Thursday, October 29, 2015

Mature Fashion: Rocking Stripes

Hello again, Stylinistas;

Two stripes going in opposite directions; The wide legged cropped matador inspired pants in a charcoal and pearl narrow stripe are paired with the charcoal and black high neck button collar in the same tones.  The black in balanced with the printed leather heeled ankle boots.  I will use a dark red or dark green handbag to add a pop of color to the ensemble.

A preview of one of my spring fashions from "Not So Old Glory," a 2016 fashion theme based on the colors of the American Flag.
The bold red and white stripes are paired  with narrow red riding pants and boots and accessorized with the faux alligator royal blue handbag.  The rectangular scarf is a geometric red white and blue yachting design, an upcoming spring trend.  Every item already existed in the closet; cost of fashion update $0.

Two examples of floral prints and stripes; one with the trendy Polynesian print and Chinese influence of Spring 2016.  Both styles will be worn with wide legged crop pants. Last year this jacket was paired with a black and white polka dots in polished cotton and black faux leather slim pants.  Lots and lots of compliments.

This combination and the one above are to be worn Spring 2016 in my "Global Granny" styling choices. 

An outfit styled for this past summer; will transition nicely into this spring  simply by exchanging the heels for ankle boots or for a more utilitarian look wearing a work boot and a canvas bag or backpack.

Another outfit styled for this past summer that will be re-interpreted next spring with a wildly colored multi-graphic scarf. The red shoes and handbag will be exchanged for plain black to balance the almost garish scarf. An example up updating your fashion saavy by simply updating an accessory or two (or three).

Of course, these examples only demonstrate using stripes with other patterns.  Obviously, you have many, many combinations of using stripes effectively with solids.  The only caution I might remind you of, is making sure the tones of the stripes are compatible.  Not all stripes look good with the color of the solid just because it is the same color.

Happy Styling..............Geneva.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Mature Fashion: Rocking Fashion Nun

Hello Stylinistas;

The last style postings of my personal closet interpretations of the
Fall/Winter 2015 Fashion week  is the minimalist Nun fashion type.  

The upper left hand corner shows me dressed in the ensemble on the left.  I am wearing wide legged just above the ankle pants with a black jersey camisole layered over a long sleeved white shirt.   I have no jewelry on except the black double layered beads under the shirt collar. Plain oval toe flats and a plain black handbag complete the outfit.

Photography details are skimpy on this picture:  A black knee length short sleeved  button up the front raw silk dress over a turtleneck long sleeved white silk t-shirt is worn under an ankle length knit sleeveless duster.  White knit tights are worn with black leather ankle boots and a Chrome Hearts handbag with the 7 cross design.  The only jewelry is the multi-stoned silver cross an black  button earrings.

I re-imagined the nun in white trousers topped with a simple round necked lace short sleeved white overblouse over the same white silk t-shirt as above. The outfit is accessorized with men style buckle oxford and the same black handbag. The cross is worn at a shorter length than above. I would wear this with the short black cape shown in the Goth collection.

I had styled the pink tuxedo outfit for Spring/Summer 2015.  A simple substitution of either the ankle boots or the plain oval toed flat pumps in the first picture for the gladiator sandals would re-imagine our nun personna fashion look for Fall 2015.  I will add the short black cape for wear this fall.  If I had one in my closet, I would prefer a cape neckline oversized wooly long sweater, but I do not.

The crop wide leg wool trousers are paired with a white turtle neck t-shirt under a matching crew neck cashmere sweater. The accessories include knit black tights, grey suede heeled ankle boots, a lighter grey canvas initialed handbag to lighten up the mood a bit.  An ankle length wool coat would be worn with this outfit, weather permitting.


This ensemble can be worn by a fashion nun of any age.  The sleeveless black wool hem pleated dress worn over the cotton high necked t-shirt provides the monastic theme of the style.  The accessories are the catalyst for creating the perfect mood and touch.  I My closet contained the knit black tights, the men style buckle shoes, and the saddle stitched handbag.  I chose the lariat silver with pearl necklace instead of a cross to lighten the mood.  I would wear the black wool shoulder cape if the weather required more warmth.

The styling of "Fashion Nun" from my closet concludes my demonstration that almost anyone can create any prevailing fashion style or mood by just mixing and matching items in your closet.  It does require trying new combinations and possibly the purchase of a very few items.  In this runway interpretation I have shown all six of the prevailing 2015 Fall fashion themes from fashion week last February: Lolita, Bedford Ave. Granny, Forever Boho, 21st Century Mod, Goth Girl, and now, Fashion Nun.

I do wish to complete the trend examples and will post Rocking Stripes soon.  Also, I will soon begin styling the fashions I wish to wear for Spring 2016.  I also hope to demonstrate a few fun outfits for the fast approaching holiday season!  Happy Styling.....Geneva

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Mature Fashion: Rocking Goth

Hello Stylistas;

Right out of 2015 Transyllvania......  Today's men's look clothing are spot on for an elegant Goth look.  Of course, the inspiration for this is our leading bad guy, Dracula.

This ensemble is composed of a black woolen blazer, a classic white pleated front tuxedo shirt, narrow stretch trousers (I mixed materials to lighten the formality of too  much of a suit) and added a satin cumberbund and red satin neck scarf.  I accessorized with the men's style buckle shoe and a gauzy "peace" symbol scarf just for fun.  I added a Maltese cross to the lapel of the blazer and will carry the Chrome Hearts handbag with the Cross pattern.

I call this my Lagerfield ensemble.  Karl Lagerfield is a perfect re-interpretation of Dracula.  The signature black gloves, leather boots, white shirt, and sunglasses have to be represented in any Goth collection. To lighten the darkness but stay true to the mood, I have added a gold multi-layered chain belt and black Paloma messenger bag that is right on trend but lightens the mood.

Closer detail of the neckwear and lapel pin

I call this interpretation "Lady Lagerfield"  This silk satin blouse is paired with the cream wool skirt, the gloves, coat and boots from the above  photo. I have exchanged the chain belt with a black satin cumberbund and the Paloma purse for the edgier Chrome Hearts Dagger Design.  The necklace is a silver/bone spike necklace.

 A slightly frivolous Scots Goth. She wears her wool cape over
a black wool pleated jumper worn over a silk long sleeved argyle shirt.  She will wear black textured tights and black ankle Boots paired with leather gloves accented with the plaid wool.  Of course, she will carry her Chrome Hearts Dagger design handbag.

Our mature Lady Goth is wearing an embroidered high neck, long sleeve lace blouse accented with a floral silk scarf that contains red roses.  The blouse is paired with a gored mid calf wool skirt.  The rose pattern in the scarf is reflected in the black tights with its embroidered rose  just above the ankle.  She will wear her Oxford style lace up low heeled shoes and her Chrome Hearts Dagger design handbag.

Our lady Goth is wearing the same lace blouse under a lace cardigan in the same pattern over an embroidered lace skirt in a slightly larger pattern. A fuzzy feathery turban hat, a stark black leather bag accented with a small silk square, and over the knee leather boots demonstrate mature "attitude."  The silver and bone spiked necklace add a bit more punch to the ensemble.

Lady goth goes a bit lighter in the faux Persian lamb cuffed jacket worn over the black lace blouse and wide legged wool blend mid calf pants.  The ensemble is accessorized with the turban, edgy purse, black textured lace lights, grey leather faux fur trimmed gloves and the necklace.

How Goth can you go?.....Happy Styling......Geneva

Friday, October 23, 2015

Mature Fashion: Rocking 21st Century Mod

Hello Stylinistas.....

Some of these ensembles have been shown in some of the trend collections already (animal prints, patterns and textures, etc.) because they represent both a trend and a fashion interpretation. Some of the combinations also fit in more than one fashion catagory. The picture on the left shows a vintage dark camel suede skimmer jacket trimmed with a mink collar. The faux suede camel riding pants reminiscent of stirrup pants, ruffled v-neckedpaisley camel/red blouse with flared wrist definitely remind one of Laura Ashley. Red and camel Dansko clogs, a cowhide alligator print handbag, Indianna Jones slouch hat, and brown leather gloves update this look borrowed from the 60's.

The outfit is minimally accessorized with a gold lariat necklace layered with slim triangle bar. 

This combination was also shown in "Granny" because it represents the combining of plaid patterns, but also belongs in the Mod fashion scene because of the skirt length, turtleneck collar, and updated boot.

Just like in the 60's, this just above the knee skirt will be worn with tights, but today's will be black textured and worn with heeled ankle boots rather than the flat heeled "go-go" boot worn in that age. The plaid scarf also reflects the "blown out plaid" and the trendy camel color.

The turtle neck over blouse was a fashion feature of Mod design and so were leopard animal prints, especially in early Mod.  In the combination to your left, the animal print trapezoid overblouse covers the thin silky turtleneck t-shirt.  The tops are matched with a darker leopard print and black and leopard flat heeled shoes.  The pop of a turquoise handbag update the look right into 21st Century Mod. (check out October issue of Vogue)

Once again, just layering a multi-colored almost garish short sleeved shirt over the same silky turtleneck and adding lace-up black heeled suede boots update the look of this season's Mod. This style of boot also gives an elegant look suitable to Mature Fashionistas. The youngsters in their forties might choose to be a bit more adventurous in choosing footwear and accessories. It is a maxim of mine (and most stylists) that it is wise to use more restraint with each decade of our more mature years.(That is not a hard and fast rule, however!! It depends on the outfit, the occasion, and your personal face, figure, and personality)  Let judgement be your guide.

I love this combination of black and mustard yellow.  The shoes have very squared toes from seasons ago, but the heel is this season's favorite. I am glad I had them on hand.  Black textured tights, slightly dangling over/under silver earrings are the only accessories that will be worn except for the Chrome Hearts dagger design handbag to give the look a slight edge. (I'm also getting a lot of wear out of that handbag this year).

An updated interpretation right out of the sixties.  Using the winter white trend of the season, I have paired a white wool textured skirt with a sporty fleece vest (high tech quilted parachute material would be better, but this is what I have) layered over a Breton like stripe long sleeved t-shirt over a thin white turtleneck undershirt.  White cabled tights worn with red suede ankle boots replace the trademark white Correges boot all fashionistas of the 60's had to have. I used an off-white leather handbag with silver hardware and a silver/pearl lariat necklace as additional accessories.  I will wear this look right into spring (maybe I can find a quilted vest in the material I want for the right price). The choice of colors and texture it what brings this outfit into the 21st century.

Update 11/4/15:

This week I discovered a jacket that had the characteristics I mentioned in the original styling (the pix above).  I could remove the sleeves and make a vest, however, I liked the look (for me)
better using it as a light jacket; one more reason to create a stylebook (mental or pix) to assist in grabbing a 'rocking'  outfit from the closet.

This picture was taken last year for my personal stylebook for Fall 2014.  I am showing the picture now because it will demonstrate how you can update your style easily without needing a new wardrobe every season.  As you can see in the picture I styled this with a large "statement" necklace, sheer black tights, and Mary Jane sturdy heels. I wore it to Thanksgiving dinner.  I am re-styling it for 2015 by discarding the necklace, putting the silky long sleeved turtleneck t-shirt under it (that top is getting a lot of wear this season!), substituting the sheer black tights for textured patterned one, and wearing men style flats.  I will wear the large black pearl over/under earrings and carry a large black handbag with silver hardware. 

You will notice I frequently use the expression "it's the little things".  The little changes we make can punch up our look with little or no trouble or expense. It does not have to take much time or money to maintain your sense of style, just the will and imagination to stretch your boundaries a little.

Almost every combination on this page are likely to experience the same make-over next year.................Happy Styling,.........Geneva

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Mature Fashion: Rocking "New England Granny"

Hello Stylinistas;....This posts presents fashionable combinations created from my personal wardrobe.  Almost every article was in my closet prior to assembly.

The ensemble to your left is an example of using both a current fashion and a trend when styling an outfit.  There is a varied combination of pattern and texture that provides a modern feel in the unexpected textures on the rose and thistle print velveteen corduroy blazer.  The blazer is matched with a nubby wine and camel plaid "kick" pleated skirt and a ribbon of material with a feel of the corduroy.  Under the jacket is a classic orchid striped shirt in the same tone as the stripes in the skirt and of the jacket.  The outfit is accessorized with the season's favorite ankle boot and bucket bag in complimentary tones.  I cannot wait for cooler weather.  I am especially pleased because each of these garments have been in my closet for a while and the look feels like I just bought a new outfit! A perfect example of shopping in my own closet first to create a fresh new look!

The same example applies to this set of clothing.  The just above the knee camel and charcoal plaid skirt will be worn with the camel ankle boots, a crew neck camel cashmere sweater worn over the silky long sleeved turtleneck top.  The ensemble will be accessorized with the diagonal camel/caramel/grey cashmere scarf, the brown bucket bag and possibly worn with a camel Indianna Jones slouch hat. The only purchases made outside my closet were the textured black tights and the hat, both purchased to accessorize other outfits styled in my preferred points of view.

The same skirt as above now combined with my prized Mui Mui ankle boots and the same textured black tights (90% off original purchase price with discounts and sale!). A vintage Burberry patch elbow double zip cardigan worn over a tomato red cowell neck sweater, a camel purse and a long mixed red gold, silver, and yellow gold chain necklace in an Arabesque design complete the look.

A really old light olive and navy tweed knee length skirt and an equally old deeper olive turtle neck cashmere sweater are paired with an orange, olive, and cream checked scarf and a knee length pair of heeled boots.  The buttons up the side lengthen the leg as well as the narrow brown leather belt. The suede leather coat and Dooney Bourke bucket bag purse shown in the following picture complete the ensemble.  

The Suede leather  shearling jacket compliments the deep green bucket bag with Southwest detail and adds a trendy take on the classic preppy style exemplified by this season's Granny".

This outfit was fun to style, but when observing this picture (camera and mirror are always better than your best friend when it comes to critical analysis of what works for you.) I think I will make a change before I wear it.  

The fun is in the pattern and color choices.  The slightly wide legged trousers are in a grey based Harris plaid and the jacket is in a camel Harris plaid of the same design size.  The scarf is also in Harris plaid in a larger pattern size in Charcoal grey with a deep red stripe.  All are worn with a slate grey v-necked cable sweater worn over a silky turtleneck and a pair of wedge heeled grey suede boots and a deep need handbag.  

I have on a lovely Navajo pendent in silver and black in this picture but I think I will substitute a long rectangular Murano glass pendent in deep red, gold, and silver.  I think that is a better representation of my style and add a little more pop to the ensemble.

These are the same grey trousers teamed with a small houndstooth blazer, a black and white gingham checked shirt under a bright raspberry v necked cashmere sweater.  I have accessorized with a reversible scarf with two toned grey polka dots on one side and a grey and black plaid on the other.  I added a deeper raspberry handbag and a salt and pepper tweed backed charcoal leather gloves.  Because I have so much pattern I will wear only earrings and band style rings.
Here is a closer look at the pattern detail; I quite like it!
What can be more classic than Black Watch plaid?  I have added a little pop to this classic collection by placing the blazer over a hunter green transparent shirt with an embellished collar, and trousers with a slim leg.  I have used the same hunter green bucket bag as above and coordinated with zippered ankle heeled boots with Southwest detail on the toe.  For fun, I used hunter green leather gloves with Black Watch plaid insets.  I also used a two toned collar necklace placed just under the collar and gold over/under earrings to add  updated detail to the accessories.  I can't wait to wear it.

Well, stylinistas, I have had a lot of fun bringing a fresh new feel to several classic items in my closet that have been resting for a few seasons.  Writing this blog has been such a pleasure because I have discovered I have been a bit too limited, too complacent  in my own fashion point of view.  I would not have explored views like Lolita, Boho, and "Granny" without styling possibilities from my own wardrobe.  I love the fact that I have pushed my own boundaries. Happy Styling .........Geneva

Mature Fashion: Rocking Leather

Althoug this combination was shown in "rocking animal prints" but I am showing it her again because it is an example of subtle use of more than one current design element in the same combination.  

 This outfit is instantly on trend simply by combining existing classics with footwear that is one of this years favorite boots and touches of gold tone metal. 

I have used a leather jacket trimmed with beading, a hand made slightly flared skirt, a classic V-neck shirt with graduating ruffled trim at the neckline.  I have added a double layered marine chain link belt with a hanging fob at the waist and a simple black shoulder handbag with the Paloma insignia in gold tone.  No other jewelry except simple gold button earrings; all this on trend with the season's minimalistic approach to jewelry.
A black leather vest paired with a pair of clam digger length pants, a white blouse with narrow black double rowed stripes, the black ankle boots, and a Chrome Hearts Cross bag provide an edgy western 
flavor to this combination.  I am wearing a single string of irregular white pearls and a string of black spinel beads.  The shirt will be tucked in and worn with a simple black belt. 
 I actually wore this combination during our very cold spring season this year but I plan on wearing it this fall.  The leather pants give a slight edge to the Hawaiian print silk jacket and the polished cotton polka dot polo shirt.  I have paired this with the Cross bag, high vamp leather heels, and the string of pearls.  

If it is very cold or overcast, I will change the jacket for a classic black blazer and black leather boots.  The polished cotton polka dot over blouse  will be sufficient to keep the combination from looking dated. All of the items exist in my
current wardrobe.

Rocking red leather.  A classic nautical print silk blouse is paired with a red leather vest; the bottom half is a pair of straight legged navy pants, navy suede boots, and a red leather purse.  The only jewelry worn is the same gold button earrings.  If weather requires more coverage, it will be worn with a navy wool

pea jacket. 

This look is all about leather. I will wear the leather knee length coat with leather pants (this length coat over pants is on trend this season).  I will wear it with an oversized sweater with a cowl collar and a pendent.  The kitten heeled ankle boots and  black Chrome Hearts handbag, black leather gloves, rust and black cashmere scarf, and possibly a leather cap will complete the edgy but sophisticated look.

This combination was also worn this spring during our cold spell.  I paired the leather pants with a transparent sport overblouse, gladiator sandals and a camel shoulder bag.  For winter I will substitute the sandals for a pair of black ankle boots and add the black leather vest.  I will use the same jewelry and purse.  Once again I will be updating my look without adding to my wardrobe.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Rocking Lolita

Hello Stylinistas!

Rocking the Lolita look for me was a personal challenge because I maintain a timeless and versatile wardrobe that can support any fashion look with just a few tweaks.  I had to think a bit as to how I would accomplish this with combinations I would love to wear because this particular look is not the fashion aesthetic I usually choose. I trust that I have demonstrated the mature woman can wear this style and not look as "mutton dressed as lamb". (I am 72, therefore my selections are more conservative than I would suggest for someone in her forties, etc.  Let judgement be your guide.)

I took the Lolita challenge and here are the seven outfits I produced. (Please forgive the less than professional quality of the pictures-I am working on it-(expanding my technical horizons? I believe a poor picture is better than no picture in this case.) Each of these looks are something I will wear at least once; I will feel comfortable wearing each of them.

The ensemble in the upper left hand corner gives a touch of the "lolita" when I added the cinch belt to a classic white skirt, a printed top with small pink and red hearts as a design, white hose, cream leather heels, and a large fuzzy handbag with heart charm embellishments and white jade hoop earrings.  I will top this with a heavy cream cashmere cardigan with a Peter Pan collar.

To your left, the asymmetric neckline of the three-quarter sleeve ribbed sweater with its reverse knit pattern just under the bust adds a touch of sophisticated sex appeal to the simple sweater skirt combination.  The flirty printed heels in a cream/red  fabric and red patent add a sense of fun to the ensemble.  The watch is a black heart faced Brighton and all is worn with the black floppy fedora; all worn with the furry over sized handbag. I love it.

I really wish I had the signature heart shaped sunglasses for this combination.  I love the outfit and certainly will wear it several times.  I believe it perfectly demonstrates how a mature woman can wear above the knee skirts in current fashions while still projecting a sophisticated and elegant appearance, especially if I wear the hat above (I will, but I couldn't call attention to the sunglasses for this picture).

As you can see in the picture below, I simply combined a silky long sleeved turtleneck with the A-lined skirt.  The interest details of the skirt with its wrap-around pleated hem line I  loved when I purchased it some time ago.  Styling for Lolita gave me the opportunity to pull together my favorite look for this particular skirt.  The knife edged small pleats are right on trend.  When I wear it  I layer two heart pendents, one small marquisette on a thick silver chain and a larger Mother of Pearl heart with silver lattice work (not shown below).  I like the look better with the layering.

The structured purse is a two toned black and brown crocodile Brighton embellished with its signature heart detail.  The high vamp shoes are suede and leather giving the combination of simple skirt and sweater a youthful and modern look. I also happen to have a black banded heart shaped Brighton watch.  Love it; so far it is my favorite pick for dressing 'Lolita'.

In this next ensemble I am wearing footless leggings in a silky polyester fabric that coordinates nicely with the under dress of the black heavily embroidered silk overdress.  The sleeves are just long enough to cover 'bat wing' flabbiness of my mature upper arms. (note how seldom you will see short sleeves in my fashion collections). I accessorized with slinky black suede heels, a fuzzy turbin/cap and black/white diamond pendent and earrings.  I accompanied with the same fuzzy over sized handbag that would not be expected in this environment.  I believe the appropriate but unexpected is one of the characteristics of fresh and youthful styling at any age.

This ensemble was worn last spring.When I was styling it, I recalled some of the early Marilyn Monroe looks.  It transitions easily into Lolita

The pink polished cotton crop pants hit perfectly below the widest part of my calf and look great with the monochrome pink dollhouse patent heels.  I wore the matching gingham boy cut shirt with the sleeves rolled up.  Accessories include the white MOP heart necklace and another Brighton handbag in cream leather.  I also wore a back-up pair of flat soled patent pointed toe flats when I was not wearing heels.

I'm sure you get the message that I was unaware I was already wearing some version of Lolita even when I said I did not personally care for it.  It was not a favorite, but I will get the wear out of it.

I also wore this re-imagined Lolita style  a few times this spring and summer.  I made both the pink and red cherry design trousers and blouse to match the Kate Spade handbag re gifted to me by a long time friend who did not like the cherries.

I wore the raspberry patent shoes as an accessory because I believed red was just too boring and I wanted a fresh look.  I am going to add the signature white MOP necklace when I  wear it this fall with a black cashmere cardigan.  

I am showing a combination I wore last spring when it was still cold enough to wear a sweater.  I wore gladiators because it was spring and it was the "it" shoe.  I love the combination of this pink knit/crochet  turtleneck cashmere sweater with the dangling mini pom-poms.  Well, pink is certainly a fresh color for winter this year and will look wonderful with the floral jeans.  I will replace gladiators with some black crocodile patent loafers I already have in the closet and exchange the statement necklace in the photo for the signature MOP pendant with chain.  I will top it with the black knit asymmetric stripe front cardigan shown in the boho post.

Here are a week's worth of examples in the Lolita fashion vein for Fall 2016.  The post for next week will be the Bedford Avenue Granny.  I hope all you Lolita style types will share with me some of the combinations you feel "Rock".  Check out "" for more styling topics...Happy styling!.........Geneva