Recommended Reading: Simple Isn’t Easy by Olivia Goldsmith and Amy
Simple Isn’t Easy may, in fact, be the first style book I ever bought. Sadly, I believe it’s out of print, but this little pocketbook of a book is packed with some of the best advice I have ever read. Olivia Goldsmith was an author of many novels, most famously of The First Wives Club. Amy Fine Collins is a special correspondent for Vanity Fair. Their book is ever so sensibly broken into simple (but not easy) steps, and I highly recommend it.
Possibly the most important step is methodically, and somewhat heartlessly, going through your closet. This crucial step is one that so many of us skip because, honestly, who wants to look at all of the mistakes, the clothes with tags still on, and the things that don’t fit anymore? No one, that’s who. It’s so much easier in the short run to look at our closets, jammed packed of ‘nothing to wear’ and go buy something else, isn’t it? Well, Olivia and Amy won’t let you! With plenty of good advice and gentle hand-holding, they will convince you that the first step to style is going through that closet. I have been surprised at the number of women I’ve spoken to who have worked with a stylist, and didn’t do this step. How can you move forward lugging all that (literal) baggage with you?
Once you’ve cleaned out your closet, you can really see what you wear, what you need, what you have too many of, what you keep buying because you can’t see what you already own, etc. Other chapters include how to shop with your new knowledge, as well as some great tips for accessories and grooming. Though both women are listed as the authors of this little gem, the book is written in Olivia’s charming and funny voice, and I think that is one of its many strengths. They really challenge you to examine your lifestyle, taste, and assets, and then help you dress accordingly.
Simple Isn’t Easy is a classic, and deserves to be in print again. If you track down a copy, I promise it will be well worth your time. That being said, do you have a favorite style guide or book that has made an impression on you? Share it in the comments!