What are Style Archetypes?
At Flourish, we use the phrase “style archetype” constantly. In fact, we find it near impossible to discuss clothing and accessories without mentioning it! Style Archetyping is a brilliant concept that was developed based on the knowledge and experience of image consulting professionals and educators including image pioneer Alyce Parsons. Over the years, Audrey has taken this concept and refined it through her own experiences in aiding clients on their path to personal style discovery. A style archetype supports the process of honing in on how to best express who you are on the inside through how you dress on the outside! All of that begs the question, what the heck is a style archetype?
We are surrounded by archetypes!
We see archetypes literally everywhere. Through Zodiac signs, Myers-Briggs personalities, and Enneagrams types, we have systems that help us understand the world around us. In fact, there are probably hundreds of archetype categorizations, and style is no exception. Archetypes allow us to identify patterns in human behavior and give them a name. For example, DiSC assessments help us define our roles professionally and build better teams in the workplace. Astrology informs us that Scorpios are mysterious. Capricorns are workaholics. Cancers are crybabies. As you nod your head, you understand that not all Aries are the same, yet they hold many of the same qualities that allow them to be typified in this way.
“Archetyping” applies to style in the same kind of way. It shows up as a combination of personality traits, interests, and ideals. By analyzing these three components, we formulate predictable values, design elements, and event textile preferences within your archetype! Do you prefer to be comfortable or do you bleed for fashion? Are you experimental with your fashion choices, or traditional? Do you want to convey your all-knowing, quiet wisdom or your wide range of emotions through your appearance? Each archetype has its own set of qualities, but it is worth noting that almost everyone is a combination of two, sometimes three, style archetypes.
Identifying Your Archetype
After studying Alyce Parson’s Universal Style during her time at The Fashion Institute of Technology, Audrey has developed her own method of identifying your style archetypes. The Flourish Method is an in-depth, three-part questionnaire that takes stock of your personality traits, understanding how you spend your time or wish you spent your time and charting your aspirations. Through this exploration, we discover the eight Flourish Archetypes! Here at Flourish HQ, the archetypes are Dramatic, Cosmopolitan, Classic, Natural, Creative, Gamine, Ingenue, and Romantic. Their names may give you some idea of what qualities they embody, but let’s take a closer look at each archetype and its core characteristics.
Flourish Style Archetypes
Expressing intensity and severity
Key traits: bold, intimidating, powerful
Core interests: upscale dining, international travel, art galleries
Primary aspirations: experienced, striking, a force
Style defined by: severe, avant-garde, statement pieces
Expressing curation and refinement
Key traits: elegant, confident, refined
Core interests: VIP events, charity balls, luxury travel
Primary aspirations: elevated, influential, in-demand
Style defined by: chic, sophisticated, on the pulse [trend setter]
Expressing reasonable, tried and true
Key traits: appropriate, organized, responsible
Core interests: private clubs, networking, nonprofit boards
Primary aspirations: reliable, put together, the go-to woman
Style defined by: principled, tailored, tried and true, clean
Expressing freedom, unpretentious
Key traits: down to earth, easy-going, low maintenance
Core interests: experiential travel, coffee shops, picnic lunches
Primary aspirations: approachable, open-minded, effortless
Style defined by: relaxed, comfortable, laid-back
Expressing individuality, authenticity
Key traits: artistic, eclectic, visionary
Core interests: art exhibits, live music, vintage shopping
Primary aspirations: intriguing, imaginative, unconventional
Style defined by: expressive, authentic, original
Expressing uniqueness, nonconformity
Key traits: mischievous, analytical, naughty
Core interests: create a podcast, trendy bars, film festivals
Primary aspirations: offbeat, fast-paced, interesting
Style defined by: androgynous, playful, retro
Expressing charm and trust
Key traits: detailed, girly, sweet
Core interests: brunch, girls night, volunteering
Primary aspirations: feminine, thinks of everything, accommodating
Style defined by: girlish, feminine, soft
Expressing emotions and magnetism
Key traits: sensitive, sentimental, affectionate
Core interests: intimate dates, creative classes, pampering appointments
Primary aspirations: magnetic, luxurious, open book
Style defined by: alluring, exaggerated, glamorous
Why Style Archetypes Matter
Identifying your style archetypes allows Audrey, as your stylist, to build an authentic wardrobe for you. It is worth noting that archetypes are NOT meant to trap you or put you in a box. Everyone should feel empowered to be playful and experimental with their style. We are all unique and we love to celebrate that! It is meant to be one of the many tools in our toolbox, along with your Flourish Color Analysis, body architecture, and lifestyle.
Can My Archetype Change?
One frequent question we get is, can my style archetype change? To that, we say, yes and no. What holds true most of the time is that people have a combination of two Archetypes. The Archetype they have the highest score in holds for the long term. It is who you have been and who you will continue to be! Consider it as the foundation of your style. The Archetype that comes in second tends to resonate with who you are in this season of life. Essentially, it can be situational. We are constantly evolving and growing as we learn and experience the world – the same is true for our style!
Interested in learning more about style archetypes? Stay tuned! We are going to deep dive into each of the style archetypes and unravel what makes each of them tick.
Want to know what your style archetypes are? We can help! Click here to book your virtual appointment with Audrey for just $298. It’s never too late to start your own style discovery journey.