Changing Your Clothes

Shopping, Sewing, Upcycling, Repairing: Make the most of your clothes!


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Dress Up! Flattering Options for Every Shape

Just in time for warmer weather (ahem… are you listening, Portland?), I give you this wonderful slideshow from Refinery29, featuring summery frocks to rock every figure!

Aside: I have to admit that I’m uncertain which category I fall into; am I a Carrot, an Hourglass, or a Botticelli Babe? (And is it wrong of me to prefer the latter, just because I like the sound of it?) Is a Botticelli Babe a cross between a Carrot and an Hourglass? But seriously… I often find it difficult to put myself definitively into one specific category, but maybe that’s because I don’t like being easily defined. Is it just me? End of aside.

Here’s one of my favorite looks, even though it’s not for my body type (or is it?):

Dress for a Carrot

A summer dress for a Carrot. I might just wear this regardless of my body type; it would be flattering on many figures. (Image courtesy of Refinery29. Click on the picture to see the whole slideshow.)

I’m personally most intrigued by the tips for using strategic placement of prints and color-blocking (you know that’s my favorite) to instantly change how you perceive your proportions; looking great in your clothes is, after all, much more about proportion than about size. Really.

Reminder: As of this week, I’ve decided to alternate my Makeover Monday and Thrift-Shop Thursday posts on a weekly basis. This week was Makeover Monday week, so next week, you’ll find a Thrift-Shop Thursday post on (you guessed it) Thursday. Don’t miss it!

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First Impressions: Great Interview Outfit Ideas

I was growing up in the era of the Power Suit, which for working women usually meant a navy-blue suit, white button-down blouse with a red ribbon tied in a bow at the neck, pantyhose, and a briefcase to carry the heels you’d change into from your blindingly white sneakers. Except for the sneakers— maybe— doesn’t this sound like an old-school flight attendant’s uniform? Now that I think about it, the general concept was that of a uniform: if a woman dressed like every other woman, the conventional “wisdom” went, it was less likely that her sexuality would be a factor in her job performance. Or getting a job in the first place, for that matter.

Today, it’s my theory that the reason why that Power Suit look has completely metamorphosed is because what was missing back then —individual style— is now not only accepted, but encouraged in many modern work settings. So without that old uniform to fall back on, how do we put together a polished interview look that actually augments that great first impression?

Interview outfits

Interview outfits: this is one of several based on the suiting dress. (Click the picture to go directly to the slideshow.)

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Dressing for Dinner (and dates, and parties, and…)

At this time of the year, I feel like I’m being inundated with so many articles/blog posts/advertisements that pop up to tell me how I should dress for office parties/dinner with in-laws/New Year’s Eve parties. I also can’t help wondering how many people actually DO any (let alone all) of these things— it’s as if I’m being not-so-gently lectured: I should be going to more parties! And have the perfect outfit for every one of them! And this is where I start to feel not just socially inadequate, but also a distinctly “Bah, humbug” attitude coming on.

Well, help arrived this morning right into my e-mail box! This slideshow from Refinery29 is a holiday-wardrobe masterpiece, showcasing 30 dresses, each with a suggested wear-to scenario. I was just flipping through it and, instead of getting depressed, I couldn’t help fantasizing about living the kind of life that would require fabulous dresses for even half of these events! (Hey, it could happen— I have officially designated 2013 as My Year of Dreaming BIG!)

Here’s one of my favorites (both the dress and the party idea):

Dress for Gatsby-themed party

Dress for Gatsby-themed dance party, from J. Crew. (Click on the photo to go directly to this slide in Refinery29’s slideshow. Each slide includes the maker, price, and a link to the maker’s site.)

As you’ll see in the slideshow, a wide range of styles and prices is represented, so you’re sure to find something that inspires you! Do you have plans to attend any/some/all of these events over the holidays? Which one would you be the most likely to wear??


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Just Plane Chic: Travel in Style!

By the time I was traveling a fair amount as an adult, the days when even flight attendants wore stockings and heels were long past. Now, it’s not uncommon to see people shuffling around airport terminals in what looks like pajamas accessorized oh-so-charmingly with flip-flops and uncombed hair. (I do assume at least some of these people just got off a 16-hour transatlantic flight, and I make allowances accordingly, lest you think I judge too harshly.)

The constant refrain I hear is, “But I want to be comfortable!” (Well, obviously— so do I!) Considering all the griping I also hear about all the reasons air travel is less than pleasant these days, I’d like to offer this hypothesis: We’d all enjoy ourselves a little bit more if we (a) knew we looked amazing (read: effortlessly comfortable), and (b) had other stylish travelers around us to improve our view en route.

Travel in Style, from Refinery29

Travel in Style, from Refinery29. (Click the picture to go directly to the slideshow.)

To get us started on the surprisingly brief journey to travel chic, take a look at this slideshow, courtesy of Refinery29: How to Travel in Style, sans Sweats! From suitcases to socks, this guide is loaded with fun and practical ideas that will hopefully inspire us all to up our style ante the next time we head to the airport!


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Fashion Catchphrases: A Video Vocabulary Lesson

Is your fashion vocabulary a little out of date? Confused by terms like “manthropology” and “fashion shower”? Brush up on the current jargon with this hilarious video, courtesy of Refinery29!

Fashion Catchphrases video from Refinery29

Fashion Catchphrases from Refinery29. (This is a screenshot from the video; click the picture to go directly to the video.)