By Angela Harrison 

Fashion makeover shows are always fascinating to watch; they find the most unfashionable subjects and transform them into chic style mavens. We love seeing people step outside their comfort zone and be completely surprised by how much they love a look they would’ve never considered before. These exciting transformations don’t have to just happen on TV — you don’t even have to be fashionably-challenged to be transformed by a look. Anyone can be made-over. 

We see our same clothes day in and day out, and while we may look like seemingly normal humans from the outside, we can always step it up from the functional bare-minimum. We can swap out our usual work-tops and black pants for clothes with life and style, or dump our beloved errand-running yoga pants for easy, cropped linen bottoms and a scoop-neck tee, or wear something other than black after 5pm on the weekends (guilty as charged!). All of these current looks we wear are fine, but fine can be turned into fabulous. And everyone deserves to feel fabulous. 

Workwear Alternatives 

We live in an age where work attire can range from a t-shirt and jeans to a full suit. Whether it’s a performance review, presentation, new client meeting — or the mood just strikes — a clean look will always set you apart from the rest. Men usually have it easy when it comes to workwear (cue the eye-roll), and a lot of my female clients feel stuck in the same black/grey blazer and dress pants or button-down blouse and jeans. One of my favorite suiting alternatives are jumpsuits; they’ve come a long way since the ‘70s, and there’s a fit and style for everyone. I consider them suiting alternatives because they give the same consistent look, from top to bottom, that a suit would; a set within one garment. The blue ‘Asplice’ jumpsuit by City Chic is a gorgeous cut, with its wrap-style top and wide cropped leg. It’s a fashion-forward piece that stands out for all the right reasons. Same goes for the ‘Popover Crop Jumpsuit’ by Chelsea28. Its popover-style bodice creates the illusion of two pieces and gives stunning proportions. Pair with your fave sandals or pumps and you’ll be looking on top of your game all day. For a more casual look, throw on a bright layering piece like the ‘Dapper Blazer’ by City Chic in color ‘Shock Pink,’ or jazz up your bottoms with the colorful ‘Richmond Stretch Cotton Trousers’ in the print ‘Riviera Blue/Wildflower’ by Boden. Both pieces pair great with casual cotton tees, button-downs, or chambray shirts.  

Ditch the Daytime Yoga Pants 

Say it with me: you’re better than leggings. You know it’s true. And yeah, their comfort is unmatched and they hold us in all the right places, but if you’re not leaving from or going to a fitness facility, we can do better. With the same exact effort as putting on yoga pants, you can put on this fab pair of ‘Island Slim Leg Pants’ by Vince Camuto, whose ribbed tank and leather slides make you look like an effortlessly-chic Parisian while dominating your Target run. “Why is Marion Cotillard picking us up from school? Oh, it’s just Mom, she’s not wearing yoga pants!”  Everything this summer season is striped, cropped, and wide-legged — get into it. Denim is always a great daytime pant; the trend is a looser fit, like the ‘Jagger Crop Straight Leg Jeans’ by Vigoss. It’s perfect for transitioning from daytime to causal dinner out; the boyfriend style looks great cuffed and with a simple Keds tennis shoe or strappy flat sandal. When it comes to tops, don’t overthink it, keep it simple with small style details like the ‘Tie Front Shirt’ by Treasure & Bond or the ‘Twist Front Linen Shirt’ by Calson. Both are classic styles with design details that step them up from basic button-downs to fashionable, stylized looks.       

Brighten Up The Night 

Trust me when I say, I fully understand the appeal and desire to wear all black for your night-out looks. But we can do better to step it up. You can keep your favorite black jeans on, but add a print top like the ‘Twinkle Palm’ top by Wallis, or the whimsical ‘Tropical Garden Tie Shoulder Top’ by Vince Camuto. Both pieces are great ways to amp up your nighttime looks while still wearing dark bottoms and being colorful. If you’re a maxi skirt fan, try swapping the skirt out for wide-leg print pants like the ‘Happy Dance Floral’ pant by Billabong, or the insanely beautiful ‘Border Floral’ wide leg pant by Evans. They give the illusion of a flowing skirt and pair perfectly with any fitted top tucked in. Add a strappy heel for fun and you’ve successfully made over your usual look.  

Makeovers don’t have to be extreme. Something as simple as trying a new color or style of top can make us feel shiny and new. If a print or cut catches your eye, TRY IT. Swap it out, step it up, make it over, and feel excited about your looks! And if you really don’t know where to start, call me!   

Angie Harrison received her BS degree in fashion merchandising from Western Michigan University. After merchandising for a large retailer, she went on to start Angela Harrison Style: a personal, print, and film wardrobe styling service. Her experience has led her to build a diverse client list of people from various professions and backgrounds. Angie has also styled wardrobes on local and national TV commercials, and has started a visual merchandising branch of AHStyle, providing styling and merchandising expertise to Michigan retailers. Facebook | Instagram