Clothes That Make You Smile


One of my informal fashion goals for 2014 is to wear only pieces that make me feel great. No “you’ll do” or “good enough” clothes. If that means I repeat my outfits a lot, that’s fine with me. I’ve discovered nobody at work remembers what each other wears (except we all notice my boss wears suspenders every day – but that’s his signature! and he looks cool).

I’ll sometimes change clothes on my way out the door, because what I’m wearing doesn’t make me happy enough. Or I’ll just change shoes, or take off a piece of jewelry, then I am happy. I am fortunate that my whole life now, work and play, is open to whatever style suits me. I do empathize with those who have workplace “uniforms” that you may or may not love. I wore the suit, floppy bow tie, nude hose and pumps for enough years to come to loathe it.

Here’s what makes me happy, style-wise:

  • Well fitted jeans, mostly slim, some rolled at the hem, or
  • Knit maxi skirts.
I live in skirts like this one from Nordie‘s.
GAP makes great ones too.
  • Slightly slouchy knit tops with open necklines.
Like this one, also from Nordie‘s but available everywhere.
  • A topper of some kind if the weather calls for it.
  • Booties, boots or flats with personality = big smile. I never wear heels anymore!
These Dr. Martens 1460’s are on my list. Via Zappos.
  • Drop earrings, often made by friends or purchased via Etsy.
  • Funky bracelets.
Like this vintage 1930’s beauty offered at Bella’s shop.
  • And recently, I’ve been wearing a scarf in my hair, or a small hairpiece, to help disguise my thinning bio hair. It gives my ego a boost, until (I hope!) my hair strengthens up.
No more bad hair days  : >  Source.

It took decades, but I finally know what I love to wear. One of the perks of being my age is — I wear what I love to wear every day. And then I go about enjoying the rest of my life. It sounds deceptively simple; why did it take me so long to figure it out??

Are you a faster learner? Do you love what you wear most of the time, and does it put a smile on your face?

Have a  lovely Monday, wear what makes you happy,

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  1. Patti, I came to this realization very recently. I lost enough weight that I had to replace much of my wardrobe. I decided enough with the too-big clothes, and every time I put something on, and it didn't fit, I put it immediately in the "donate" bag. Then I started doing this with things that still fit, but that weren't very flattering, or that I just didn't love. Now I have a wardrobe I LOVE! Wish I'd started doing this years ago πŸ™‚

  2. You are so wise. It took me years to figure this out–wearing the wrong clothes means you can never be truly comfortable that day. Wearing clothes you love brings joy, and we need to start with that baseline every day. So, have courage! Don't just wear what you love, but banish what you don't. That sweater that scratches your neck? Donate it. The skirt that makes you feel frumpy? Out of your life. Don't even look at your disappointments–make room for more lovely and curate joy into your wardrobe.

  3. I really like your personal style. It works beautifully with your build.

    I too love the feel of loose tops with scoop necks (in fact looking at the photo you posted made me sigh with happy comfort), but I only wear them inside because with my build and my mannerisms, they make me look pregnant/like a vagrant.

    Yes, yes, YES to boots and no to heels. Up the revolution!

  4. It is essential that we like what we wear or we don't shine in the world the way we should. The best part of losing the recent 50 lbs is remaking my closet with things that make me feel the most like myself…And not being aftaid to say that doesn't work and purge immediately.

  5. Oh Patti, these all make me smile. I can so relate to every word you just said. I think knowing what we enjoy wearing must be part of the 50's club. And, it does make our days so much more enjoyable. Just this past week I've been purging my closets and when I think "do I enjoy wearing this item?" it was the best tool to getting rid a lots and lots of items that I honestly just didn't enjoy wearing. Thank you for the extra little incentive. By the way, did I miss it? I'm really curious as to which dress you decided to go with for the wedding event.

  6. Yeah, I need to work on this a little more. I've mostly got it, but I do tend to try new things that don't work out.

    And I've got my eye on some Doc's too. Why are we waiting?

  7. I love many of the same things!! Bracelets, soft maxis, open neck soft shirts etc. I will occasionally wear heels, primarily because where I live and the events I attend call for them. However, if it's cool enough I'll always wear boots!! Sometimes I'll try something outside my usual comfort zone and on a very rare occasion I'll love it. I second-guess myself much less frequently now, especially since I've returned to making my clothes. Then it's easy not to give a damn what anyone else thinks. I love the idea of more head scarves, too. I always experiment but then end up in a hat. Looking forward to how you style yours.

  8. This is great knowledge, that I took advantage of when I got into my thirties. I never wear anything that is uncomfortable or doesn't put a smile on my face. Comfortable clothing makes me want to dance and sing through my day. Thanks for the post and the shopping ideas.

  9. Awesome post Patti!! I'm too old to care what the OMGFASHUN crowd tells me I must wear. I'm gonna wear what I like!!!

  10. I agree. Long skirts and dresses are great. The pirate scarf is funny. Good idea. Have a good time. Sunny

  11. More than the articles of clothing, its COLOR! Thats what makes happy clothes for me! Xoxo

  12. Great idea, and for our visibility challenged generations, it is absolutely practical as well. What are we saving it all for? I'm on the "love it or leave it" bandwagon, too.

  13. My Doc Martens totally make me smile! I also make wearing clothes that I love a priority–and it makes getting dressed fun!

  14. This has been my goal for the last ten years, Patti! I don't leave the house unless I can look in the mirror and SMILE!

  15. Great post! I also now pick clothes for how they make me feel … being able to fine tune personal style, certainly is another gift of aging!

  16. I definitely got sidetracked by "shoulds" (when it comes to style) for the last couple of years. There are a lot of neglected pencil skirts in my wardrobe. But I'm over that now, I think.

  17. Always always wear clothing that takes you to a happy place, yes! For me, what makes me happy changes over time, but colour, fit and how said piece fits into my life all have an impact on how I feel in it. Accessories are even better as you don't have to worry about whether you've gained a few pounds. They're pure joy!

  18. Wow, you'd think that teacher would have graded you on your argument instead of whether or not he agreed with your premise. Sad! I'd have given you an "A". πŸ™‚

  19. I completely agree with wearing what you love and what makes you feel great. Why would anyone wear anything that they don't actually like? That would be very odd! I'm slowly weeding out the "it'll do" items too. Your choices are simple and beautiful and effortless and perfect for you, Patti! xxx

  20. I'm with you Patti. Wearing what I love is one of life's pleasures, which of course includes headwraps!

  21. I think I would live in jersey knits, both top and bottom, though I don't quite have enough in my wardrobe to abandon other things yet. I adore tunics and leggings or a knit skirt. This doesn't translate quite so well into summer months but if I could get a supply of little jersey sundresses I would be happy. Too bad I am terrible at sewing.

  22. I think one reason I do wear so much color is because it does make me happy. I love a bright color or a quirky print. And lately, I've been getting into graphic tees that make me happy!

  23. These pieces are all so you. And we've got to do what it takes to shine. I wore something the other day and I felt so good in it I almost laughed. Do I need some kind of professional help? (okay, rhetorical question, PLEASE don't answer)

  24. Knit maxi skirts and head scarves. I soooo agree. When I was in high school I wrote some sort of essay where I discussed a happy dress. My English teacher (a male) and I had a long discussion about whether clothes can or cannot be "happy" or "sad". I said they can impart emotion. He said No. I had to rewrite the essay. It was a sad day for my dress.

  25. I agree with you completely. Life is just too short not to enjoy every day. Wearing clothes you really like can be part of the joy of each day!

    blue hue wonderland

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