MAKEOVER MUSINGS

Since my post on Makeover Magic, I have been doing a bit of thinking.

MAKEOVER MAGIC

I have been thinking about the fact that I need a “makeover” almost every day. If I were to just get up in the morning, throw on some clothes, and walk out the door, I would look at least twenty years older and would just blend right in with the WalMart shoppers. To be truthful, I have done that many times….and gone to WalMart, and blended right in!  LOL  Most of the people there did not look any better than I did, but that is no excuse.

It does take some planning and some effort to achieve a “put-together” look. It also takes some knowledge of what clothes to wear to flatter your shape, and what colors look good on you. As I have told you, I have done a great deal of trial and error in those departments!

In addition to trying on different styles and colors, I have read quite a bit of fashion and style advice, and watched every episode of What Not to Wear. That in itself is like getting a college degree in makeovers.

It never failed to amaze me that Stacey and Clinton could use their vast knowledge and experience to make every person they worked with look beautiful. Every time I would think, “Oh no! This is the time they will fail. There is no way they can do anything with that (figure, hair, attitude, face, or whatever). ”  But they did. Every single time. Every single episode.   So I learned. I learned that anyone can look good, and that the way you present yourself to the world is important. It says “I am worth the time and trouble to look good.”  It also says, “I care enough about the people who see me to take pride in my appearance.”

I have showed you examples before, but I will continue to do so, because I want you to understand that it is possible to do makeovers on yourself! Here are some before and after “mini makeover”photos for your amusement and to learn from (I hope!)

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If you need one, give yourself a makeover! You know who you are. Do not leave the house as your “natural self” unless you are under 30. That is my advice. Take it or leave it.  🙂

 

MAKEOVER MAGIC

Several months ago, I had the fun experience of helping someone with a makeover. She has given me permission to share the photos with you.

She had several reasons for deciding to make a change, including having come through some serious illnesses during the year. When she started feeling better, she realized her outside did not match her inside.

Naturally a thin person, she had had to cope with weight gain caused by some of her medication, and did not know how to dress the larger version of herself. Thankfully, she was able to come off the medication that caused her to gain weight, and at the time of the makeover had started losing weight, but still did not know how to deal with her shape.

As so many of us do, she had had the same hair style pretty much since high school, and just did not have clue of what to do about that.

The first thing we did was make an appointment with a top-notch stylist. If any of you live in the Clearwater, Florida area, you cannot do better than Catie Giblin who owns Holy Chic Salon in Dunedin.  She is a magician!

https://www.facebook.com/HolyChicSalon/

Before I show you Catie’s magic, here is a “before picture” taken on the way into the salon:

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Catie indeed worked her magic with a fantastic cut and beautiful color. Don’t you agree?

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Now of course, when your hair looks that good, you have to go shopping! She had a budget, so we hit the mall. The process was that she stayed in the dressing room, and I browsed the store and brought her things that I thought would work.  She was very open to trying anything I suggested, and we came home with some very flattering outfits.

I don’t think she would mind my saying that the biggest issue was that her midsection was very much out of proportion to the rest of her body, so we tried to find outfits that minimized that.

I am going to share the photos, but please remember that these were just phone snapshots.  At the time, we never thought they would be published. LOL

If I had known, we would have had better lighting, and done a bit more with makeup and accessories, but I think you will get the idea. IMG_8383 (267x640)

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This photo was taken a few weeks later. She had lost more weight, and found and styled these outfits on her own:

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I just can’t leave without showing some side by side comparisons. It really is amazing to me what hair, clothing and makeup can do!

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IS THIS EVEN THE SAME PERSON???!!!

I am so thankful that she is kind enough to let me share this experience. She hopes that this part of her “fashion journey” may inspire some people who just don’t know where to start, or think it is impossible to find a nice outfit because they have gained weight.

Please know that you are beautiful.  My greatest wish is to inspire you to find ways to let your beauty shine through!

I would love to hear your comments, and would be happy to answer any questions.

 

 

HOW TO BUY AN OUTFIT FOR LESS THAN $50

Not long ago, I challenged you to put together an outfit that cost less than $50. Today I am going to go through the process I used to buy an outfit with my $50 birthday gift card.

  • Went to Ross to look for a dress
  • Tried on about 40 dresses
  • Tried on dresses in my size and one size up and one size down
  • Did not look at the price tag before I tried on..most Ross dresses are less than $20
  • 35 dresses were a definite NO
  • 5 dresses were maybes
  • 1 dress was clearly better than all the rest, so kept that one
  • Paid $11.00 for my dress (On Tuesdays Ross offers 10% off to ages 55 and above)
  • Went next door to Famous Footwear
  • Started in the clearance section
  • Found the perfect pair of heels to go with the dress. Price tag said $25
  • Went to check out…actually on sale for $17.00
  • So far,  have spent only a little more than half of my budget, so still have some left for accessories and purse
  • Went to Cato to look for a necklace
  • Found one for $6.00
  • Received a purse I had ordered earlier.  Cost: $6.00
  • Bought a stack of bracelets for $10.00 at Glitzy Chiks
  • TOTAL: $50.00
  • Made it! Right on the nose!

Now of course, you know I had to try a sweater with my dress.  I always love to add a little color and cover my arms and midsection.  This made the outfit more expensive because the purse was $18.00 and the sweater was $16.00.  So this version of the outfit cost a total of $78.00. But if you take into account that these two items were already in my closet, I only spent $44.00. No wonder my husband has a hard time with my accounting practices. LOL

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Bottom line…it is possible to find inexpensive clothing if you are willing to do a little work.

You still have a few days to enter the shopping challenge! Don’t forget that the winner will receive a $25.00 Amazon gift card.  Here are the details of the challenge:

SHOPPING CHALLENGE

How did you like my outfits? Which one do you like better?  Constructive criticism welcomed!  If you hate them, I will have a good excuse to go shopping again.  HAHA

As always, thanks for reading and come back soon!

 

HOW NOT TO LOOK FRUMPY 2

Several weeks ago, I wrote a post on looking frumpy. You can read it here:

HOW NOT TO LOOK FRUMPY

Here is something that was definitely frumpy:

Frumpy dress, unflattering clothes

For today’s post, I decided to see if I could rescue this dress, rather than send it away. At first I tried adding some accessories and trying to style it to see if I could make anything work:

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These were better, but it is still a bit on the frumpy side. After looking at it, it was obvious that the main thing wrong with the dress was the length. (Not to mention the horrible shoes which immediately went in the Goodwill bag LOL)

I am not very good at sewing, but I figured that even I could hem up a dress with some Stitch Witchery, so I started with that.

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As you can see, the dress looks better already, just by changing the length. The next step in the process is to experiment with different accessories and try to make an outfit.  Here are the results of that:

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Just for fun, here are the similar versions side by side:

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Do you see how much difference the length makes?!!   So…..memorize this rule:  “If your dress is too long, it is frumpy”

Do you think I should keep this dress?  If so, which look do you like the best? I really do value your opinions, and would appreciate hearing from you. As I have said before, I am on a journey and still have much to learn.

Thanks for reading, and please comment!

P. S. The little girl in the photo is the reason I have not posted much in the past few weeks. I had the great pleasure of having my sweet seven-year old granddaughter with me for four weeks.

Today I am linking up with Tania on Wednesday’s Wardrobe

Don’t forget to enter the shopping challenge! Only one more week before the deadline.  I have already found my outfit and can’t wait to show you.  It can be done!

SHOPPING CHALLENGE

 

SHOPPING CHALLENGE

Today, I have a challenge for you. I think you will like it. I know I will like it!

I had a birthday recently and one of my gifts from some very special people was a $50 gift card that came with instructions to use it for the blog. Yay!

I am going to use my gift card to see if I can make a complete outfit for $50, including shoes, purse and jewelry.

I am going to challenge you to do the same. Here’s the way it works:

  • The challenge will be open for about two weeks.  It will close on Wednesday, August 17 at midnight
  • Put together an outfit that costs less than $50 total.  It must include shoes, purse and at least one accessory
  • If your budget does not permit buying a new outfit in the next two weeks, you may use items you already have
  • Send the photos to blog5020@aol.com before midnight on Wednesday, August 17
    •  You may send photos of yourself in the outfit, or just the outfit
    • Selfies are fine. If you don’t want to show your face, it’s okay. 😉
    • Please let me know if it is okay to post your photo on the blog
    • Include a list of the items and how much you paid for each one
  • Write a comment on the blog letting me know you have sent the entry
  • I will announce the top three entries the week of August 17, and let you vote for the overall winner
  • Winner will receive a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card

Have fun! I can’t wait to see the results.

Today I am linking up with Nancy at  http://nancysfashionstyle.com/

FINDING FASHION 2

In my last post, I talked about the process of putting outfits together from my closet, and I gave you a little quiz. I asked you to look at each outfit below and decide if you think I wore it (A), improved it (B) or deleted it (C).

I know this was a fascinating topic for you. The response was overwhelming….two people actually took the quiz. LOL

But since they went to the trouble, I will give you the answers and my comments.

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#1

The answer to #1 is B. I improved this outfit by deleting the sweater (too boxy) and just wearing a pretty black top.

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#2

The answer to #2 is A.  I really liked this outfit and took it with me on a fall vacation. The long sweater helps to minimize my midsection, and adding a belt defines a waist.

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#3

The answer to #3 is A.  I have worn this a couple of times. Not my favorite outfit since I love color, but easy to pack and wear to dinner on a trip.

#4
#4

The answer to #4 is A. Another outfit that I took on a vacation. This sweater is much more flattering than the one in #1.

#5
#5

The answer to #5 is A.  This is one of my favorite outfits for some reason.  I have worn it many times.

#6
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The answer to #6 is C.  There is nothing about this that I like. I feel like I look ridiculous. I don’t like the color, I don’t like the fit, and I don’t like so much animal print.  Luckily, as usual I did not pay much for the dress. It was definitely a shopping mistake. It is still in my closet for some reason, but will soon be going to a new home.

#7
#7

The answer to #7 is C. I loved this top and it was so comfortable, but when I saw the picture, I realized that the comfort is not the number one consideration, if something makes you look like a white whale. The shirt is too long, and is very unflattering, and the white color makes me look larger than I am. The scarf is very pretty, but too large for me.

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#8

The answer to #8 is B.  This dress is fine for a casual summer look, but the shoes are horrendous. They went straight to GW after I saw this photo. I also eventually found cuter bracelets and a necklace.

I hope you know that the reason I do this blog is to help others learn from my mistakes and all my trials and errors. I don’t want to see any of you walking around in something like #6! Or in something like this:

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I just had to sneak a photo of this outfit that I saw on my vacation. I sincerely hope this lady is not one of my readers. LOL

Thanks for reading. And remember to take selfies before you walk out the door!

 

 

FINDING FASHION

Today’s post is about how I find outfits to wear. Maybe you are the kind of person who can go to your closet, pick out a couple of items and end up with a put-together look. I am not that kind of person. To find something that I actually want to wear, I need to go through a process. Sometimes the process can be time-consuming, so when I do manage to coordinate an outfit, I make sure to document it so that I won’t have to rumble through my closet the next time I am looking for something to wear.

When I want to put an outfit together, I go to my closet and start “shopping”.  If I want a dress outfit, I pull out a dress and put it on. Then I start looking for accessories to make the dress look better, like a belt, a sweater, or a jacket.  Next I try to find the right kind of shoes. And finally, I go ahead and experiment with jewelry. You would be surprised how the right necklace actually makes the outfit.

I have found that the best way to decide if something looks good is to take a picture. I stand in front of my full-length mirror and take a photo of the outfit with my cell phone. I don’t worry about my hair or makeup….I am just looking to see if the clothes fit, flatter and coordinate.

When I see the pictures, it is easy to tell if the outfit is something I would ever wear, or if it needs more work, or if it needs to be put out of its misery.

Here are some pictures to illustrate what I am talking about.  Some of these outfits made it to the outside world right away, some were eventually improved upon, and some were “killed and buried”.

Here is a little quiz for you. Look at each outfit below and decide if you think I wore it (A), improved it (B) or deleted it (C). You can give your answers as comments. Just put the number of each outfit and A, B, or C in your comment.

I will give you the answers in my next post, and tell you why I made the decisions.

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#1
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#2
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#3
#4
#4
#5
#5
#6
#6
#7
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#8
#8

 

Today I am linking up with http://nancysfashionstyle.com/

 

TOTAL FASHION BREAK

I have just returned from a trip where absolutely ZERO fashion was in evidence anywhere. Every year in July, I host a camp for my grandchildren and my great nieces and nephews. Cousin Camp only lasts three days, but it seems like three weeks! This year there were seven children between the ages of two and eight, and it was held at my sister’s country house in the middle of nowhere in Alabama.

It is the kind of camp where you are lucky if you take a shower, much less put on a nice outfit.  I wore some lovely men’s t-shirt- and- old shorts ensembles, but I will spare you the pictures. LOL

Here is an example of what one of the boys wore one day:

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It is that kind of camp!  If you can’t find two shoes that match, who cares?

It is a LOT of fun for the kids, and I look forward to it every year, even though it is more than exhausting for the adults. (The adults consisted of my sister and myself, and a teenager. I have learned that it is worth any amount of money to hire a helper ).

I spend time during the year planning for it, and have plenty of games, crafts, and activities ready for the kids. I have to overplan, because I have learned through experience that when you read a Pinterest post that says “This entertained my children for hours, and they said they never had more fun”, it is good for about 8 minutes, and at least 3 kids will say it is boring.

It was almost 100 degrees every day, so had to make some adjustments in the outdoor activities I had planned. Picnics and relay races were definitely not a good idea. We needed water activity!! We found some, but it did not turn out exactly as planned. (Nothing ever does at Cousin Camp.)

Here is my total fashion fail story:

One day we took the kids to a lake about an hour away. It was supposed to be about 25 minutes away, but we got lost, and ended up in Mississippi before we turned around. Do not ask me why we drove over 10 miles into the state of Mississippi when we knew the lake was in Alabama. Maybe our brains were scrambled from lack of sleep. We finally made it and the kids had a great time swimming.

As I said before, my sister’s country house is in the middle of nowhere, and since the kids had eaten almost all of the three tons of food I had brought with me in the first day and a half, I decided that I would have to stop by the grocery store on the way home, since it was about 30 minutes from the house and I did not want to come back. I did not want the children telling their parents that we had been eating white bread for snacks.( It was true, but I did not want them telling their parents. LOL)

You cannot possibly imagine what I looked like. I had on an old bathing suit and an old men’s shirt, water shoes covered in sand, and my hair was wet and sticking up.  I told myself that I did not know anyone in this country town, and I would never see anyone here again. The kids were hungry, and I just had to suck it up and go in the store! So I did.

I truly hoped that no one would notice my odd appearance. You have to remember that the grocery story was nowhere near the lake or any other water source. I did notice that people were doing double takes when they saw me. As I was checking out, the “lady” (I say that in quotes because she was buying cigarettes, beer, and snuff) in front of me stared a hole through me for about 3 minutes, and then asked, “You been swimmin’?”

I hope I never have to relive that visit to the store, and I am so glad that other than the security cameras in the grocery store, there is no photographic evidence of my “fashion.” You will just have to use your imagination.

The point of this post is that sometimes some things are more important than how you look.  And making special memories for seven of the most awesome children in the world is in that category!

I love to read your comments. Do you agree that sometimes how you look is not at all important? What is your biggest fashion fail? Was it for a good reason?

Thanks for reading! Back soon with more pictures of myself. I am sure you can’t wait for that!

Today I am linking up with Tania onWednesday’s Wardrobe.

 

TRIAL AND ERROR

You all know that I like to try to wear cute outfits, and that I don’t like to spend  a lot of money on any one thing.  This post is about the process of trial and error.

I have been shopping enough to know what to try on and what not to try on when I go to a store, but I have learned this from trying on many styles and sizes. Lots of trial and LOTS of error. If you are still in the “learning what looks good on your body,” stage you need to try on lots of things until you realize that some things make you look and feel great. Those are the things you need to buy. Do NOT buy something just because it is on sale. (I myself have never done this HAHAHAHA).

Also, through the use of trial and error, I have learned that some things that do not look good by themselves can be helped by adding accessories, or in my case “camoflauge.”

Often I will try on a dress that I know will not be particularly flattering, knowing that I can “fix it up” at home. Most times I am able to come up with a decent look, but if not, then I return it.

Here is a dress that I bought on sale for $6.00.  It is reversible, so it was like getting two dresses for $6.00!

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Now some people just might wear this dress, and be fine with it, but I am much too vain for that, so I went to work to see what I could do to make it look better.  I started with a navy sweater to hide my midsection:

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Better, but still not there yet.

After this I added a belt:

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With this look, I felt like I was on the right track.  I did not have the necklace or bracelets with me that I wanted to add, but you get the idea. Here is the before and after:

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Same person, same day, same dress, but in my opinion, the second look is a huge improvement.

So…when you shop, keep an open mind, and experiment a little when you get home. You may have different “figure issues” that need to be addressed, or you may have a perfect shape.  Either way, accessories and styling can make a plain dress look like an outfit.

See you soon!

Today I am linking up with Tania on Wednesday’s Wardrobe.

 

MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS

This summer has been a busy one for us! After returning from our awesome trip to Alaska, we had only a few days before we were on the road again….this time to a conference in St. Louis. My husband attends this particular conference every summer, and it is always in a different city. Sometimes I tag along, as I did this year.

Since I have attended many times, I knew what to expect. He is working all day, and I am in the hotel room all day. Sometimes I have planned ahead and figured out how to go places and do things, but this year I decided to just hang out and rest. After four days of resting, I am glad to be home, but had to hit the ground running to finish preparing for the annual cousin camp that I host every year. More about that in another post, but this year there will be seven little ones between the ages of two and nine!  Wish me luck.

Back to St. Louis…..even though it is basically down time during the day, there are activities every night, so I had to have outfits, of course. And you can’t just walk around the lobby of the Ritz Carlton in cut-offs and a tee shirt, so had to actually get dressed every day.

Since I really had nothing to do, I actually spent some time one day making up outfits and photographing them.  This was, of course, after I had spent several hours binge-watching reality TV shows with the curtains drawn to make it as dark as night in the room. Hey, gotta make the most of vacation time! It was great.

Here are some of the outfits I made up with what I had in my suitcase:

White pants, navy sweater, summer outfit

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Look at the cute black and white shoes from H & M.  $7.00!  And I bought the jeans on sale at Belk for $11.00.

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I told you I had time on my hands! But I always love playing dressup.  Here is the last one. This is what I wore to the Cardinals game.

White pants, navy top, summer pants outfit

I would love to know which outfit you like the best. Don’t look at me…just judge the outfit. Would you wear any of these? I would also like to know if there are any you don’t like and why. Don’t worry about hurting my feelings. I have lots more ways to mix and match, and will just make up something else if you don’t like these.  Thank you, and look forward to your feedback! If you don’t want to comment on the blog, you can email me at Blog5020@aol.com

Sorry the pictures are not that great. The ones with the flash always turn out a little blurry.

Also,  I posted another black pants outfit. Up to 14 now.

100 BLACK PANTS

Today I am linking up with Nancy on Fashion Friday

http://nancysfashionstyle.com/40plus-fashion-shorts-linkup/