Author Topic: i need help dressing myself. Seriously. **UPDATE**  (Read 3570 times)

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joraemi

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i need help dressing myself. Seriously. **UPDATE**
« on: September 15, 2010, 11:23:55 AM »
I am, 98% of the time, a fashion calamity.

I am 40 years old and I do not know how to dress for my age.  So - I have resorted to knit pants and t-shirts.  I spend most of my time at home in the house doing house stuff - laundry, cleaning, cooking - so trousers and blazers, little cute jackets, etc, are just not practical for me.

How can I dress for what I do most of the time, be comfortable, yet not look shlumpy when I leave the house? in  a perfect word I think most of my clothes would come from coldwater creek, llbean, lands end, etc.  But I can't see wearing a $60 pair of pants to clean toilets in, you know?  And I don't want to have to change my clothes every time I leave the house because that would be several times a day.

Any suggestions or tips?  Please just make grown up garanimals for me.....
« Last Edit: October 23, 2010, 09:04:45 AM by joraemi »




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Oxymoroness

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2010, 11:29:16 AM »
I am, 98% of the time, a fashion calamity.

I am 40 years old and I do not know how to dress for my age.  So - I have resorted to knit pants and t-shirts.  I spend most of my time at home in the house doing house stuff - laundry, cleaning, cooking - so trousers and blazers, little cute jackets, etc, are just not practical for me.

How can I dress for what I do most of the time, be comfortable, yet not look shlumpy when I leave the house? in  a perfect word I think most of my clothes would come from coldwater creek, llbean, lands end, etc.  But I can't see wearing a $60 pair of pants to clean toilets in, you know?  And I don't want to have to change my clothes every time I leave the house because that would be several times a day.

Any suggestions or tips?  Please just make grown up garanimals for me.....

I'm not exactly a fashionista myself. In fact, I hate shopping and hate spending money on clothes. Worse, I work in an office so I have to have a half-way decent wardrobe.

I go for never-fail classic. Blouses I'm comfortable in that are non-tshirts that are usually solid or low-key patterns in brighter colors. Those I pair with black slacks. (Yes, I have 4 pairs of black slacks.)

The beautiful part is that all I have to do to switch to casual is take off some jewelry and put on jeans.

Almost all of my wardrobe has been purchased in nicer stores, but on clearance, so it doesn't sting so much.

Past office casual? I'm useless. Which stinks because in my job now I occasionally have to attend nicer events ... yea ... not so easy for me to dress for.  :P

Ambrosia Hino

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2010, 11:47:00 AM »
Right now, most of my wardrobe is maternity wear, but I'm going to try generalizing this some too (I'm a bit younger, and normally dress mostly out of American Eagle's clearance section)

My pants vary between several pairs of jeans, khakis, and black pants, as well as similar in capris (its hot here). Most of my shirts are normally nicer tees, paired with a coordinating colored cami underneath.  Most of the time I can go from looking "frumpy" to "put together" just by rebrushing my hair and putting on a touch of makeup. It may be 'soccer-mom' put together, but it works well.

These outfits usually work well for me at the office (not the jeans, but the rest), at home, dinners out, etc. They are pretty no-fail. All you need is a bit of jewelry or a cute jacket to dress it up when needed.

GwenB

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2010, 11:57:07 AM »
If you are looking for something that it comfy around the house for cleaning, etc., but then not shlubby for running errands, I think you are on the right track with knit pants and t-shirts.  I’m a big fan of nice workout pants and brightly colored t-shirts.  Think black, grey or navy blue pants and cute shirts.  Stay away from anything too “sporty” or with logos and I think you will avoid the “I just came from the gym” look.  I think the key is the pants – they can’t be too “sweatpant” looking - if you are comfortable in them go for nice yoga pants, but nicely cut sweatpants are great, too.  I like solid colored shirts with v-necks or scoop necks as opposed to a basic t-shirt neck, they somehow look more polished.  Switch the pants out for jeans and put on jewelry and you are a step up from running errands.

I’m thinking of something like these pants in a grey or black:
http://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=53935&vid=1&pid=676488&scid=676488202
With a top like this:
http://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=55405&vid=1&pid=686593&scid=686593132

Carnation

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2010, 12:54:40 PM »
Wear jeans and throw on a nice jacket or sweater when you leave the house.

Everybody wears jeans.

Don't they? ::)

Winterlight

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2010, 01:04:18 PM »
I'd go with basics- first, decide what you like. Is it scoop neck tees or a buttondown shirt, capris or bootcut jeans? What colors do you go for?

Then, figure out how many things you need to get you through the week with a couple of extras.

Look at accessories. Are you an earring person, do you love scarves, is a bracelet your favorite piece or are you a cute shoe fanatic? Adding something to your basics will spark them up.

In my case, I look best in scoopneck and V knit tops, sweaters and bootcut jeans. I love all shades of purple, emerald green and grays. I only wear silver jewelry. I occasionally wear a scarf, but mostly those are winter things.

If I were a SAHM, my fall/winter wardrobe would consist of:

  • Several pairs of bootcut jeans in dark wash and charcoal gray.
    3/4 or long sleeved tops in my colors- say, 8-10 of them so I have extras if I need to change
    A few nice sweaters for layering- Vs and turtlenecks.
    A good warm winter coat/raincoat.
    A few pairs of silver earrings I love.
    My collection of hairsticks.
    A man's fedora  
    A slim belt.
    Maybe a couple of bracelets.
    A few nice scarves to go with my winter coat.
    A charcoal gray bag.
    A couple pairs of comfortable shoes in gray and a nice pair of boots.

Start the day in a lavendar tee and jeans, add a charcoal V-neck sweater, earrings, scarf and boots and you're set to go out on a breezy fall day. If it's colder, add your coat. Since you're working from a limited color palatte, you don't have to worry about matching if they tone together.

I think this is the longest thing I've ever written on EHell. Hope it helps! :-*

ETA that I'm going to use this list to plan my wardrobe. Thanks for making me write it! ;D
« Last Edit: September 15, 2010, 01:13:38 PM by Winterlight »
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MommyPenguin

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2010, 02:23:52 PM »
I vote for jeans, too.  Not expensive ones, but ones with a nice fit (not schlumpy).  They're casual, good for working around the house, but can also make you look nice and trim.  You can easily pair them with a t-shirt or a sweater.  Go for inexpensive clothes but that fit you well.  That way it's not a huge deal if they get messed up over time, but you look good while you're wearing them.  A good fit is everything.

AdakAK

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2010, 02:28:43 PM »
I agree with PP.  If you have no objection to thrift stores, see if you can get a few outfits to try for a bit.  That can let you decide what to look for but not be too $$ to donate back if it doesn't work out. 

GwenB

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2010, 02:55:09 PM »
Forgot to add - you mentioned liking Land's End but not wanting to spend lots.  Land's End tends to have awesome clearances - check out your local Sears, they carry some Land's End stuff in stores and have good deals on clearance stuff.  And on their website they have great deals in the Overstocks section. 

Hmmmmm

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2010, 02:58:01 PM »
I think part of the dressing depends on where you live.  Nov-mid Mar I usually wear jeans and a knit shirt around the house and then throw on a light weight cardigan or khaki jacket when leaving the house.  I also have a pair of cropped yoga pants and matching jacket that I like to wear when I know I'm my outside erands will total going to the grocery store, dropping of kids, or picking up dry cleaning. Or I'd wear a shirt like this with either your knit pants or jeans.  http://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=5382&vid=1&pid=772282&scid=772282012

The rest of the year, I'm pretty partial to capri pants or walking length shorts with knit shirts.  I have a collection of cute sandals that can easily be slipped can add a little more style when needed.  But I'm also a huge fan of sundresses and shirt dresses.  To me they are super comfortable.  I'll wear something like this around a lot during the summer.http://oldnavy.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=15292&vid=0&pid=772352&scid=772352042

I also make sure that I do hair and makeup each morning and at least have a pair of earings on. 

I'm a big fan of buying clothes at end of season when discounted, especially if they are my "play/at home" clothes.

Aggiesque

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2010, 06:04:18 PM »
LOL! I'm like you... I wear cleaning appropriate clothes in the house, change around 10am to run errands, then change back when I'm done going out for the day >.<
Aggie

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RegionMom

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2010, 06:27:45 PM »
When DD turned 13, we took her and some friends to a "fancy" dining place downtown.  None of them were told to dress up when they came the night before for a sleepover.  Most had jean shorts and t-shirts. 
How did we dress them up?
Scarves!!
A ginormous one was wrapped completely around one girl, making it almost a shirt of its own.  Another tied it like a fabric necklace.  Another just tied one in her hair, and another scarf as a belt. 
Even DH was impressed with the "dressed upness" of the girls when he met up at the restaurant. 

For the two that had printed college team t-shirts, they borrowed plain tops from me or DD.  Solid colors. 

I wear scarves a lot.  I have one dress that is what I call "my t-shirt dress."  It is a solid one color.  I have had it over 10 years.  It is comfortable.  Why do I still keep getting compliments when I wear it?  Aside from a flattering wide neckline, I toss on a different scarf almost every time I wear it.  I can take it on a trip and wear it two times in a row completely differently.  On time will be with a shawl/scarf completey over my shoulders, and the next time will be with a scarf belf and a funky necklace. 

I am 39. 

Scarves also hide stains from food spills.  :)

Happy dressing!

oh--
don't forget jewely!  A high pony tail with earrings can look nice.  A little bit of sparkle makes you NOT look like you have been doing housework!  (I keep a pair of studs in the coffee cup holder in the van.)
Fear is temporary...Regret is forever.

jpcher

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #12 on: September 15, 2010, 06:52:16 PM »
I'm really comfy in my cheapo sweats at home. I wear the nicer v-neck or scoop-necked T's with sweats/knits at home (unless I'm grungy-cleaning, then I wear my ratty old T's.) If I have to run out, its a quick change to a pair of jeans.

When I get home from work (I work in a casual place, so my shirts aren't all that fancy) I just switch out my pants or jeans with a pair of coordinated sweats/knit pants. That way, if anybody just stops by, I'm not too "lazy-at-home" looking.

On the weekends, I just make sure that my hair is clean and casual make-up done. Again, a quick change to a pair of jeans if I have to run errands.

Ms_Shell

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2010, 07:06:41 PM »
Any suggestions or tips?  Please just make grown up garanimals for me.....

LOL! They are freekin' adorable, aren't they?

My suggestion is to buy a few button-down, three-quarter-length-sleeve shirts, maybe in a stretchy material.  I've never seen anyone who doesn't look good in that style, and they are comfy enough to wear arouund the house (at least in my opinion.)  The other upside is you can always just add a blazer, pin, or scarf to dress it up if you need to quickly leave the house.

"I've never been a millionaire, but I just know I'd be darling at it." - Dorothy Parker

joraemi

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Re: i need help dressing myself. Seriously.
« Reply #14 on: September 16, 2010, 06:44:11 PM »
I'm taking notes furiously as I read your posts.  I will definitely try some of these suggestions and see if it helps me get it together!!

THANK YOU!




Courage is the price life  exacts for granting peace.  ~Amelia Earhart~