The OOTDs of a person who doesn’t quite belong

As fashion blogs are so popular on the internet, I thought today it’d be fun to talk about my personal style. Why? Well, unlike all these other girls who seem to have it together, who follow (or set) the trends and look as if they’ve stepped out of a magazine, I’m generally just a hot mess.

I mean, I don’t think I’m a hot mess; I wear what I like and feel good in. But I’ve met many people over the years who have given me those backhanded compliments that have assured me I’m not doing it completely right. Things like:

  • When I would tell people I was going to study abroad in London, their response would be “Ah, that’s cool. Your style looks like it comes from somewhere else. You’d fit right in.” Um thanks? I appreciate being recognized as someone with a unique style, but are you telling me I don’t belong here based on my wardrobe? And really, how much do you really know about UK fashion?
  • Or when one of my old managers in retail would talk about having a teammate having a great fashion sense in a conversation and I would reply asking her about mine, to which she would reply that it was very “me” and “different”. I’m pretty sure it was her polite way of saying “You do you, but it’s not right.” Haha.

And really, the people from the above examples are right: I don’t necessarily dress to fit in and I do tend to have my own sense of style. But hey, isn’t that the beauty in fashion just as it’s the beauty in art? Sometimes the most interesting things come from people stepping out and finding their own style?

So, to celebrate my own unique fashion style and encourage others to do the same, I thought I’d share some OOTD drawings and talk about what you can expect to find me wearing if we ever meet.

(And apologies in advance for the somewhat sloppy quality of these photos. It was ridiculously hot when I went outside to take them, the kind of hot where you sweat just breathing, so I totally rushed through them. Whoops.)

OOTD Illustrations || Waist-tie Dress and Pandora jewelry || by Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Outfit #1: Dresses & Pandora Jewelry

My mom actually loved putting me in dresses as a kid, but between my inability to drink milk out of a carton without spilling it all over me and my natural tomboyish ways, I quickly stopped wearing them once I started dressing myself. As an adult though, I find I love them and it mainly has to do with one thing: my fluctuating weight. I hate the stress that comes with putting on pants and realizing they’re no longer fitting as well as they used to. Dresses solve that problem for the most part. I mean, you do have to be wary of how short they get as you get wider, but overall they’re more comfortable to grow in.

And, if I’m wearing one of my many dresses, it’s a good bet that I’m wearing my Pandora jewelry. I have a Pandora bracelet that Dave bought me for our first Christmas together and over the years it has been filled with charms from our many adventures together (along with a few others from my parents). It’s the only jewelry I wear (along with a necklace) and I like that it acts as a memory book in a way.

OOTD Illustrations || Cardigan, Blouse, and Shorts || by Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Outfit #2: Sleeveless Blouses, Cardigans, and Shorts

Sleeveless blouses are my favorite things. I like how light and airy they are, I like that I can just throw a cardigan over them if I’m a little chilly, and I just think they’re one of those things that will always be somewhat in style. Plus, they’re sleeveless! And, if you couldn’t tell between this OOTD and the last, I don’t like long sleeves. If any dress or top has them, you can almost always count on me to roll or scrunch the sleeves up so my forearms are bare because for some reason their full length bothers me.

And the shorts? Well, don’t let me fool you. Those are not tight booty shorts. I don’t care for those personally. The kind of shorts I prefer to wear are the loose fabric kind with elastic waistbands. Because comfort. I’m all about comfort. (But hey, the funky patterns make them sort of fashionable, no? No, probably not.)

OOTD Illustrations || Pants, Tanks, and Cap || by Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Outfit #3: Caps, Tanks/Tees, and Baggy Pants

This is my “I don’t really want to get dressed so here’s my half-assed attempt” look that I can be found in most often, which I sometimes claim to be my attempts athleisure wear. It usually involves throwing a hat on my head because my hair’s a mess, putting on a loose t-shirt or tank, and wearing comfortable baggy pants either casual or joggers. It’s honestly really nothing pretty and I’m pretty sure it’s the look that confuses people the most because it’s like “is she trying or not? What the heck is going on there?” And really, I don’t know. It’s just an accurate representation of how I feel some days: I go out attempting to look like I have it all together but really, I’m just not feeling it. It’s neither here or there.

OOTD Illustrations || V-neck tee and midi skirts || by Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Outfit #4: Shirts and Midi Skirts

This is my newest go-to look (though one I don’t wear often because my mom says it reminds her of what my aunt wore when they were in school and I don’t know, that just put me off): high-waisted long skirts with somewhat fitted shirts. You see, the thing about most of my looks is that they’re not always flattering for my body type. I prefer bagginess for comfort and/or growth but unfortunately that bagginess tends to mean most of my shape is hidden. And, believe it or not, I have a nice hourglass figure (bom chicka wow wow!) So, these high-waisted skirts are awesome because not only do they highlight my waist but they still allow for the comfort I so happily seek. Plus, it means I don’t have to worry as much about flashing everyone on a windy day. No one wants to see my granny panties.

The only thing missing from these four OOTDs are my scarves. I do own quite a few scarves and they are the one thing I turn to when I like an outfit but feel like it can do with something a bit more. They’re not pictured in any of the above because it’s a bit too hot for them now, but I can guarantee you I could find a scarf to wear with each above if I wanted. (And I’m not quite sure why I like them so much. Makes me feel less naked since I don’t often wear jewelry? To help cover cleavage? To have a tool to choke someone if they really annoy me? Hmm…)

So there you have it, a rundown of my style when it comes to fashion. That wasn’t too bad, right? I don’t look completely ridiculous, do I? I’m curious, what would you say are your go to looks? Any similarities? Is there a certain theme (such as my comfort and ability to wear with fluctuating weight) that affects what you like to wear? Let me know in the comments below!

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Have I found my art style yet?

Have I found my art style yet?

One of the hardest things about illustrating again is attempting to figure out my “style”. I try not to think too much about it because I believe in many ways it can be counter-productive, but I would be lying if I said that part of me doesn’t want to be able to look at my work and see traces of consistency.

Of course, the funny thing is, oftentimes when I post my illustrations on the blog or on Instagram, my friends will respond and say “Your drawings are so you!” or “I can always recognize when one of your illustrations pops up in my feed.” How do they recognize my style when I don’t? To me, the illustrations I posted in my last art update, were sort of all over the place. Some had dark outlines, some had lines in their hair, some had (bad) coloring, etc. I mean, variation is great and I like each of those pieces for one reason or another, but to me it was still very obvious that I was just trying to get used to creating again.

I’m happy to say though that with this next batch of illustrations, I see a consistency and I really like the results. And it’s not even because most of my illustrations are based on the same photo shoot, though I’m sure that helps. I just see a connection here between each image where even though they contain different personalities and looks, they all represent a similar style.

That being said, this batch of illustrations is from January and I can assure you that changes are still taking place, especially as I experiment with adding colors to my work. But hey, there’s nothing wrong with that. I like still being able to see my growth each month as I reflect on earlier pieces and it’s encouraging to know that my style is making itself known.

Illustration based on Feb 17 Vogue: Dior Ad || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, February 2017 ed, Dior advertisement

Illustration based on February 2017 Vogue: "Dangling Modifier" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, February 2017 ed, “Dangling Modifier” as photographed by Willy Vanderperre

Illustration based on February 2017 Vogue: "Small Wonder" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, February 2017 ed, “Small Wonder” (p. 168) as photographed by Willy Vanderperre

Illustration based on February 2017 Vogue: "At Attention" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, February 2017 ed, “At Attention” (p. 165) as photographed by Willy Vanderperre

Illustration based on February 2017 Vogue: "Far and Wide" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, February 2017 ed, “Far and Wide” (p. 163) as photographed by Willy Vanderperre

Illustration Based on January 2017 Vogue: "Moment of the Month" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, January 2017 ed, “Moment of the Month” (p. 98) as photographed by Patrick DeMarchelier

Illustration based on February 2017 Vogue: "Business as Usual" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, February 2017 ed, “Business as Usual” (p. 164) as photographed by Willy Vanderperre

Illustration based on November 2016 Vogue: "Gray Lady" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, November 2016 ed, “Gray Lady” (p. 205) as photographed by Patrick DeMarchelier

Illustration based on November 2016 Vogue: "Flower of the Flock" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, November 2016 ed, “Flower of the Flock” (p. 207) as photographed by Patrick DeMarchelier

Illustration based on December 2016 Vogue: "Eye to the Ear" || Asti @ bit.ly/atypicalnarrative

Reference: Vogue, December 2016 ed, “Eye to the Ear” (p. 241) as photographed by Josh Oline

Let me know what you think! Have any thoughts on the illustrations above? Any comments on my style or your question to find your own? I know a lot of creatives who read my posts are writers so would love to hear from your perspective as well: do you ever think/worry about your style when writing or are you too caught up in creating to notice? I’m curious!

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