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Five ways to break free of your clothing rut

Jennifer Baumgartner, a clinical psychologist and author of “You Are What You Wear: What Your Clothes Reveal About You,” says there are small steps you can take to vary your look, even if only slightly.

1) Be a copy cat (sort of). Look at magazines or actual people and see what you like, and then try to incorporate elements into your own style.

2) Scarves, think scarves. You’ve heard it before, but listen this time: accessories. As Baumgartner says, “This is one of the easiest and most nonthreatening ways of altering your appearance without feeling totally uncomfortable with change.’’

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3) Why not? Let someone else dress you.“Whether it’s a best friend or a salesperson,” Baumgartner said, “see how it feels.”

4) Go for it! Take a chance. “Try something totally new and crazy and see what the experience feels like, and what response you get.’’

5) Be realistic. Accept that you are drawn to a particular style and make minor tweaks to what you already wear. “We all have our classics that work for us,” Baumgartner said. “Mine is a shift dress that I could wear for the rest of my life and be happy. So I tried it in a different pattern; I changed to a new sleeve.”

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