Six Of My Style Mistakes, And What I Learned

Six of my style mistakes through the years, and what I learned. Nobody’s perfect, or even close. And we learn more from our mistakes than from our successes. Over the nine years I’ve been a blogger I have made my share of style mistakes, and more incredibly – I posted them for the world to see. There’s nothing too frightening, just outfits that didn’t express my authentic self, and were, let’s say it – failed experiments. No shame.

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know I am not about style prescriptions or, gods forbid, “style rules.” I believe strongly in the “wear what you love” philosophy. To love an outfit, I have to believe that I look real, happy, comfortable, and genuine.

Let’s have a look at some of the not-great looks that made it to the public arena, and see what went wrong. There are also great and terrible hair days interspersed in the archives. When it comes to my hair, I have to submit. Here we go:

Pretty colors, love the skirt, a thrifted Ralph Lauren (sim). Buttoning the thin cardigan over the flowy top makes a scrunched, bulky silhouette. Lesson: layer thoughtfully, with the most fitted pieces next to the skin. The Steve Madden sandals must have been the real me, because I nearly wore a hole in the soles.
I love a long skirt and flowy top. This skirt and top are both a bit too long to get the look I was going for. And the drooping, flowy scarf screams “I am long and loose.” It would have been better if the skirt had been midi length, with a smaller scarf knotted at the neck. The blue suede sandals are perfection, and a good hair day.
Ranger Patti, reporting for duty. The denim shirt as a vest had possibilities, but the straps and leather are too military for my style. And the amount of skin between the hem of the skirt and top of my boots is awkward. I’d lengthen the skirt four inches and lose the canvas purse strap. More good hair . . . hmmmm, why did that happen more often in the past than in the present?
Oh my. Too short! What was I thinking? And the man-eating scarf does the look no justice. Great pedicure, though, and sweet ankle-strap sandals.
Good pieces, combined badly. I love the vintage lace shirt but the funky conch shell belt does not sing harmony. And dressy sneakers would’ve been much more in sync with how I felt than the floral velvet booties. The lace shirt is fabulous when tucked into dark jeans.
Ahhh, where to start? The dress is more than over-sized; it’s a tent. The color isn’t my best and the little yellow belt looks forlorn. I should’ve made a blouse out of this dress and tucked it into a slim skirt. Great beaded necklace and yet more wedge sandals – I still have a thing for them.

I want to encourage you to keep experimenting with your looks, especially now that many of us have ample at-home time 😊. There are no fatal style mistakes, just learning opportunities.

Have you had one or two style mistakes over the years (hey, it’s not like we wore a meat dress)? Stay fabulous and safe, wash and wash and wash, xo

While sheltering at home, browse these simple pleasures:

Header image via source.

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  1. Hi Patti, Just happened to bump into you from another blogger. I love your attitude. I’m a retired teacher having taught all areas of design, clothing, textiles, and Interior Design. I am now a professional stylist for a large boutique in the states. I don’t know how you do this in such a fun manner with a job as well. I come home and chill!!!

    Thank you for also trying to help ladies look their personal best.

    • Thank you Ellibelle for all your kind remarks! And I hope your week ahead is happy and healthy. xo

    • Hi Anne – love that word “bloopers.” And your corset was tres cool. Stay well, xo.

  2. I don’t see any of these as “mistakes”, more as experiments, some more successful than others. How will you know what outfit possibilities exist in your closet if you don’t try mixing things together?

    • You’re right of course – we don’t know until we try. I hope you’re feeling well and cozy in London, and also enjoying some down time! xo

  3. What stories photos tell us. None of the outfits are too bad, but I understand about not being “you.” Usually, my “what was I thinking” moments contain overdone accessories!

    • Good morning Kim, nice to see you! Yes, you’re right, it’s about feeling genuine, not “right” or “wrong.” Stay safe, xo.

  4. As the others say, these “mistakes” are minor and, in some cases, almost invisible. Your style is at a level where you’re tinkering with perfection; the rest of us are much farther down the scale. Stay safe.

    • So good to see you, Ally! I hope you’re staying well and experimenting with style. Big safe hugs to you, xo.

  5. I love that you were always trying to switch things up. And that you have still had fun with these in this post. Great positive energy always.

  6. Oh, this was a fun flashback, thank you, Patti! I always enjoy a dig into my archives for these “what was I thinking?” moments. None of these are THAT bad – and you look gorgeously YOU in all of them. I think your hair always looks great!

    • awww, thanks, Sheila. Those “what was I thinking?” moments are where we learn, yeah? Stay safe and beautiful, xo.

  7. Hi, Patti,
    Hilarious post! I made it a game to predict how I would have changed the ensemble – and then compare it with your assessment. We were very close!
    As a frugal fashion-lover I have started to look askance at my vast wardrobe which gathers dust during the quarantine. I LOVE fashion, but sadly, I’m a Zara wannabe with a middle-age spread and a license to prove it. I’m a wee bit addicted to shopping (even though I’m a bargain hunter) and buy too much of the same thing. Because I brought out my sewing machine to make masks for friends and family, I am now vowing to end the shopping madness and re-purpose unused or under-utilized garments. It took a pandemic to knock some sense into me; let’s hope I stick to it!

    • Hi Mollie and thanks for coming over! My closet is getting dusty too – only gym shorts and tee shirts are getting a workout. : > Yes, do some sewing, a creative way to get new clothes. Stay safe and well, xo.

  8. Patti! Great post!
    I would love to see a follow up post on you Refashioning these outfits….put the photos side by side!
    ps i actually Love the teal shirt dress–that outfit is super cute–regardless of how oversized it is–those sack dresses are having a moment right now…
    also, i would be honored if you could please check out my first Upcycle refashion on my blog…i’ve been following you for a long time now…it’s ladies like you (and i will make that list) who have inspired me to be me….
    I Upcycled a Pouf Sleeved Blouse from a way too long, sleeveless Missoni-style dress..

    • Hello Eva and thanks for coming by! Your Missoni puff-sleeved blouse is gorgeous – well done! I am far too lazy now in quarantine to make “after” pics of my “bad” outfits (I don’t style my hair or wear makeup these days : > ). But thanks, it’s a good idea i will file for future posts. Stay well, xo.

    • Thank you Joan, for coming over and sharing kind words! Hafe a safe and peaceful day, xo.

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