I wonder if you might do a post on shopping for quality/longevity. I find some stores, like Ann Taylor or L.L. Bean, have pretty good and consistent quality in construction and holding up to washing, etc, or really good return policies. But the Gap, for example, is much more uneven, and I’ve just stopped shopping at Old Navy because everything loses its shape after a wash. Especially when thrifting or buying at a place like T.J. Maxx, which have a hodgepodge, how can you assess how the piece will hold up with wear and tear and washing?
Originally posted 2011-01-27 06:14:10.
If you put on an outfit that you feel is super cute, but absolutely no one gives you positive reinforcement on it, are you more likely to continue wearing that outfit/type of outfit or would you consider rethinking its composition? Even if we think we make bold personal fashion choices, do we actually inadvertently tailor our personal style based on environment and that we take cues from others – spoken or unspoken – as part of our style evolution?
I think that personal style is heavily influenced by peer, family, coworker, and stranger feedback. Few women who live in rural areas adore pencil skirts with heels, few women living in nursing homes shop at Hot Topic, and very few female corporate lawyers wear Birkenstocks to the office. Peer group feedback – in the form of compliments, questions, looks askance, and outright insults – creates a loop of response, whether we acknowledge it or not. Positive feedback and acceptance help keep group-approved clothing and styles in heavy rotation. Insults and disapproval may provoke initial rebellion and over-wear, but for most of us these doses of negativity eventually lead to the removal of group-shunned clothing and styles from rotation.
Originally posted 2009-06-05 06:06:00.
Reader Deb wrote to me with this fabulous question:
As a middle-aged woman, I often hear style gurus advise women of my age that we can wear trends as long as we “wear them with sophistication.” I’m happy that age-related style rules (no long hair after 35) are no more, but I’m floundering a little with the sophistication bit, especially sophistication on a budget.
Would wearing just solid colors be more sophisticated? Have you helped any of your clients with this issue? Is sophistication just one of those things that you recognize when you see it, or can it be described?
Originally posted 2011-01-14 06:05:21.