How do you decide what you are going to wear?
Did you wear uniform to school?
Did your mom have lots of opinions about what to wear and when?
Was fashion important to you growing up?
Whatever your answers, everyone has an internal voice guiding our clothing “picks”. The myths and rules attached to what you can wear, when you can wear it and how old/young you have to be to can be confusing and very illogical. Fashion myths often become dogmas that we accept as truth. But are they? Take a minute and ask yourself what are the fashion rules that you believe to be true.
One size fits all: Ha, Ha,Ha- the only thing that comes close are NPR’s slimmers. They really do fit most.
Horizontal stripes make you look fat or short: it all depends on the width of the stripe and the amount of value contrast (the light to dark of the colors). Some stripes are actually slimming and can make you appear taller when the stripes are variegated in width.
Big prints should be saved for wallpaper: hmmm maybe, but again if there is not much contrast between the colors, the pattern could work. Also your height dictates the size of pattern you can wear.
Shoes and handbag need to match: No, not anymore. A playful mix of accessories always elevates your look.
Only wear white between Memorial Day and Labor Day: No- white is a fashion staple in jeans, blouses and jackets. Winter white looks fresh on dreary winter days.
High heels are more sophisticated: No, flats and 1½”- 2” pumps can be adorable and kinder to your feet and back. The important thing to remember- shoulders back, chin up and chest out. Good posture always makes you look more put together.
Patterns can’t be mixed: Yes they can. Mixing textures and patterns in different scales or sizes can make your outfit look sophisticated. Solid color accents help unify the look.
Never combine black with navy or navy with brown: Another old wives tale. Black looks great mixed with navy and navy mixed with brown is the new “go-to” color combination in suits this season. Mixing different colors always works better when your accessories (scarves or necklaces) pull the two or three colors together.
You have to spend a lot of money to look good: No- you just need to be knowledgeable about fabrics (and how they wear and launder), how to accessorize and how to shop sales. Remember, we believe in Never Pay Retail! Look for simple designs that can be dressed up or down with scarves or sweaters. Keep your shoes in good repair- no scuffs or rundown heels.
Classic clothing is better than trendy: hmmm- not necessarily. Classic clothing can be worn for more seasons, but consider the cost per wearing for the garment. If you have classic styles that are seldom worn, you are probably better off buying trendy clothing that you wear more frequently. Know yourself and buy what makes you happy.
You have to change your look as you age: Maybe/no/yes- you do need to evaluate whether your current hair and makeup still flatter the present-day you. “Signature looks” can be part of your identity, but usually need to be “evolved”. As we mature hair, skin and bodies change and it’s good to adjust to those changes. A good tip- cast a cold eye on a current picture and analyze what you would like to change. Be brave- have a stylist or trusted friend help you make a plan.
No short skirts after 30: Sometimes the last thing to “go south” on a gal is her legs. Consequently, if your legs look good, wear your short skirts. It’s refreshing to see women “over a certain age” showing their legs.
What is your favorite rule to bend?