How to Get Dressed in Five Minutes

Without fail, whether we are going to work, church, on a date or a special event, I’m ALWAYS dressed before my husband. How is that possible, when as a woman I have more items to incorporate into my overall look than my husband does? Think handbag, jewlery, sunnies, etc.

What I am doing that my dear hubby seems to miss?

There is a one-step routine that I’ve followed for several years. I’ve been able to shave time off my own style sessions.

So, what’s my secret? Brace yourself! I pre-plan my looks. So what does that mean? I plan the outfits in my head and store them there until I’m ready to bring the look to life. For example, on Sunday I’m already thinking about what I’m going to wear to work on Monday and Tuesday.

Now, you’re probably thinking, THAT’S IT?  That’s the earth shattering one-step routine that will cut my dressing process down to five minutes? YES! Somethings just aren’t complicated and getting dressed everyday for work or to head out with your girls shouldn’t be complicated. Trust me, I definitely notice a difference when I don’t pre-plan my looks. I procastinate getting out of the bed in the morning and hit snooze because I’m trying to bide time and put more thought into what I’m going to wear. When I finally get out of bed, I spend even more time (that I don’t have) in my closet experimenting when I should be on my way to work. Not to mention my closet ends up looking like the Tazmanian Devil spun his way (minus the wacky sounds) through my racks and floor.

So, when is the best time to do all of this pre-planning? For me, I do a lot of the mind coordination during my long drive to and from work. I will confess, there have been a time or two (or a million) when I’ve planned out a week’s worth of outfits during a conference call or meeting at work (shhhh). That’s what I call effective multi-tasking!

For my mommy readers, the title of this blog may be a bit ambitious. I can’t say that I’ve actually tested this theory with a bunch of little humans running around, but the point here is that advanced planning really helps to save time. Also remember that the five minutes is ONLY for getting dressed. It doesn’t include all of the primping  we do in addition to getting dressed. Think hairstyling, lash curling, make-up applying, leg shaving, etc.

Now, that I’ve let you in on my secret, I challenge you to try and get dressed in just five minutes this week. Pre-plan your looks and see how much time it saves you in the morning before work or at night when you’re headed out on a dinner date.

Take the challenge, pre-plan your looks and get dressed in five. Ready, set, dress!

shannon b. 


The Road to Discovering Your Style Personality

So, if you remember from last week, I told you to make a list of all of the adjectives that describe that one item in your closet that you have multiples of. Unless you wrote that list on the back of a napkin that you eventually ended up throwing away (thanks a lot), then it’s time to pull it back out for our next step in the style discovery journey.

  1. What is my style personality?

I almost liken discovering your style personality to figuring out your zodiac sign. Each sign has it’s own characteristics that are “supposed” to describe you. I think the same can be true for your style personality.

When I first meet with my clients for the Personal Style Consultation, I usually give them a Style Personality test. I know that sounds agressive, but it’s a no-fail test. In fact, I don’t even call it a test. They don’t even know I consider it a test, well until they read this post! Through some research and my own experience, I think there are about five different style personalities. They are listed below along with a few adjectives that describe each personality.

Natural – Relaxed, effortless casual, functional, no-fuss, minimalist or bohemian; Think long flowy dresses, soft tees, boyfriend jeans and dusters. Famous naturalistas: Solange Knowles, Sienna Miller or Joy Bryant

Classic – Structured, clean lines, timeless, tailored, sophisticated, traditional or elegant; Think structured blazers, shift dresses, neutral colors, pearl accessories or tailored jeans. Famous classicistas (okay, I made that up): Kerry Washington, Jackie Kennedy Onassis or House of Cards’ Claire Underwood (played by actress Robin Wright)

Trendy – Electic, spontaneous, risky or sassy; Think fringe, joggers, leather, jumpsuits, midi skirts or looks inspired by celebrities or fashion magazines. Famous trendsetters: Rihanna, Miley Cyrus or Kelly Osbourne

Dramatic – Bold, statement maker, head turner, intriguing or confident; Think statement jewelry, leopard print, bright colors, feather boas or sequin gowns. Famous drama queens: Madonna, Diana Ross or Lady Gaga

Romantic – Feminine, whimsical, flirty, soft or flowy; Think maxi dresses, floral print, lace, tulle skirts or pastel colors. Famous romantic ladies: Emma Stone, Jennifer Lopez (red carpet) or The Notebooks’ Allie Hamilton (played by actress Rachel McAdams)

Now, compare your list from last week to the section above and see if there are any matches. This will help you determine your style. 

Disclaimer: This isn’t the complete list of style personalities.

There are several; however, in MY experience, these are the most common. If you don’t fall into any of these categories, it is okay. That just means that we have to do a little more digging.

I look forward to hearing your feedback and which personality best describes you. Take my short quiz below, so I can see where you land. Oh, and in case you’re curious about little old me, I fluctuate between classic, dramatic and romantic on any given day. Did I also mention that in general I’m extremely indecisive? I think my various style personalities are validation of my vacillating thought-process!

shannon b.

The First Step to Defining Your Style

“How would you describe your style?”

That’s typically the first question I ask a new client during our initial consultation and in most instances, the response includes a lot of hemming, hawing, gasps, long breaths, forehead scratches, sighs and finally…

“I don’t really have a style.”

With so many style choices and options available for us to choose from, no wonder it can sometimes be overwhelming to choose just one. But do you really have to? Do you have to pick one style?

Well, depending on who you ask, you’ll get a different answer. I’m under the mindset that you can have more than one style. My style personality fluctuates from time to time and that’s perfectly fine with me.

So, with all of the various styles out in the world — preppy, bohemian, grunge, goth, hipster, girly, conservative, etc. — how do you even begin to define your style?

I think there are a few of questions you can ask yourself (it’s perfectly fine to talk to yourself, I do it all of the time) to help put you on the golden brick road to owning your style. Let’s start with the first one today. I’ll save question two for next week.

  1. What do I gravitate towards?

Do you have a closet full of white collar shirts or casual blazers? Do you tend to buy the same type of wardrobe piece over and over again? There is no wrong answer. If your answer is yes, that is totally fine. It just shows that you know what you like, but dig a little deeper. Why do you like that one item so much? What is it about that item that makes you keep going back? For example, if you have 17 casual blazers in your closet, (meaning you wear them outside of work) is it because you think it makes you look polished? Does it cover up body parts that you’d prefer to deflect attention from? Do you like the flexibility of blazers? You can pair them with jeans, a tutu, a dress or pencil skirt…that’s a lot of flexibility! After you interview yourself about why you gravitate towards certain wardrobe items, write down a list of adjectives that describe that item. Hold on to the list and I’ll tell you what to do with it next week…that’s called a teaser! Oh, and if you don’t tend to gravitate towards one (or more) specific items, next Monday’s post is for you too…that’s called a double teaser!

Here’s to starting this style identity journey together.

See you next week! 

shannon b. 


What to Wear During Your Pounds Meltdown 

Spring is here, which means summer is right around the corner. All of you New Year’s resolution makers that vowed to get in shape and shed those holiday pounds by Memorial Day only have a few weeks left to get prepared for swimsuit weather.

So, what can you wear as you transition to your new summer shape without keeping multiple sizes of clothes in your closet?

I think there are three essential pieces that you should have in your wardrobe during your body transformation…and trust me, you’ll want to wear these looks even after your new shape has arrived.

  1. Wrap dress

Even if you aren’t undergoing a body transformation, a wrap dress is still a statement piece that should have a home in every woman’s closet. It’s perfect for a body that is fluctuating in size because you can pull the waist straps of the dress tighter (for that shrinking midsection) or looser. A wrap dress accentuates your silhouette, no matter what stage you’re in during your body transformation.

DVF Wrap Dress

2. Cocoon Dress

Cocoon dresses are another great option to keep in your closet while you’re melting down the pounds for summer. They have a lot of volume and aren’t restrictive around your arms (as you build up those biceps) and your midsection (as you sculpt your new abs). I also think just the name cocoon is the perfect metaphor as you shed those winter pounds in preparation for your summer body debut…almost like a butterfly shedding her cocoon.

Anthropologie Cocoon Dress

   3. Jumpsuit

Jumpsuits are another essential piece you should have in your wardrobe as you prepare your summer body. Besides being extra cute, comfortable and functional, they are what I consider the magic must-have in your closet. Jumpsuits are the masters of illusion when it comes to deflecting from those body parts and areas that are still under construction. Come on, wearing a jumpsuit is like wearing a onesie all day. Nothing is more comfortable than that!

FTF Jumpsuit

FTF Jumpsuit

I’d love to hear from you about the body transition pieces that have worked the best for you. Happy shedding!

shannon b.