3 Simple Ways to Improve Your Fashion Vocab


by Julia DiNardo of FashionPulseDaily

Are you totally tired of using the same descriptive words when it comes to fashion, over and over again? I know how easy it is to get in a word-use rut, and have definitely fallen victim to using the same adjectives numerous times, which can sometimes have the ability to  actually detract from the post. Let's jump start your vocab with some tips and tricks that I have used over the years that I promise will help you to expand your fashion words and usage.

Ban Words from Your Writing

Chic, chic, chic, chic, chic. This word is one of the main perpetrators that can rapidly go into overuse category, along with “looks” “collection” and “designs”.  Figure out what words you need to substitute out with synonyms more frequently, and enforce a self-imposed ban on using them in your post.  I make a rule to never use the same word (i.e. chic) more than once in a post, but if it is an absolute dire situation in which I just have to use it twice, two times per post is the absolute hard limit maximum, and I will never use it twice in the same sentence. Being able to identify and rework these words will not only improve your writing and fashion vernacular, but also give the reader an elevated experience.

Read, Read, Read Until Your Eyes Bleed

Well, not really! But in all seriousness, read about fashion excessively. I feel like an old schoolmarm saying this, but the best way to improve your writing is through reading. Set aside a manageable amount of minutes every day or reserve an hour on the weekend to pour over fashion-related articles and stories. You can find some of my favorites in the post that I wrote for IFB here,  and there's always so much to take in, from current fashion news to fashion history.  Switch it up too, and read new blogs, periodicals, magazines, and books about the subject; the knowledge and style of writing will surely seep it's way into your subconscious, along with the new vocabulary!

Start a Vocab List

This may sound a little cheesy and as if I'm assigning you a homework assignment, but I sweat it works! The best way to do this is to read through runway reviews and write down some great nouns and adjectives to discuss the collection that strike you as interesting, and words that you most likely would not have thought in the context of fashion or ever use. Also, if you don't know what a word or reference means…take that extra one minute to Google it! You never know – it just may become your new favorite word to reference the aesthetic of your favorite brand or designer. Keep the vocab list in a document that you will always have handy (I like Evernote), and add to it as you come across new words, while placing an “x” next to the ones that you eventually do use.


What tip do you recommend for introducing new language into your fashion vocab?

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About The Author

Blogging at her site Fashion Pulse Daily since 2008 and working on fashion's editorial side since 2003 has lent Julia the acumen to think creatively and endure in the colliding worlds of blogging, fashion and beauty. New York City is her backdrop for inspiration (and many a outfit photo), where she is often found on her couch, feverishly typing away at her latest post, with her trusty feline at her side. Follow her on Instagram , Twitter, and Pinterest.

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11 Responses

  1. Melanie Sims

    This is perfect! I just started making a vocab list of my own. Great post!

  2. Seppy

    great post! I’d be curious to know what other bloggers read to get their fashion ‘news’ or resources from because I’d like to expand mine. I like style.com and Fashionista a lot…other suggestions?


  3. Jessica Flores

    This reminds me -I never finished reading my “Yo Mama” vocabulary book. Must pull that one out from the bookshelf soon.

    Excellent tip by the way. A good vocabulary in general is always good.

  4. Tiffy Diamond

    Great tips here, recently my editor told me to stop using the same words over and over. SO I will be including a vocab list to my Google Drive ASAP.


  5. KnivesLiao

    Great tips and an important topic to discuss. I often have to re-read and edit wording at work and I find we have ‘crutch’ words. These tips provided are helpful to ‘re-exercise’ the brain. 🙂

  6. Rachel

    This is very useful! I will definitely be taking some of these tips and applying them to my blog. Thanks!

  7. The Science of Happy

    eBay is a gem for developing fashion vocab and trawling through online retailers. Although, you face the difficult task of resisting any purchases!

    For anyone interested, I’m holding a birthday MAC giveaway on Friday!