WHITE PANTS TRY ONS

Hello Friends,

Today I am back with the first in a series about some of my “experiments.” I post these periodically in the hopes of inspiring you to try things on before you walk out the door. 😉

I have a lot of clothes in my closet, but just because I have something doesn’t mean that it will look good if I just pull it out, put it on, and walk out the door. That rarely happens. Most clothing needs to be “styled” which means that some ways of wearing it will look better than other ways. You won’t know which looks better unless you try on and evaluate.

It can be time-consuming, but not too bad if you do it the right way. This means:

  • Think of what you might want to wear
  • Imagine some items that might look good with it
  • Try different items on (experiment with shoes, jewelry, purses)
  • Take quick selfies (in the mirror is fine)
  • Don’t worry about hair, makeup, or posing
  • Evaluate the photos and see if you can do better

I like to take “try-on” pictures, because I find that seeing a photograph is very helpful. I can usually tell pretty quickly if the outfit is something that I will wear or not.

I have decided to share my try-on photos (which I don’t really like doing), because I hope it helps you to see that some of the things you think you love may not look that great, or that some things that you didn’t think were that great actually look nice.

These are really try-ons. No makeup, hair not washed, bra showing, blurry, etc. I also apologize for the line across the bottom. Have not had time to get my camera repaired.

This session started out because I saw some young, beautiful, skinny girls on tv wearing some really cute earrings, so I went out and looked for something similar. I guess I thought that  pair of $3.99 earrings would magically turn me into a young, beautiful, skinny girl 🙂

And these girls were wearing these earrings with white pants, and I love summer mostly just because of white pants, so I decided to go to my closet.

I will start with the “earrings outfit” even though it didn’t turn out exactly as I had pictured it. I guess you just need to be 26 with a golden tan and long legs 😉

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As you can see, Number 1 was horrible, Number 2 a little better, and Number 3 was wearable.

After I saw the final version of this

I decided that the earrings might look good with this another top I had tried, even though I really did not like any of these try-ons:

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This is pretty cute after I ditched the sweater:

 

Keepin’ it real until next time! I will be back with some more white pants outfits soon.

If  you would like to see pictures of most of the outfits I have put together, click on the page for the category you would like to see. On a mobile device, click menu to access the pages. You can also follow me on Instagram@over50under20.  

 

GETTING READY FOR SUMMER

I hope you missed me this week! I missed you. 🙂 I did not get a post out on Sunday because we had a very busy week and a family wedding over the weekend. But I am back now, and have started thinking about my summer wardrobe. As you know, I HATE to go to my closet and try to find something to wear right before I am walking out the door; for me, security is knowing that I have outfits already put together, and can just choose one. I have a lot of clothes (most cost less than $20) but it can be overwhelming to try to put things together, especially if I am in a hurry.

I do like to have a choice, because I might not be in the mood to wear a certain outfit, even if I like it. Or the shoes might not be comfortable enough, or it might be too cool or too hot. I really love the feeling of knowing that I have several outfits, including shoes and jewelry, documented and ready to put on.

Today, I spent some time making several outfit choices for a new pair of shorts. I have a lot of things planned for the summer, including some travel, and am hoping I can have quite a few outfits planned and ready to go by the time I need them. Once May is over, I definitely will not have time to “play dress-up,” so I will be spending some time in my closet this month.

I have promised myself to STAY OUT OF THE STORES, because after doing a little shopping last week, I do not need anything, but I do need to work on coordinating what I have–time consuming, but well worth it.

So…here are the results of today’s visit to the closet. I am showing all with comments, so you can learn along with me. Some didn’t quite make the cut, but I have ideas on how to fix them up.

This one is pretty basic. It will work for taking the grandchildren places this summer, but truthfully probably wouldn’t wear the necklace on such outings. Looks better than an old t-shirt and jean shorts 😉

 

      

Here is one with and without some bling

Nice basic outfit for casual activities

My first attempt at pattern mixing. Definitely will not be wearing this!

Tried again. I do like this pattern mixing, but the shoes are literally making me laugh out loud! This is why you try things on before you leave the house.

Love the color combination, but need a different camisole. I hope there is something in my closet, since I have vowed not to shop this month. 😉

Thanks for stopping by. I’ll be back next week with some more experiments. I would love to hear your thoughts on any of these outfits. Honesty appreciated!

If you would like to see pictures of most of the outfits I have put together, click on the page for the category you would like to see. On a mobile device, click menu to access the pages. You can also follow me on Instagram@over50under20.  

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NOTHING TO WEAR

Has this ever happened to you? You walk into (or look into) a closet full of clothes and say, “I have nothing to wear?”  If you are like most women, it has happened more than once.  There can be a variety of reasons for this. Sometimes it is just the mood we are in. Nothing in our closet seems to appeal to us.  Sometimes it is because we are feeling bloated or fat. (Do men ever think this way??? LOL)

In my case, for the most part, it just seemed to be that I could not figure out what to wear. I had cute pants, cute tops, cute sweaters, cute shoes, but nothing I tried on seemed to work. Especially if I were in a hurry…as in “we are going to a fancy party in one hour and I just realized the dress I wanted to wear is a little too snug in the stomach area, and I don’t really have time to try to pull something else together.”

Since I have started putting outfits together and documenting them BEFORE I actually need them, this problem has disappeared from my life for the most part. I am not naturally an organized, do-it-ahead-of-time kind of person, but I have learned to be better at it, because I have discovered that it saves a lot of stress in the long run.

I have to admit that I am still in the learning phase in many ways. Sometimes I have put on an outfit that I had documented a few months earlier, and immediately put it in the “what was I thinking?” category. But because I have put together a LOT of outfits by mixing and matching my stuff,  I can usually find something else without too much trouble.

For instance, I now have more that one dressy outfit in case I need it. I have found several inexpensive dresses  and of course, I can always wear my black pants if I am feeling fat or cold or if all my pantyhose have runs in them.

There are lots of ways you can document your outfits. The easiest way is to snap a quick photo in front of your full-length mirror. That way you will have it in your phone, and can access it easily.

PLEASE DO NOT TELL ME THAT YOU DO NOT HAVE FULL-LENGTH MIRROR.  It is 100% imperative to own one. No excuses. You can get one at WalMart for less than $10.00. Seriously, you can’t get dressed properly without looking in a mirror that shows the whole outfit, including shoes.

You can also just make descriptive notes on cards or in a notebook, take a picture of the outfit on a hanger or on the bed, or use an app on your phone that keeps track of everything in your closet (I will post on that another day).

I like pictures, but I also often use index cards when I am traveling. Each card lists everything (shoes, earrings, purse,etc) that makes up an outfit I like. I plan all the outfits I think I might need for whatever I will be doing. Helps with packing, and I use the cards to get dressed everyday when I am on a trip.  Might be too much for you, but it works for me!

The point is to find a system that works for you. I can promise you that know matter how much you think you will remember every item you used to make an outfit you loved, when the time comes to get dressed, and you are in a hurry, or stressed, you WILL NOT remember that the large black necklace looked better than the pearls, or that the red shoes were cuter than the black ones. Trust me on this.

You don’t have to do this all in one day. Just get started. The next time you put together an outfit that you really like, just make sure you document it in some way so that you can recreate it. If you keep doing this, you will soon have a lot of nice outfits to choose from.

Or you can take a day and style a lot of outfits at one time. Just try to do this when no one is home…and make sure you have some wine ready at the end of the day.  LOL

Good luck and have fun with this!

If you would like to see pictures of most of the outfits I have put together, click on the page for the category you would like to see. On a mobile device, click menu to access the pages. You can also follow me on Instagram @over50under20.

JEANS FIVE: Brown Belt

This is the last post in the series of how I styled my new jeans by using different accessories.  None of the outfits in this series is “perfect.” There is no such thing. They are all outfits I would feel good about leaving the house in, and that is my goal.

It is easy to get discouraged and think that you will never be able to come up with something that looks good and is inexpensive. BUT….that is not true. I felt that way when I wrote my posts LOSERS and BLAH, BLAH, BLAH.

But all it took was a new pair of $12.99 jeans and a couple of hours of trying on clothes for me to get my mojo back. You can do it! Just don’t be afraid to try new things, and don’t be afraid to add some bling.

You might make some mistakes. Actually, you will make some mistakes. But this is not a life-or-death thing we are talking about here!  There is no Great Fashion Judge who is going to give you a failing grade. If you try, you WILL make progress.

You will learn from every mistake. And some of my “mistakes” were better than what I was doing before I started trying.

Okay, enough nagging.  Here is what I did using some brown stuff:

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The belt is the same. I just turned it around so the animal print would show.

And speaking of making mistakes, here is an outfit that I wouldn’t wear out of the house. But hey, five out of six is not bad! 😉

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Here are all the looks in the series:

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Which one do you like the best?

I’ll be back soon with something that ISN’T jeans. I would love for you to subscribe so you won’t miss any of my nagging!

And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @over50under20

 

JEANS TWO: Anatomy of an Outfit

In my previous post, I showed you my new jeans, and the process I used to put together an outfit.  I am continuing that theme today, and again, I will use photos from beginning to end, so you can see the steps involved.

Isn’t this cute?  HAHA  I actually saw a lady in the store today with almost this same look, except she had even MORE fat rolls. 🙂   🙂 Don’t do this!

Now I look like I am wearing a red blanket:

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Faking a waist helps somewhat:

Pulled it all together with a scarf:

 

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I hope someone is learning something from all my humiliation of myself!

Don’t forget to subscribe and don’t forget to follow me on Instagram:

@over50under20.com

NEW JEANS

In my last post, I showed you how I tried to make some outfits, but they were all blah, which made me feel blah.  I am feeling much better today. Why?  Because I bought new jeans. Yes, it sounds ridiculous! But a new pair of jeans did wonders for my mood.  I have lots of clothes and probably did not need new jeans, but in my mind, I did, because I wanted boot-cut jeans to go with my high heel boots.

So off I went to find just the right pair, thinking it would be a time-consuming ordeal, and probably expensive. But guess what? I found them at the first store I went to….my go-to place for inexpensive clothing and costume jewelry…CATO. 🙂

AND they were less than $20.00.  I got jeans and a belt for $14.99.  YAY!

I decided to use the jeans to do a series on using accessories. Of course, these will be a visual lessons 😉

Before I started on my “fashion journey,”  I pretty much considered an outfit to be pants and a top, or a dress. It never occurred to me that you could add things like sweaters, jackets, or belts. And I might have worn whatever jewelry I happened to have, but certainly did not change accessories for different outfits.

The outfit I am wearing today is pretty basic, but it does look like an outfit, not just jeans and a top.  Here are the steps I took to get there:

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I started with the jeans and a white top, then added a jacket. Still not right, so kept going and added a belt.

That wasn’t quite enough, so finished up with necklace, bracelet and earrings:

Now I am good to go!  Much better than the blah outfit from last week:

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I’ll be back soon with more “experiments in style.”  I would LOVE for you to subscribe, and don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @over50under20.

 

LEGGINGS

Not too long ago, I wrote a post about wearing things as pants that are not actually pants–chiefly leggings. I showed you some photos of people who were wearing leggings in a most unflattering way! Here is a link if you missed that post and want to read it:

SOME THINGS ARE NOT PANTS

I have one more picture to share with you, just to make sure you know what I am talking about:

No, no, no, no, no.  Do NOT wear items like this outside your home!

Several of you commented and told me that you like to wear leggings, as do I. But there is a right way to wear them. They really need to be worn with a dress or a long tunic. I showed you several examples of dresses in the last post, so today I am showing you some tunic outfits.  So great for winter! And for disguising your midsection!

If you have read any of my posts, you know that I am big on trial and error, and like to share my trials with you, so that you won’t make the same mistakes. Here is an outfit that I tried, but as you can see, the sweater is too short to wear with leggings.  I will try it with some jeans or with a pair of black pants, but I promise you that I will not wear this out in public!

So learn from me, and wear a nice long tunic or a dress with your leggings. The general public will thank you for it.

By the way, the cute red tunic is from Walgreen’s, and I paid $10 for it.  😉 Did you know you can buy clothing at the drug store??? And the blue tunic is from Belk–$13. I really try not to spend more than $20 on any one article of clothing, unless it is something really special.

As always, I love to read your comments, so that I know my posts are not just disappearing into space somewhere. 😉

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A MILESTONE

In a couple of days, dear readers, I will be celebrating the six-month anniversary of starting my “sharing on the internet” journey. My first blog post was May 20, 2016.  I have had so much fun shopping (my closet as well as in stores) and playing dress-up, and I feel like I have learned and grown along the way.

As I reflect on the past 6 months of blogging, I want to take time to thank you for all your support. It took me a long time after figuring out all the details of setting up a blog to actually hit the “publish” button. Like most people, I was very hesitant about putting myself “out there.” It felt like a huge risk to publish photographs of myself, and think that anyone could possibly care, or to portray myself as some sort of “style expert.” The only way I convinced myself to do it was to think about all the people who had inspired me, and to realize that they had probably had doubts also. For quite a while, I never even mentioned the blog to family or friends, and felt very self-conscious when they happened to discover it.

As I asked myself why on earth I would want to do this, I thought about how much I love to see people who look like nice. It puts a smile on my face to see someone who is wearing a nice outfit that is flattering and looks stylish. It sounds silly, but it makes me feel like they care about people and want them to have something nice to look at….sort of like an artist who shares her work. I love to see all the ways different people express their personality through their clothing.

I could have told myself (and did) that I had no business trying to help anyone else…I am certainly not qualified in any way, other than a lot of experience in trial and error; but then I remembered the bloggers and friends that I had learned so much from. Their outfits were not always perfect; in fact there is no such thing, but they were willing to share what their idea of style for that day was, and it has helped me tremendously.

The more I studied, the more I learned what appealed to me, and what I thought looked good. Seeing lots of outfits that looked nice helped my brain to understand what “style” meant. And it was helpful to me not focus on one type of style. I searched out young, old, casual, sophisticated, preppy, bohemian, European and everything else in between.

What finally convinced me to “push the button” was that I just kept thinking that there were women in my age bracket who would love to know how to dress better, but have no idea where to start, and maybe they could use my experiences to get a little farther along in the process.

I decided right from the beginning to show a lot of before and after, because I had not seen much of that in other blogs, and as a visual learner, that would have been very helpful to me. Were these women just naturally beautiful and look good in anything, or did they have to pick and choose?

Ever since I put my fears aside, and actually started writing, you have been there to encourage and support me. I can honestly say that reading your comments has been great! I love it when you speak your mind, and give me honest feedback. I have never had a comment that I thought was mean-spirited. Even if you don’t like something, you say it in a nice way. You have really helped me, and I am very appreciative.  THANK YOU. 🙂

Just for fun, here is are some of the outfits from the past six months. I was so proud of some of these at the time, but looking at them now, I do feel that I am maybe a bit farther down the road in six months.  I have tried to include some examples of good, bad and so-so. I will leave it up to you to decide which is which. 😉 I left out the yellow print, because I already know your opinion on that one!

I have also included a section of “before photos” to help keep us all grounded in reality. LOL  You don’t need to vote on these!!

I would love for you to comment on which outfits you like or don’t like. It will be interesting to see whether most people agree, or if there is a variety of opinions.  There are 2 outfits from each month.

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And now for the “what I really look” like shots. Do NOT put these on a Pinterest Board! These are just to show you what I would look like if I DIDN’T try.

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Aren’t you glad I left you with these images to be burned into your brain???

🙂  🙂    🙂

Thanks for a great six months, and don’t forget to: 

  • Follow me on Instagram @over50under20
  • Subscribe

 

 

GRAY DAY

Hello there, friends. Well, I did it. As I said in the last post, I returned the yellow print dress.  Most of you who commented on it thought that I should return it, and after reading your thoughts, I agreed.  You were kind enough to tell me the reasons why you thought the dress was not right for me, and you convinced me.

Valid observations included: the dress was too youthful, the color was not flattering, too bohemian, the leggings made my legs look short,and the long sleeves paired with the light fabric and print seemed confusing.

I must have had some of these thoughts going through my subconscious style filter, which is why I asked you to give me your opinions. Thank you! You saved me from going out in public in an inappropriate outfit. You told me all the things that people would have thought and said behind my back. 😉

I am most appreciative of your constructive criticism; having said that, there was still something about the dress that I really liked, so…..when I returned it, I exchanged it for a different color! I do like it better in the gray, and I hope you do too, but here’s the thing….everyone will not always like everything I wear (even I don’t like everything I wear) but I like it, so I am going to wear it.

I did take your suggestions to heart…I think this color is more flattering, it is more appropriate for the fall, and the dark leggings look better. All IMHO.

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Again, thanks for your help, and keep up the good work of finding your style. Don’t forget that the error part of TRIAL AND ERROR is the part we learn from.

And by the way, the dress was on sale when I returned it, which made it less than $20! Now I don’t have to feel guilty about breaking my rule.

Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @over50under20 and don’t forget to subscribe.

 

STYLE JOURNEY

Hello Friends,

Today I want to talk a little bit about journeys.  Here is what the dictionary says :

  1. a traveling from one place to another, usually taking a rather long time
  2. passage or progress from one stage to another

Both of those definitions relate perfectly to style journeys. There are some people who have a natural talent for dressing well and looking stylish, but for most of us it is something that we need to learn, and sometimes that can take awhile; truthfully, there is always something new to learn, so the journey will really never end until we do. 😉

Even after we learn some basic “fashion rules” and apply them, we need to keep abreast of the latest styles, and incorporate at least some aspect of those styles into our outfits. Most of us do this subconsciously, but some of us are a little late boarding the train!

If you don’t think you do this, just look back at some of the fashions from previous decades, and you will realize that you no longer dress that way. (Hopefully!)

I have always wanted to dress well and look nice, but have not always succeeded. When I was in high school and college, I only wanted to wear what “everyone else” was wearing, and never thought about whether or not it complimented my shape.

As a newlywed, my clothing budget was minuscule, and back then there were not as many options for buying inexpensive clothing. The only places to buy clothes were the mall or a department store, so I was always just trying to make do with whatever I had.

As a young mother with three children, I was mostly about wearing what was comfortable since I didn’t get out of the house all that much except to hang out with other moms who were also all about comfort.

After the children left the house, I was more aware of style, but to be honest, we lived in Florida and I did not see a lot of style there. There were many retirees in our area, and they appeared to have retired from dressing stylishly. A lot of the other people I saw were on vacation and were wearing their beachy-looking outfits, even in the winter.  Even people who were not retired or on vacation just seemed to gravitate toward comfortable clothes that were okay….their clothes usually matched….but just didn’t seem inspired in any way.

Even the stores did not carry the same styles that were in other parts of the country. The only way to know what was currently stylish was to see it in a magazine or maybe pick up clues from watching TV.  Remember, this was before the days of internet, and there was no such thing as a blog.

After we left Florida, I began noticing that a lot of women in the Atlanta area looked really nice. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but many people looked like they had on outfits that were, well, just really cute….and not just young women. The older ladies really inspired me. They had STYLE and I wanted it.

So I started trying to learn. That was about eleven years ago, so you can see why the first definition of journey really fits well: a traveling from one place to another, usually taking a rather long time

I am still learning, and hope I will never stop learning. I do not consider myself an expert in any way (except maybe in how to wear sweaters and belts LOL), but I do believe that I dress better now than I did a few years ago, which fits perfectly with the second definition of journey: passage or progress from one stage to another

I have passed through the “wear what everyone else is wearing” stage, the “too poor and too young to care” stage, the “comfortable mom” stage, the “Florida tacky” stage, and the “newly arrived in Georgia” stage.

I don’t know what stage I am in now, but I am having fun learning and growing, and I hope you are too.

I appreciate it so much when you comment and give me your honest feedback. And because of your honest feedback, I am returning this dress. I knew I should, but it was good to have it validated by you!

I NEED YOUR HELP

I especially love it when you share stories about your journey, and particularly enjoy it when you send photos.

My photos for today are from two of my readers who have been following my journey and were kind enough to share some photos of their journey. The both look great, and I am so happy to share their pictures.

And even though I haven’t mentioned it in awhile, they remembered that my motto is “Don’t spend more than $20 for any one article of clothing” and shopped accordingly.

Here is a cute picture of Jamie who bought her pretty fall scarf for less than $5.00:

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And here is Sue wearing a sweater and a belt 🙂   Love it!

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Don’t they look great?

While I am on the subject of journeys, I want to share a link to the story of one of my favorite bloggers. I am so thankful that she was willing to share pictures of the beginning of her journey, because it makes it so much more fun to share this stage of her journey.

http://www.whenthegirlsrule.com/?p=190

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