Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Style Lessons From Dad

I have never thought my dad was stylish. When I was young, my family would make fun of him all of the time. The man would keep his dress socks on, throw on a pair of wind pants and Sperry deck shoes, and head to the store. This was a major fashion faux pas. Now, I may or may not, own a pair of those Sperry Deck shoes (we call them boat shoes in my family). Although dad is not the most fashionable guy I know, he has flashy taste like I do.

Last Sunday, mom and dad and I got in the car to go to church. We were all wearing purple! What were the odds? Great, I thought, I match my parents. Maybe I can sit between them and hold their hands too. Standing at church I was a little embarrassed. That is when I looked down. To my horror, I had on my snakeskin high heels and he had on his snake skin boots! I said to him, "Look it gets worse", as I pointed down. He cracked up when he saw it, and neither of us could stop laughing.

Who would have thought that I would wear anything that resembled what my dad wore? I always thought he was so oblivious to fashion, and then I ended up being his twin for a day! He could still use some guidance from time to time, but dad is OK and dresses better than lots of people.

Learning From the Past

Many styles skip a generation. Things that were in style for my grandma are once again considered stylish. Because my mom already saw them as old fashioned when she was my age, to her they look outdated and unappealing. I see them as fresh and different. In the past few years I have noticed some items receiving a warm a welcome back to the fashion world.

Dresses and Skirts: This was the standard for my grandmother when she was a young lady. The 1960s and 1970s saw the breakthrough of pants for women. This allowed women a lot of freedom, and they could wear pants almost anywhere. I believe this is why my mother and many women from her generation still prefer to wear pants if they are able to. However, young women from my generation have always enjoyed the freedom of choice between pants and skirts or dresses. Lately many of these women have chosen to go the ultra feminine route, and wear a dress or skirt. Personally I love it! Dresses are especially easy because there is just one thing to put on. I also think they are more flattering for most women.

Fur: Please do not turn your nose up at this elegant style! My grandmother scrimped and saved to by her very own, hand made for her, mink coat. It cost something like $200 in the early 1940s, in Indianapolis. It has her initials sewn inside and there is no way I will ever get rid of it! My mother does not really care for fur and thinks it looks a bit too fancy, but I love it. My fur coat is not real, but PETA has put stickers on it before. I thought THEY would know the difference if anyone did. Bottom line- Something about a fur coat just makes you feel beautiful.

Gloves and Hats: These little accessories are often passed over. They are often worn in fabrics that are cheap, and thin. Another problem is that no matter the occasion, they often make the wearer look ready for a snowball fight rather than a sleigh ride. Lets class it up a little bit this season. Many nice looking materials cost just as much as the casual ones.

I am sure there are many more, but I will stop here. Don't be afraid to steal grandma's style ideas. Stay warm and chic!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Love it!

There are some things that I get made fun of for wearing, or for even ogling over at the store. That is why I usually try not to say much about these pieces before I buy and wear them for a night out. By not announcing their debut, I find there is less of a window of opportunity for the naysayers to judge my new treasure.

A few examples of such items that I love right now, include:

High tops- They are very hip for young women in Europe right now I swear. Paired with skinny pants it gives off an, "I wear what I want to" vibe.

Jumpsuits- This look from the 70s and 80s is surprisingly flattering and sexy in my opinion. It redefines your idea of the power suit.

Yellow gold jewelry- I have been into yellow gold for about two years. I think the bright, true yellow, hued variety, looks young and fresh. It brightens up any skin tone.

Elbow length gloves- The beauty of these is that they can be hidden under sleeves, and keep you warmer than shorter styles, or they can be paired with a bracelet sleeve for a glamorous old Hollywood look.

Please do not disregard any of the above items before at least trying them on. If you end up buying one or all of these items you can thank me later ;)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Just wear it!

I do not think that being fashionable has to be expensive, or difficult. I also believe that by learning some key points, anyone can look fabulous. You can't very well learn to read before you have learned the alphabet, so I am going to start off with an easy concept.

-Wear what YOU like
People in the Midwest often fall into two categories. One group does not really care what they wear as long as it's clean, and even that is negotiable. The other is way too careful about what they wear. If it hasn't been seen on everyone they know, and it isn't being sold at Wal-Mart yet, they wouldn't dare try it. I'm here to tell you to quit being a chicken. If it makes you feel good, you should wear it. Wear it at home first, and strut around in it in front of the mirror. Whatever it takes, just get comfortable in it. One warning though, once you're wearing it out in public you have to commit to it! Wear it with the same confidence you would have in those oh so average boot cut jeans, boring cardigan, and clunky Ugg boots. Maybe even with more confidence. Oh, and this just in, Ugg boots are no longer edgy.

Here are a few of my favorite stores that you can shop at and still afford to eat lunch afterwards.

-Forever 21- Very edgy with great prices. If you are looking to be fashion forward this is the place.
-Target- Really starting to have great pieces by international designers, and are usually in step with the latest trends.
-T.J. Maxx- Quality name brand clothing for prices you can not find at department stores. Count on them for trends or classics.
-H&M- Continues to better itself by inviting top designers to come on board and design clothes for prices that the average person can be happy with.

Happy shopping!