You’ve Got Style

I think you guys might know I’m sort of having a love affair with Stitchfix (for the record I am receiving no compensation from them, though given the amount of time I talk about them I probably should)  For the uninitiated, Stitchfix is the perfect solution to either someone who doesn’t like to shop, or someone who doesn’t really know how to make the most of their wardrobe.  You fill out a very detailed questionnaire, and then they send you five items of clothing/accessories whenever you schedule it.  I think it’s brilliant.

I have now done two boxes, and will get delivery of my next box sometime at the end of the month.  I have been extremely fortunate in that every thing the stylist has sent me has been something I really liked (or loved) and was a great piece for my wardrobe.  The fit has also been spot on.  This amazes me- how they could find me black jeans better than I have bought myself is shocking to me.

Here’s the catch.  I was brutally honest when I filled out the questionnaire.  I gave my actual weight and body type.  I explained the “flaws” and how I try to correct them.  (my fatal flaw is being short waisted.  My ribs end and my hips begin, so I can really look like I have no waist.  I choose things that elongate me, and give me the appearance of curves.  I also have nice legs and arms, so I tend to wear clothes that highlight one of these areas.  I like knowing my strengths and weaknesses, so to speak.

But, even though I don’t really know how to be stylish, I know what my style is.  I like classic clothes in neutral colors (who am I kidding- I wear black and grey, with sometimes white or pink). I like clothes with simple lines and not a great deal of fuss.  My favorite look this season has been black faux leather trimmed leggings, a long black tunic/t shirt and a knee length grey cardigan with either black suede sneakers or black booties.  Big necklace, big stud earrings.   I am not girly.  I am not boho.  I am not dramatic.  I am simple….I do like a fun accessory, funky necklace or shoe, and I am willing to try a trend.  (I went to a party the other night sporting a pale pink shimmery shirt with those little flutter like sleeves that are so popular now.  I felt a little fun and different)

Ok- I’ve given you details and description (i’m learning that my novel is lacking this, so, lucky you, I am practicing with you)

But where am I going?

One of my really close friends tried Stitchfix.  She HATED it.  Absolutely hated it.

Why?

Because she has absolutely no idea what her style is.  None at all.  She insists to me that she is like me, classic and simple.  I’ve know her for 25 years.  She is not classic and far from simple.  She loves color- her closet is a rainbow.  She loves florals and flowing tops.  She leans towards peasant, boho styles in whatever she chooses.  yet, if you ask her, she will tell you that the last thing she is is Bohemian.  She literally said that to me.  When I asked her what style she is, I gave her a list of choices, and the only clear thing she said was that she is NOT BOHO.

Why is this important?

Take a look at yourself in the mirror.  Accept who you are.  Who you actually are, not the person you are in your mind.  I think people get into problems when the outer you, the you that you represent to the world is not in sync with what’s really going on in your head.  The outer you and the inner you need to match.   Outer and Inner need to come to some sort of agreement.  If they are always battling, you, as a person, are never going to be happy.

Don’t try to be something you’re not.  Be who you are.  And don’t let a spouse, a friend or a parent sway you as to who you really are.  My Mother will often buy me clothes.  In theory this is nice.  In reality, she is buying things that she thinks I should wear, the style she thinks I should be.  I’m 53, and my Mother is still trying to dictate who I am.  Don’t get caught in this.  Be who you are. (FYI- who you are can change.  It is ok to be punk when you’re 30, and boho when you’re 35- that’s just evolving- nothing wrong with that at all as long as you are true to yourself and not trying to morph into someone else’s ideal)

So here’s the takeaway:

  1. I love having someone else pick out my clothes and curate my wardrobe for me
  2. I know who I am and am happy with who I am
  3. Figure out who you are and run with it.  you will be an awesome you!!

 

 

 

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LBD

I went to a funeral the other day.   As I was getting dressed, I came to a realization: I wear the same dresses to funerals as I do to weddings- I just accessorize differently.  For the record, I also wear these dresses to semi-formal events, and even to dinner.  So…..what does this say about me?

  1. I have reached a new milestone in minimalism.  Living in a tiny space with few closets has made me more aware of purchasing and holding on to things.  I’ve realized that there are very few physical things that make me truly happy.  To quote Marie Kondo- “If you don’t love it, toss it.”
  2. I need to shop more.  Here’s the thing-  I don’t like to shop.  This is a sharp turn around from my youth, when my friends joked that I chose my college because of proximity to an upscale shopping mall.
  3. I go to very few weddings.  I’m at the age where my friends are mostly married, and the ones getting married are opting for very casual weddings.  My friends children are mostly at an age where they are thinking marriage, or are still in school.  And frankly, I think less people are choosing marriage.
  4. I go to very few funerals.   Death rituals are becoming less formal- some of my friends parents are opting for luncheons and memorial services instead of wakes, Shiva’s and the like.
  5. I no longer feel the need to have event specific clothing.  True dat.  I buy a new black dress every year, and I get rid of one.  (that’s my family rule- if you buy something new you must get rid of an item.  I do the same at holiday time.  Daughter must donate the same number of items that are on her wish list)  For a wedding the dress with be worn with fancier shoes, glitzy faux jewels, and elaborate make-up.  Funeral, toss a jacket over the top, low pumps and simple jewels…..you get the idea.  It makes my life less complex- there are enough things to stress over- dressing should not be one of them.
  6. I think of marriage and death as the same thing.  Hmmmm- I’ve got to think about this…..
  7. I no longer feel the need to dress sexy at certain events.  There were times when I would go to a cocktail party, or wedding, and I would wear a little slinky dress.  This was as recent as 5 years ago.  And one day I realized- who am I trying to impress?  I’m much more comfortable in a simple dress that covers my rear, and does not require me to wear a strapless bra.  If I’m comfortable, I’m happy.  Happy wins.  If you want to think that I’ve succumbed to age- that’s fine.  I’m also at the age where I don’t care what people think.  When it comes to feeling sexy- I’ve  learned that sexy is fueled by the brain- if you don’t think you are sexy, high heels, short skirts, cleavage are just not going to cut it.  If the only thing that makes you feel hot is men staring at you- guess what?  You’re not hot.  You’re just a Barbie doll.  Trust me- I’m still pretty sexy……

So- long live my little black dress- It worked for Audrey Hepburn- I think it can work for me.