Laura Haley-McNeil

11/3/19, Wardrobe


As a writer creates a character, there are many aspects she needs to develop about this person⸻what kind of person is she, her likes and dislikes, what is her personal history? Adding to that is how this character looks. Tall, short, fat, thin, but also, what is her wardrobe like?


The way she dresses is another way the author can portray her character’s personality. Is she a free spirit or regimented? Does her wardrobe help you to know more about her background and her outlook on life? Of course, the character’s style should add to the story not detract from it.


When I write, I like to be comfortable, so usually my characters are, too. When writing When Love Whispers, Book 2 of the Beaumont Brides Series, the heroine, twenty-one year old Willow, discovers she’s pregnant. As a waitress at Charleston’s trendy night club and a carriage tour guide, she’s a casual dresser. When she waitresses at the club, she wears black jeans and a black t-shirt. For the guide position, she wears lighter colors. The weather is warm and she tries to stay cool. When she isn’t working, she’s focusing on her dream career as an artist, and is covered in her painting smock.


Once Willow’s pregnancy starts to show, she opts for long skirts and snug fitting t-shirts. She is a free spirit, rarely styles her long, curly dark hair and loves comfort. Her clothing is colorful and usually of a print floral design. If she could live in her paintings, she would, as she paints the scenes around Charleston, the ocean being one of her favorite subjects.

Historical Fiction

Do you notice what characters wear? For those of you who read historical fiction, you may pay more attention to the wardrobe as accuracy adds to the enjoyment of the story. Does a character’s wardrobe add to the plot development and the character development? Do changes in wardrobe style indicate change in the character?

Wardrobe can be very important to the story, and give the reader insight into the character, but mostly wardrobe should add to the story, because nothing is more important than story.

I hope you have a wonderful and blessed week!