Style Evolution: 10 years (152 pics!) of My Emerging Style...
This is 10 years of my personal style compiled right here in this post y'all! This post took some DOING, for real (sheesh) as these photos were all over the place. They were on my old blog, my new blog (this is my new blog, you are *HERE), my hard drives, style sites I used to post my outfits to (mostly my early looks) on my computer... EVERYWHERE. It took me DAYS to complete this, but I'm glad I ventured out to do it because this will serve as a sort of outfit time capsule for me and I could always just add to it. My photos go from me being really timid posing in front of my dresser, not wanting to show my face, in my closet, in front of of the stairs to finally venturing outdoors (like right outside the house though, lol, also we've moved twice in these photos) before I started to feel comfortable enough to be photographed on location around 2013. I love scouting new locations now to shoot editorial style! So below are 152 photos from the last 10 years (152 pics!) of my evolving style from 2009 to 2019, and look, some of my looks are pretty questionable, but I just look at those outfits as me taking a risk... listen, this post is a lot, it's a MEGA POST! So scroll all the way down to get into this decade of looks!
Photography: Ron Ward (and my iPhone)
Left: One of those risk taking outfits I mentioned. The top is DIY, I don't remember those bottoms.
Center: Selfie in my (then) closet. Thought I was cute and casual.
Right: My Thakoon for Target Dress that I LOVED at the time.
Left: Another Target dress, took the nieces and nephews to the Storybook Ball back when they were littles. Recently sold it on eBay.
Center: Another basic casual look, I felt cute here.
Right: A DIY dress that I still have & wear! Because comfy + pockets!
Left: Thrifted sequin top and trouser shorts that I still have and wear.
Center: That white swing top had pockets (!) it's fabric scraps now, I use the denim leggings as a head wrap/turban.
Right: Another DIY dress! Made this at the height of Michelle Obama's time as our awesome first lady. Remember when she dressed like this?
Left: I still have the Run DMC tee and gray wrap, the rest of what I'm wearing, I don't recognize. Sorry to those clothes.
Right: Not sure what type of look I was going for here, but I do remember it all being from Forever 21.
Left: A black DIY dress I made inspired by a Michael Kors look.
Center: Another DIY dress I made inspired by the TV show "Mad Men"
Right: A brown DIY jumpsuit that I made but never wore anywhere because at the time I thought it was a wardrobe malfunction waiting to happen.
Left: Listen, I thought I was super cute here with my uggs and holiday blouse. Don't know what I did with that cute blouse. I wish I did.
Center: I still have this gray leopard blouse even though I never wear it. The black pants too.
Right: I still have this black dress and red sweater. Not sure what sort of weird tights phase I was going through back in 2009.
Left: I remember this GAP dress. I bought it and was surprised when I got it home and it had POCKETS. The dress was a little conservative for me so I recently sold it on eBay.
Center: Not sure why I would have ever bought that blouse. Do. not. like.
Right: This was my DIY Vacation dress I made that I would go on to RE-FASHION into a whole other dress later.
Left: My DIY short camouflage jumpsuit. Also wore this when No Limit headlined one night of Essence Festival recently.
Center: My DIY white mini dress. Never wore it out.
Right: My DIY tan (taupe?) romper. Also never wore it out.
Left: This dress was from H&M and I honestly don't have a good excuse for purchasing it. True story, I tried to get rid of it by selling it on eBay years ago, and my buyer messaged me once she received it in the mail wanting to know WTH it was and could I please return her money, lol lol.
Center: The sequin dress was a thrift store purchase and you've already seen the wrap.
Right: This top was Helmut Lang and I remember being so proud to own a designer name brand piece but today I couldn't even tell you what I did with it.
Left: I wish I knew what happened to this red plaid shirt because I would still wear it as a winter layering piece if I had it.
Center 1: The jacket is gone, the blouse is gone, I still have the shorts.
Center 2: That top was bright and colorful wasn't it? Also I'm kinda obsessed with the length of my pigtails in this pic.
Right: Still have the jacket, I've since dyed it yellow, still have the shorts and the red tights.
This DIY dress was one I made for a Hip Couture Hip Candy Giveaway!
I made this maxi dress when I was really into Rachel Zoe's style back in 2010. She had a really bohemian vibe that I was all into. I re-fashioned this dress to a more fitted dress later. But check my inches in this pic though!
This DIY dress I made to wear to my cousins wedding in New Orleans, it's Cynthia Rowley Simplicity pattern 2497. This photo also represents the very last time I chemically straightened (relaxed) my hair.
Left: Shades of black, still have everything except the red flats.
Center: Tiered taupe strapless dress that i recently sold on eBay.
Right: Another DIY jumpsuit that I made in black!
Left: The gray mini and vegan leather jacket are gone. The black and white feather boa is still hanging in my closet though, lol.
Center: Gave the hat to my Grandma because she loves hats, still have the rest of this festival outfit minus the tan shoes.
Right: I heart this H&M dress and I still have it! The only reason I don't wear it much is because it's the same color as my skin which makes it a little awkward.
Left: When I look at this next series of photos, I realize how thin I had gotten after having surgery to have fibroids removed. I remember getting down to 124 lbs. which was a really thin weight for me. Still have the jeans even though they don't fit like that anymore, that black top is poof, gone.
Center: This entire cutie brown plaid shorts outfit is no longer.
Right: I still have this black shirt dress, it was from Sarah Jessica Parker's clothing line at the time.
Left: Still have the tan top and red jeans but I don't wear either. The red jeans because I struggle to get the zipper up, lol. Should probably just give them away.
Center 1: Still have the Run DMC tank, I sleep in it now, I don't know those jeans.
Center 2: This is an H&M dress that I put an elastic drop waist in that I'm now taking back out. We change our minds.
Right: Still have this whole outfit. I wore this when we rode bikes through Spain in November 2011 on the Mr's birthday. Fun times.
Left: Another pair of pants that I still have but never wear. Glad I got rid of those weird heels. This pic also represents my first big chop (hair)!
Center: The vegan leather jacket is no more, the weird draped skirt is now a lining on a dress I made.
Right: This little DIY number was a turtleneck top that I made into a dress by adding a double layered ribbed bottom. A Keke Palmer magazine spread was my inspiration for this look. Still proud of it.
Left: Hair is growing out a bit, that top and heels are no more.
Center: Listen, I was trying things out here that I probably wouldn't try again. Not sure where I got the white fluff blouse but I made those pants. This was meant to be an Easter holiday look.
Right: Remember my tan jacket from a few looks back? Well this is the same jacket after I dyed it. I still have it and still wear it.
Left: This is me trying to bite Solange Knowles entire style at the time. I made the sequin mini and I still have the leather jacket.
Center: This was a pair of tan fitted cargo pants that I dyed light pink. I was on a bit of dying spree for a minute.
Right: I made this white skirt, then re-made it shorter, but this entire outfit has been given away.
Left: A plaid Levi's shirt dress that I still own and wear.
Center 1: Still have the plaid shirt and striped tie.
Center 2: This is my DIY poolside dress that I made and I actually wore it poolside once to a swimwear fashion show. I wore it more recently to the New Orleans Wine & Food Festival.
Right: Those pants! They were a re-fashion from a size 22 thrift store dress! Still super proud of that make.
I made this black halter when I was working wardrobe at L'Auberge Casino in Baton Rouge. My top was an exact copy of a red halter that L'Auberge had for the cocktail waitresses to wear and I loved it so much that I recreated it.
Left: I made the little gray peplum top and matching belt. Another DIY.
Center: Bought this dress last minute to wear to the Endymion Mardi Gras Ball that year. This is also the year I had my curly hair straightened and it was beautiful.. and also promptly heat damaged. Curls in the front of my hair were GONE. I dealt with my heat damaged hair for about a year before doing another big chop about a year later.
Right: The yellow lace skirt is a DIY that I made and loved at the time, the skirt has since been made into scrap fabric.
Left: This dress was Ann Taylor and it was another piece that I loved at the time. I've since sold it on eBay. This was another dress that was a little conservative for me.
Right: This is my re-fitted, re-fashioned maxi dress from the dress I made back in 2010.
Left: This teal cowl neck short set was a DIY I made. I found the pattern for the cowl neck top from a Japanese pattern book called Drape Drape and my shorts were a self draft that I wouldn't get right until a few tries later. I hid the mess up on the hem in the back.
Center: I credit this Jimi Hendrix t-shirt, jeans and Converse photo with the start me of stepping outside of my comfort zone and getting more comfortable with being photographed outside (where people might stare at me! lol) But this photo right here definitely represents the start of me not limiting myself on where I'm photographed.
Right: This is my 2nd pair of DIY shorts, and I still didn't get these completely right. But these were much closer to being right than my teal pair.
Left: This DIY dress I made was inspired by a Juicy Couture dress I spotted Jennifer Lopez wearing. I copied it nearly exact, I just added pockets to mine.
Center: Another DIY dress I made that included pockets. Wore this little number when the Mr. graduated from Film School.
Right: I still have everything in this winter outfit except the vegan leather pants, those are gone.
Left: This outfit is still intact too except for the vegan leather jacket. That's gone.
Center: Another DIY dress I made that I was super proud of. I think this was the first time I attempted to sew a collar. This dress also has pockets. I still have it and still wear it.
Right: Remember the white pleated DIY skirt from earlier in this post, well this is my remake of that skirt.
Left: This first pic was right after my 2nd big chop where I cut my hair much shorter than I did the first time to start over from my heat damage. The boyfriend shorts were a pair of boyfriend jeans that I cut, made them into shorts and then re-cuffed.
Center: Those gray skinny jeans are long gone. They barely fit when I bought them, lol.
Right: I still have this whole outfit minus the combat boots. I think this was my very first crochet braid install too, I went on to install crochet braids on myself about 14 or so more times.
Left: This photo is washed out, but the pants are light pink seersucker J. Crew pants that I picked up at the thrift store with the tags still attached. Thrift store score!
Center: That t-shirt means "I don't care" in French. I sleep in it now.
Right: I loved this DIY red dress when I made it, it's scrap fabric now.
Left: This leopard coat still hangs in my closet. I wear it ever so often.
Center: All red everything, I still have all of it.
Right: Also still have this trench coat from Old Navy. I don't wear it much, but it's one of those classic type pieces that you just don't want to get rid of.
Left: I still have that black CHANEL tee and my Levi's cut off denim that I wear all the time.
Center: This dress was my first attempt at a ball length gown! I made this red number to attend a Mardi Gras ball and yes it had pockets.
Right: I still have this blush pink midi dress. It's a perfect go to dress for spring weddings.
Left: This entire outfit has been given away. But this day, I wore it to a wine festival event in New Orleans.
Center: Another dress I was super proud to pull off back when I made it! It was inspired designer Stella Jean and her mixed prints. I don't think I ever wore it out anywhere though.
Right: Made this striped dress for a design contest using fleece fabric, I didn't win because I didn't follow all of the instructions and I didn't figure that out until after the winner was announced. I lost to someone who made a basic cape. But again, probably my fault. I still love and wear this dress when it's cool enough to put it on.
Left: I made this raglan sleeved dress too, it was inspired by a dress I spotted on Instagram. I still have it and still wear it.
Center: I made this maxi dress back in 2009, but didn't really start wearing it until around the time we took these pics. It also has pockets.
Right: I made this dress as well and it was inspired by a dress that I saw Chelsea Handler wearing and I just fell in love with the hemline and wanted to recreate it.
Left: I remember this outfit that I wore to an Essence Fest Concert that year. Those are my cut-off Levi's I wear everywhere.
Center 1: Remember my "Mad Men" inspired dress that I made? Well I re-fashioned that dress into this skirt (with pockets) and the top was a Forever 21 long sleeved tee that I turned into a crop top.
Center 2: I bought this dress from the Victoria Secret Catalog, remember when they used to mail those? I still have the dress.
Right: This black tiered, ruffled, handkerchief cocktail dress I still have, the denim jacket too.
Left: These dresses are what I call my 2-piece dress series. This first brown body con dress set turned out so well, it just convinced me to make more.
Center: This plaid 2-piece dress I made is the one I probably wore out the most. It has back button detail and pockets on the skirt.
Right: I got lots of compliments on this 2-piece body con dress from passers-by while we were out shooting those pics! This 2-piece dress also has back button detail.
Left: These were my red DIY Holiday party shorts! I finally perfected my shorts sewing pattern on this pair. 3rd time's a charm I guess.
Center 1: This is my DIY Valentino copycat dress. This is the original designer dress on the runway. My dress has pockets.
Center 2: I made this dress too, the cutout back was the signature feature. This dress has pockets too.
Right: I had a goal to make this blush pink swing dress in one day and I did it! Finishing a sewing project in a day is still a big deal for me. I didn't include pockets on this one.
Left: This was my Halloween costume that year. I was a Southern University Dancing Doll. I made my leotard from Dollar Tree t-shirts and leftover sequin fabric scraps!
Center 1: I didn't make this dress, but I did add pockets to it making it 1,000 percent better than when I bought it.
Center 2: This orange top was inspired by an Urban Outfitters top that I just knew I could re-create, so I did.
Right: This tangerine dress was my DIY birthday dress that year. I got the idea for this dress from one of those Chinese fashion sites and just re-created the look.
Left: 2017 was the year of my DIY swimwear and satin lined beanies! I made this black one piece first on some scrap stretch fabric, then on one of the Mr's old stretchy t-shirts, then the final swimsuit I made with some scuba fabric I purchased from Walmart. I wore it on our Anniversary cruise in 2017.
Center: I made so many of these satin lined beanies in 2017 in all different colors. They're all lined with scarves that us you would tie your hair up with anyway all purchased from the beauty supply. I sleep in them, I wear them out over my hair when my hair is twisted and I wear my hair styled in them too.
Right: This is my 2nd DIY one-piece swimsuit that I packed to wear on the same cruise as my black scuba one.
Left: I no longer have this white dress (SOLD it on eBay) but the back had really cute detail.
Center: This gray dress is sold too but it was comfy while I had it.
Right: I still have this red exposed shoulder swing dress/top, but it's for sale HERE!
Left: There are my cut off Levi's shorts again, my clear frames, along with my black satin lined beanie and a big white tote that was a free gift from shopping at Sally's Beauty.
Center: My carefree blown out natural hair (on low heat!) check the hair growth! I still have my "Today's Outfit" tank but not those shorts.
Right: Showing off some impressive hair growth again in this pic with my Dope black tee that I still have and my super short cut offs that I only wear on vacation now.
Left: This color blocked pencil skirt was a skirt that a friend of mine who lives in California purchased but couldn't fit and instead of returning it and getting her money back (over $80 bucks!), she sent it to me figuring that I could fit it. To the rest of my friends who do this type of thing, where y'all at??? I wear a size 6-8 right now, LOL.
Center 1: This pink H&M sweater I still have and wear.
Center 2: This was my DIY Halloween costume that year. It was a candy corn dress, with pockets.
Right: This red print dress was another DIY dress I made, with pockets, I think I'm going to add side vents to it.
Left: I still have everything I'm wearing in this photo except the gray dress and and sneakers.