Style Inspiration: Autumn/Winter ’09

October 28th, 2009 - filed under: The Fashion » Clothing and Accessories

jodibieberImage by Jodi Bieber.

I don’t follow trends and I don’t buy magazines, but I do adore the self expression of personal fashion. And since I’m not concerned with being ‘current’ and since I choose not to shop at new clothing stores, I’m always in the process of reworking and redefining my own sense of style.

I pull my inspiration from everywhere, wherever inspiration strikes. I’m always collecting images and eventually, when I feel an aesthetic shift coming on, I delve into my collection. Revisiting these images is always interesting – some of them make no sense to me anymore, while others just sing out loud.

The following pictures will fuel my creative fires this fall and winter. I hope you’ll find a few of them as inspiring as I have!




helena_montageHelena Bonham Carter is amaaaazing.

helena17Helena with Nell.



sassy_july_1992_pg59Sassy magazine spread from the early 90s.



So what about you my dears? What’s inspiring you this season? (PS – I’d love to credit these images if I could. If anyone knows any sources, please pass them along!)


  • Minna

    Oh, oh! Those tights with buttons are SO cute! It’s almost like these two things don’t go together at all – tights and buttons. That’s what makes them so extraordinary. + I love Helena’s boots on that pregnant-picture. And everything else that she’s wearing. Haha.

    I myself don’t have that much time or need to think about fashion this Spring. Yes, it’s Spring in Australia. I basically just went Spring-Summer-Spring and now it’ll be Summer soon again. How cool is that. But yes, since I’m on a low travel budget and have only the dearest and most comfortable flip-flops and shorts with me, I can’t really be that creative :( But I gotta admit, even if I wanted, I couldn’t get that much inspiration here. I mean, I love Australia and especially its wonderful nature and animals, but I don’t feel the retro and diversity on the streets that I do feel back home in Europe. People are either extremely obese (since the awful KFC&McDonald’s culture) – which is not inspiring, wearing comfortable shorts and t-shirts or just office workers in grey skirts or suits and ties. We haven’t even found any alternative pubs or rock clubs or anything.. It’s totally unbelievable. So yeah, I’m not at all that satisfied with the life here, you can only get white bread and wheat flour in the supermarkets, I’ve only found one or two organic shops so far… people rearely know what “vegan” means. But it might be that I’m just in the wrong city :) I’d love to get enough money to buy a car and see the outback.

    Anyhow, it’s just shorts and flip-flops for me right now. And of course, a protecting hat!

  • Heather

    Tis the season for brown hip-hugging courdoroys and pink long sleeve T-shirts! My favorite outfit as of late :)
    So, you gonna get that belly adorned with a beautiful henna decoration when it’s big and round? I saw some super cute pics online the other day and thought they looked up your alley.

  • sarah

    When I feel in the mood for some individualized fashion inspiration I head over to – most of it is the uber-trendy (ha) stuff that looks like it was bought in a thrift store but actually cost $300 and is brand new, HOWEVER, it’s the combinations and accessorizing that make it unique. I just think it’s cool because all the photos are user taken and submitted.

    I also, try not to buy clothing new any more… partly because of money, partly because of principle. If you haven’t seen it, check out The video is very well done. There is a really sweet discount (?) store near here for items that have been damaged in shipping and so on and so forth… so if I do buy new items that’s where. I also have been checking out lately.

  • Staar

    For winter the colours I am into are royal blue, red, forest green, and plaid. To keep warm I will be layering tall socks and tights with leggings. My inspirations are wolves, Gustav Klimt, Frida Kahlo and Tecumseh. It’s going to be all about intense colour, maximalism and details.

  • Julie

    Oh Say, I always thought your sartorial eye was fantastic and you probably don’t remember but our first conversation ever was about clothes (I was wearing pink Dickies & a black tank and you told me the colors reminded you of burlesque). BUT, I simply cannot get behind that get-up from Sassy. Some fashions do not need to be revisited! Haha. Anyway, my thing lately is wide lapel peacoats with vintage gold brooches on the lapels. My favorites are a 1930s red rose pin with a brushed gold stem and a 1950s cameo pin. I got them super cheap at thrift shops and my peacoats (I have several) from the Veterans Thrift Store. When I was pregnant I LIVED in leggings and tights, maternity pants are just too expensive for how long you will wear them and I hated the way that the nylon belly band felt anyway.

  • Kathryn

    When autumn comes around, I LIVE in leggings, big sweaters, cardigans, scarves, long sleeves, dresses, tights, and my peacoat. You know, typical indie kid. I should be sipping an Americano and hanging out in coffee shops. :)
    (And I usually keep it pretty bright all year long. So much so that when I wear an abundance of black people ask me what’s wrong!)
    Helena’s daughter is growing up with some of the funkiest fashion.

  • Kate

    @Sarah – YEAH for knowing the story of stuff!! Tree hugging hippies unite!

    I have to admit I’m not very eclectic when it comes to style, I stick with simple, clean lines and follow the fashion with regards to what is ‘clean’. I don’t like to stick out when I walk in the room, but prefer to be the devil in the details… :-)

    BUT I did want to say that I LOVE Jodi Bieber! Her Real Beauty gallery is AMAZING!! It’s all over the facebook now. Thank you!

  • S. Melville

    What’s been inspiring me, especially for the winter coming up, is Twin Peaks, that amazing early-90s number by David Lynch and Mark Frost. Talk about rocking plaid and big sweaters. So great!

    I’ve been blessed with fashion ESP, so pretty much whatever I find in thrift stores and falls in love with is usually one of the upcoming trends. I used to read Vogue all the time, but I haven’t in a few years because I’m too poor to buy magazines anymore.

    I don’t shop in normal stores anymore either. Go us! I’m really into wearing mostly black these days because I can get by with fewer clothes because, well, everything matches when it’s all the same colour.

  • Sayward

    @ Minna – I totally understand the fashion drought that accompanies summer. I was lost this year in 100º heat, living in cutoffs and tanks and flippies. Ah well, the vitamin D sure was nice. =)

    I hope you settle into Australia and find some niche spots more up your alley. I’m not sure where you are exactly, but I have heard wonderful things about some of the bigger cities, both fashion and healthfood-wise. Good luck!

    @ Heather – Maybe I will! I hadn’t really considered it for myself, but I did see I huge pregnant belly mid-henna-ing at an ‘Eco Baby Faire’ this summer. It looked awesome!

    @ sarah – Yeah, I’ve had mixed experiences on lookbook. A few times I’ve been overwhelmed with inspiration, it’s awesome. But more often than not it just feels too contrived and mainstream for my tastes. I’m a grunge kid for reals; I like my mess!

    The story of stuff is GREAT!

    @ Staar – Nail. On. Head. Wow, I couldn’t agree more. Especially: Wolves, Frida, tall socks, and maximalism!

    @ Julie – Yes! Of course I remember that conversation . . . we discovered a mutual interest that day, eh? =)

    The Sassy spread is pretty awful, haha. It’s not so much the clothes themselves that strike me, but that I remember when I was the girl reading Sassy, and I remember when fashion spreads looked like that. I remember that my bedroom reeked of Sandalwood incense and there was candle wax meltings on every surface. I was practicing witchcraft and sneaking out my window at night to swim in the ocean with all my clothes on. I was trying to reconcile playing D&D with my childhood friends, and smoking pot with my ‘new’ friends. It was a time of intense feelings and a sense of such seizing and abandon. So incredibly tactile. I like to be reminded of that sort of ‘in-the-moment’ living. =)

    @ Kathryn – Yes! And Im so glad it’s coffee-shop season again. These days, decaf Americanos are my favorite treat!

    @ Kate – Tree-hugging hippies unite!!! Woo-hoo! =)

    And yes, Bieber is amazing. I just discovered her and I’m loving it.

    @ S. Melville – Oh, a woman (?) after my own heart! When I first discovered Twin Peaks, I watched the entire series start to finish without stopping or sleeping. Now, it’s my New Years day hangover-nursing tradition. =)

    I’ve been wearing a lot of black too, but I’m trying to bring the color. Yay thrifters!

  • Christa

    Ah, of course no fashion image montage is complete without tank girl… *love*
    And the Helena Bonham Carter photos are superb. She is indeed amazing!
    My fashion inspiration often jumps quite heartily between punk rock and 1950s pinup and super quaint country girl… I love it. It’s random and fun and new… I just need to get sewing more!

  • Ashley

    Whattttt! That garbage sillhouette is amazing! I’ve never seen it before and wow, it blew my mind for a second there. Some people are so incredibly creative.

    I have no fashion sense whatsoever, but I’m with you on the mission to not buy new clothes (I make exceptions with undies and some shoes). I love anything layered, loose, and cozy.

  • Kelly

    Envy is one of the deadly sins, but I still SO wish I had a shred of your creativity to pull together interesting outfits and confidently wear them. Alas, my style is BORING and I really loathe shopping…except for food and shoes. I often go without a clue as to what I want or like, so I dig the idea of inspirational clippings or, better yet, a personal shopper! If only I could afford one…

  • Sayward

    @ Christa – Oh I feel ya, I have this awesome sewing machine and all these ideas and projects, but alas . . . never enough time in the day. Gah! =)

    @ Ashley – I know isn’t it amazing!? I’d never seen anything like it, so unique!

    @ Kelly – Oh man, thank you! Inspirational clippings (both on the computer and torn out of magazines and stuff) really really help me. But yeah, a personal shopper would be awesome, haha . . .

  • S. Melville

    I am indeed a woman! I should’ve known you’d be familiar with Twin Peaks. All the cool kids are. I mean, the REALLY cool ones. I’m currently working through it with my family, and our once-a-week installations are almost painful. I don’t understand how they only watch one at a time.

  • Sayward

    @ S. Melville – That’s torture! Gah! =D

  • Sleepy bird

    this is a bit off subject but could give you some hints on cleaning clothes. i know the horrors of dry cleaning and try to stay away. The natural cleaners are so expensive and I don’t think they work. any suggestions?

  • Sayward

    @ Sleepy bird – Well as far as home cleaning, I make my own laundry detergent. It’s non-toxic and mild and very eco-friendly (not to mention CHEAP!)

    For dry cleaning I don’t know of an alternative, and honestly I just avoid buying dry-clean-only clothing. Too much of a hassle, and most of the dry clean stuff is non-vegan anyway (wool, silk, etc). Sorry I don’t have more for ya!

  • Kerstin

    Oh my god did you seriously put a picture of Tank Girl up there. You, my sweet girl, are now my hero.

  • Sayward

    @ Kerstin – Yay Tank! <3

  • megn

    top picture you are looking for credit is Lori Petty from the 1995 film “Tank Girl” (based on a Britsh comic of the same name).

  • Michelle B

    Those beige embellished tights caught my interest right way.interesting One could easily wear those today and look fresh.