Darlings, my editor, Kayla, at Honey Good plans the title of each story two months out on an Editorial Calendar. When I saw the idea of “brands I shop” I definitely wanted to change the theme. Why? Because shopping is not about a brand per se, it’s about a woman’s experience leading up to the ‘find.’
Let’s use our creativity (that is what shopping is about) and imagine the woman is on a hunt to shop her authentic style. Certain brands are in her repertoire. You have your favorites and I have mine. That does not mean we will not suddenly veer off course. That is the nature of women. We gather! And yet at our age over 50 we are seasoned shoppers.
When Does Your Sense of Style Begin?
Think about your parents or that special person(s) in your life who helped you form your panache, your verve… your style! In my case, it was my mother and my father!
As a little girl I think you began to notice your mother’s style. She was your first teacher. I say that because my mother was my teacher and my role model. I observed her outer demeanor because she was my mom, not because of the way she dressed.
By the age of ten my mom was amused and surprised I could discern what looked good on me. I was most fortunate my mother taught me the importance of style over fashion; to spend only what I could afford (she did) and the power of the accessory. She went further by explaining the importance of the art of tailoring and the importance of honoring my personal style. She explained I would know because I would feel happy. I also learned from my mother that less is more, to buy my wardrobe to last a lifetime, and that simplicity was style.
My father had impeccable taste and I must say, for a small-town boy from Kankakee by the Sea, he had stunning taste. He taught me to buy the best, to feel the fabric, and to own my look. Of course my mother taught him everything, but he acquired his own style and his love for quality over quantity. This I learned from my dad, and when I shop I think of my dad with an eye for quality and my mom with an eye on style.
Of course, like you, I became my own woman and made a personal footprint on my favorite brands I shop from clothing, to furniture, to collectibles, to accessories, to music, to flowers, to travel, to the arts, to architecture and on and on. And because I have chosen brands that speak to me I find joy. I hope you do too.
Shopping is Hard… Here Are Some Thoughts
Shopping is hard. Don’t you think? It takes time, considerable thought, energy, and staying power. Take it off. Try it on. Take it off. Try it on. Frustration and aggravation. It is for this reason that when you find your favorite brands, latch on to them for dear life.
Here is a key to help you with the art of fashion: For your body type, your lifestyle and your personal feminine mystique… get a personal shopper. The advice of a personal shopper is the smartest thing a woman can do who is searching for a new look or wants the advice of a professional.
A personal shopper does not charge you. She is there to help you. When you go to the market and need help finding the perfect melon, you call on a person in that department to help you and teach you. He or she for that moment is your personal shopper because he or she will help you find the perfect melon and give you some honest and sound advice.
Let Passion Be Your Dresser
Darling, please believe that age is just a number. When it comes to style have a little defiance in your attitude. Breakthrough the negative messaging of fashion and age. Go out and forget the rules. Be rebellious and reinvent yourself.
If spending is limited, don’t let that stop you from owning your style and the enjoyment of dressing. I have friends who spend large sums on their wardrobes and I have friends who can’t or choose to budget themselves. Often time my friends who spend less look more glam than my friends who spend more. They spend within their budget and look like a million bucks!
Here are a few ideas on how to spend less and look like a million! Many are brands I shop.
Look Like a Million Bucks
I have a large red flower that I bought for $14.95 (see picture above). I wore the flower in my hair as a fascinator for a hat party while all my friends wore very expensive hats. And I wore my hair slicked back so you only saw my face with red lips and my red larger than life fascinator flower. Start collecting flowers, Darling.
I own a plain white dress so I decided I would pin the same red flower just below my shoulder. Then I added red patent leather heels. I wear the flower pinned at my waist with Levi’s and a white shirt. I used one inexpensive accessory to create a look.
On another occasion I saved a satin Chanel ribbon from a gift box and tied it around my neck and wore it as a necklace. Put your thinking cap on and see what you have in your drawers, see what you have saved for gift wrapping. Maybe a velvet ribbon? Be creative.
Why Shop In Small Boutiques?
The word safari is the Swahili word for journey. Shopping for me is like going on a Safari, a hunt, so I prefer to hunt in small shops because the atmosphere is peaceful. I have attention from a stylist and I can dedicate myself to one brand. I have so much on my plate that knowing my favorite shops that specialize in my kind of brands is a relief.
Favorite Clothing Brands
My favorite brands of clothing for style are Georgio Armani and Jill Sanders. The lines are simple. A young woman in her 30’s and an older woman in her 70’s look stunning in Armani and Jill Sanders. I have the majority of these brands from years ago. They are keepers. I admit there are certain seasons where I do not like their line, so I pass and wait for the next season.
For a WOW designer with panache, I love Pucci because not many women I know in my circle wear the brand. I love their designs and colors. Every one of my Pucci pieces is a keeper.
Louis Vuitton fashions stand on their own. The line fits me well and I am a Louis fan from the get-go. I love everything Louis Vuitton.
Darlings, I am not a voracious shopper and I don’t have a large closet. I am very selective and wear my clothing for years. Do you?
Favorite Handbag and Belt Brands
Dior bags for style and wearability. I love the Dior Saddle Bag for day and night with different individual accessory straps I hook onto the bag to change the bag’s look. I love their belts with small bags, too.
Louis Vuitton never wears out, never goes out of style and will always be a favorite. I love my older Gucci’s and other brands I shop, some well over 20-years-old. I owned and loved The Kelly and The Birken Hermes that were stolen. And for a tote, the best of the best is Goyard.
Belts are a great accessory and I have to give Gucci an A+. They are fun and flirty! My pearl and rhinestone buckles make me happy just seeing them hanging in my closet. As well, I also love Louis Vuitton and others.
I love Lululemon for lifestyle and workout, Prada and Saint Laurent for shoes because of my bunions and Isabel Marant for sweaters and blouses.
I Love Accessories
My biggest purchases are accessories.
I never pass a fabulous accessory and I save them forever. I consider my glasses, the frames, and colored eyeglasses accessories. As well, I love my Ippolita earrings, my collection of colorful Hermes bracelets, little rhinestone butterflies for my hair, or different colored rubber bands on pigtails.
I also love a colorful scarf wrapped around a handbag handle and colorful luggage tags with a saying on boring black luggage. And don’t forget a velvet and satin bow tie to wear around your neck instead of a necklace. I will even wear my Ultimate Concierge’s interesting ties with a suit to make it edgy to match my personality.
I have shared my shopping story with you. Please share your shopping stories, your advice, and any questions you might have with me.
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