It’s time for ‘out with the old’ and ‘in with the new’- in most situations. My 2016 Style Resolution Post was one of my most requested and most quoted posts of the year. So some of this info bears repeating because quite frankly, I am pretty sure you want to have your best foot forward in 2017!
Remember – small changes can lead to big results no matter what you resolve to do.
Maybe it has been years since you incorporated anything fresh into your repertoire, enthusiastically experimented with a new look, or even thought about outsourcing your style. Having a signature style is a great plan, but not if it is outdated or ill fitting. Times-they-are-a-changing! That means fashion changes, your body changes and obviously your age changes!
Let’s do a 2017 checkup on all three.
- Your fashion sense: Resolve to stop thinking about ‘fashion’ as something for others, something out of your budget and something so ever-changing that you can’t keep up with it. The easiest way to keep up with it is to simply start paying attention. Put it on your radar screen by picking up a style magazine, noticing other women who look stylish to you and then breaking down which items within their look that you could infuse, inject or incorporate into your wardrobe! Tackle it one item at a time as a little bit goes a long way.
- Your body: It is what it is. If it is in your personal power to lose that 5-10 pounds you have been carrying, then by all means just jump in and do it. If however, it has been a decade and your black stretch pants have stretch marks of their own, then take the plunge and buy a new pair for the size you are today. Yes, you might have to bump up a size and yes that quite possibly means they will be too long, so plan a trip to the tailor. Your butt will look a lot better (and you will be more comfortable) in the right size!
- Your age: Dare I say if you are not dressing age-appropriately, then you are dressing either too young (maybe those Lulu’s are best left to the Ugg wearing teenage girls at the mall) or you are dressing too old (think proverbial oversized potentially pilled cardigan sweater). Honestly though, the phrase ‘dressing your age’ is a tad over-rated, especially for us 50-somethings. Most 50’s that I know look pretty damn good! So dress with style, flair and confidence and be sure to incorporate quality fabrics and impeccable tailoring so you can rock just about anything!
Let’s get to the ten resolutions so we can resolve not to use the word resolve the rest of the year!
- The best wardrobes are well edited. Resolve to maintain the flow of items out of your wardrobe as often as you maintain the flow of new items in. Resell, consign, or donate used or unwanted pieces whenever possible.
- The best wardrobes are well organized. Resolve to just do it, once and done. Get that closet in ship shape order. If the thought of performing your own closet edit is so overwhelming, you are frozen in your tracks, then outsource it. The point is, once it’s done, it’s done! Then all you have to do is resolve to maintain it by always refolding those sweaters and t-shirts, re-hanging everything in the right place, mending/cleaning things that require attention within a week, and selling or giving away the things that you are not (or should not be) wearing as you come across them. This will make your 2017 dressing and shopping more enjoyable and easier because you will know exactly how your wardrobe is functioning and what you need to purchase to fill in any gaps. Then you can resolve not to wear the same item of clothing more than once in a fortnight.
- Resolve to buy new underwear and throw old the old. Decide to shop for your intimates like you do your outerwear. Start thinking of your undies as power pieces, and you’ll notice a pep in your step right away.
- Resolve to experiment with your style. I am not talking Sarah Jessica Parker here, just something that changes your look up so it is not the same old, same old. Buy a few fashion magazines and give the old Post-it Plan a try. Simply tag things that attract your eye, forget the size zero model or the $1000 price tag; just flag it because it appeals to you. Fashion is available in all sizes and all price-points. The important component of the exercise is that YOU like it, so tag it! Seek inspiration from folks whose style you like. Zero in on one or two elements that you could infuse easily into your humdrum neutral zone. The intention is to start experimenting more and honing your personal style.
- Resolve to not buy anything in 2017 that you won’t still love in 2018 by making an effort to be more selective and thoughtful in your fast fashion impulse purchases. Ask yourself, “Does it go with three things I already have in my wardrobe?’ If the answer is no and the item stands a chance of being a lonely one-shot-wonder in the closet, then step away from the register! Tweak your thinking and resolve to up your cost-per-wear average by buying quality items and styling them into your outfits more often.
- Resolve to ignore size labels. Yes, there may once have been a time when you could grab anything off the rails in your ‘usual size’ and be pretty certain it would look good on you. But because your body is always changing, and sizes vary from store to store, it’s so important to make time to try before you buy. Standard sizing doesn’t exist, so don’t worry what the label says; just make sure you buy clothing that fits you well and makes you feel confident.
- Resolve to stop covering yourself up! I am not suggesting you start flashing lots of skin in the New Year, but nor should you completely drape your body in shapeless oversized garments – even if they do feel more comfortable. No matter your size, your body loves structure. Clothes that fit perfectly will make you look slimmer and feel more confident. Use the New Year as an opportunity to resolve to only have clothes in your wardrobe that fit and flatter your figure. Toss everything else out, whether it be too big or too small.
- Resolve to replace any worn out black basics! Incorporate a one-in, one-out policy. Let’s review that list! Underwear (yes, most women own more black under-garments than white), black short or tall boots, black leggings, black tights, black dress pants, black slim skirts, LBD’s (little black dresses) and potentially more depending on how dependent you are on your black essentials.
- Resolve to shop your closet. If you are a comfort zone type woman and don’t want to blow your budget on new out-of-the-box items, create out-of-the-box combinations from things you already own, things that you know, like and trust.
- Resolve to stop living in the neutral zone. Inject some major color into your wardrobe. If you step back and only see black, grey, brown and navy, then the mall is your oyster! Start by picking a favorite non-neutral color that could be just a color that makes you sing, a color that looks good with your eyes, or even a color that you have never dared to wear. Let’s say red pants…liberate yourself and give it a try girlfriend, I guarantee the fashion police will not be pulling you over for breaking any rules.
Speaking of dare…let’s incorporate ‘dare’ into your 2017 game plan.
- Dare to embrace your curly hair
- Dare to be stylish in your current size
- Dare to be fearless with colors and prints
- Dare to wear day heels
- Dare to wear leather
- Dare to STOP layering
- Dare to rotate your coats
- Dare to shop in new boutiques
- Dare to outsource your style
- Dare to wear different jewelry everyday
- Dare to carry only half of what is currently in your handbag
- Dare to build your accessory wardrobe and make your fashion statement with the extras
- Dare to infuse some color into your shoe collection
- Dare to be bold by mixing your classic pieces with your jeans
- Dare to embrace 2017 and make it your most stylish year yet
Need more help? My Savvy Style Guide is now available on Amazon.
Confidence Is Always In Style by Doreen Dove