A Fashion Guide is a comprehensive set of guidelines that establishes and enforces style to improve communication among audiences. It defines a brand’s aesthetic and outlines rules to guide future creative updates.
Whether you prefer to build a digital mood board or cut up magazine photos in a physical mood board, this resource is a must-have for any fashion designer!
Mood boards are visual representations that help you communicate an overall idea before you start the nitty gritty of designing a project. They are a common tool for graphic designers, interior and industrial design, and photographers. They can be physical or digital. They can also be text-based if they aim to convey the tone and mood of a concept, for example in the case of a style guide.
Fashion mood boards may include outfit pictures from professional models, friends, or streetwear that you have collected. They should also include color schemes and other inspirational images, along with swatches of any textures you plan to incorporate into the final design. Adding short descriptions, like those on Ashley Bennett’s mood board, can help you elaborate on certain elements or fill in gaps that might not be obvious to someone else, like the colors and shapes of the outfits she’s included.
Fashion is a form of self-expression that allows you to make a statement. You can create a unique fashion statement by wearing outfits that reflect your confidence and creativity. Whether you prefer to rock a flowy dress with denim on denim or a fitted blazer with distressed jeans, you can find a style that suits your personality and preferences.
To get a clearer idea of your personal style, start by assessing what you have in your wardrobe. Take a look at your closet and put together a list of all the pieces you like. Next, go online and search for different styles to understand your tastes better. This will help you identify your style and choose the right clothes for your body shape. Take a cue from Queer Eye’s Tan France and get your very own style spirit guide in the form of a capsule collection. He explains how to build a collection, how to make it work for you, and what proportions mean.
Personal style is less about adhering to a specific aesthetic, but rather figuring out what clothing makes you feel most like yourself. This is an ongoing process, and it may take some time to figure out your signature look.
It helps to document your style inspiration, either through a digital app (Pinterest’s algorithm is quick to learn your preferences) or by collecting photos in a designated folder on your phone or even with old-fashioned scrapbooking supplies. This visual framework serves as your style guide while you begin to put outfits together and make decisions about what you’re going to wear.
Experimenting with unique style choices may be intimidating at first, but it’s okay to start small. For example, if you’re unsure about adding color to your wardrobe, try experimenting with bold accessories instead of full-on colored pieces. A bright bag or a printed scarf are easy to incorporate into your wardrobe and can still showcase your style personality.
Your style guide should include a breakdown of your brand aesthetic, guidelines for modeling and images/iconography. This document is essential for keeping everyone on your team on the same page and enables you to maintain consistency with your audiences.
While most fashion rules are arbitrary judgments steered by whatever comes down the runway, some commandments have more staying power. These are the menswear lores that, even though they might change over time, act as failsafe guidelines for getting dressed in the morning. Here are some tips from Queer Eye’s Tan France to help you build your own personal style bible. He covers finding your signature look, understanding proportions, and building a capsule wardrobe. (And yes, you should wear white underwear to bed). Creating your Fashion Guide will make getting dressed easier than ever.