Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Comfort and Style- they aren't enemies!

Ah comfort. I can't tell you how many times I have heard someone excuse their horrible fashion with saying something along the lines of "Oh but Grace, it is just so comfortable!" or "I dress for comfort, not style." That's all fine and dandy- but I think you are selling yourself short if you believe in either of these excuses. I enjoy being comfortable just as much as the next person, but you don't see me walking around like this:

And neither should you. Wearing sweatsuits is something that NO ONE and I will repeat, NO ONE should be wearing in public. I don't care how "comfortable" they are. Are regular pants really that uncomfortable? Did I miss something? If your pants are really THAT uncomfortable, I would suggest that maybe you need to get some new pants. Don't give up looking good for the idea of being comfortable because feeling good about yourself definitely outweighs feeling warm and comfy in your favorite pair of sweat pants. If you don't believe me, then hey try it! There are a ton of options out there that are a) comfortable and b) stylish. So I don't want to hear these excuses any longer! Let me give you an example of how I feel about a certain "comfortable" product out there right now:

Everyone tells me that these shoes are so comfy, and therefore people think they are wearable. Is anyone looking at these shoes? They are simply not ok, no matter how cushioned they are. Did you know that there are actually stylish and comfy shoes out there? Call me crazy, but it's true! Ladies, I understand that you don't want to wear shoes that are pointy, or high heeled, etc because they make your feet hurt. And that's fine! But look for a cute ballet flat or some oxfords (see last post) which are flat and will be kind to your feet. Guys- there are tons of stylish shoes you can wear that aren't nasty running/tennis shoes. Try some casual leather shoes for a change. Wrap your mind around the fact that you can have more than just a Sunday pair of shoes and a casual pair of shoes. If you get stuck in this mind trap, then you end up having a fancy pair of shoes that you feel you can only wear to church or formal occasions and a pair of tennis shoes that get beaten up and nasty extremely quickly because you wear them all of the time. Tennis shoes should be used for exercising. It's ok to have 3 or 4 pairs of shoes!
I understand that people want to be comfortable, I just want them to also understand that you don't have to give up comfort to be stylish and you don't have to give up style to be comfortable. The sooner we all realize this, the better. If nothing else, never wear sweat suits or crocs in public. You will feel better in a good looking outfit than you would in a fuzzy sweatshirt. Just imagine the possibilities!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Current Love

I have a current obsession. And that obsession is oxford, wing-tipped shoes. For men and women. They are soooo classy and just great all around. I actually just bought a pair online, and I can't wait to get them! They are the perfect trend right now because you can dress them up or wear them casually- and both guys and girls can wear them. See how this woman is wearing them in a more dressed up manor. Doesn't she just look classy?

And then here are some women- celebs wearing them in a more casual manor. Notice how you can wear them with skirts or pants- dressy or casual. And they are flats, so they won't hurt to wear them around all day. More proof that you don't have to wear heels to look classy and fashionable, ladies!

And guys- there is nothing more attractive (at least to me right now) than guys wearing wing tip oxfords. So classy and shows the sign of a true gentleman that knows how to dress. Here are some shots that I got from thesartorialist.blogspot.com. I also got the woman in red oxfords from that site too. It's a blog that I definitely love and you should check out. I love this older gentleman in his outfit and oxfords. Notice his ability to wear them with jeans, so casually, and yet still look classy. This doesn't just go for older guys!

And I absolutely LOVE this picture. There's something amazing about it. And they are wearing oxfords! There are all sorts of oxfords, so go ahead and find some that are fitting to your style, if you feel! I just bought some for only $25 so you don't need to spend a lot of money, if that's what you are worried about. Guys- these shoes work really great with a suit too, in case you are needing to upgrade your Sunday/business shoes to something more fashionable and classy.
So happy oxford season! I love this trend and I hope you can learn to love it as much as I do.

I also hope that you all like the new design! I spent quite some time on it, and I absolutely love it. I also added an "about me" tab at the top, if you want to check that one out! I will be adding more tabs in the future, so keep your eye out for that!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The everlasting search for the perfect JEANS

Something that I'm sure we all struggle with is finding a good pair of jeans. I'm unsure as to why it is so difficult for everyone to find good jeans- especially women. But hey it is! But that doesn't mean we should give up the search and wear jeans that don't make us feel and look our best. I just want to start off by warning all of you against some jeans that are out there. If you own jeans that look like any of the following examples, get rid of them! And get rid of them fast. They aren't doing you, or anyone for that matter, ANY favors. These all go for girls and guys FYI.

Exhibit A: The destroyed Jean
No. They were popular like um I don't know? 5 years ago? But they aren't now. And they shouldn't have been then either. They just look silly and make you look like a slob. If you want to look more refined, sophisticated, and confident, I suggest that wearing destroyed jeans is not the way to do this.

Exhibit B: The over embellished Jean
Also a big no. Jeans are something that should be kept simple. When you have so many embellishments on your jeans, all of the attention is going towards your jeans and not to you. And that's not a good thing because it is most likely negative attention. Guys don't think this let's you off the hook. I have seen many guys wearing jewled jeans with crosses or other "guy" things on them. And they don't look good. Let's keep is simple shall we?

Exhibit C: The cargo/carpenter Jean
I'd say this one is the worst offender of all of these jeans. Because I see SO many (usually guys) wearing them. And they are not ok! Do these jeans look flattering to you? If they do, then you need to relearn the word flattering :) They don't help shape you at all and they are extremely outdated. They are ok if you work at a construction site, or are doing other jobs like painting or wood work. But other than that, let's just not, ok? If your jeans have pockets on the side of the legs, then that is a huge indicator that you should probably get rid of them.

Exhibit D: The Mom (and Dad) Jean
Once again outdated jeans. Do you see how these jeans make these women look slightly pregnant? And how incredibly unflattering they are? The high waisted mom jeans are the worst- so try to avoid them at ALL cost. Even if you are a mom!

Exhibit E: The pajama Jean
haha! Sorry- I just had to. I don't actually know anyone that owns these, but aren't they just awful? At least as jeans they are. Maybe they would make great pajamas...

When buying jeans try to follow a few standards:
1. Buy jeans that are long enough for you. Then they don't give the flood look.
2. Buy jeans that are darker in wash. Not all jeans need to be darker in wash, but if you are wanting a more sophisticated look, it is definitely the way to go.
3. Go for jeans that fit closer to your body. Skinny jeans definitely fit this description, but that doesn't mean you have to buy skinny jeans. Just jeans that fit throughout your thighs at least. And then a simple boot cut works. Anything wider than a boot cut- like a flare isn't very flattering usually.
4. Never settle on a pair of jeans because you are tired of looking for a good pair. Only buy ones that you love and feel good in. It may take longer than you would like, but I know you can find the right pair. Be willing to try different cuts and sizes if you can't seem to find some that fit you correctly.

Happy Jean hunting!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

It's your life, dress for it

What kind of life do you really want for yourself? I don't know mean just things like- oh where do you see yourself in 5 years? Or what do you want to be when you grow up? But what kind of life do you really want yourself to live in order for you to be happiest? Are you confident? Powerful? Successful? Comfortable with yourself and others around you?

I really like this idea of living the exact kind of life that I want to live. I want to live a life where I feel good about myself and feel confident. And I want to feel powerful- meaning having the power to do whatever I want to do and to do it well. This may not seem to have much to do with fashion- but trust me, it does. Confidence is something that is oh so important. No, I do not have a perfect self image and 100% confidence, but let's all take this journey together towards feeling better about ourselves. I want to remind you of the reason why I started this blog. I want people to realize the connection between feeling good and looking good. When you look good and more importantly, know that you look good, you feel so much better about yourself. Why? Because of one thing- confidence. Dressing well leads to more confidence. You look good and therefore have the confidence to talk and create relationships with the people around you.

So how can we live a life of confidence? How can we encourage ourselves to do the things that we have always wanted to do and just never had the strength or self assurance? I would like to submit that dressing for such a life is a great step in the right direction. You all remember Britney Spears, right? You know- that girl who was incredibly successful and then had a mental breakdown? Well she's making a comeback. She already has a hit- "Hold it Against Me" on the radio and itunes right now. Whether you like that song or not is not the point. The point is that she seems to finally be coming back and living a life of confidence and love for herself after such a low point. This is what she looked like during her low point:

Notice how incredibly sloppy she is. Her hair is messy, she probably doesn't have any make-up on, and (the worst offender) is wearing sweatpants. In public! Does she look like she is living the kind of life that she wanted to be living during that time? Her appearance on the outside is screaming how she was feeling on the inside. Or at least one can assume. She was dressing for the type of life that she was living. Which relates to my title. Dress for the kind of life that you want to have. If you want a successful career, then dress for the job that you want to have! If you want a life that is just simply full of happiness, then dress in a way that shows you are happy and glowing with confidence. This is what Ms. Spears has done in this next picture:

Do you notice the difference? She looks a million times better- and her current success shows it. She has found the strength to make a come back, which requires confidence. She is dressing for the kind of life that she wants. She cares about herself enough to dress in a way that shows it. Her hair looks groomed and her outfit looks clean and great. And she's not wearing sweatpants! I'm sure she still has a fair amount of problems, and hey, who doesn't? But doing something simple like dressing in things that are clean and fit you well leads to a better chance at living the kind of life that you want to live- a more confident one. Clothes make you! So instead of hating it, embrace it! You'll definitely notice a difference if you just try and dress in a way that says "I am a confident beautiful person" for at least a week. Go ahead- give it a try. And go ahead and share your experiences on the blog! I would love to hear from you.


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Shirts with Attitude

Have you ever been out in public and seen someone wearing a shirt like this? Or do I dare ask if you yourself own such a shirt?

I call these kinds of shirts "attitude shirts" and no I did not coin this phrase. They say some completely ridiculous statement, like the one above, and gives the wearer all the wrong kind of attention. Having "Don't ask! You can't afford me anyway!" written across your chest is not giving off the "I like the nicer things in life" message that the shirt seems to be trying to convey. There are so many shirts with these sayings with attitude on them- for guys and girls. And if you want my real opinion- I think they are absolutely ridiculous. Your shirt may say you are 100% angel, but all I'm seeing is that you have 0% taste. (burn!) haha You don't need your shirts to scream "look at me! I have something to say!" You want people to look at you because you look great and are giving you the kind of attention that you deserve. This will lead to you feeling more confident because people will want to get to know you for the right reasons. It's always better to be more safe than sorry- so I'm thinking that you should keep all of your shirts with sayings either for bed time or throw them away. Burning them is also an acceptable alternative. Don't have your shirt tell the world what you are, but let them have a chance to get to know you. And no- these shirts aren't funny. (In general). And even if they are- that doesn't mean you need to wear them out in public. I would generally stay away from the following types of shirts:

1. Shirts that tell the world how awesome you are- for example the 100% angel one. If you are really that awesome, then you don't need a shirt that says so.

2. Shirts that insult anyone who reads them, such as "You can't spell Stupid without U" or some other ridiculous phrase. They aren't very funny and they just make you seem more unapproachable.

3. Extremely political tee shirts like "Bush sucks!" are also unnecessary. If you are that passionate about politics, start some friendly debates or find others with similar interests as you.

4. Shirts implying that you live a certain kind of lifestyle- such as "This is your boyfriend's shirt"- they just make you look trashy. And we don't want that, now do we?

I'm sure there are other examples, but I'm sure you get the point. Don't let your shirt do the talking. It's tasteless and is not helping anyone in looking or feeling better.