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Refine Your Style in 2016

“A personal style is like handwriting. It happens as the by-product of our way of seeing things enriched by the experiences of everything around us.”  – Mossimo Vignelli

In high school, I wanted to be just like my best friend, Patti. She wore great clothes and all the guys loved her. I also wanted to write like her. I would spend hours trying to duplicate the way she wrote her name. I still write that way, even now. She was my handwriting icon and over time, I adapted my own version of her style. So I completely understand the quote above. My handwriting became me over a period of time, and, like it, my personal clothing style has grown as I emulated and refined what I saw on other women.

I know… You might call me a slow learner in my 60s. But it did take a lot of experimentation and mistakes before I knew what worked and what did not. For the most part, I do not go for really trendy, out-of-the-box styles and often my outfit posts are very similar and subdued. But I find pleasure in knowing the similarities mean I have achieved what I was looking for and communicating the messages I want to send.

Refine Your Style in 2016Here are the ways I further refined my style in 2015:

  1. SIMPLICITY WITH ACCESSORIES. I wore less last year than ever before. My beloved scarves became only gentle, sporadic breezes just blowing through my style occasionally rather than daily. I ceased wearing earrings (because I have an injured ear), so that led to more necklaces and simple bracelets. This once highly accessorized woman became more minimal with one statement piece per outfit.
  2. SOLIDIFIED NEUTRAL FOUNDATION. I have been headed this way for a couple of years, but my wardrobe is now more neutrals than anything. I wore fewer prints in 2015, and more blacks, navy blues, and browns. Prints became occasional statement pieces, and I ceased mixing patterns. I am more purposeful with my selection now, since these represent my creative voice.
  3. LESS COLOR EXPERIMENTATION. I stayed away from pastels last year, and chose more deep, saturated colors. It is nice to know exactly what colors work for me and which ones do not. I also wore more white, and love it now all year long!
  4. ADDED SMALL HEELS. Though more often than not you will find me wearing flats, I added a few small heels to my wardrobe as I returned to the professional world. I was pleased to discover shoe lines which are comfortable even with a small heel.
  5. I PROVED I HAVE LEGS. I haven’t worn so many dresses and skirts in a long time. I rarely wore them when teaching high school, so it has been nice to see my legs come out and the hemlines raise a bit. I actually like the comfort of a great pencil skirt as much as a pant.

Next week we will look ahead into 2016, but for now, fill me in. What style changes did you make last year? Did you learn anything new or try something you know will always be in your closet? I think, like my handwriting, these five refinements are here to stay.

Have a great first week in 2016… and thanks for stopping by!

Pamela Lutrell

Pamela Lutrell began her blog, over50feeling40, July 2010 with a desire to encourage women over 50 to walk in strength, confidence and joy. Of course, head turning style makes each day fun!

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Janice Collins

Wednesday 13th of January 2016

I lost almost 50 pounds at the beginning months if 2015. This presented an opportunity to develop a new classic minimalist wardrobe based on warm tan/brown and navy neutrals with my favorite shades of blue and green, aqua and turquoise accents and lots of white/cream. My outfits are also similar. I'm more comfortable in pants and knit tops with simple jewelry - mostly simple quality earrings and occasional scarves or my favorite simple gold chain short necklace. I don't wear prints except Breton stripes and I seem to live in my Softwalk clogs that look nice and are so comfortable .. Recently I purchased some kicky print and stripped warm socks to wear with the clogs. I coordinate them with the solid tops and pants. I've gotten lots of compliments and friends say I always look put together and elegant! Interesting because my wardrobe is more casual than ever. But I think it is because everything fits well and I've carefully selected things that allow my outfits to look very coordinated.

Dr . Dorrie Cooper

Saturday 9th of January 2016

I also looking to embrace the idea of aging as being active and youthful is a western myth. We age based upon many factors. I have a disability and many people complain about aging and wellness is relative. I want women to embrace their femininity as we age. Having cancer or other illnesses remove more than your life. People need to be as they can be.


Tuesday 5th of January 2016

Having spent much of my professional life "in neutral", I added more color. I do have a sense of the colors that work for me as well as those that don't. And I needed color to punch up the neutrals. My biggest change last year was improving my weekend wardrobe. I had some fun with this and dress better on weekends than I had in the past. Also simplified jewelry, wearing "barely there" nicer pieces. It's a phase! For me, classic will always be what I feel best in, but I'm having fun keeping it modern and fresh!

Pamela Lutrell

Tuesday 5th of January 2016

I like the way you said "barely there" nicer pieces...They sound perfect, Karen. I also love classic the best. Thanks for sharing your own journey with us!


Tuesday 5th of January 2016

I love your favorite outfit also! I discovered silky, swishy, dress pants at Macy's. They became my favorite pants for travel, working, everything - dress them up in a snap, or go light and simple. They are a staple in my wardrobe.

Pamela Lutrell

Tuesday 5th of January 2016

The pants sound wounderful, Terri! To find the perfect pant is so important. Thanks for sharing!

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