Transform U: Beware New Trends

By Auretha Callison

by Auretha Callison Before you pick up a fashion magazine this season, beware.  Frightening and horrific fashion awaits you! Ridiculous shapes, mismatched items or clothing that doesn’t match at all is what is being sold to you as style. Ucght!

My boyfriend is always a great litmus test of whether fashion is beautiful or not. I ask him his opinion just to laugh hysterically at his reactions to the crap in magazines. He is amazed and horrified and so am I this season. I’m not even going to waste your time describing it to you. 

Let’s discuss style versus trend. Stylish people have a clear sense of their essence and have found a way to express it. They are always in style. Creating a sense of personal style is my goal with my clients. I am chipping away at the diamond in the rough. Your own style should leave you relaxed and slightly excited. It should be comfortable and feel flattering to your body and your intellect.

A trend, on the other hand, is a tool to create sales of clothing. Changing the hemlines and cuts of pants and lengths of skirts is a normal trend. Weird clunky shoes, Capri pants, and ’80s fashion are examples of my least favorite trends. You can make trends work for you by finding what cut of skirts and pants look best on you and stocking up when they are on the market. One other way of avoiding trends is to find a designer you like and wear their work, which will nearly always stay in style.

One great example of a local stylish chick is a gal named Josie at Solissa’s boutique in Sugar House. Josie has a classic French look. She expresses it with her hair, her makeup, her clothing, her coat and her accessories.  She always looks fabulous and timeless and you never feel nervous around her because she is at home in her own skin. She doesn’t seem pretentious; it doesn’t feel like she’s trying too hard. It just works for her. I don’t get the sense that she spends a fortune to express her look but she probably picks up items here and there that are right for her. She doesn’t lose her way with the trends of distraction but stays on course with chic!

People like her inspire me. I inspire myself when I show up in my own glamorous auburn classic feminine style. This season, like the last few, I will be including fake fur in my repertoire because it is my style-opulent, sensuous, and a bit over the top. Lace and fur are a couple of the few good trends this season.

This magazine’s editor has an essence style that I call Boho (short for Bohemian) Chic. Mix Stevie Nicks with Elegant Ethnic. She has many other style personae, but this is the one that I think is her true north. Spiritual but playful, her style is all-girl but wise at the same time. Open and flowing, nothing is stiff about Greta. 

My friend Carlos is extremely stylish and communicates "masculine" without trying. Always a gentleman, his essence is warm and relaxed and although his clothes are mostly Banana Republic, he has a way of wearing them softer. Another person you naturally feel comfortable around, he has a classic style and avoids trends. You will see him in slightly fitted stylish t-shirts with aviators and slim cut jeans or a nicely pressed dress shirt with no tie and flat-front pants with classic Italian shoes. Nice!

Questions to give you some ideas re. how to express your style

1. What metals do you connect with? What elements? Earth, water, wind, fire?

2. What stones feel the most "you?" Pearls, turquoise, buckshot pellets?

3. Do you have any favorite superheroes? (I’m wearing Wonder Woman emblazoned on a bottle cap these days and she is my truth-lassoing queen!)

4. Do have favorite animals/guides? Do they have feathers or fur?

5. What are your favorite prints? Chain mail, polka dots, or paisley?

6. What did you love when you were a little kid?

7. What are your favorite textiles/textures? Chamois, silky, wool plaid?

8. Are there any people that you emulate that had a signature style? Hepburn, James Dean, Pee Wee Herman?

9. What are your favorite places in the world? Morocco, Milan, Taos?

10. What do you want to be when you grow up? Pilot, sailor, ballerina?

I could go on and on. Everything we like and love gives us clues to our own style. Expressing personal style is the way that we all can be performance artists. We are the painting. Every time we put energy into our style we make ourselves shine a little brighter in the world. Bring a smile to someone’s face today with style-your own! 

Auretha Callison is an image and essence consultant in Salt Lake City. Visit her at

This article was originally published on September 30, 2008.