To quote Coco Chanel…
“Dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they remember the woman.” ~ Coco Chanel
Oh Coco, what inspired words you speak!
This past Sunday, while the world watched the Oscars, there were many fabulous, stylish women who walked the red carpet.
I think that we all agree that there were, on the other hand, some pretty unfortunate dresses.
Whether you are going to your child’s soccer game or to a formal wedding, we have found that looking the best you can for every occasion is worth the effort. It makes you feel good. It tells the world that you have put your best foot forward and that you have respect for yourself and them. As Coco says, “I don’t understand how a woman can leave the house without fixing herself up a little – if only out of politeness. And then, you never know, maybe that’s the day she has a date with destiny. And it’s best to be as pretty as possible for destiny”. Now, that does not mean that you would wear a ball gown to do the grocery shopping or a silk suit to walk the dogs in the morning! You wear things that are appropriate for whatever it is that you are doing. For some of you, this will mean adding a pair of earrings and a pretty lipstick. For others, it might mean shedding something in your wardrobe that, albeit comfortable, does not show you in your best light.
Very few people can wear every style out there and, as you concentrate on this a bit, you will find that there are certain styles that suit you better than others. Some styles will not suit you at all and so, obviously, whether they are the height of fashion or not, it is best to stay away from them.
So, the first thing you want to do is to find your style. Once you have done this, slowly build your wardrobe, piece by piece, if necessary. Having a large wardrobe does not necessarily mean that you have style! It is much better to have a few pieces that are just “you” than many pieces that do nothing for you.
Part of “finding one’s style” is finding the colors that best suit you. Years ago, it seemed to be the “it” thing to “have one’s colors done”. There were several companies that grew up overnight that specialized in letting you know what colors were “you”. We have found that one can tell what colors suit one best just by looking in the mirror or asking your sister, or your husband or a good friend. Pay attention to what you find out. There is probably a lot of truth to what you are feeling and hearing ~ and then stick to those colors.
The actual shape of a dress can make you or break you. Try on a few different types of dresses and see which one feels the best on….again, ask a good friend to help you if you are having difficulty with this. The cut of a skirt or jeans is the same thing. Just because it is the fashionable thing this season DOES NOT MEAN that it is the best thing for you, so do not be a fashion idol.
Accessorize well but don’t overdo it. If you have one pair of earrings in your jewellery box, make sure they are classical and can take you anywhere. Pearls are always a great choice and, as both Coco Chanel and Jackie Kennedy proved to us, they do not have to be real BUT they do have to look classy!
If you are finding this all a bit difficult and would like help with finding that “impeccable” look, there are experts who can help you. Google “wardrobe consultants” in your area to find one. If you live in southern California, you might want to give Nancy Allan a call. A costume designer by trade, Nancy, in her gracious, loving way, will come in and give you all the tools you need to have them “remember the woman”!