The concept of “trying too hard” irks me. People are constantly being criticized for putting forth minimal effort, and yet we censure them for being overly enthusiastic, too. Talk about a lose-lose proposition.
And yet, I’ve gotten several reader questions about “trying too hard” stylistically, and I understand why. When I was 13, I felt certain that simply OWNING and WEARING cool clothes would make me cool … but when I got my hands on an entire Esprit ensemble and wore it to school, I was still shunned. And the feeling I had? Trying too hard. Specifically trying too hard to fit into a group that didn’t want me, trying too hard to adopt a style that had nothing to do with my own tastes, trying too hard to be someone I’d never be.
Originally posted 2011-04-27 06:19:27.
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.
I´d love to know your thoughts about over-dressing: like wearing something nice to a supermarket and something really extravagant to a casual occasion. I don’t mean expensive pieces, but just something elaborate and pretty. Do you think overdressing is pathetic and a sign of a boring life, or do you think it´s the rest of the people under-dressing that´s the problem?
First of all, I don’t believe that ANY kind of dressing is pathetic. Every woman has her reasons for choosing her clothing, and assuming that I could accurately gauge those reasons by looking at her is pure foolishness. That goes for over-dressing, under-dressing, dressing differently from peers, dressing impractically, dressing in ways that I cannot personally fathom … you name it. I am continually fascinated by the choices of others, but do my best to reserve judgment.
Originally posted 2011-03-24 06:23:44.