love it more with every ‘wear’. :-D

    *I feel like putting up a sign in my closet that says ‘It’s the fit, stupid!’,_stupid

  • Jaime replied 1 year ago

    Your outfit does a beautiful job of illustrating your thoughts Suz. I am interested in the idea of seasonal stories. I don't really think of my outfits as stories, maybe more like moods, but I think stories might be a more fruitful approach. Of course I am very curious what your explorations of the local consignment scene turn up!

  • kkards replied 1 year ago

    Suz- I’m always so impressed with how well you articulate your goals and map out your strategy to reach your goals.  

    I’m not sure one the seasonal style moniker, as i generally think wh9 we are is who we are, but if YLF has thought me anything about fashion, it’s to keep an open mind, so I’ll be waiting and watching to see how this plays out. 

  • Star replied 1 year ago

    Suz are you familiar with the blogger Sheila of Ephemera?  She is in Victoria and only shops 2nd hand, she lists all shopping spots on her site.

  • jussie replied 1 year ago

    I love seeing your outfits and reading the thought process behind your wardrobe management! Always so considered and stylish. I wonder if this year will bring any sartorial surprises out of left field for you Suz?
    The idea of telling a fashion story is very intriguing. I enjoy seeing how costume designers do this for film and tv. I can’t wait to see what you come up with.
    Seasonal might just be the way to go…. I always struggled to come up with a meaningful moniker because my fashion moods do change quite a bit …. But the seasons could really work…
    Summer: self indulgent fancy resort madam
    Autumn: artsy and layered hippy earth princess
    Winter: bleak middle aged woman enduring life of drudgery
    Spring: eternally hopeful unicorn Barbie gal

  • Jessikams replied 1 year ago

    That’s an interesting idea, to swap out guiding words according to the season…. Very intriguing….

    Laughing at Jussie’s seasonal personas!

  • Helena replied 1 year ago

    I love the idea of season style words ... might have to try this!

    Suz, your style is ALWAYS amazing and authentic, and sounds like you've got a great handle on your direction for 2023. Looking forward to following you on your journey, as always! xx

  • replied 1 year ago

    I Love the idea of telling a fashion story as well as the seasonal style words!
    I feel Jussie's Winter description deep in my soul!

  • Suz replied 1 year ago

    Okay, so I need to clarify here -- I don't think I'll switch out my monikers, exactly. That was, in fact, Bijou's suggestion, and it's what Tanya does, too, I think. It's more that I'll look for different ways to interpret what that means, or maybe what I'm trying to say is that I will drill down further to see what that chosen moniker actually means and what it could convey. 

    And I might, in fact, come up with a few added adjectives about the mood I'll be aiming for. However, it all remains to be seen and no doubt I will do my usual -- last minute panic shopping for missing essentials with the odd lucky wildcard thrown in! I hope not, though. 

    Jussie, you crack me up. I am currently very much in the bleak middle aged woman enduring a life of drudgery phase! 

    Star, I was not familiar with that blogger -- thank you! Or rather, I think you (or someone else) had suggested her to me before and I looked her up and then forgot her. This is great! 

    Jaime -- I don't think the outfits per se will be telling a story (well, maybe sometimes...) -- it's more the whole collection of garments and how I'll try to put them together. 

    kkards -- I agree, we are who we are, but some people are multifarious! In fact, I'm not, or not so much, but I do want to nod to my girly side, which tends to come out more during summer. 

    Contemporary works well for you, Carla. Updated but not extreme. Crisp and fluid, rather than sloppy. 

  • Jenni NZ replied 1 year ago

    Suz I really want to respond intelligently but just can’t think how!
    I do think 46 is quite a lot to retire in a year which interests me since you have always seemed to choose so well in the years I have been here.
    That outfit at the top of this post is just fantastic though so whatever you are doing is working!
    And I love Jussie’s description of the winter persona- I also feel like that. Maybe I wear so much black in winter because I feel like I should be bending over the coal scuttle! (Actually our new home has underfloor heating plus 2 heat pumps.)

  • Bijou replied 1 year ago

    Suz, it is always inspirational to see how you evolve your style. You know how to keep things real, adapting your style preferences for the life you lead. Your knit suit is a great example, it has the formality of a suit balanced with the fluidity of a knit. I am trying to do this too, toning down the formality, but trying to add a bit of zest through interesting details.

  • Suz replied 1 year ago

    Thank you, Bijou, and thanks for the inspirational ideas! You are doing brilliantly at casualizing your own closet for WFH without losing your signature style. 

    Jenni, you are right -- this is a huge number of items to retire in a year! In my defence, I was sitting on the fence on quite a few items due to the pandemic -- I just could not decide. Meanwhile, I lost a bit of weight at the start of the pandemic and was wondering about the fit of a few items. And, quite frankly, apart from gear and undies and replacement essentials (and my perennial footwear!), I had bought very little in the last few years, so many of my statement items are/ were feeling tired to me. So it is a real wardrobe refresh or renew, not a typical year. 

    Suntiger, LOL -- me too!!

  • Olive Green replied 1 year ago

    Washable, not precious, and you can walk miles. Trifecta!

  • rachylou replied 1 year ago

    I have to contemplate desired seasonal feeling now… !! :)

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