If you asked women on the street about their closet, I bet most of them would tell you that they often feel like they had nothing to wear. Right?? And if you belong to the minority of women who do know what to wear… Lucky bastard! I sometimes think that it’s the sheer mass of clothes makes us lose the overview over them. Furthermore I have often experienced that I created a good outfit for one occasion, but later forgot about it. If only there was a solution to this…You could almost say that the future is finally here, at least fashion-wise. Drumroll for the Stylebook app please!
What’s in the app?
Although you may think that an app like Stylebook tends to be girly, it’s not. We’re talking serious fashion after all! And there are definitely apps tending to be more colourful. Your starting screen features several categories, for me the most important being ‘closet’ and ‘looks’. Everything is neat and tidy. When you open a category, a simple list of subcategories will open. ‘Closet’ is divided into types of garments, mostly like your own wardrobe, unless you like to throw everything together. You’ll never know! ‘Looks’ will open a list of event categories, so you can filter your outfits regarding the time you want to wear it.
Furthermore there are some shenanigans which I find really interesting, let’s see if I’ll use them sometimes in the future. The inspiration category can be filled with all kinds of photos you take yourself, maybe when you see a cute outfit in a shopwindow. Or you feed it with pictures from blogs, Pinterest, Polyvore…you know the drill. So when creating your outfits you can use one of these photos as a template.
If you really like to plan ahead (I don’t think I’m that organized), you can use the ‘Calendar’ set of the app. Just assign an outfit to every day of the week, month, year…! And then there’s the ‘Packing’ category, giving you the opportunity to not only list all the things you want to pack but to plan all possible outfits as well. How cool is that?! ‘Style Stats’ will give you info regarding which pieces, colours etc. are worn most and least often. This would be interesting for me concerning decluttering my closet. Makes it real easy! You can of course also order clothes online via ‘Shop’, which I won’t, because I know my sources. Plus there are tons of tutorials on how to get the best style, organize your wardrobe etc. in ‘Style Expert’.
The app is also available not only for you phone, but your iPad as well. This gives you the opportunity to have a bigger screen to work on your outfits. A possible downside: If you have the app on both devices, your clothes won’t automatically appear on both. You first have to exchange them via ‘Wifi Accept’. This is a bit inconvenient, but doesn’t take too long.
How to get started
Getting started with the app is the most busy part of it all. Because, of course you have to import every single item in your closet. So, take a weekend of time, for you will really need it.
Lucky for us, the Stylebook app offers tons of video material showing the user how to start. For me it was quite helpful to read the manual and see how to do things and how not. The most important rules for me were to get the best lighting and the best background possible. The rest is pretty simple. So to begin, it’s best to prepare an area with either a studio backdrop or monochrome piece of fabric. The tutorial says it’s best to take your photos in the morning when the lighting’s best. However, since I have a studio lamp and my ceiling light as help, the lighting wasn’t really a problem. If you don’t have these things, look for a bright place in your apartment.
Then prepare the floor with your backdrop. Now here’s an important tip: Since my backdrop is white, I had no problem shooting colourful and dark clothes. It seems I am curiously drawn to striped shirts (I have 4) and white tops, and this doesn’t work here. That is why you should have another solution in a different colour, in my case a red blanket. Keep everything wrinkle-free and you’re good to go!
The app tells you how to best lay out your stuff, so this is rather easy. You can take online shop pictures of clothes as stencil as well. Take your photo, and when everything works and the contrast is good enough, you can remove the background and have your piece of clothing. Add some information if you want to, like colour, fabric, brand and season, and save in a category. And on to the next one!
Although this truly takes some work, it’s not a dull one. Put on some music and it’s a fun activity for the day. Plus, you can already evaluate which clothes are your favourites and which you should maybe throw out.
I guess the feature that makes this app better than the rest is the background removal tool. So when you take the picture of your piece of clothing, you should be able to remove the background completely. This way you can treat it as a puzzle piece you can combine with others to create an outfit. Do you know the website Polyvore? Works the same way. Thing is, nothing is perfect and it would be unrealistic to expect that this tool is. It does indeed work perfectly 50 percent of the time, and by perfectly I mean that you shoot your photo, remove the background and save the piece within 30 seconds. For this, your contrast must be as perfect as a black-and-white one.
However, if you have a piece in different colours, you sometimes have to use the manual tools to remove the leftover background. So if you play around with the slider of the background removal tool and see that it removes parts of your clothes as well, it’s best to leave a bit of background at the sides and remove it by hand. You have some additional tools for that. They allow you to zoom in and move around the picture, to remove background by tapping on it (thus removing whole parts with the same colour) and to erase the background by hand. It takes a bit of time, effort and touch, but it’s not magic. And don’t expect your results to be as good as those photos in online shops. They use professionals for that. And Photoshop!
To be honest, since I was looking for an app to help me get rid of that feeling that I have nothing at all to wear, I am pretty thrilled with what I have got here. The app is simple enough for everyone to understand, and has tons of additional tutorials and tips to offer. It’s well structured and has some interesting features, especially that ‘Packing’ category appeals to me. Honestly, I always seem to pack too much, and I know this isn’t my problem alone!
The background removal tool is better than I thought, and almost makes my clothes look like online store stuff. It’s practical for everyone who wants to keep track of what’s in their closet! Because when the times comes to throw out things you know exactly what to throw. And maybe even what to get to create tons of new outfits. Although the app costs 3,99 €, I must honestly say it’s worth it, and I usually don’t buy apps. The only bummer: It’s only available for iPhone and iPad. Get it here!