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
#6

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.

#8
#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.

Red Sweater2 (233x640)
#1
Grey and orange (305x640)
#2
2014-09-26 21.14.55-1 (261x640)
#3
#4
#4
#5
#5
#6
#6
#7
#7
#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:

IMG_9945 (480x640) - Copy

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!

DSC_0483 (316x640)

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:

DSC_0483 (316x640)DSC_0489 (304x640)

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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DSC_0469 (277x640)

DSC_0475 (248x640)

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/

 

ATTENTION K MART SHOPPERS

When I started this blog, I promised to show you how to buy cute clothes for $2o.oo or less. Today I am showing you what I bought last week for a total of $18.39 at K Mart:

K Mart, bargains,

 

Now please understand. I do not NEED to go shopping, even at K Mart. I do not NEED to spend even $20 or less on more clothes, but I am going to confess to you how it happened.

I had to take my car in for servicing at the dealership, which is in another town about 30 minutes away. As I was leaving there, I heard a little voice in my head say, “You know, there is a K Mart nearby. Remember those cute shoes you got at K Mart a few months ago? They were so cute and so inexpensive. You might as well just run in K Mart for a few minutes while you are here. Don’t forget that you don’t have a K Mart in town anymore.”

Now I don’t know if this voice is a devil or an angel.  It is just my “shopping alert” voice, and I usually heed its call, as I did this time.

Fast forward almost three hours later. I am finally headed home with a large number  of K Mart bags in my car. What happened you say? Well, guess what? This K Mart was going out of business and everything in the store was being sold at a considerable discount.

I not only bought some cute clothes, but got a head start on Christmas shopping for the grandchildren, and stocked up on a lot of things I normally buy. Thanks, little voice!

In the spirit of true confessions, the items pictured are not all of the clothing items I purchased, but I will save the others for another day.

Don’t forget to listen to your little voice, and happy cheap shopping!

 

HAPPY “AMEXIT” DAY

Happy Independence Day to all my American readers! It is a celebration of the day the United States decided to “exit” the British Empire. LOL

I think the 4th of July is my favorite holiday. There is nothing more fun than getting together with friends or family to have a barbecue and watch fireworks. It is the kind of holiday where the kids can stay up late, run around and have as much fun as they want, and the adults can act like kids again for awhile. No matter how many times I see fireworks, they never fail to delight me. I ALWAYS say ooh and ahh and “those were the best yet.”

We are fortunate to live in a town that still celebrates the Fourth the old-fashioned way. The day starts out with a parade down Main Street, and ends with fireworks in the city park at dusk. What could be more all-American than that? In addition, our local country club has a super celebration with bands, inflatables, skydivers and MORE fireworks.

One thing I like about living in a small town is that is easy to participate in all these activities. There is no getting in huge traffic jams to get places and parking is not a big hassle. When we lived in a more populated area in Florida, we often opted to stay home rather than fight the crowds and the traffic.

My photo today is the outfit that I wore to our church service and potluck dinner on July 3rd. In our Small Town, USA church, the choir sings The Battle Hymn of the Republic, and after that, all the veterans march to the front behind a flag from their branch of the service as the congregation sings the song for each branch…Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard.

After the service, we have an old-fashioned “dinner on the grounds”. Well, technically we are “on the grounds”  but we actually eat our fried chicken, potato salad, baked beans, and much more in air-conditioned comfort! It always amazes me that so many people are such good cooks!

Since this is a “fashion blog”, I suppose we should get to that subject. You saw what I actually wore to church, but let’s look at what I did NOT wear.

As I have mentioned before, I have a few (ahem) “figure flaws”, and I try hard to disguise them.  I really wanted to wear a white dress, but was pretty sure I could not get away with just a white dress and some cute shoes.  See what I mean?  (not cute shoes, but you get the idea)

White dress

This is not actually the dress I wore, but it is similar. As you can see, adding some accessories really helps the look!

As for the shoes….the blue striped ones are Crocs, and are SO comfortable. You can’t tell from my photo, but they are wedges. Aren’t these cute??

Crocs

crocs Women’s 15313 Leigh Graphic Wedge Sandal, Nautical Navy/White, 8 M US

That’s it for now. Again, Happy Independence Day to the Americans. Thanks to everyone for stopping by.

Disclosure: I do receive a small commission from any Amazon sales.

 

 

 

 

LUMBERJACK STYLE

Most of you know that I just returned from a cruise to Alaska, and that it was a wonderful experience. I had planned all my outfits, and for the most part pretty much everything worked. But there was a reason that I posted pictures of my outfits BEFORE I left. I knew from experience that snapshots are not always flattering.  Before the days of Facebook and other social media, it was not a big deal. You took pictures, had the film developed after you got home, threw away the ones you did not like, and no one but your poor family had to look at your vacation photos. Now, your picture can show up on the internet before you have even finished your dinner.

Now maybe you are not like me. But if I see a picture of myself, and it is not flattering, I never want to wear that outfit again. There are lots of Goodwill shoppers walking around in my former clothes! And someone will soon be the lucky owner of an orange gingham shirt.  I thought this shirt was so cute when I bought it. And my trial photo seemed okay.  BUT when I saw the snapshots, I realized that shirts are not my best look. In fact, if you live in my area and are looking for some cute shirts, you should check the Goodwill store next week.

Unfortunately, I had bought several shirts in preparation for the cruise, thinking that they would be perfect for walking around in Alaska. Can we just say that imagination and reality did not coincide in this case?

The pre-cruise photo is okay. Not perfect, but certainly wearable. But in these photos, I somehow turned into a large LUMBERJACK:

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IMG_9137 (640x427) (2)

I am posting these so that you can learn from my mistakes. Let’s analyze a bit.  The shirt is too boxy too look flattering.  It emphasizes my chunky midsection.  Not a good thing!  LOL  The white sweater actually enlarges it even more!

Next time I take pre-photos, I will try some more realistic poses. Surely, I could do better than this for an outfit!

Just to make myself feel a little better, here is another snapshot from the trip.  I am wearing my travel vest, and I do “fill it out” as my husband said, but this style camouflages my midsection much better!

Travel vest, cruise, Alaska

As always, thanks so much for following my fashion journey. As I promised, there will be a lot of trial and error.  I LOVE to read your comments, so please let me know what you are thinking.

See you soon!

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

 

CRUISE SHOES

Hello! I have missed you! If you have never done an Alaskan cruise, please put it on your bucket list. We had the best time ever, and saw some of the most amazing scenery and animals, including eagles, bears, moose, seals, whales, and caribou.

Eagle 4 (640x500)

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The ship was amazing, and of course the food was way too good. You probably won’t be seeing any recent pictures of me for awhile. LOL  The whale pictures are NOT me, but that is how I feel.

My husband commented one day that I filled out my travel vest a good bit more than when I first got it. I tried to tell him that it was just because my pockets were stuffed, but truthfully, it was because my stomach was stuffed!

Of course I had a lot of opportunities to see what people were wearing. It was especially fun to see how pretty everyone looked on the formal nights.

I knew you would want me to come home with some kind of fashion tip, so today I am going to focus on footwear. As in what NOT to wear.

When I travel, I ALWAYS wear comfortable shoes. You cannot have fun if your feet are not having fun. However.….you do not have to wear ugly shoes.  And let me say right now that I really cannot think of any occasion when big white athletic shoes are appropriate.  If your comfortable shoes look like any of these, it is time for a change:

White shoes (627x640)  DSC_0339 (351x640)White shoes red pants (640x547)

These photos are are just a sample of what I saw….big white shoes were everywhere.   It is a little hard to take pictures of people’s feet without them noticing, so I was only able to get pictures of a small percentage of the offenders, but I think you get the idea.

Please note that I am not saying that you cannot wear white sneakers. But there is a way to wear them and a way not to wear them. Jennifer Anniston makes white sneakers look adorable.

Jennifer Anniston sneakers (398x640)

Here are the ones that she is often photographed in:

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Superga Unisex 2750 Cotu Classic Sneaker,White,39 EU (Women’s 8 M US/Men’s 6.5 M US)

Here is a link to a blogger that I follow. Notice how cute her shoes look!

BLACK&YELLOW BODYCON DRESS

And speaking of what not to wear on your feet, PLEASE be careful how you wear hose. Most people do not wear pantyhose at all anymore, but if you do, they should be sheer and worn with a dressy closed-toe shoe. I know you would NEVER do anything like this:

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Or this:

Pantyhose and boots (462x640)

I will post a few more scenic shots after I have organized all my photos. Thanks for stopping by, and don’t forget my shoe advice! See you soon.

Please be aware that if you click on an Amazon link, and make a purchase, I do receive a small commission.

 

 

 

 

 

 

CRUISING ALONG with a buddy

As I have told you before, I really love to travel and have been fortunate enough to travel to many interesting places. I have also traveled with many “interesting” people. Have you ever been on a trip with that one person who somehow takes the joy out of everything? You know….the one who complains that the food is not “like what we have in America” (duh), or that the people dress funny, or that traveling in Italy in the summer is hot, or the worst one of all–“nobody speaks English.”  And this person usually has an annoying, whiny voice that carries all the way to the back of the bus.

One roommate I had was afraid of everything. She was afraid that she would get sick from the food, she was suspicious of the “foreigners,” she was afraid that the cab driver was driving too fast (actually he was!), she was afraid of the people on the train heading to the city on a Saturday night. She held on to her suitcase with a death grip, until I finally convinced her that young people on their way to a club had zero interest in her “old lady bag.”

I am pretty sure that none of my traveling companions for this trip are in any of those categories; in fact, I know so, because I have traveled with them before.  Lynne and I have been on two long trips together “on the half price plan” (without husbands) and she is the best traveling buddy ever. We have also traveled together as couples, so no worries about this trip.

Here is some free advice for you: Before you plan to go on a trip with anyone, do a dry run of a day or two. Sometimes your best friends are really great friends, but really poor traveling companions.  I cannot tell you how I know this, because some of my friends read these posts. Just trust me on this.

Having said all that, I can’t wait to show you some of the cute outfits that Lynne is taking. She was nice enough to come over and let me take pictures of her, even though I am not the world’s greatest photographer, to say the least. I really appreciate having such a good friend! Notice the cute flowy black pants, and what a great job she did of mixing and matching. I will post these on my 100 Black Pants page.

In the “under 20” department, this adorable orange and white top was purchased at a consignment shop for $5.00.

Black pants, orange sandals
Casual dinner outfit

I wish you could see how sparkly and beautiful this top is.

Dressy, black and gold
Dressy outfit for Captain’s Dinner
Black pants, flowy top, cruisewear
Another pretty dressy outfit
Same outfit without the top
Same outfit without the top
Lynne with purse
Headless photo with cute catfish purse. Bad photographer, great outfit.

dressy purse, evening purse, gold purse, metallic purse, catfish purse, fish purse

I couldn’t find one like this, but here is something kind of similar:

Fish purse

Purses for Women Luxury Rhinestone Crystal Fish Evening Clutch Bags Vintage Party (Gold)

This will be my last post until we return. But you can be sure I will have lots to share in a couple of weeks. I might even have to post some “what not to wear” shots!

Don’t forget to subscribe if you want to receive notices of posts, and I always welcome and love your comments.

Please be aware that if you click through any of my Amazon links, and make a purchase, I receive a small commission.