On Types

Before you lay your hands on a roll of fabric or even glance towards the shop-window, you should afford yourself some hours or some days of thinking time. One does not become a well-dressed woman merely by wishing it. It requires the foundation of strategic planning, a well-thought out scheme or blueprint, for designing of which any and every woman must make time. A first step, then, in creating this scheme of total good dressing for yourself is to find and establish as indefatigable some foundation principle. Generally speaking you are either a tailored type or a fluffy and sweet type – which basic categorization in a way conforms to the Brunettes and Blondes of the Aristasian worldview – and around the principles of this foundation you should form all your contributing forces. Good dressing is primarily a matter of self-understanding and dress-understanding, and only quite secondarily of purchasing, arranging and combining clothes. Texture, color and form must all be considered in relation to the personal appearance or “type.” The beautiful in itself is not always a safe guide, but its beauty in relation to the wearer must be the test.

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Your type guides all your clothes-thinking and you should always keep it in mind when acquiring even the smallest article for your wardrobe. It should be the under-current of all your clothing decisions. However, your type should not be viewed as a limitation. Type is established only as a background, a principle, a foundation upon which to build ever so many different sorts of outfits for your various circumstances and moods. A tailor-made woman is not expected outfit herself for a luxurious gala evening in a plain suit, of course not! She will be as sumptuous and gorgeous as the situation demands and her heart yearns for, only with a view to her particular type, which can be expressed in striking and magnificent silk dress as well as in the simplest and most severe tweed suit. The fluffy and romantic woman, on the other hand must not appear in a delicate dress and bouffant petticoat when embarking on a mountain walking tour. Even the woman who practically exudes curled silk ribbons and on whom gowns fairy webs of fine lace seem to grow naturally, must by iron rule of practicality and appropriateness restrain herself from any excess in her walking or street costume. But certainly she will find a way to infuse a dose of her sweet personality even in the simple street suit, all her clothes from the frothiest negligee to the most practical suit are distinctive of her type and personality. A woman’s outfit should be so much the expression of herself that, seeing it, we think not of the clothes, but of the woman who is its soul. There can never be a question of suppressing one’s type, only of expressing it in a manner suitable to the occasion.

Expressing your personality and type in a agreeable manner requires sane and balanced judgement, as does anything pertaining to dressing and aesthetic expression in all everyday matters. Individual preferences, age, and character also have their effect on how you express your type – for example a young romantic girl can wear  simple and fresh cotton frocks without any decoration save the lace of her petticoat peeking from under the hem, and still exhibit her ultra-feminine type to the fullest. With a thorough understanding of line, material and colour, you will be able to determine instantly the fitness of certain lines or garments to your type.

To discover your type it is most important to consider whether you feel just right in a certain sort of frock. If the feeling and the poise and the surety of being well-dressed is lacking – if you are uncomfortable and distrait, then there is surely something wrong. Test different accessories and fondle fabrics of various types. Is it the absence or presence of a pretty bow which causes discomfort? Does the softness and delicacy of chiffon annoy you or soothe you, and do you feel and itch to add or subtract a frothy tulle when deciding on a hat? Then draw the conclusion as to your type, and always check that all your clothing decisions are measured against your type and your personality.

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