From Bremerhaven, Germany
2 years in Hamburg
Why do people often have so many clothes, but nothing to wear?
Some people have a problem being honest to themselves – about what they really wear. They lost the overview of their own closet. Sometimes it’s just because they hang on too much to some specific style pieces to which they’re emotionally attached. For example, they once wore this fantastic dress and still want to get back this special feeling – or size. Another reason is that people like to spoil themselves when they are feeling bad. If you go shopping while being in this mood you will buy something just for the act of shopping. But it won’t be something to which you would say “Hell, yes” when you look into the mirror. Then you go home with a new piece but after putting it into your closet you won’t take it out to wear it. Maybe it is because you attached the bad emotions from that day to your new clothes or you don’t even like it anymore when you look at it. So, here we go, your closet will hide the real nice things covered by these items.
How do you help people (re)define their own style? What’s the first step?
The first step is always to declutter and clean out your closet. It may sound easy but it’s usually quite tough as we always connect emotions to every piece. But to get a closet full of things you love to wear you have to get rid of all the things you don’t wear. So the key is: be honest with yourself.
To start, get everything out of your closet te become aware how you much really have. If you see this amount of clothes in front of you, you will be surprised. And now we go deeper: touch every piece and ask yourself is it still really you, do you say “Hell, yes, I love this piece” – then put it on a spot for all the items you want to keep. For all the items to which you say “Hell, no” – donate them, give them away, sell them online or bring it to your next second-hand shop. But on the third spot you put all the things you are unsure about. Leave them out of your closet and go through them the next day or a few days later. Sometimes even to understand our inner style voice clearly we need a break.
All the clothes to which you say “Hell, yes” you will put back into your closet ordered by color and category– e.g. all trousers from light to dark color. You will be amazed how your closet will look afterwards. To do the first steps I create a freebie with 5 videos to guide you through: bit.ly/stylegift
You’ve lived in Switzerland and Spain. What did you notice in the style of the people when you moved back to Hamburg?
What I love about Hamburg is that people are willing to live and wear their own style. But sometimes people forget to put a bit more personality into their style. By this I don’t mean to dress up like crazy: style is more than just clothes. With your attitude you can change your look immediately. In Switzerland I noticed how often people were running around like look-alikes: same facial expressions, same suits, same haircuts – even the teenagers. As if they don’t dare to show their real selves. In Spain even in fall and winter there are colours! People are outside, talking to each other, enjoying life and they love to show and live their characters.
In Hamburg I love the direct way of communication. If you want to dress up here – just do it. Sometimes I wish we would allow more individual shops to show up and show us what they really have – in sizes and body shapes. For example, I’m a curvy woman and sometimes shopping is limited. It would also be great to see people with different body shapes working in the stores. This would help women and men to see how they can dress, live out the rebel inside them and not to hide their beautiful personalities.
Can you tell us a “secret spot” where to find nice clothing/accessory items?
I always find some inspirations and hidden style gems in the second-hand shop „Kleiderrausch“ (Eulenstraße 85 in Ottensen) or if I take some time to walk around Schanze. I also love to stop by at “The Golden Age” in the shop ALL MY FRIENDS to see what Anna has brought in. This year, I bought my absolute favourite floral bomber jacket at her shop.
Could you use some of Tanja’s de-cluttering in your wardrobe as well? Have a look on her website: www.stylegenius.de
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