How losing my personal style made me feel like I lost myself

My personal style reflects me, so when I realised I lost it by giving into the T-shirt and jeans uniform I realised I lost a part of me somewhere along the way.

After moving from Milan to Stockholm I felt like my personal style got lost in translation. The feminine vintage lover that I was felt like an alien in the sea of Scandic minimalism. It’s not that I decided to ditch my style because I wanted to fit in, but I found it hard to maintain it in such a different environment.

I was dealing with a different climate (one that killed my desire to dress up) and my day job involved working with kids. So my work outfits had to be comfy and not too precious, as they would often end up having ketchup or grass stains on. My favourite pieces were worn less and less and I could feel my inner fashion girl crying. Somewhere between my big winter jacket and horrible winter boots, I almost gave up.

 Me in my favourite vintage dress.

I looked at myself in the mirror. I thought: “If this outfit could talk, what would it say?” It didn’t seem like it had many interesting stories to tell. It would probably talk about the weather and about work. I probably wouldn’t care to listen to it and for someone who loves fashion and studied fashion communication, this felt sad. How did I become so plain?

I always say that fashion is something to play with, but I wasn’t living by that rule anymore. Dressing up wasn’t fun anymore. It became a necessity. And while I understood that I can’t and shouldn’t go back to my old Milanese self, I decided to take things into my own hands. I will not give up on my fashion and my style because that feels like giving up on myself.

 Mixing and matching at Milan Fashion Show when fashion was still fun.

It may seem like I’m making a big deal about fashion and looks, but this is so much bigger than that. I am talking about personal style. About the way that your clothes make you feel. The message that you send with what you decide to wear. The confidence you get when you feel good about yourself. Fashion is literally superficial as it is clothes that we put over our skin, but our relationship with it is so much deeper. What you wear can make you feel good, confident, seductive, insecure, fat or invisible. When something we think is insignificant has such a big effect on how we feel, why don’t we use it to our advantage?

That’s what I decided to do. I will work on rebuilding my style and my wardrobe. Also, I’ll try to figure out more stylish ways to combat the cold. And for work, I can at least add some cool accessories to a simple outfit. I will play more with fashion because it is meant to be fun. I will rebuild my style and with it myself.

P.S. If you guys want to follow me on my adventure or reviving my style you can follow me on Instagram as that’s where I’ll be documenting all the inspiration and interesting things that happen along the way. Hope to see you there! 🙂 Also, what do you like to do when you feel in a rut regarding your style? I’d love to hear any tips and tricks.

Ivona Josipovic

Ivona Josipovic is a co-founder of The Smoke Detector, writer, fashion stylist, social media manager, curious creature, chocolate lover.

1 Comment
  1. I can definitely relate to this! Haha I love fashion so much and have always connected my style to how I feel. If I’ve been feeling rather blue I always try to put on an outfit that will cheer me up. And if I wear an outfit I’m feeling uncomfortable in, it affects my mood. And same, of course, goes for long periods when I’m feeling on the down side for fashion – it affects me so easily!

    Have a lovely week babe and thank you for sharing! Xx

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