Meaning of Style: Relax! Be Practical

This started out as a simple blog about style choices – how we (consciously or not) determine our modes of expression in dress, décor and for me, print design.

It has become far more philosophical.

Voltaire-Baquoy

Le mieux est l’ennemi du bien.

I’m seeing how choosing style relates to my essential mantra from trade school, “Done is Beautiful.”  Yes that was trade school, not a fine arts institution – which is kind of the point, I guess. My instructor, an ad agency veteran, was bestowing worldly practicality upon us that was far more valuable than any high art hoopla.

I had to meditate on this mantra a bit. IS the good the enemy of the best, when it comes to style? (I’m sure Voltaire who said this was very stylish, being French.) Mustn’t we ever strive for the very best style? The edgiest, the most meaningful? Ever pushing the envelope of self actualization and expression in the universe … ?

Um, I really don’t think so.

On a day-to-day basis I think we’d get exhausted, really. Why do you think celebs with enough money, hire “stylists” for pretty much every little thing that can possibly be styled? And how would project deadlines ever be met in the never-ending quest for the meaningful statement?

Here I’ve come up with three easy criteria to help you make common sense style choices, beyond delving deeply and narcissistically into, “What is the world hearing me say?”  Or, “How will this change the world?” Because, after all, what’s wrong with saying to the world that you’re sort of practical?

RECYCLE. That’s right, find something pre-owned (by you or someone else) that you really like and check a couple style magazines. Chances are some variation of it has cropped up yet again, and you can make use of it with retro pizazz.

GO STURDY. It’s really just the teeny boppers that use the throw-away trendy stuff – who wants to invest in something that seems like it’s going to fall apart any minute. Either literally or style-wise.

THINK CONVENIENT. Is it going to be useful to you? Are you going to have lots of opportunities where it suits your purpose? No point having something that makes you feel uncomfortable most of the time. Go with what you’ve learned works for you!

Now, didn’t that feel good? No over-thinking involved really. I am a little worried that the Gen X slacker in me could be overtaking the hip Boomer perfectionist but hey. Times are changing.

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