Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Wardrobe Obsessions - What's Yours Today?

Fashion and style are such a glorious hobby. We get to be creative, expressive, individual, purposeful -- and obsessive! All within the realm of normal human behaviors.

Without being a slave to trends (and most of us reading this blog are not), it is fun to get temporarily besotted with some item of clothing or accessory, and to stalk, hunt and collect it. Sometimes the stalking is just via window or cyber-shopping, without buying. In my life, it means seeking affordable versions of my current crush, via thrift and consignment stores. Every once in a while, the object of desire is worth a splurge, and lasts for decades, like my beloved Moissanite wedding ring.

Here are some of my past obsessions. Maybe you will relate to one or more -- I'd love to know. I'll post my current obsession at the end.

  • Vintage gloves. I had to look at every pair in town, and on eBay! I bought several, and still wear and appreciate them.
  • Tote bags. The search for the perfect work tote bag was feverish for a while. I looked at canvas, brocade, vintage, kooky and classic. I now have two, a gorgeous quilted design made by a friend, and a practical pleather one that looks good with every outfit.
  • Cuff bracelets. Still loving on these, but I do own enough. I think.

    Except I think I need this one. So cute.

    • Tingly lip glosses. I went far and wide, and keep coming back to Burt's Bees. Guess I am sticking with this one.
    • Patterned tights. You can ask me who carries these in my small city, 'cause I have been around. (Target's got the best selection and prices).
    • Midi skirts. My eyes followed only the hemlines of skirts on the racks, and I reached for the long ones. I did end up with a handful of cool midis for this Fall/Winter, without spending very much.

    If it's midi, it's for me. From Asos.

    • And my present obsession: chunky boots. I can't get enough. At every thrift store I enter, I head straight for the boots -- ankle, mid-calf, knee, doesn't matter. I touch them all and envision how they'll work in my wardrobe. As usual, I buy just a few and enjoy the heck out of them.

    And lately, I seem to want more and more like these (Steve Madden here)


    Or these, by Merrell.

      These are some of the ways I enjoy guilt-free shopping and indulgences. I have very few identifiably "bad" habits (at least not any more). And my work life is serious and responsible. So it's a treat to have an obsession and play it through with joy.

      What are your fashion obsessions, past and present?

      Sunday, November 27, 2011

      Visible Monday #23: Breaking Rules Willy-Nilly, and Having Fun

      Welcome to Visible Monday #23! If you want to participate, it's so easy: just go to the bottom of this post for the simple how-to.

      Today I chose the second gift that wonderful Sheila (of Ephemera) sent me (see the first one here): a yummy silk blouse by Talbots. It fits me perfectly, thank you Sheila! And in her honor, I am pattern-mixing it with my favorite hounds-tooth midi skirt. I am actually assigning this skirt to the "Neutrals" category, because it "goes" with every darn top in my closet. Whee, breaking rules at my advanced age!

      A belt pulls the look together, I think. I  am also showing my little GAP faux-fur jacket as a topper. I thrifted it a couple of years ago, and I love to pull it out of the closet for the 6 - 10 cool days we have down here. For footwear, boots of course. As long as I can extend boot season on either side of the calendar, I will do it!

      I read in one of my fashion/style books that when wearing boots with a skirt the "rule" is: for form-fitting skirts, show a little skin (or hose) between the hem of the skirt and the top of the boot. For full skirts, like mine, it's OK to have the skirt cover the top of the boot. What do you say?


      Blouse, c/o Sheila, thrifted vintage skirt, GAP jacket and belt,
      Gianni Bini boots




      I'm linking to Tammy @ SilverStyle's "Trending Through the Decades" here!


      Now, I would love to see what you are wearing this holiday weekend - did you buy something new/old and fabulous on Super-Shopping Friday??



      The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple!
      1. Any Monday, whoever wants to can join in! Just compose a post that includes any outfit, accessory, piece of jewelry, hairstyle, cosmetic or other adornment that makes you feel more confident, alive and visible that day.
      2. Include a link to Not Dead Yet Style somewhere in your post.
      3. Go to the bottom of this post and click on this cute little link:


      In the "Next Step", you crop the pic (easy tool) you want to display, and you're done!



      Saturday, November 26, 2011

      Today's Inspiration, Of The Over-50 Variety . . .

       . . . is the fascinating Tilda Swinton. True, her style is not for everyone. She is sometimes quite stark, with her pale skin and no-makeup look. She wears some edgy clothes that definitely would not work for me. But I love her fashion statements, her divine posture, and her serene self-possession. Keep showing us your cool, fab style, Tilda, and congrats on just having turned 51!


      Casual, and still with the mysterious smile



      She's so cool and collected, and gorgeous in deep green


      Her much-criticized 2008 Oscar gown. I like it.




      Join us! Click the Spotlight


      Visible Monday Link-Up Reminder:  Monday November 28th is Visible Monday, a group posting for anyone who'd like to participate. The simple guidelines are here. Basically, just post something that makes you feel wonderful/visible, and link to it via my Monday post. Easy and fun.

      Friday, November 25, 2011

      The Beauty of Experience

      After reading the post I re-ran yesterday, I got to thinking more about beauty and age. I've been contemplating how aging or experience translates to beauty. That's what aging is, after all - experience at living. And experience helps us in every area of our lives: at parenting, at our jobs, at managing money and homes and hobbies.

      So can it help us be more beautiful and stylish? I think yes. Here are some of the ways experience can make us more beautiful:

      • We don't doubt ourselves as we select our wardrobes, so we are more sure of our choices.
      • Our style reflects who we are more closely -- because we know who we are, more confidently each year.
      • We take the time and make the effort to take good care of ourselves. If budgets allow, we get massages and pedicures. If not, at least we know how to turn down the noise and take a long, fragrant bath.
      • We've learned how to accept, style and work with our hair, to its best advantage. No more straightenings for me, or setting my hair on juice cans.
      • We are not so self-conscious in our clothes as we once were. We get dressed, have a good look in the mirror, add or subtract a piece and go about our day. Because . . .
      • We know what works!

      For example, I did a mini closet clean-out last night. I just focused on my work skirts and blouses/tops. I tried most of them on to see if I still said "Oh, yeah!" when I looked in the mirror. "Do I still love this?" and "Do I want to wear this right away?" The Yes pieces got put back in the closet

      There were a few easy No's - that just don't fit right anymore, or are too scratchy/pilly. Then there are the very nice pieces that I haven't worn in a long time. The nice black wool Banana Republic blazer. It's in perfect condition, and it's my size. But it's double-breasted and has shoulder pads, and it's just too masculine for me. That's why I haven't worn it, duh! So to consignment it is going.

      Beautiful, but it doesn't fit my style (this one's a Donna Karan).


      This soft Banana Republic cardigan suits my look perfectly.


       
      This Theory cardigan is also my style (but not my budget, sadly).


      I have learned/am learning my own style so that it's easier to say No, whether at the store or in my closet, to pieces that are not Truly Me. That's the beauty of experience.

      What do you think? Has aging helped make you more beautiful, by giving you that extra boost of wardrobe confidence? Or are you thinking: shut up, Patti, I'll take 29 and inexperienced any day?  : >

      Thursday, November 24, 2011

      Posting Redux: Beauty/Style: What's Gotten Better With Age?

      Happiest Thanksgiving to you (and happy day in general all of to you non-US readers)! It's a fairly busy holiday, so I am re-running an old post that my readers seemed to enjoy: What's actually better about getting older, other than the obvious Wisdom, Grace, and Overall Fabulousness?  : >

      ------------------------------------

      I'm inspired today by a post I read on NaturallyCurly.com about the physical aspects of aging. The question was posed: What do we like better about our physical selves as we age? Well, several posters piped right up with: nothing! And there are days when I definitely echo that sentiment. Some mornings, my face looks a bit saggy, eyes crinkled, silver showing at the roots of my hair.

      By aging, I'm not talking about that lovely transition from college girl to working woman/mother: those physical changes in our 20's and 30's give our face its form, smooth out our awkwardness and calm down our skin. Those are the decades when we learn how to apply makeup artfully, tame and twist our hair, and build a flattering wardrobe.

      The beauty and style changes that emerge after age 40 have not been given as much positive press. Let's try to wring some out here! I'll start, and I will try to maintain my sense of humor:
      • My posture is definitely better as a result of yoga and stretching.
      • I can afford a pedicure and sometimes my toes look great.
      • My silver hairs have a lot of body, so my 'do looks more bountiful.
      • I know my best colors much better and am not too easily led astray.
      • I've developed a blissful relationship with my hair stylist, who understands curly hair!
      • I don't choose to, but I could wear a Chanel suit and not look silly.
      • My eyelashes are longer, thanks to generic Latisse.
      • I never stay out all night anymore, so very few dark under-eye circles.
      • Deep rose lipstick looks good on a mature face!

      A smile and confidence are always in style.
      Photo courtesy of BlitheandBlonde


      Please let me know what you think: what's gotten better for you, style and beauty wise? Younger readers, what do you hope/expect to keep getting better?

      Tuesday, November 22, 2011

      How To Give Your Outfit a "Little Lift"

      I've been reading and enjoying a "vintage" fashion/style book, Looking, Working, Living Terrific 24 Hours a Day (mouthful!) by Emily Cho. It was recommended by the fabulous Steph of The Dashing Eccentric. It is dated in some of the specific fashion advice -- lots of bow-tie blouses, e.g. -- but it offers a lot of time-tested style tips.

      I especially enjoyed Ms. Cho's list of "Little Lifts" for your wardrobe. Here are some of them I would definitely use, and recommend to my readers:

      • Button the last couple buttons of your cardigan, and blouse it over a belt.  OK, not rocket-science, but it does give me an additional way to style a cardi, more like a soft jacket.
      A cardi can look like a blouse, or add a belt, and it's a
      soft jacket

      • Twist two contrasting scarves together before tying them around your neck. I keep wanting to try this, and forgetting to do so on busy mornings. It sounds like fun, and no sewing required!
      • Fold over the top of your boots for a new look. I hadn't though of this, but I have a couple of soft pair that this might work with.
      • A fabric  flower in leather or silk is a nice touch. Indeed. I love the idea of a leather flower for Fall/Winter. Always-stylish Kasmira of What I Wore Today has a cool leather flower cuff that I admire.
      Leather flower pin, so cute

      • If you can't figure out the right shoe to wear with a skirt, boots work best. So true. Boots make most any outfit more modern and chic.

      Keeping with the keep-it-simple, make-it-fun theme, I'd add these little lifts:
      • Colored tights, or even gray or textured black, will make most any look more interesting.
      • A bold cuff bracelet is a fun touch, even if you're not a big accessory-lover.
      • Mix a winter pattern skirt (hounds-tooth, checks, pinstripes) with a floral blouse or sweater if you're feeling a bit bolder. I just started doing this since I created my blog, and it's too much fun to stop.


      • Mix moods, if you feel like it. Wear a floaty skirt with a chunky sweater and add boots. We don't have to be matchy anymore, yay!
      I know you have some little lifts you're using this season to make dressing more fun. Please share in the comments!


      The very kind people at Karina Dresses featured me yesterday in their blog, The Karina Chronicles. Thanks, Karina people! Love your dresses.

      Sunday, November 20, 2011

      Visible Monday #22: Showing Some Curves

      Welcome to Visible Monday #22! If you want to participate, it's so easy: just go to the bottom of this post for the simple how-to.

      I have three general rules for age appropriate dressing (rules for me, not for you): nothing too short, too tight or too low cut. I don't feel comfortable showing a lot of leg or chest. And I don't often wear figure-hugging sweaters to the office, but I bent my rules for this cute little sweater.

      This is a Nanette Lepore top, so pretty in muted teal and with crochet accents at the neck, sleeves and hem. I bought it at a resale shop in NYC. It suits my feminine vibe, but I balanced that with a simple knit maxi skirt by GAP and chunky boots. I added a little ivory blazer when seeing clients.




      How do you feel about showing some curves?And oh yes, please show us what you're wearing today!



      The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple!
      1. Any Monday, whoever wants to can join in! Just compose a post that includes any outfit, accessory, piece of jewelry, hairstyle, cosmetic or other adornment that makes you feel more confident, alive and visible that day.
      2. Include a link to Not Dead Yet Style somewhere in your post.
      3. Go to the bottom of this post and click on this cute little link:


      In the "Next Step", you crop the pic (easy tool) you want to display, and you're done!



      Saturday, November 19, 2011

      Feminist Icon Breaks Fashion Rules, Beautifully!

      I've loved Gloria Steinem since I was a little baby feminist. Very shallow as a teen, I just wanted to look like her. Then later, I started listening to and reading her ideas.They helped shape my own idea of what kind of woman I wanted to be.

      She has aged so gracefully. Married late in life, then widowed so quickly, she still is out there, showing us what a strong woman can look and sound like.

      This fashion tidbit just tickled me: At the recent gala for Glamour Magazine's Women of the Year, where she was one of the honorees, Ms. Steinem garnered many compliments for her simple yet stunning outfit. When asked about it, she replied "I'm wearing exercise pants." Hee! It looks like they may well be, but she's carried off the look beautifully.




      Keep going, Gloria. Age 77, and so Not Dead Yet!





      Join us! Click the Spotlight


      Visible Monday Link-Up Reminder:  Monday November 21st is Visible Monday, a group posting for anyone who'd like to participate. The simple guidelines are here. Basically, just post something that makes you feel wonderful/visible, and link to it via my Monday post. Easy and fun.

      Thursday, November 17, 2011

      What I Wore: It's a Wrap

      Who doesn't love the iconic wrap dress? It flatters nearly every woman, it's easy to wear, accessorize, and winterize, if you need to!

      At first I turned down this (no-label-intact) dress because it has pointy lapels. I don't like pointy lapels. But my fellow bloggers are so crafty and creative, I just asked myself: WWCFBD? (What Would Crafty Fellow Bloggers Do?) I turned the collar to the inside, didn't even need to cut or stitch, and now the dress has the clean neckline I like.

      I really appreciate the herringbone print and the slinky fabric. It looks close enough to the classic Diane von Furstenberg 70's dress that I'm considering it a cousin. I added pale grey leggings and black booties for Fall. I think I like my thrifty find now! (Total cost of dress = $3.00).

      Thrifted dress: no label; Booties: Sofft; Earrings: handmade by a friend



      A timeless original, worn by the designer, 1976.


      Are you a fan of the wrap? Did/do you own an original DVF?

      Wednesday, November 16, 2011

      Bloom Where You're Planted



      I am coming down off my NYC high. Back to work, grocery shopping, chores and small-town life. I am going to go back to the city soon, and still plan to live there part-time. But for now, I will bloom where I am planted.

      I think one of the keys to inner contentment is not wanting to do/be somewhere/something other than what you are. My former therapist told me: "Don't be married and wishing you were single, or vice versa," (although the former is more complicated than the latter). A great example of blooming where planted.

      So I am not going to live day-to-day in Smalltown wishing I were elsewhere. Life's too short and precious for that! There is a lot of joy to be found here, including a job I love and a very dear sister. The beach is four blocks away and my husband loves to surf. We have a couple of pubs we call our "locals" where the barkeeps are friendly and the drinks are cheap reasonable. Parking spaces are abundant. 

      And -- we have thrift and resale stores too. OK, nothing like Beacon's Closet or Buffalo Exchange, and no fabulous vintage Flea Markets. But some good finds for the faithful shoppers. Yesterday I found a nearly-new Tahari pantsuit. Black with a fine chalk-stripe, fully lined and marked at $8.00 -- but reduced by 50%! I don't wear trousers that often, but just a great-looking jacket for $4 puts a smile on my thrifty face.


      Tahari by Arthur S Levine suit

      Tahari by Arthur S Levine suit- mine's similar to this one, but more pin-stripey, and the jacket's a touch shorter. 


      In what ways do you enjoy and make the most of your surroundings? What do you love about where you are planted?

      Tuesday, November 15, 2011

      Winner! In the Karina Dress Giveaway! An Over-40 Style Warrior

      Congratulations to Anne, of The Frump Factor, who is the winner of the Karina Dress giveaway! Many of you already follow Anne's terrific blog and enjoy her witty take on style and other issues of import to us over-40 women.


      Here's Anne of The Frump Factor - no frump in sight


      I think Anne is going to be a natural for the ease and comfortable chic of a Karina dress. She's mentioned that she liked  the Adrienne, but we shall see what her final selection will be -- she hints she may show it off in a future Visible Monday.


      Yes, this Adrienne dress is a winner

      If you haven't yet shopped at Karina Dresses, please do have a look. The pieces are so comfortable, easy to wear and style, and are made right here in the US. I had the privilege to tour their facility in Brooklyn, and it's a very cheerful, positive place that creates jobs for local folks.




      And my readers can use a special discount if you order any full price dress:

      $30 Off Any Full Price Dress  - GIBP30

      Use your discount code at:
      http://karinadresses.myshopify.com/collections/all


      Congratulations, Anne!

      Sunday, November 13, 2011

      Visible Monday #21: A Vintage Louis Vuitton Blouse

      Welcome to Visible Monday #21! If you want to participate, it's so easy: just go to the bottom of this post for the simple how-to.

      I was so tickled to find this vintage Louis Vuitton blouse at a re-sale shop in the East Village during my NYC vacation. It is really not a spectacular, show-stopping blouse, but I love the subtle paisley print and sophisticated colors. I think I can wear it a lot of different ways.

      I reminds me of another designer, Yves Saint Laurent, in his rich hippie/boho period, so I paired it with western style pale boots and a full skirt. I think I've got a 70's vibe going, but I could be a decade off! The Diesel belt was also a NYC thrift find, for a very frugal $9.


      Old Navy skirt, Gianni Bini boots, and somewhat unruly hair today : >


      The blouse reminds me of this YSL 1970's look

      Now let's see what you're wearing this Visible Monday!


      The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple!
      1. Any Monday, whoever wants to can join in! Just compose a post that includes any outfit, accessory, piece of jewelry, hairstyle, cosmetic or other adornment that makes you feel more confident, alive and visible that day.
      2. Include a link to Not Dead Yet Style somewhere in your post.
      3. Go to the bottom of this post and click on this cute little link:


      In the "Next Step", you crop the pic (easy tool) you want to display, and you're done!




      Saturday, November 12, 2011

      How The City Changed Me; Visible Monday Reminder!

      No secret, I have loved the big city for decades. I worked in Boston and Washington D.C. for many years and was always energized by the concrete canyons, the stream of people, and the buzz of business. No place compares in my mind to New York City. I had the great privilege to spend two weeks there, borrowing a real-life city apartment and living as much as I could like a real New Yorker.


      Hello, Beautiful!


      Every experience has the potential to change us. I am open to letting the city life change some old stuffy ways of thinking, acting, dressing/shopping, and relating. Change is often necessary to get un-stuck and get back to the good stuff again.

      Here is how I believe the city is working on me:

      • Carpe diem, baby. Those two weeks flew by and I was strapped into a plane returning to Florida before I could breathe out. I have to savor my moments, stop obsessing about what's next. This cup of coffee, in this chair, right now, is mighty fine.
      • Don't save your good stuff for some future occasion. People in New York look snappily dressed (many of them anyway) on a daily basis. I took some of my favorite clothes with me - why not make all my clothes my favorite clothes and dress like I'm in NYC? Life's too short for just-OK clothing.
      My husband, as The World's Most Interesting Man.
      Always wear your finest. And stay thirsty, my friends.
      • Be a little good to yourself. I am a bit of a Scrooge when it comes to spending money on me. In NYC I got two wonderful manicures. I treated myself to a gorgeous (pre-owned) Louis Vuitton blouse, and it made me feel great. I got the good wine. I struggle with feeling selfish, but I am responsible with money and it really is OK to have some treats. Tomorrow = manicure!
      • I like a simpler look with fewer, rather than more accessories. I only took a few bracelets, two necklaces, and three pairs of earrings. I didn't even wear them all. My fuzzy hair counts as one big accessory, and I'm very comfortable with just my wedding ring, watch, and one other piece. Which leaves a little more in the budget for:
      • Good shoes and boots. I saw these all over the city and in re-sale shops. I fell in love again with fine, soft leather and now I am doing inventory on all my footwear. Only the best are staying. Comfortable and beautiful is my new shoe mantra.
      • I am a political animal. I've worked on several Congressional campaigns, but had recently moved on from that chapter in my life. Being in the city re-energized me and I have some ideas about how I want to direct my political energy next. Not Dead Yet.  : >

      She still inspires me.


      I would love to hear about how vacations, sabbaticals, work or school-related travels have changed your ways of thinking. Please share!


      Join us! Click the Spotlight


      Visible Monday Link-Up Reminder:  Monday November 14th is Visible Monday, a group posting for anyone who'd like to participate. The simple guidelines are here. Basically, just post something that makes you feel wonderful/visible, and link to it via my Monday post. Easy and fun.

      Thursday, November 10, 2011

      What I Wore: Courtesy of Blogger Friend Sheila!

      Today I am delighted to wear a treat - a gift from the so-fashionable Sheila of Ephemera! Sheila sponsored a contest around her birthday last month: she challenged us to choose outfits from her closet for her to wear, and she'd select a gift for us in return. How crazy generous is that?! Reverse-birthday, I'd call it.



      I chose her Periodic Table of Elements skirt and she wore it. She declared me one of the winners and sent me this gorgeous Kenzie silk skirt and a similarly splendid Ann Taylor silk blouse (to be seen in the near future.) I am totally awed and delighted. Sheila discerned my taste to a tee.
       



      I added an Ann Taylor Loft blouse, thrifted a while ago, and Gianni Bini caramel boots. A woman stopped me in the grocery store tonight just to say "I love your outfit!" Aww, thanks Sheila.

      Tuesday, November 8, 2011

      Do You Wear White in Winter? I Do!

      Among the old rules we women of a certain age have trash-canned is "no white after Labor Day". White in Fall/Winter looks so elegant, so pulled together and yes, so warm. It's all about the fabric, I think. White eyelet lace/chiffon/seersucker doesn't feel quite right to me for winter daywear.

      A rich white or ivory knit sweater -- cashmere, wool or synthetic blend -- looks very appropriate all winter, and with any skirt or trouser. I have several lightweight ivory sweaters (lightweight because our winters hover around 65 degrees!). I wear the heck out of them, and just picked up another today at the consignment store around the corner.


      Gotta have some of these


      I don't own, but would love, a white/ivory knee-length skirt. This should probably be a nice fine-wale corduroy, or heavy cotton knit, so I could wash it. I couldn't find one easily on-line tonight but I'll bet I could with a little effort in real life! What do you think about this (very high-end) wool version?:



      Out of my price range, but very sassy. By Mulberry


      I waver on the footwear. Are ivory shoes/boots ever okay? I just passed on a great-looking pair of mid-calf leather boots in NYC: nice shape, soft, soft leather, mid stacked heel -- but the color looked too glaring. Like, "look at my hooves!" What say you? Would you buy these?:


      A Western white


      A funkier snow-queen ivory boot


      Let's keep breaking and re-making the rules, and have fun doing it. We are Not Dead Yet.

      Sunday, November 6, 2011

      Visible Monday #20: Stepping Out in Stripes

      I can't believe we are at week #20 already! If you want to participate, just scroll down to the bottom for the easy how-to's. Everyone is welcome.

      Today is my last day in New York. Sob! It has been such a rich, lively and joyful visit. The time flew as it always does when we are doing what we love. (Note to self: pay attention to the passing of every moment!). The passion, pace, diversity and energy of the city are now imprinted on me more than ever, and I'm bringing that energy home.

      Here is a casual-but-dressy-enough outfit for our last day: a trip to Midtown for lunch, and a walk around 5th Ave. We were fortunate to watch some of the NYC Marathoners race by the windows while we enjoyed a hot coffee. I chose a simple black knit skirt and a striped top, which I bought at Buffalo Exchange here. My trusty Aldo boots are getting a workout. That's my new Cole Haan bag that I also picked up at a thrift in the East Village.

      I thrifted the gold cuff too, at Beacon's Closet.

      The sweet kitty is Cleo, who came with the apartment. She's a perfect cat.


      I am so grateful for the opportunity to "live" here for two weeks and to soak up the beauty of New York City. I'll write more next week about the new ideas that are percolating in my brain as a result of this trip!

      But now, let's see what you're wearing on this Visible Monday:


      The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple!
      1. Any Monday, whoever wants to can join in! Just compose a post that includes any outfit, accessory, piece of jewelry, hairstyle, cosmetic or other adornment that makes you feel more confident, alive and visible that day.
      2. Include a link to Not Dead Yet Style somewhere in your post.
      3. Go to the bottom of this post and click on this cute little link:


      In the "Next Step", you crop the pic (easy tool) you want to display, and you're done!



      Saturday, November 5, 2011

      Some Fashion Lessons from the Big City; Visible Monday Reminder!

      What a two-week fashion study I have had the privilege to enjoy! In addition to the superb arts and culture, the delicious dining and awe-inspiring sights (see below), I've had the opportunity to observe the women and men of one of the most fashionable cities in the world.

      The dress code varies by neighborhood, to be sure. Lots of dark, sleek suits in the Financial District, and hoodies/tights abound in the East Village. But I have put together some general observations that I want to share, and take home with me to my little 'burb. I want to use these to tweak and refine my own look too, because fashion is all about change, right? And we're Not Dead Yet.

      • As the wise and wonderful Pam wrote a little while ago, simple is good. There are a lot of simple, clean lines and refined silhouettes in the city. That's partly a function of the season of course; I didn't have the chance to see too many pretty dresses under the trim black coats! But the slim lines and solid colors are very appealing to my eyes.
      • You just can't have enough boots for Fall/Winter. I thought I'd see higher heels, but the vast majority are flats, wedges, or short (2" max) heels, in all kinds of yummy designs.
      • Scarves! A saw one billion gorgeous scarves. OK, ten thousand. This inspires me to up my game on the quality of scarves I own. A richly colored scarf -- doesn't have to be cashmere, there are some wonderful rayons -- lifts a Fall/Winter look immeasurably.
      • Carry a great looking bag. In a big city, a big bag is essential. In my little city, it's not, but they sure do look good! Again, my eyes went for the sleek, simple rich-looking bags. I can find these back in Florida in consignment shops for affordable prices.
      • Even in the biggest city, you don't have to spend a fortune to up your game. There are so many thrifts and resale shops. Trade in sweats for a crisp pair of dark denims, white trainers for some ankle boots, add a thrifted scarf, and you've got a chic look.
      • Posture counts! Walk tall, head high, have a purpose and feel visible. Something I do that many New Yorkers do not, is smile. I can't help it, I'm a happy woman!



      What a breathtaking piece of architecture - the Brooklyn Bridge



      It was cold and windy - can you tell? Fashion took a back seat to warmth.

      Do you have any other tips to make your look more sophisticated, if you have the desire to? Share, please!



      Join us! Click the Spotlight


      Visible Monday Link-Up Reminder:  Monday November 7th is Visible Monday, a group posting for anyone who'd like to participate. The simple guidelines are here. Basically, just post something that makes you feel wonderful/visible, and link to it via my Monday post. Easy and fun.