Pondering my style

Boho? Classic? Eccentric? Exactly what is my style?

Since moving back to California, I have been having a style crisis. People in California seem to live in jeans and tee shirts.

When I am in Mérida I dress up more. At home, I’m likely to be wearing shorts and a tank top with flip flops, but when I head out the door, I dress up. Seriously, I have dressy walking shorts or slacks and nicer tops for going shopping, dresses or palazzo pants for going dancing. I usually put on some makeup and wear jewelry (or at least earrings) when I leave my house. I go to Art Galleries, the symphony, charity events, and even the occasional cocktail party.For example, I was there this week, I would be going to the Annual St. Valentine’s Day Friendship Dance that the International Women’s Club puts on as a benefit for their charities (in Mexico, Valentine’s Day is for friends and lovers, not just romantic love).

Not only is the weather different here in Northern California ( it’s 50 degrees F at 2 p.m.), we don’t do the same things. It’s been cold and wet, and I am not motivated to walk downtown to sit in the park and people watch.

My husband and I saw a local production of Hamlet, with a few exceptions, most of the people dressed like they were going to the grocery store. I’d like to say that they were dressed so casually because it was a Sunday matinee, but we’ve been to the San Francisco Opera and most of the patrons were wearing jeans.

What I’ve realized is that I while I don’t want to look blah, I am not into looking like I am wearing a costume or dressing too eccentricly. I like a bit of originality, like a quirky necklace or earrings, but I don’t want to look like I just stepped off the stage of a play. While I admire people who wear vintage in their every day lives, it feels too much like a costume to me. Maybe that is because I make and wear costumes to events? Also at my age, mid 60s, retro can just look like you never changed your style since you were a teen.

Pinterest is a tool that I like to use to sort out ideas. I have a board for refashioned and altered clothes and while I have some crazy things pinned, I’ve realized that I probably won’t wear them. I don’t like things that look like random things were just sewn together, I like a more coordinated thought out look. However, I have gathered some ideas for altering the clothes that I have that don’t quite work for me as they are now. My next post will be about those things.

Fashion and style are two different things. I have never been high fashion. I have always had a definite style. When I ask my husband about what I am wearing, his reply is almost always, “It’s California, nobody cares.” That sort of answer doesn’t help, because I care about how I look.

When I worked, my favorite clothing were what we called office casual, and it still really is. However, I don’t have an office to go to. I also love leggings and tunics. I like long skirts. I like pretty but not fussy clothes. Right now, I am wearing grey pinstriped high waisted trousers (with leggings underneath for warmth), a long pale pink sweater, and a taupe knit infinity scarf. I could go anywhere and blend in.

Ideally, I want to hear,”You look really good in that outfit” not ” I love that outfit” I want my clothes to be a back drop not the star of the show. Maybe I do have my style figured out, I just need clothes that fill the role.

I’m going to go through my wardrobe and see what I can do to make it work, as my hero, Tim Gunn, says. I think I can add some length to a few too short tops.

How about you? Do you have a definite style? Are your clothes background or superstars?


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