Refinery29's New Book Is Your Pocket Manual to Personal Style

In a style rut? Check this out.
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Lauren Indvik
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In a style rut? Check this out.
Authors Piera Gelardi and Christene Barberich. Photo: Mark Iantosca

Authors Piera Gelardi and Christene Barberich. Photo: Mark Iantosca

No matter how much money or thought or time you pour into your wardrobe, there are still mornings you open your closet and find that you have nothing inspiring to wear. Or, you feel that none of your clothes no longer really feel like you. We've all been there.

This week, Refinery29 co-founders Piera Gelardi and Christene Barberich came out with their first book, "Style Stalking," a 192-page paperback guide designed to help you through your next style rut. The pair have combed through the many street style shots that have appeared in Refinery29 over the years, and parsed them into categories: "brights," "layering," "mixed prints," "good vintage," "ugly pretty" and so on. What the book does well is give you basic guidelines for incorporating a bit of everything into your own wardrobe -- even if, say, you're style mainly falls in the "tomboy" category. For wearing mostly black ensembles, for example, the book suggests including colorful mid-layers to make individual black items stand out. It also helps you understand why a particular look is so appealing, and how you can replicate various styling techniques on bodies of many shapes and sizes.

Another wonderful thing about the book? Unlike most style guides, it doesn't encourage you to go out and buy stuff, but to look at your own closet differently.

In an interview with Fashionista, Barberich says it was important for her not to come out with yet another coffee table book about street style, but to create a real, working style guide. "We wanted it to be really digestible, a user-friendly cheat sheet," Barberich says. "We wanted you to be able to throw it in your bag, so you could really use it, not this kind of precious thing that you would never touch."

If there's one thing I wish, it's that there was more to the book -- it took me about 90 minutes to go through cover to cover, though given how many pages I dog-earred, I imagine I'll come back to it several times. For the price of two to three magazines, though, 90 minutes isn't such bad mileage. Click through the slideshow below to see a selection of looks from the book.

"Refinery 29: Style Stalking," $15.31, available at Amazon.com.