Pioneering fashion designer Coco Chanel once said, "Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street. Fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening."
So if you're looking for inspiration for your wardrobe and personal style, don't just rely on fashion magazines or what you see celebrities wearing on the red carpet. Look at the world around you. Take a closer look at the colors, textures, shapes and patterns around you as you go through your daily routine.
Here are some tips to get your started, ranging from tried and true traditional sources to some less obvious sources that you may be overlooking
Take a walk around your neighborhood. Whether you live in an area packed with apartment complexes, brownstones or single-family homes, you'll notice a wide variety of building shapes, textures and colors. Think of how these elements can be combined into patterns or how various colors seem to stand out or make other colors look better.
Notice the textures of the materials used in the buildings you see. Take a closer look at the colors you see in trees, flowers and any landscaping. Again, look for distinctive shapes and interesting color combinations.
Is there a park nearby or maybe a walking or jogging trail that meanders through a nature preserve or wooded area? Wander down it and observe the beauty that nature creates.
Engage in some serious people watching while you're at it. What are they wearing? Do certain items stand out or make you notice some people more than others?
A picture says a thousand words - and can provide plenty of fashion inspiration. That's why so many people love looking at fashion magazines and apparel catalogs. But how clothing looks on a professional model doesn't always translate well into our wardrobes. Instead, look for pictures of "ordinary people" wearing ordinary and not-so-ordinary things.
Try Flickr, the online photo repository. There's a category called "wardrobe_remix" and it includes a vast, constantly changing collection of real outfits from real people of all shapes, sizes, ages and budgets. Scroll through the pictures for new ideas for mixing and matching clothes. Better yet, join the group and challenge yourself to post pictures of your own outfits.