Tuesday, October 30, 2012

I'm Blushing! (But Not Bronzing)

It's official now: Simon Doonan, creative director of Barneys, has declared bronzing/tanning over. In this interview with the Skin Cancer Foundation, Doonan announces that tanning is not only out of style, it's "80's porno star" and "very Rock of Love". Ack!


Christina is a beautiful woman, but is this much tan over and out?


Doonan cites three celebrities with healthy, natural skin: Tilda Swinton (I love her pale glow), Michelle Obama, and Lucy Liu. He's rabidly opposed to suntanning the old fashioned way: "Burning and blistering your skin is like smoking packs of cigarettes or excessive boozing. It's negative and gnarly and self-destructive. You must love yourself, which includes loving your epidermis."

He's an advocate for the "skin tone you were born with", and his final words of advice are, "Love your skin, don't barbecue it!"


Doonan cites Lucy Liu as an example of healthy, non-barbecued skin.
Love the freckles.

I agree with Mr. Doonan on this one. I'm from a generation that sizzled and fried in the sun as teens, with nothing more than a splash of olive oil to "protect" our skin. I've had some skin cancers, yeah. But my eye is still attracted to a bronze glow. I guess all those years of programming, staring at this ad, are tough to erase! Curse you, Bain du Soleil.


Yes, in 1982 SPF 15 was "The Ultra Block"

To save my skin, these days I am enjoying a renaissance of blushing. I love ChaCha Tint by Benefit. I use it as my first layer of blushing as it's sheer but long-lasting. Then I brush on some pinkish powder like this one by L'Oreal,  high on my cheeks. I'm using a little more than I used to, as I notice it actually does perk up my face!

Do you still love the look of a "healthy" tan? Via the sun or by way of lotions and powders? Or do you embrace your natural skin tone, or fall somewhere in-between?

Safe and positive thoughts are sent out to all those in the Northeast suffering the after-effects of Hurricane Sandy.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Visible Monday #70: Scarving It Up

Welcome to Visible Monday #70! If you want to participate, it's so easy: just go to the bottom of this post for the simple how-to.

It's transitional season dressing time, yay! That opens the door for all kinds of fun looks, incorporating more layers, longer sleeves, and more scarving. For this outfit, I started with the most simple of white tees from the GAP. I usually buy a couple of these at a time, because, well, white tees just don't stay work-worthy for long.

The print skirt was thrifted. I have enjoyed wearing it more than I expected, because it keeps its shape nicely and it's a great length. The maker is "Nygaard", of whom I had never heard, and for whom I found only this close approximation. Great skirt, anyway.

The scarf was an eBay find; it's really soft and I see a lot of Fall/Winter potential for this one. Are you using your scarves like mad now that it's cooler? (or even cold, for some of you!). I love to have one in my ice-box of an office, and have even converted them to rain-hats on occasion.


Picasso's lion has hair like mine.


You can see the scarf is big enough to be a dress!



Now, let's see what you're wearing, Visible Women!!

The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple!
  1. 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, October 27, 2012

What I Wore: Tutus for Grownups

I have fallen for this layered net skirt and wear it a lot (last seen here). It makes me feel youthful but not silly. The length is just right and it's black - hello, favorite non-color!

I paired it with a semi-sheer blouse by JJill (thrifted), and a medium blue suede belt that's proven to be more versatile than I expected. I'm wearing my black Impo thrifted booties for additional grown-up flair. I see now I could have benefited from a nice pair of dangly earrings and a touch more lipstick. The camera tells more than the mirror.



Sassy in a tulle skirt by Old Navy.



Have a superb Saturday, and don't forget: Monday, October 29th is Visible Monday. Everyone is welcome to participate!


Join us! Click the Spotlight

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Featured Fab Blogger: Sarah Hulbert Style

Sarah popped up on my radar when she first linked up with Visible Monday. I have been reading her blog ever since, and loving her positivity and her creative style.

Sarah says her "Style Faves" include bright lipstick, leopard prints, knee high boots, pearls worn with menswear, and "all things sparkly". Sound like a lot? When Sarah pulls it together, it's just right. She also can help you beautify your home and personalize your closet; she likes to make things more fabulous.


Color, texture, pattern, shine - Sarah works all the elements for a
personal style that glows.

She can really make her accessories sizzle, like these leopard flats
and brilliant scarf.

And Sarah mixes brights beautifully and with confidence.

If you haven't yet, please check out Sarah's blog; it will make you smile.


Sarah very kindly bestowed the Sunshine Award on my blog. It comes with the request to answer her questions, so here we go:

  1. Why did you originally start your blog? I wanted to write about being 50-something and still being interested in looking great. And slightly worried about the whole Am-I-Too-Old-To-Be-Fashionable thing.
  2. Why do you continue to blog? What inspires you to keep going? The pleasure of the interaction with other bloggers, and the discipline of making myself write!
  3. What is the most treasured item in your closet? How/why did you acquire it? Hmmm, not too many treasures in there. Can I say my wedding ring?
  4. What is your signature style piece? (A scarf, a favorite coat, piece of jewelry, etc.) Probably booties, brown or black, with full skirts.
  5. What movie/TV show do you find most inspires your style? I adore the fashions Grace Kelly wore in all the films she did in the 1950's, esp if Cary Grant was in them.
  6. Got any great pics of your sense of style as a kiddo? Please post or describe. Umm, I was a chubby kid with short curly hair. Probably cuter than I remember, but I was not stylish in any way!
  7. “I can’t believe I ever wore…” Hot pants.
  8. Fill in the blank: “My biggest personal style hurtle is _________. I jump this hurtle by ________________.” Financial/thrift shopping.
  9. What era of style do you most identify with and why? (Roaring twenties, nineties grunge, etc.) I love something about every era, but I especially adore the long, sleek dresses of the 1930's, and the fabulous hairstyles of that time.
  10. I have been blogging less than a year. What is the best advice you would give to a newbie blogger? Be yourself!

I can never choose just a handful of blogs that inspire me, so I pass this award on to all of you who would like to participate. Spread the sunshine.



Tuesday, October 23, 2012

New York Street Style: What I Saw

I didn't photo a lot of street style, because well, I don't have the nerves to snap peoples' pics in public. I'm not as adorable as Bill Cunningham, nor as bold as a paparazzo. But I do have a good memory! And I pay attention, unless I am making my way home from late-night ballgames at the Riviera Cafe and Sports Bar.


Just steps from our apartment, it became our local  : >

Here are some of the trends I saw in abundance, on college women of New York University, on urban Moms-On-The-Go, and even on some Women of a Certain Age (why not?):

  • Skinny jeans, jeggings and leggings. I know the word is out that boot-cut jeans are also in style but you wouldn't know it from New York, people. And I love a boot-cut myself - but it was skinny, skinny all the way. If I had a dollar for every non-skinny jean I saw, I could not buy a cafe latte.
  • Flat boots. Yay for this trend! Although I did spot some heeled boots in Midtown, in the Village I saw nearly all flats, slightly rugged, in shades of black, gray, brown and taupe. All heights, from knee to ankle, looked smashing with the aforementioned skinnies.
  • Ballerina flats, too. The alternative to boots appears to be ballet flats (with your skinnies), mostly in black or animal print. These women know they need to walk and they are going to be comfortable doing it!
  • Scarves. They seem indispensable. Mostly long, looped and wrapped (see Une Femme's tip for a cool style). Lots of McQueen-esque skulls on the younger women. It's the way to add color to an otherwise dark neutral palette, and style to a long-sleeve black tee.
  • Big bags, but not as humongous as a couple of seasons ago. Remember when bags were bigger than the models carrying them? This year I saw lots of "good" leather bags in neutrals, big enough for city paraphernalia, but not overwhelming. The old style cliche seems true: a quality bag elevates a look.

Emma Watson works the look with classic flats and a
streamlined pea-coat.


Sienna Miller takes the uniform more bohemian, with suede booties.


A version for the 20-something, substituting tiny denim shorts


And for us mid-lifers, a sophisticated version from Eileen Fisher,
via Neiman Marcus


What I did not see much of:
  • Skirts - although I frequently wore a knit midi skirt, I saw few others. I am behind the curve!
  • Flannel shirts - I thought I'd see a lot as they're trending in online stores. Maybe a more West coast trend? 
  • Brights - I saw some colored jeans, but in subdued tones like deep russet or gray. Toppers and sweaters were mostly dark neutrals with scarves providing the only color splash.

Are you wearing any/all of these styles in your part of the world?


Sunday, October 21, 2012

Visible Monday #69: Sparkly Shiny

Welcome to Visible Monday #69! If you want to participate, it's so easy: just go to the bottom of this post for the simple how-to.

I doubled down on shiny today - I think I broke a rule - with my shimmery pleated skirt and be-spangled belt. I kept things sober up top with a favorite breton-striped tee. And well-grounded below with nude platform sandals. Visible for the win!

Tee: Lands End Canvas; Skirt: DKNY, thrifted; Sandals: Anne Klein


Red, white and navy may be predictable, but I still love it. My husband can
be predictable too, and I love the heck out of him  : >

Now, let's see what you're wearing, Visible Women!!

The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple!
  1. 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, October 20, 2012

In Which I Take The Bull By The . . Flank

Yesterday's adventures included a walking tour of the Financial District, one of the oldest sections of the city and dotted with magnificent buildings. We especially enjoyed St. Paul's Chapel, where George Washington worshiped and which became a haven for 9/11 rescue workers.


Inside St. Paul's Chapel, full of tributes to the rescue workers of 9/11.
The World Trade Centers were just a block away.

I found Wall Street itself rather cold and forbidding. I actually got a chill of not-the-good-kind in that concrete canyon with its monuments to money. I saw almost no women or people of color there, although I know the Exchanges are diversified now. Eh, the Hippie in me remains, even if she now has a 401(k)!

I couldn't resist the Charging Bull, however. So cheesy but so New York. As you can see, it's a popular photo op!





Have a glorious Saturday, and don't forget: Monday, October 22nd is Visible Monday. Everyone is welcome to participate!


Join us! Click the Spotlight

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Do You Sephora?

I spent some time yesterday at the Sephora on Broadway in Soho. It's not the biggest Sephora I've ever been in, but it will do! It was teeming with women, sampling blush, gloss and scents, and getting "done" by the makeover artists on staff. If there exists a beauty product that can't be sampled at Sephora, I probably will never need it. I am not even sure I need a mascara fixative or pre-primer primer for my eyelids.

It's great fun and like a playground for grown-ups. I did have a moment wrestling with my self-esteem, surrounded by model-beauty young women, just polishing their already-gorgeous faces. But! There was also a salesperson d'un certain age who very nicely approached and asked if she could help me. Refreshing to see a rep I could completely relate to, as we chatted over the latest miracle smoothing creams.

Just as I search eternally for the perfect cardigan, I was on the lookout for the perfect lipstick. Could this be the reason I own four lipsticks of almost exactly the same color? I contented myself with sampling some lovely Clinique colors, then I spritzed myself with a gorgeous scent and navigated the crowd back to Broadway. I bought a pot of chamomile tea at the corner cafe and was awash in contentment.


My perfect color is here.


That may be the lesson of Sephora for me: fun and experimentation, and the occasional swell new product. Then back to my real life, content and Visible-if-not-Glamorous, contemplating the wonderful world.

Do you Sephora? Like it/loathe it/not interested? I always love to read your thoughts, and though my computing abilities are limited here on vacation, I am reading all your comments and smiling.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Style Lesson: Don't Try Too Hard

First, I want to thank all the participants in Visible Monday this week for your creativity and enthusiasm. What a delightful, confident group you are, bringing your own special style sense and flair to the party. Thank you so much.

I am in my dream city, New York. We are again renting a small apartment in the West Village (yes on Sarah Jessica Parker's street, but I haven't bumped into her or Matthew yet. : > ). I brought along a very simple capsule of denim, black, gray and ivory clothing, with colorful scarves and bangles. I have been inspired by Une Femme d'un Certain Age, who travels to Paris so gracefully with just a few basic pieces.

My style mantra here has been "Don't Try Too Hard." As I have the privilege to study some very stylish women, as well as the effortlessly chic young women of the Village, a theme jumps out: "casually-thrown-together" is appealing.

There is a certain look, more seen in the toniest neighborhoods, that is not-me. I don't judge it for those who enjoy it, but it is not authentic or comfortable for me. It includes very well coiffed hair, perfectly polished makeup, and carefully coordinated ensembles with nary a seam out of place. When I try this look, I end up looking well, silly. I do admire the grace of the women who do it well.

She was always impeccable. But so not my style. Still, love the hat.

So every morning I choose a pair of jeans or black knit skirt, add a cozy gray or cream sweater, my best walking boots, and a vibrant scarf. The wind is going to blow my unruly hair around anyway. Ahhh, I feel good. Red lips are always okay, right?

While I don't have her youthful beauty, this is much closer
to my NYC look  : >


I hope your day is fabulous and fulfilling. Thanks so much for reading and participating; you rock.



Sunday, October 14, 2012

Visible Monday #68: Minor Color Blocking

Welcome to Visible Monday #68! If you want to participate, it's so easy: just go to the bottom of this post for the simple how-to.

I don't wear bright colors very often, but I like the color blocking trend. Here's a muted version I put together from my closet and felt good in. The GAP Body tank is pre-blocked (ahh, lazy!). I have it in two colors; it's as soft as jammies.

I paired the top with a simple black layering tee and favorite gray pencil skirt. The silver square pendant is thrifted, as is the green bangle. Simple and Visible for a cheerful day at the office. (Disclosure: This outfit was pre-recorded, as in real time I am in The West Village, NYC, in a cozy sweater and jeans, drinking English Breakfast tea!)


A  neutrals kind of woman tries her hand at color blocking.


The scarf/shawl comes in handy for frigid offices. You know what I'm talking about.


Because of limited computer capabilities while on vacation, I won't be able to comment on all your fab entries today, so sorry! But I will be reading and enjoying them all, and I appreciate your participation with a happy heart.


Now, let's see what you're wearing, Visible Women!!

The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple!
  1. 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, October 13, 2012

And Away We Go . . .

We're taking off for NYC today! There will be eating, drinking, walking, walking, shopping, some lectures, some comedy, and a boat tour of the island. A meetup with delightful designer Karina of Karina Dresses is planned. A historic pub, The Fraunces Tavern, is on the agenda for sampling. In general, fabulous fun times ahead.


Fraunces Tavern, Established 1762


Visible Monday is most definitely ON for this week. I will be taking a hiatus from commenting on all your entries this time though: the laptop I am bringing to NYC has limited capabilities and commenting is HARD (not as hard as math, but hard  : >). But please know I am so grateful and happy for your participation, and I'll be back to interacting next Monday fer sure.


Kidding! I love Math.


Have a simply fab Saturday, and don't forget: Monday, October 15th is Visible Monday. Everyone is welcome to participate!


Join us! Click the Spotlight

Thursday, October 11, 2012

What I Wore: Pattern-Mixing, I Can't Stop

I do fear that six months from now, I'll look back at some of these outfits and say hmmm, Patti, what overcame you? But I'm having fun with pattern mixing, especially anything with stripes.

I bought this sassy striped sweater at the 15 Dollar Store. Guess how much? (Whenever we go into the Dollar Store, my husband loves to hold things up and ask me "How much is this?" He's hilarious!) The print dress underneath is Lauren Ralph Lauren, thrifted earlier this year.


I love my nude wedge sandals. Looks like another couple weeks of 80 degree
days, so they'll be worn lots more.

Black and white looks forever fresh to me. Just a touch of color is added with a bright green bangle, thrifted at Beacon's Closet in New York. We're going back to NYC for a visit next week! I shall most definitely return to Beacon's to sample the goods.

Are you pattern mixing? Am I hopelessly late in this trend? It wouldn't be the first nor the last time, but I don't really mind. Fashion is for fun and expression, and being Not Dead Yet.


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

No Regrets Shopping

An oldie-but goodie style book I often turn to is In Style: Instant Style. It's got loads of pictures and common-sense advice, as well as a gazillion checklists. I adore checklists, being ever-so-slightly OCD. OK, quite a bit OCD, but I do not alphabetize food items in the pantry.




The book's advice for no-regrets shopping includes these helpful tips. I've modified them a little to make them applicable to online shopping:

  • Shop for the here and now. "Never shop thinking, I'll lose a little and it will fit. Buy for the moment you're in." I do well with this one. I like to buy only what feels good on my body, not what will make me feel uncomfortable or negative about myself.
  • Know your price. "When you find a miracle worker, buy at full price. As for the sales rack: it's not a bargain if you won't wear it." Hmmm, I could improve here. I seem allergic to paying full price, but I know I have passed up some great classics, like the perfect V-neck cashmere sweater, or fabulous boots, by shying away from the "investment."
  • Don't give in. "Ask yourself the key questions: Do I love it? Do I feel great in it? Does it fit me? Does it flatter me? Does it go with at least two other pieces in my closet?" This one really says it all about smart shopping. Especially: Do I Love It? I tell myself while shopping that I have plenty of "you'll do" pieces already. If you're coming home with me, there's gotta be love.

Have you any tips to add for no-regrets shopping?

For my fellow list-lovers, here's a checklist for a Fall/Winter wardrobe, from the same book:


I'd skip the turtleneck, switch trousers for more skirts, and change out
kitten heels for wedges. Oh, and no long winter coat needed  : >

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Visible Monday #67: Hippie Revival, Last One

Welcome to Visible Monday #66! If you want to participate, it's so easy: just go to the bottom of this post for the simple how-to.

Here is the last of the three cotton wrap skirts I found at the back of one of my dressers. (See the other two here and here.) This one is has a gorgeous cream design on a cocoa background. And pockets! Love pockets. I think I can style this all year round, even though it's cotton, with boots and tights and a chunkier top.

The tee here is a simple one by Coldwater Creek, thrifted for a few dollars. I'm wearing my White Mountain studded sandals (still plenty hot here in Florida), faux pearls and assorted bracelets. In the last pic, I'm showing the bright scarf/wrap I added for the office, where the air conditioning is set on Arctic. Visible yes, and must also remain defrosted at work  : >


I don't resemble the hippie of my youth anymore, but I do still love these
funky wrap skirts.


Pockets!


Colorful scarf was picked up at the street fair.


Now, let's see what you're wearing, Visible Women!!

The guidelines to participate in the Visible Monday Link-Up are so simple!
  1. 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, October 6, 2012

Frocktober! Karina Dresses I Have Known

Who doesn't like a flattering, easy-care dress? Year-round, I reach for dresses when I want to look pulled-together with minimum effort. It's no secret that one of my favorite designers is Karina.

If you haven't checked out Karina's styles yet, please do. Not just because the dresses are pretty, versatile, and machine washable (multiple times, I tell you!). But Karina's company is so cool, too. It's in Brooklyn and that's where the dresses are made - right there in Brooklyn USA. That's becoming a rare phenomenon.

For you happy Karina dress owners, during October (Frocktober!) Karina is sponsoring a contest: send them a video and qualify to win a free dress. See all the details here.

Here's a few of my moments in Karina dresses:


Classic, conservative styling with faux pearls and a long cardi.
Karina Megan dress.


The Megan again, punked up with a studded belt, tights and booties.


The Carmen dress, simple casual styling for a statement print.


The Audrey! An iconic dress that's surprisingly versatile. I've
worn it many times for many happy occasions.

Use code GIBP30 to get 30% off any full-priced Karina dress today!


Have a first-class Saturday, and don't forget, Monday, October 8th is Visible Monday. Everyone is welcome to participate!


Join us! Click the Spotlight

Thursday, October 4, 2012

What I Wore: Oversized Man's Shirt

I am not a big lover of the classic white button-down blouse. Main reason: laziness. I hate ironing. I thought I'd give this over-sized man's shirt a try though, as it promised to be no-wrinkle. And I am liking the slouchy look lately, surrendering the waist for comfort and style.


Large faux pearls are a feminine addition.
Both the shirt and the Banana Republic skirt are thrift finds.


Sorry for the brightness/contrast fail!
But this pic shows the nice slouch of the shirt.


Have you/would you wear a man's shirt? Or are you a traditional crisp-white-blouse person? Or neither -- perhaps a lover of knits rather than wovens?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Help! Accessorize An Afternoon Wedding

My delightful nephew is marrying his gorgeous fiancee in a few weeks (on my own wedding anniversary, it so happens!). The wedding will be in the late afternoon at his parents' waterfront home. So priorities: love, marriage, celebration, family . . . and how to dress the middle-aged auntie.

Ah, my husband has no challenge. His handsome dark gray suit, white shirt, and a colorful silk tie. Black shoes, black socks, done.

I'm more complicated. So, I bought this dress. Love it. It's a Calvin Klein, medium gray, fits like a dream, simple and elegant.


It's hard to see the ruffle detail in this pic, but it's very flattering.
The necklace here is an old prop from my eBay selling days.


I have a colorful, large silk scarf that I am going to use as a shawl, in case it gets chilly. But I am pondering the rest of the accessories. Shall I go with classic black patent pumps or something more "wedding-y" like these:


Caparros Satin Pumps, Zappos


I think the neckline of the dress is enough of a statement, so I'll skip a necklace and probably wear vintage rhinestone earrings like these:


I have a pair similar to these.



And maybe a simple cuff:

A classic Tiffany. Always good on a wedding day.


But I am open to all suggestions. I am not a dressy woman, as you've probably noticed via Visible Monday. "Dressed up" is an uncommon event in our social life, although I am still awaiting an invitation to the Inaugural Ball in Washington  : >  I appreciate your feedback, and have a happy Tuesday!