Clean out your closet and toss out insecurities

Book helps women dress 'from inside,' find 'fashion type'

October 12, 2003|By Jean Patteson | Jean Patteson,The Orlando Sentinel

Jackie Walker has been conducting style seminars all across the country for 15 years, and the audience reaction is always the same:

"The women crowd around me afterward," she says. "They ask, 'Do you have a book? I want to take this information home with me.' "

Now, at last, the wardrobe guru does have a book: I Don't Have a Thing to Wear: The Psychology of Your Closet (Pocket Books, $12). It is co-authored by Judie Taggart, a fashion writer.

"My mission is to give women self-esteem. I don't tie image to size or weight or age. It's all about understanding who you are, becoming comfortable in your clothing, then going out and enjoying your life. That's dressing from inside out," says Walker, a slender woman with a mass of dark curls, a huge smile and boundless energy.

Clothing is a costume, she says. "When your costume fits right, you can go out and get any role in life."

Nicknamed "doctor of closetology," Walker discusses in her book what a closet reveals about the woman who uses it, and provides a guide for clearing up closet chaos and establishing order. She also covers topics such as shopping strategies, accessories and travel wardrobes.

But the key chapter, she says, is the one titled "Discover Your Fashion Persona." It describes seven fashion types: classic, natural, modernist, romantic, trend-tracker, mood dresser and dramatic. Then it offers a detailed quiz to help readers determine their persona.

Women share one thing, says Walker. "When they look in a mirror, they see every insecurity they've had in their entire life."

But once they identify their true persona, she says, they can forget their insecurities and select clothing that makes them feel confident and beautiful.

The Orlando Sentinel is a Tribune Publishing newspaper.

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