Do you need a personal uniform?
- Are you struggling to find something in your closet that fits and is comfortable to wear?
- Do you often feel self-conscious and not put together in your clothes?
- Do you buy clothes then find it difficult to wear them with anything in your closet?
- Do you spend too much time picking out clothes but never find the right outfit?
- Do you sometimes feel underdressed or overdressed?
- Do you often feel you can’t be bothered to get dressed and would prefer to slouch about in comfortable joggers?
- Do you struggle to find a personal style of your own?
- Do you struggle to find something when shopping for clothes?
If the answer to most of these questions is yes, then you will probably be the perfect person to try a personal uniform!
What Is A Personal Uniform?
There are quite a few takes on this but the most famous example of someone who has a personal uniform would be Steve Jobs.
Steve Jobs and Ryan Nicodemus of The Minimalists are some great, men’s, personal uniform examples.
Steve Jobs wore the exact same outfit every single day, a black top, (latterly a turtle neck ) with jeans and trainers.
Whilst Ryan Nicodemus opts for a black, round neck, short-sleeved, t-shirt and jeans every single day. It couldn’t be simpler!
Advantages of wearing the same clothes every day.
- You stay true to your personal style no matter what the occasion. Do you ever worry when there’s a knock on the door and you’re in your slouchiest joggers? When you perfect your personal uniform, it will feel as comfortable as wearing those joggers and will now be able to receive guests after 6 pm!
- You wear fewer clothes, those of you who follow me regularly will know how I like to embrace minimalism as much as possible. To have fewer clothes hanging in my closet and to have much less laundry really appeals to my minimalist tendencies.
- You will save money. When I think of the money I wasted on clothes that bought on a whim and never wore, it makes me break out in a hot sweat. Some of them were not comfortable, some did not match anything in my wardrobe, so I had nothing to wear with them. When clothes are simplified down to a cohesive personal uniform, everything gets worn regularly, and you stop wasting money on unworn impractical clothing.
- You save time getting dressed each morning, this is a huge bonus for me. My 7-year-old has ADHD and doesn’t sleep too well, he can be up and at full throttle as early as 5.15 am some mornings and its full speed until he goes to school. There is a really small window of opportunity for me to get dressed in the morning, choosing an outfit has to come low on my priorities. Finding a pair of jeans which fit perfectly first time is the best feeling each morning!
- You don’t have to keep up with changes in fashion, you’ve got your own style now, be a leader rather than a follower!
- Shopping is easier; when you need to replace a few items it’s so much easier to order them online. In the summer I swap my black t-shirts for a longline black vest top. River Island has the perfect vest top which works well for my shape. It’s quick and easy for me to order online rather than spending a morning in the shops searching for the perfect fit.
- You will always be dressed appropriately, lunch, dinner, the school run, coffee with the girls, it’s effortless to get dressed in the correct outfit when you have a personal uniform!
- It’s so much easier and more efficient. I love to be structured, I love rules and I love to have a system. Developing a personal uniform allows me to be structured and efficient when getting dressed in the mornings.
- Less laundry. This will depend on how many wears you get out of each item of clothing before you wash it. I have kids, so I’m always covered in some sort of gooey mess so I prefer to change my clothes daily. You, my friend, can go your own way!
- Unlimited outfit combinations. All the items in your closet match and work together creating a cohesive style.
- People do not notice that you’re wearing the same clothes every day. Even my nearest and dearest do not notice that I am wearing the exact same outfit each day. There in tells a story!
If the thought of a personal uniform is freaking you out why not learn how to create a capsule wardrobe, check out this post!
How to create a personal uniform
Creating a uniform wardrobe is not overly complicated, follow these easy steps to have a lifestyle overhaul and adopting a uniform to suit your personality!
Most of us wear the same things every day without knowing it. We tend to reach for the same things each day when we are pottering about, the same comfy jeans or the same slouchy t-shirt. While the other 80% of our wardrobe sits there waiting for us to plan the next big night out.
A personal uniform allows you to embrace the clothes you readily reach for and allows you to streamline your closet.
- Choose your personal style
Your personal style needs to be in keeping with your life. So, for instance, if you are looking for a wardrobe of uniform clothes for work you will need to choose clothes that are appropriate for your working environment, are hard wearing and are comfortable.
If you are a stay at home mom you will be dealing with all sorts of toddler mess, and most probably crawling around on your hands and knees for the most part of the day.
By creating a uniform for yourself which is stylish, practical and most of all comfortable you will have one less thing to think about on those chaotic mornings!
- Decide on the type of clothes you will need
Do you prefer leggings or jeans, blouses or t-shirts, dresses or skirts?
- Choose a colour palette
Choose these colours wisely and keep it simple, you need to build a cohesive colour palette. To read more about how to choose a basic colour palette for your wardrobe read this post.
- Choose your bottoms
Whether it’s a skirt, dress, jeans or leggings, make sure whatever you decide to wear is as comfortable as having your pyjamas on, nothing too tight or restrictive should be allowed in when creating a uniform for yourself.
You’ve got to be able to open that wardrobe door each morning and be able to grab a pair of jeans knowing that they are comfortable enough to wear until 10 pm. So, whatever your style, make sure it’s comfortable!
- Choose your top.
What length of top do you prefer, long or short, t-shirt or long-sleeved top, blouse or shirt?
Go with whatever style makes you the most comfortable.
Use what you have in your wardrobe. You may already have five navy blue t-shirts and five pairs of black jeans, in which case you will not need to buy anything else.
If you are struggling you may need to fill in the gaps with extra items. It’s your uniform you decide!
Remember, if you like to wear your pants only once before washing them, you will need a pair for each day.
If you wear your jeans a few times before washing you will only need a few pairs.
- Choose your shoe style
Will it be Doc Martens, Converse, sandals, flats, heels?
It really doesn’t matter as long as they are comfortable and suitable for your environment.
It’s often with my shoes that I will add a splash of colour to my personal uniform.
I love to bring out my red Dr Martens or red Converse during the winter months.
- Choose your coat or jacket
I find that because my personal uniform is quite plain, I can afford to add a splash of quirky colour to it by adding a louder coloured coat.
I opted for a yellow overcoat this year to give me a slight edge, and I love it, it’s so easy to wear on top of a black t-shirt!
- Own it!
Whatever your personal style may be, own it, make it yours and have fun with it. If like me, you love Doc Martens or Converse, wear the wackiest ones you can find, be different and stand out from the crowd let your personality shine! To find out the best way to break in Doc Martens read this post!
What attracted me to a personal uniform?
Whilst Steve jobs and Ryan Nicodemus are extreme examples of a personal uniform for men, creating a style uniform was an idea that was very attractive to me.
I envied the simplicity of a man’s wardrobe, how they don’t need to think about what they wear, how everything in their wardrobe matches, including shoes, how quickly they can get dressed, and how comfortable they are even when they are dressed up.
How I created my personal style uniform
I guess you’re wondering how on earth I can wear the same clothes every day without anyone noticing, well now the cat is out of the bag, I’m going to show you how I created my own personal uniform to wear every single day.
Choosing my outfit
I thought about which of my clothes were most comfortable, which clothes I would always reach for when getting dressed and which colours I prefer to wear.
I work from home and I am always with the kids when they are not at school. I needed to be comfortable and casual. My clothes needed to be practical too, to deal with a barrage of glue, spilt food, snot and sneezes!
Jeans were my go-to pants and I made sure the jeans I chose from my wardrobe fitted me perfectly and were comfortable. I already had three pairs of very comfortable jeans, so I bought two more pairs to go with them.
Choosing a top was the hardest part of creating a personal wardrobe. I thought long and hard about this, my deciding factors were:
- Comfort, the top I chose had to be loose and comfortable and not too short, so I opted for a box standard, black, longline, short-sleeved t-shirt
- Colour, the colour of the top had to go with everything I already owned including cardigans and coats. I have a few bright coats, shoes and cardigans so I decided to opt for the good old classic black t-shirt. I already had a few black t-shirts in my closet and decided that to make this work, I would have to buy a few more, bringing my total to seven.
- Accessories, I love wacky shoes, edgy handbags, and fur coats, so, I had no problem adding a bit of my personality to my personal uniform in the way of accessories. I’ve always loved Doc Martens and these are my signature boot or shoe for the winter.
So, there it was, the basis of my personal uniform, all that thought and I ended up exactly where Steve Jobs and Ryan Nicodemos had been for years!
I sectioned off a separate space in my closet specially for my personal uniform and looked forward to seeing how it went for the rest of the week.
I loved grabbing my t-shirt and jeans each morning and getting dressed, it was so simple and I somehow felt a lot more confident in such an uncomplicated daily style.
The best part about it, was that absolutely nobody noticed that I was wearing the same outfit every single day.
If my spouse came home early and we went for lunch, I would throw a jacket over my outfit, or bling it up with accessories.
If we ventured out unexpectedly for dinner, I could team my outfit with a pair of beautiful leopard print heels and a posh bag and was ready to go.
If I had a planned night out that’s when I would break away from my personal uniform and get dressed in something else from my closet.
My day to day living, picking up the kids, working from home, going out to work, was always in my uniform.
It was easier than ever to get ready for coffee with the girls, or a quick trip to Nandos. I loved it so much I will definitely not be reverting back to my old way of dressing as I enjoy having a personal uniform so much.
How to develop a personal style uniform
Once you have created your fashion uniforms you will need to develop and maintain it. When things need to be replaced try to stay within the rules of your wardrobe.
Adding any pieces which do not fit within the boundaries of your uniform will have you back on the slippery slope of closet nightmares
Frequently asked Q&A
Choose one thing that makes you stand out from the rest (think Matt Smith’s bow tie in Dr Who) and run with it. Make it your signature and have fun with it.
It was hard for me because I love quirky things, colour and animal print.
I soon realised that if I kept my daily outfit as basic as possible, most of my other quirky items are always cohesive and match whatever I’m already wearing.
Getting dressed had never been simpler I didn’t need to give it a second thought!
Most of my style is edgy so many of my accessories, shoes, bags and coats keep it from getting boring.
You need to create your personal uniform to match your amazing personality and don’t be afraid of adding those key elements which show off your true nature.
Creating a work uniform is possibly the easiest of all the uniform styles to create.
You will already have boundaries in place which have been created by your employer, you just need to narrow things down somewhat. Design your own work uniform by following the advice lined out above, then switch things up slightly with accessories or jackets. Work uniforms needn’t be boring, have fun and play with colour when considering your accessories.
One of my favourite style uniform examples was when we discovered that Luther had a whole closet of clothes which were the exact same including his overcoat.
It wasn’t until that moment, that the viewers realised he wore the same clothes every single day, month and year and we hadn’t even noticed.
You can do the same by choosing a style you like and adapting it to create a daily uniform to suit your lifestyle.
Tom Shelby from Peaky Blinders is another fantastic example of a men’s personal uniform, this would be especially easy to replicate if you work within an office environment.
Yes, of course, you can!
I know wearing a work uniform, not of your choosing can be pretty soul-destroying especially if it’s quite ugly.
Creating a personal uniform which screams your personality is the way to go, there is no need for your personal style to be dampened, you can be as flamboyant as you like it’s your work closet!
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