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Personal Style Revisited // Season 5, Episode 6

Welcome to the Millennial Homemakers! On this episode, we decided to revisit one of our earlier topics – defining your personal style. We’ll share our personal styles, and share tips on how you can define your own styles.

Jaclyn:   Hello and welcome back to the Millennial Homemakers. Today, we wanted to talk about a subject that we already touched on in Season 2, Episode 6. So, only three seasons later.

Jackie:   Exactly three seasons later.

Jaclyn:   We decided that it was about time that revisited this subject because it is so important to everything we talk about.

Jackie:   I think it’s important to mention that one of the big reasons we decided to revisit this was actually our interview with Ty Pennington. If you haven’t listened to it, please do because it was so much fun. If you’ve listened for a while, you know that we always ask guests to give us three adjectives that describe their style. And Ty, being Ty, only gave us two words. So, we thought about our personal style in a different way than we had the first time. And we decided this is the perfect time and the perfect excuse to take a look at it again.

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Jaclyn:   Yeah. And I think too, the longer that we’ve been mulling over these subjects, talking about them, and posting about it on Instagram, we’ve matured in different ways. Even before Ty, our interview with Myquillyn Smith had us thinking about our styles again. She calls herself a cozy minimalist, which is an adjective and then a noun. And with Ty, I think the two words that he used were primitive and modernist. So that got us thinking.

Jackie:   Absolutely. And I think it’s important to revisit your personal style on a fairly regular basis. As you said, Jaclyn, we’ve evolved in just three seasons. And then any major life events will shape your style and even change your style. And just like I’ve been told, if you have a major life event – a new job, you get married, you buy a house, you have a baby, anything big – you should always retake personality tests, like the Enneagram, the StrengthsFinder from Gallup, or any other personality tests, because your personality changes a little bit. It’s still going to have a lot of those same qualities, just redefined. And I think it’s the same with personal style.

Jaclyn:   I totally agree with that. And I really wish there was a better personal style quiz. I wish that there was a way that we could help you find your personal style, and we’ve talked about it a lot. I’ve made color wheels devoted to personal style and done a ton of R&D on how we can help people find their personal style. But honestly, it’s such a case-by-case basis because it is so individual. I don’t know how. There’s really no way unless we became personal style coaches or something, which seems really ridiculous. But there’s really no one-size-fits-all, cookie-cutter thing because everyone is so different. And literally, we could write a book on it maybe, but not like a pamphlet.

Jackie:   Yeah, it would definitely have to be a book, and it would have to cover so many different ranges because you can combine styles to make your own. The last time we talked about this subject, we had a lot of you that are members of our Facebook group post pictures of typical outfits you wore or things you’re attracted to on Pinterest. And as a group, we helped you define your style if you were having problems with that. And again, it’s that individual basis where we can’t define it without seeing what you’re attracted to, what you like. Then, we can help you. You’ve already defined it by posting those pictures. You just want to put words to it so that you know what to look for when you’re shopping or when you’re on Pinterest looking for inspiration.

Jaclyn:   Right. You just want a label. To me, it just makes it easy. It’s like, “Well, I don’t know what I like.” If you’re working with an interior designer or with a personal shopper, or you’re just talking to a friend, it’s helpful to have a label, to define the relationship. So today, hopefully, we’re going to help you DTR your personal style. Do we want to talk about what we’re now calling our new, updated styles?

Jackie:   Yes. If you want to go ahead with yours. And remember like we said earlier, it’s now based on how Ty addressed it. So it’s now two words instead of three.

Jaclyn:   So first I’m going to revisit the three words that I gave in our previous podcast and my three words were classic, feminine and eclectic.

And my new label, if you will, is an eclectic traditionalist. That’s what I’ve been playing around with. It’s very similar. It’s a different way of saying the style that I had before. Except when I first did it, I really didn’t want to say, “traditional.” I wanted to say, “classic,” and I don’t think that that is wrong at all. But honestly, the more I’ve been doing research on the traditional style, the more it makes sense. I know it’s a lot of Chesterfields and things that people think are outdated. You might think of a study that’s really dark-colored. My whole house is painted a really light gray, so I’m not super dark and moody. But the more I’ve looked on Pinterest, the more I’ve realized that I like Pins that have the word “traditional” in the description. So now, I just have to accept it and go with it.

Jaclyn Humble Eclectic Traditionalist Dining Room

And then the word “eclectic” is all-encompassing of all those different things, the feminine aspects and the old-world aspects that I like – the maps and the China and that kind of eclectic vibe. And it tends to be very Southern just because I live in the South and that is where I’m thrifting. That probably impacts the things that are available to me.

And the longer I’ve been married, the less pink I use, and I think that’s a maturity thing. I still love blush, and maybe, if we have a daughter one day, her room might be girly. But I do love blush, and I see that as more of a neutral, but I’m not into magenta and things like I was before.

Jackie:   I think it’s part of, like you said, a maturity thing. And, as you’ve lived with Jordan longer, you’ve learned how to incorporate his style and what he likes into your own style. So that’s going to push out that pink because that was the girliest and feminine aspect of it. You still have the feminine aspects and the different shapes you have in your ginger jars and chairs and things like that.

My three words originally were comfortable, simple, and timeless. We originally talked about how we thought it was funny that you used classic and I used timeless because they’re very similar. So now my new take on it is cozy industrial.

Jackie Alexander Cozy Industrial Dining Room

The cozy part is obviously very comfortable, so that obviously ties in. I think industrial on its own is very harsh. It’s a lot of metals, woods, and exposed bricks. If you think about an old factory, that’s industrial. The cozy aspects come from adding in more of the farmhouse pieces that I’ve always been attracted to and including those really soft textiles and softer colors.

I think there’s a simplicity in both of those – in the farmhouse and the industrial – because they both have clean lines. It’s going back to our roots a little bit, which brings in the timeless aspect. So, just like yours, I think it’s still very much encompasses the style I defined three seasons ago. It’s just evolving and noticing what I’m attracted to or what I’m looking at.

Two years ago for Christmas, my brother and sister-in-law got me a book called City Farmhouse, which is full of pictures of farmhouses in urban settings. It shows how people incorporate farmhouse style in the middle of the city. And I’ve noticed that most of the pictures that I’ve bookmarked are ones that had a lot more of that industrial feel. They had an exposed brick wall or their light fixture had a working cranking mechanism to raise and lower it. They just had those really cool, out-of-the-ordinary aspects that aren’t necessarily common in a house.

Jaclyn:   One thing that I thought was really interesting is that we came up with these terms by ourselves. Then we swapped notes, and we both came up with terms that had that yin and yang – those masculine and feminine elements. So, with mine, I would think of eclectic as more feminine and traditional as masculine. With yours, cozy is more feminine and industrial is masculine. There’s that balance and maybe contrast. They’re almost opposites, too.

Jackie:   Because usually if you think traditional, you’re thinking there’s not that eclectic feel. Everything’s very cohesive. Where with eclectic, everything can still be very cohesive, and that’s how you approach it. But, it’s not the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word.

Jaclyn:   When I think of the word traditional, and I think of furniture, I think of matching bedroom sets, and everything matches. And what I like about traditional is materials and maybe some silhouettes. Just the same classic things I’ve always liked, and less trendy silhouettes, but still some interest. And then eclectic is kind of where I could play with a lot of the ordinate stuff. And, I would consider ginger jars – I think they’re pretty traditional as well. But I might use the ginger jar prints that have colors in them – yellow, blue, or multicolored.

Jackie:   And I think going with back to that balance, it’s very important for any room to have that feminine and masculine balance. I think it feels automatically more put together than if it’s overly masculine or overly feminine. Then, everybody feels comfortable in your house. They don’t feel like they’re out of place because they’re not as girly as you, or they’re not as masculine as your husband or whatever. They don’t feel uncomfortable; they feel comfortable. And I think that’s very important in a home. I’ve talked about that a whole lot. I think it’s also, again, because we’ve been married for a couple of years now, we’re starting to get to know our husbands’ styles and routines, and we want to incorporate them in our house more. So, we are naturally more attracted to a little bit of that masculine side, so they also feel comfortable in their house and feel that it is their home and they’re not just guests in our homes.

Jaclyn:   I definitely agree with that. We wanted to give you some takeaways – how can you go on this personal adventure and discover what your style is? And one thing that I would encourage you to do is just really get into Pinterest.

Jackie:   I feel like that’s always our first tip. Pinterest is the best.

Jaclyn:   Just get into it. Pinterest has become so smart now. If you click on a Pin, you’ll start seeing a bunch of other Pins that pop up related to it. So if you’re scrolling and you see a Pin that you like, but you don’t really want to re-pin it, just click on it. You’ll start seeing more and more Pins similar to it.

Jackie:   Absolutely. And I’ve found so many things where I see a room, and I’m like, “Well, I like this but I don’t love the room.” But if I look at it and scroll down, and I keep following that rabbit hole, I find those rooms that have all of those elements that I liked. That’s when you start to define your styles – when you chase that rabbit hole a little bit based on the fact that there’s this one element in this room you like, and then you find this other one that has that element and a new element you like.

Jaclyn:   No, it’s so smart. I think I re-pinned 10 different pictures of the same foyer. I didn’t really know it was the same room. I was like, “Oh this is a really cool trend.” I just got so into it. You can see the different angles of that room, and you’re just going to be obsessed with it. Then, read the descriptions on the Pins, and, just like me, you might have to accept the fact that you like something that maybe you thought you didn’t because you didn’t like giving that label to yourself. I didn’t want to be a traditionalist. I wanted to be classic.

Jackie:   You fought that for a very long time.

Jaclyn:   I didn’t want to be traditional. Then, for me, too, is look at whose Instagram feed you can’t get enough of, whose stories you can’t get enough of, whose vibe do you just want for your life. And really follow those people and go through who they’re following. Follow more people like that. See if they tagged anyone in their photos and just look at your Instagram aesthetic. It doesn’t have to be all those fast fashion bloggers with the same orange filter and Target stuff – unless your style is literally just anything from Target.

Jackie:   Which I definitely acceptable. I’ve been there.

Jaclyn:    But then maybe your style is just really trendy. I don’t know. To me, I’m getting further and further and further away from trendy because then you just waste a lot of money on things that you’re going to hate in a year.

Jackie:   Your style evolves. So right now, you’re attracted to everything Target has, and they have great stuff. I’m definitely still a fan, but you might notice that in a year, you don’t like it as much. Or your style has evolved so that there’s a particular section of Target that you’re really attracted to.

Jaclyn:   That’s where I am. There’s like one specific line there that I like, for home decor at least.

Jackie:   It may or may not be the Magnolia collection at Target for me. No surprise.

Jaclyn:   This is more interior focus, but then with your fashion, I think everything just kind of flows together. So I might have more of the feminine aspects in my fashion.

Jackie:   And I think it’s very interesting because usually we approach this from where I focus more on the decor and you’re more focused on the fashion. And this one, we were very much both on the decor.

But if you’re following those Instagrammers that you love, and their home decor just speaks to you. First of all, look at what they’re hashtagging because that’s probably one of the words that you’re going to associate with. But then notice what they’re wearing when they’re doing their stories or if they’re in their pictures and it’s not just their home. Because fashion can kind of reflect your home decor style because it’s going to be very obvious if they’re very like different. It’s going to look very out of place if they’re standing in a room that’s very industrial, but then they’re all glammed up. That just seems very out of place to me.

Jaclyn:   I totally agree with that. That’s really good advice.

Jackie:   Even if they’re not a fashion blogger. They’re going to be in clothes – they’re going to be dressed up in at least a picture or two.

Jaclyn:   And just their vibe, too. And then you’ll make it your own. And that’s a good place for experimentation. Who are some people that you follow who are maybe more on the industrial side or who have really influenced you?

Jackie:   That’s a good question. Let me actually pull up my Instagram, so you can go for it while I’m looking.

Jaclyn:   I have followed Mary Elizabeth, I think she’s, Hey, Mary Elizabeth on Instagram. I’ve talked about her before, and she’s great. And so she was an inspiration for me in the beginning. She’s in California and has this more free-spirit, boho vibe than I do.

But recently I have started following another account – her name is Gwen, and she is the Makerista. She does a lot of second-hand thrifting, but she’s a little bit more experimental with the paint colors. And I haven’t gotten into that yet, but she has very moody paint colors. I think she’s in Kansas City, but I just love her thrifts, and I really like her vibe. She does a lot of second-hand clothing, which I don’t necessarily do, but I’m just into her vibe very recently.

Also, I love Patricia from Southern Charm in Charleston. And her house is so glamorous. If you go to Architectural Digest and look up Patricia Altschul. I love her and her whole vibe. I want to be her when I grow up. I would have a Butler and everything, but anyway, so those are just two people. Patricia’s style is a little bit busier, which is very Southern. I think she just probably has more of an “I don’t care what you think” kind of attitude.

And Kate Spade, her apartment in New York was a lot busier, same kind of a thing, but she had that like super eclectic vibe, too. And I just loved seeing her apartment. And you can Google pictures of that. I think there’s even a video where she takes you through her apartment. It makes me so sad whenever I think about it. But anyway, she’s always been a big inspiration for me. And not just clothing, just in life.

Jackie:   My Instagram’s not working at all. I even went to my Pinterest because I know I’ve pinned things from Instagram and I can’t even open those.

So anyway, I know one, and I talked about her I think very early on and someone that I followed and fell in love with her decor. I think through what she’s pinned, I’ve seen more of the industrial elements where I was initially attracted to her more farmhouse-y elements. It’s Erin from Cotton Stem; she is just adorable. And we have even a very similar fashion sense, where everything’s comfortable but it’s usually more fitted. A lot of times you can’t get both of those – I like more of those timeless silhouettes where it doesn’t look slouchy but I’m still very comfortable.

But she has a she-shed in her backyard that’s her office when she’s working from home. And it’s those industrial elements of that. Sheds are where you store tools, and that’s a very industrial thing to think of. It’s just that vibe.

And then another one is Vintage White Farmhouse. She has giant clothespins on her wall, and I’ve always wanted that. She also has an old washing board, like an actual vintage one, and I just love vintage, which is why I really like industrial.

Jaclyn:   That’s cool. I like that. Kind of country industrial, you know.

Jackie:   About two days after Jaclyn texted me that we should revisit our styles, I was browsing the clearance section of Pottery Barn, which I still can’t afford, but they have this coffee table that is so industrial. The top is rustic wood, and the bottom is metal. And it has a crank that actually works. So you can have it coffee table height and then raise it up if you want to use your laptop. And I love that it’s functional and also looks super cool.

Jaclyn:   That’s just like a confirmation.

Jackie:   Yeah. I think that happens a lot – you find something and then now you realize, “Oh, I’ve always liked this. I just didn’t know I was looking for it.”

Jaclyn:   It’s like the yellow car thing – where if I tell you that you’re going to see a yellow car in the next few days, you’d be like, “I never see yellow cars.” And then you realize that you see them everywhere. I would just encourage you to revisit your style every now and then, realizing that we change and adapt and might need to redefine our styles sometimes.

Jaclyn:   That’s all we have, and I hope that y’all continue to revisit it. Give us some feedback in our Facebook group. We love talking to y’all about that. Think of it as this is the course material, then let’s have a discussion off-air.

Jackie:   Which is our favorite thing to do anyway because we learn new things and get to discover more with you guys, which is a lot of fun.

Infographic of how to define your style

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