A few years ago, I worked at a personal styling company. My boss and I would often debate on the difference between style and fashion. She insisted they are different entities; my argument is the two cannot be separated. Of course, there are people whose classic style endures, regardless of passing trends. But I would argue that the truly stylish adapt their look to stay contemporary. Inevitably, what was considered chic and classic 30 years ago, would now look dated. Also, style has to evolve with age. My look has always been feminine, but with the passing of time, fussy lace and ruffles have stopped looking good on me. I’m still drawn to frills and I find myself trying on fripperies, only for me to throw them off in disgust, realising that I can’t dress like an antimacassar anymore.
Style should be guided by what makes you look and feel good, but to say that fashion has no part in this would be unrealistic. We’re all influenced by the zeitgeist, no matter how subtly. My look is a variation of a narrow formula that I’ve honed for years. I now know what works on me, however, to say that I do this entirely independently of trends would be dishonest. Fashion is there to inspire and excite, not to dictate.