Archive for the ‘Features’ Category

Quote of the Week:

And this week’s quote comes from so very many of you, our beautiful customers. How many times have I heard those words spoken just in the past couple of weeks? Too many to count and I count myself right in there with the rest of you. I too love fall clothes.

There are a few mumblers and grumblers out there. You know…. about not wanting to “go there yet!” Well, they don’t have to go anywhere yet as the fall clothes are in the store and summer is still “out there.” So, rest easy, and take it at your own pace.

But, seriously, dear friends?

I can’t believe anyone wouldn’t look forward to the fun that is fall fashion. And, believe it or not, we are selling sweaters and down coats and fall dresses in the midst of summer’s heat. The one certainty in the Pacific Northwest is that fall will definitely make its appearance, as opposed to spring which can be fickle.

Two words: Sweater Weather! Is there anything better than a size-too-big cable knit sweater over your favorite jeans when it’s 50 degrees out? I think not!

From the blessing of boots to silky scarves, from the wale of corduroy to the warp of wool, the clothes I get to wear from mid-September through the end of November include my most loved pieces. Long live the boots + jeans + sweater ensemble and all of its wonderful variations. Have you noticed in fashion layouts that the sweater vest is making a revival? Pair it over a collared blouse or mock turtleneck and voila! Then there’s my favorite word: Over-sized! Everything from a jean jacket to a tunic top to a dress from Europe is now “fashionably” over-sized. What a relief. Comfort and fashion in one garment.

As for me, my heart races each time I enter the front doors of our store and see styles, colors, textures, patterns and layers just waiting my attention. The biggest question is “will I take home a paycheck this month?”

Let’s see…. I’ve already bought one Masai orange down coat and one Masai winter white sweater and one FDJ patterned turtleneck to go under my new rich brown Necessities hoody. Oops! Almost forgot the Renuar heathery, wheat colored soft turtleneck sweater dress. Maybe I should be asking Jenny for more work days in which to wear all my new belongings.

Then again, I’ll just take Shelly’s advice and dress for coffee at the Café Louvre. By all means, don’t forget to accessorize your new outfit with a pumpkin spice latté. In your weekend wanderings find a great location where you and your favorite outfit will photograph amazingly against a colorful fall backdrop.

As I began with a quote. . . so shall I end.

“As long as autumn lasts, I shall not have hands, canvas and colors enough to paint the beautiful things I see”. ~ Vincent Van Gogh

Julie’s humble offering:

As long as autumn lasts, I shall not have days enough to wear all the multitude of textured, colorful layers that I can think to combine.

Alas! Big Sigh!

Please come by and discover all the store has to offer in new selections for the fast approaching autumn season.

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Quote of the Week:

Alice is right and I feel vindicated when, in a previous post of mine, I mentioned that a day for me goes better (even when feeling not so great) if I make the effort to wear something pretty and “accessorize” it with a little make-up.

Just recently I bumped into somewhat of a scientific study that validates my observation and even has a name to go along with the study.

Have you ever heard of Enclothed Cognition?

It’s no secret that our clothing is an artistic mode of expression. A way of conveying to others a sense of ourselves. That’s why there are designated “fashion personas” and most of us embrace at least one or two of them in the way we select and wear clothes. What we wear can be an implicit non-verbal way to express our unique personalities to others.

Turns out that science now suggests that the clothes we wear affects our own behavior, attitudes, personality, mood, confidence, and even the way we interact with others. This is “Enclothed Cognition“.

Fascinating stuff!!

Let’s put it to the test, shall we?

What are you wearing right now? How does it make you feel? Does what you wear affect your behavior? If I go there with this new “science” then I can say “yes to the dress” which I wore last week in the store. It was a bit out of my comfort zone to even wear a dress but it elevated my sense of self and gave me confidence. Didn’t hurt that it sent several compliments my way. So, of course, I’ve already bought my first dress for the upcoming Fall season and can’t wait to wear it with tights and boots.

Then there is this:

Joules Harbour long sleeve jersey top in cream, navy, red and blue. Famed for the fit and the fabric, wear it anywhere . Boat neck, long sleeves, relaxed fit, breathable, 100% cotton, machine wash and tumble dry low.

Can you see yourself in this essential, easy fit top sitting on an Edmonds beach eagerly awaiting tonight’s sunset? Add a navy turtleneck for that extra coziness.

What would you be feeling?

Are you in a good mood?

Here’s hoping the answer is YES ’cause the Joules stripe is just waiting for you now at Sound Styles and it is eager to witness a fabulous sunset.

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FYI: Who out there knows of Alice Temperley (the author of this week’s quote.)?

Nor did I.

So….. I did the research and it turns out that she is a well-respected English fashion designer who lives and designs and creates in her home called “Cricket Court” in Somerset England. I’m already a puddle!! The “banner” that surrounds her quote is really a hand-embroidered scarf which she designed. Gives you a slight sense of the romance of her collection Would that I had a home called Cricket Court in Somerset England. Where’s a good Englishman when you need him?

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Quote of the Week:

“Sweaters need to be imagined, dreamed over.” ~ Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (well-known writer and knitter extraordinaire)

So… picture this

Sleeping Lady, Leavenworth.

Waiting beneath the chadeliered terrace, she slips on her favorite long sweater and offers her hand. Madeleine Peyroux sings quietly in the background while an October rain softly pelts the roof of their cabin.

“Dance with me?” She asks with a smile he knows all too well.

Earlier in the day, on the ride up, she confessed that modern, hectic life was catching up and she was tired of texts, emails, phone “jingles” and must see photos on social media pulling her down and demanding her time. Turns out, he had just the prescription – a week-end of ‘Austrian’ charm and at least 48 stems of edelweiss awaiting their arrival.

Who doesn’t love the comfy charm of a sweater dress?

Sweater dresses are cute, comfortable, can be dressed up or down, and they keep you warm and cozy. What’s not to love about these closet staples?

Another great thing about sweater dresses is that you can easily use them for layering your clothes. You are free to wear shirts underneath, fur vests atop, or choose bombers or leather jackets or long coats to layer with them.

We have a new one in from Tribal. Rich tobacco color in a ribbed soft t-neck style. Just long enough to cover the knees and be great with boots or tennis shoes. Picture yourself in the photo above on a beautiful Edmonds Fall day in a soft, feminine sweater dress.

Perhaps on the way to Leavenworth for October Fest? Or just for a pumpkin latté at your favorite coffee shop.

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Quote of the Week:

Okay. . . so  maybe it took til almost three o’clock this afternoon, but this day’s sky did become quite a glorious one with the colors of yellow and orange enhancing the beauty of its milky blue.  I think Van Gogh meant that blue becomes its most vibrant when it is enhanced by its complements (opposites on the color wheel) yellow and orange. That seems to be especially true at sunrise and sunset. 

The “fashion” colors of this year are turning toward a palette fit for a painter.

From lemon yellow to tangerine orange to bubblegum pink, these deliciously bright pops of color bring a feeling of joy and happiness. And that was purposely planned by fashion designers, as they wanted to exude a sense of optimism and positive spirit into their 2021 seasonal runways. 

I love color so choosing a favorite is impossible but orange is right up there in my color wheel of favorites. For goodness sake…. I have an orange sofa in my living room. Not at all what I was thinking when I walked into the showroom of the furniture store… “I want an orange sofa” was not on my agenda. But, there it was right in front of me and I was stopped in my tracks by its happy energy, its warmth, and its evocative feelings of Autumn. 

Since the rest of the room is relatively neutral, I felt safe in adding a pop of color with this sofa. It worked out great and I and my kitty, Gracie, love that sofa. I had to find an orange throw blanket to drape over the top so Gracie could curl up and sleep without leaving too much “debris” behind. Doesn’t hurt that Gracie is an orange calico so she fits right in. Designer kitty!

And then there is this! A spring birthday bouquet of exquisite beauty with one bright orange parrot tulip as its centerpiece.

Oops! I digress! But… you know how one picture is worth a thousand words and, in this case, make it two pictures. It’s definitely impossible to write an essay on such a vibrant color, or any color, without visuals. So. . . perhaps we can learn a lesson or two from my living room decor, minus Gracie, of course. And from a birthday bouquet of definite distinction.

Yes! By all means, orange is a bold, attention-getting color not to be worn by just everyone. If you can, DO! But, if you can’t, then go for just a touch of orange in an accessory that pops the more neutral outfit and, by all means, don’t be afraid to wear orange, if only just a touch. And no. . . orange is not the new black, at least fashionably speaking. But it is out there in force and represented by nearly all the fashion vendors so, if you need to brighten your day, bring some orange into your life. It evokes happy and energetic feelings that just lift you up and help you find and embrace life’s vitality.

WOW! Just to showcase my little essay on orange: here is one of Shelly’s “Van Gogh” moments in her photo of an Edmonds skyline on an Autumn’s evening sunset. Spectacular and makes me happy to be in our small corner of the world.

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Dolce Far Niente

QUOTE OF THE WEEK:

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Quote of the Week:

Be still my heart! Give me a moment please to wax poetic about the simple, yet complex, beauty of that figure of speech comparing two unlike things . . . Reed’s simile “Like a leaf of lavender in a store of linen, so does memory make life sweet.” Both a leaf of lavender and memory sweeten life. One with a tangible and immediate sensory perception. The other in an emotional reckoning with the passing of time after the pain of heartache. Would that my writing could conjure up a simile of such unexpected and pleasant surprise. I feel a challenge coming on. Am I up to the task? Stay tuned!!

Let’s see. Where was I? Ah yes! Thank You! I am back to reality and why I even found that quote to begin this post. My intention here is to offer up a few pointers about the qualities, benefits, and wearability of linen.

Don’t stop reading now please!

Give me a chance to plead linen’s case. I do know that many of you love linen and wear it with ease and beauty. However, there are many, like myself, who have had a love/hate relationship with linen over the years. Love it in the store and on the hanger but not so much on our bodies. . . for all the obvious “wrinkly” reasons. Then there are those who just plain dislike it and won’t go near it. Perhaps it is to the two latter categories that I write here and did some research in hopes of us all becoming more accepting of what is actually a very remarkable fiber.

Turns out that once upon a time, linen clothing was worn only by the upper eschelon of society. . . monarchs, knights and priests. Us commoners were denied the luxury of linen until the propagation of flax plants became widespread sometime during the 16th century and led to everything linen from bedding to kitchen towels to clothing. There are even those who claim that linen has healing powers and wouldn’t wear any other fabric, especially in hot and humid weather.

So… just what is it about linen that makes it so sought after and superior to other fibers? I learned some interesting details while searching for an answer to that question.

Ready! Set! Go! Here comes the infamous list!

  • DURABLE: If the strength of the fiber directly contributes to the strength of the fabric that a garment is made of, then linen has optimum longevity. Buy a linen top or dress or pair of pants and you can count on it to stick around for decades ’cause linen is considered the strongest of natural fibers… much more so than cotton.
  • SUSTAINABLE: Linen ranks high in the category of environmentally friendly and ethically sourced clothing. Flax plants are resilient, can grow in poor soil and require very little water or fertilizer. Being a natural fiber also makes it biodegradable and recyclable. Buying and wearing linen means you won’t be adding to the growing pile of textile waste all over the world. With all that said, you might be wondering why linen is considered a luxurious fiber and thus more costly. While easy to grow, the process of getting the flax plant ready for spinning is a lengthy one requiring several months of softening before it is ready to process as fabric.
  • SUITABLE: What do I mean by suitable? Here’s something new that surprised me. Hard to believe but one of linen’s more magical properties is that it can keep you both cool and warm. Because it is breathable, moisture wicking and lightweight, linen is the obvious perfect summer fiber. But think Spring and Autumn as well because flax/linen is a natural insulator and capable of releasing excess humidity. You won’t get sweaty in linen clothes as you can in cotton or wool because linen retains the heat from your body and releases the excess making you feel nice and cozy during cooler transition months.
  • EASY-CARE: While considered a luxury fabric, linen doesn’t need special or expensive care. Machine wash in cold water just don’t use bleach or detergents with whiteners in them as they tend to weaken the fiber. You can tumble dry your linen or hang them to dry naturally. As for ironing, much of linen’s charm is in those wrinkles so ironing is not necessary. A smoothing out by hand can accomplish much in the way of softening the look. Now, whether you succumb to its charm or not is a personal choice.

I hope that I’ve given you some new thoughts to ponder and consider when looking for or deciding whether to choose a new linen garment. Right now Sound Styles has a great selection to choose from so come see us before the weather heats back up again.

Remember to wear your linen in seasons other than just Summer.

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Quote of the week:

Seems like we’ve needed a lot of armor during the past sixteen months. While fashion is not, of course, a full suit of armor. . . I do believe it might just be an accessory to the full panoply that helps us hold up our resolve to overcome the challenges presented by our daily lives.

Does that sound trite? How can what you wear on any certain day help you survive that day?

Okay. . . so survive might be just a bit melodramatic. 

Simply said. . . I’m a great believer, from personal experience, that what you wear, be it clothes or make-up, directly influences your thoughts, behaviors and self-esteem. It also impacts how others perceive your personality and actions.

Does that make sense? Certainly, in all the days of our lives, there are going to be those where we have no choice in the matter and wardrobe and make-up don’t win.

However, if at all possible, I make every attempt in the morning to go through a routine that includes picking out something nice to wear and applying at least a bit of blush and eye-make up even if I’m staying home that day to nurse an “owie.” I don’t want to look in the mirror, by accident or on purpose, and feel worse because of the reflection staring back at me.

These last few days of heat have challenged my resolve. What a relief tonight to feel a cooler, natural breeze wafting through my windows. Nature beats the electric fan any day of the week. And, in all honesty, this post was started last week and meant to be finished and polished by Tuesday morn (of last week).

Best laid plans as they say. While sitting in front of my computer with 100 degrees bearing down on me, my “fried brain” just couldn’t deal with it so. . . Alas! No post last week and I’ve kind of forgotten where I was even headed except that I do like the beginning so I will re-group here and offer up some advice.

For me, some days just go right and I feel good in what I chose to wear. Other days, however, find me putting on and taking off in rapid succession ’cause just nothing “feels” right. I did a bit of research on this dressing dilemma that I’m supposing presents itself to most of us. Based on my research, let me offer up a few tips to help us all dress with confidence and feel great in what we wear.

  • APPEARANCE: On those days when I’m taking on and taking off, it’s usually because I’m over analyzing my so-called “body flaws.” This top doesn’t camouflage the tummy area enough or cover the arm where it needs covering the most. That sort of “talk” goes on in my head. But if I really think about it, it’s not my clothes that are giving me grief, it’s my attitude towards my body. Acceptance of who we are on any given day can go a long way towards feeling good and confident in what we wear.
  • KNOW YOUR PERSONA: I used to get frustrated when shopping with a friend who would say “that looks just like you” as I reached for something off the rack to try on. “Am I that predictable?” I’d think to myself. Now I actually think that’s a good thing because it means I have a strong sense of what I like and want to wear. These days when I answer the question “does that look like me?” I’m glad to answer “yes!.” I’d much rather look like myself than a victim of trends. Let’s face it, there are lots of styles out there that won’t be right for me so knowing what suits my personality contributes to feeling confident because my clothes become a good reflection of who I am.
  • LET’S HAVE FUN: Sometimes when I’m struggling with what to wear I find myself muttering “Lighten up, Julie. Getting dressed in the morning isn’t brain surgery.” If I stop the over analyzing, and give myself permission to just have some fun with what I put on, my options open up to new ideas and possibilities. A lighter, more playful, attitude goes a long way towards feeling and looking great in what you wear. Your ability to discover new looks and try out fresh ideas should be fun. And, who doesn’t like having fun?
  • OOPS! You know the old adage “Learn from your mistakes.” Well, that goes for clothes as well. We’ve all had them. Days where you feel awful in what you are wearing. Back in the good old carefree days of college, I took a fashion design class where we had to make our own pattern and sew a garment from the pattern. I’ve always had the propensity to buy clothes for which I have no lifestyle that would possibly give me an opportunity to wear that garment. That’s a mistake it’s taken me some time to learn from. It started in that class when I designed a slightly formal dress of white lace that should have been worn to a prom. After modeling it in the class fashion show, the dress never got out of the closet again. It was way too formal for me and the lace was scratchy and itchy and stiff. The point being that learning from fashion mistakes is a gift you give to yourself as those mistakes teach us what we feel and look good in.

When you feel confident and happy with what you are wearing, others see you that way too. So, accept your body, know what suits your personality, have a little fun with fashion and remember to learn from those times when mistake were made.

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Quote of the Week:

So. . . picture this! While I’m getting the store presentable for opening yesterday, pushing the vacuum cleaner from front to back and windexing a glass shelf or two, my eyes kept wandering to a certain rack where temptation calls my name.

Mind you…. I’m asking myself all the same questions I hear from you when shopping in the store. Do I really need that? Don’t I already have enough of that color combination in my wardrobe? Didn’t I just buy a black and white top from that same label? Didn’t I just promise myself that I wouldn’t buy another black top or pant? What would I wear this top with?

Ooo… I really do love the tunic style of that piece and it’s quite different from the crop top I bought last month. I’ve seen it on customers and it is so flattering. I’ve been “thinking”about it for days now and I can still hear Mary egging me on with her encouraging words, “you know you want it. . . so just buy it!”

You guessed it!

I’m a goner!!! The Masai black and white tunic top is in my “shopping cart.”

Two colors in your closet today, technically, aren’t colors. But these two colorless colors offer us limitless choices for both casual and dressy occasions. It’s hard to top a more stylish outfit than one that’s all black and white. There might be those who say you need color to be exciting. However, the stellar contrast between black and white is sure to capture anyone’s attention and be appropriate for any occasion. Coco Chanel called their independent beauty “absolute.” And their combination “is the perfect harmony.”

When in doubt about what to wear, a first “go to” is always black and white which is easy enough for casual wear, stylish enough for the office and elegant enough for special occasions. Black and white is classic, always on trend and SLIMMING. . . words we all love to hear.

And. . .

You probably already have the elements of black and white in your closet so you won’t need to spend a lot to achieve that “fashionista” look when you step out your front door.

The obvious, easiest way to achieve “the look” is to invest in pieces that already incorporate the black and white in their print, stripes or dots. Voila! You’ve got the look down pat. Just put the printed top or bottom with a contrasting solid. A simple white shirt with a black pant and an accessory or two of black and white also achieves the look.

So… there aren’t too many tips that I could offer here because putting black and white together is relatively simple. Just don’t make the mistake of looking like the waiter at your upcoming dinner date by stopping at just a white shirt and black pants. Add a few more “layers” of interest to take the outfit from sterile to stylish.

For avoiding that mistake, I will show you the top that I bought and make a few suggestions as to how to style a black and white outfit.

Accessory options are endless with black and white which makes it so fun to work with. While certain accessories like scarves and jewelry are obvious, never discount the power of sunglasses, shoes and handbags as accessories. They highlight and compliment an outfit in an instant.

Next, bring in texture combining. Patent sandals, pebble textured clutch, shiny jet black beaded necklace and a soft silky scarf can all add textured interest to the black and white print of my top. These same principles would also apply to a basic white shirt and black pants by bringing in extra layers of style.

Last but certainly not least. . . add a splash of color, as I did with the red in the scarf and, most important, the shoes. Color options are endless as you make black and white the canvas for whatever colors you love.

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Quote of the week:

Well drat! Wouldn’t you know! 

I just bought a brown sweater.

I wonder if the poet is equating old age with brown sweaters or, coincidentally, was it a brown sweater he put on that morning when he was feeling the aches and pains of being older. Even though an English major, I’m not one to over analyze so I’ll go with the latter and not get all caught up in symbolism. But he did give me momentary pause to question my new purchase.

FYI: The color itself is making a huge comeback for all seasons, including this spring and summer. As for me, I couldn’t be more pleased. Brown has been hiding out for far too long. And, as it is for every color, brown does come with its own symbolic associations. Brown is a natural color linked to the earth and equates to being wholesome, warm and honest. So there you have it!

But no. . . this post is not about the color of my new sweater.

It’s about the SWEATER! A cardigan sweater to be specific!

I set out in writing this post with the idea of showing how accessories can transform an outfit in an instant. In doing a bit of research, much to my surprise, a cardigan sweater was often listed as an accessory that can do exactly that. . . transform an outfit. Surprised because I’d never really thought of a sweater as an accessory.

A cardigan is a type of knitted sweater that was traditionally made of wool and designed with an open front. This popular garment wasn’t worn until around the mid-1800s so it has a short history. It’s named after James Brudenell, the 7th Earl of Cardigan, who was a British Army Major General during the Crimean War and led the charge of the light brigade. Supposedly, he invented the cardigan after noticing that the tails of his long coat had been accidentally burnt off while standing too close to the fireplace. Wow! Now that was one lucky Earl of Cardigan to survive both the war and the fireplace.

Pardon the history lesson. Hope you’re still with me and I haven’t put you to sleep. What can I say? I’m a compulsive looker-upper of minutiae.

While good at keeping away the chill factor and hiding our arms from those cropped and sleeveless tops, the humble cardigan sweater offers much more versatility to our wardrobe. They add elements of color, texture and layering to anything from a casual or even “dressy” dress to a t-shirt or collared blouse to a pencil skirt, high waisted pants or jeans. They are both ageless and timeless.  

From summer to winter, a cardigan can “crown” your outfit, no matter where you’re going or how old you are. Necklaces aren’t the only accessory to make a statement. Think of a cardigan as a “statement piece” in your wardrobe and give it the prominence it deserves.

As one of the most versatile fashion layers, there are so many different styles of cardigans and so many ways you can wear them that trying to define and illustrate all of them would be overwhelming so I put together a visual of a few possibilities.

Since one picture is worth a thousand words, I should probably quit while I’m ahead, as you probably “get the picture.”

Be they of short, long or even no sleeves as in sweater vest. . . be they cropped, jacket or coat length. . . be they asymmetrical or even in hem. . . be they hooded, shawl collared or no collar whatsoever. . . be they buttoned, belted, zipped or just plain open. . . be they striped, flowered, polka-dotted or solid. . . be they slouchy or tailored, think of a cardigan as any season’s investment piece and consider having several in your wardrobe.

the tale of “my new brown sweater”

My tale ends here with this pic (just in case you were curious). Yet one more boyfriend, my obsession of late. My new Karen Kane tie-front top and a pair of black leggings with those ankle boots make me eager for Fall dressing (no affront to Summer). While I would never wear a cropped top with a pair of leggings, the length of a boyfriend cardi covers all the parts I want covered and gives me permission to put the two together.

However, rest assured. . . I will be careful to keep my “tails” away from a fireplace.

THE END

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Quote of the week:

Whew! Big sigh of relief.

After a day or so of downsizing my spring and summer clothes, I now have three bags full of donations, along with several ideas for how to stow away some of the autumn and winter clothes.

There are boxes made for under the bed storage and I do have one long rod available for hanging in my closet at the top of the stairs. So…I’m determined to keep only what can be kept in those two places.

But… why the relief I wonder after three bags full and new places to store the off season clothes.

Well… I’m thinking that getting dressed each morning will be faster, easier and less stressful because I now only own spring/summer clothes that I love, feel good in and look good in.

Guess I didn’t even realize that my closet (wardrobe) was causing some stress in that I was feeling a bit overwhelmed and just plain tired when I walked into it. Some of those items in there were even making me feel bad about myself and my body and guilty that I hadn’t been able to fit into them for a long time. It was definitely time to declutter and downsize.

Now I will wear and love the clothes in my closet! No more flipping past clothes I don’t like when I’m looking for my favorites. Instead, my clutter is gone and I’ve only kept the clothes I love!

I’m even hoping that I will save money because I’ll know exactly what I have, what I like wearing and what works for me.. This should mean that I’ll stop buying clothes that I don’t need or don’t work for me.

Whoa! Slow down Julie. Did I just write that last sentence? The don’t work for me part …. well, I’m reasonably good at that already but the don’t need part.… I’m the one who constantly tells customers to park that need word at the door when they enter. What fun is having a wardrobe based only on need?

Now that last sentence is pretty good. I’m going to have to remember it when the next customer says “I really don’t need anything.” My reply shall be. . .

    "What fun is having a wardrobe based only on need?"

Time to put back the "keepers."

Beauty tips for the closet:

Closets come in many shapes and sizes and there are umpteen organizational closet tricks and closet paraphernalia to help in finding solutions for each shape and size. I won't get into detail when you can see for yourself at any website from Ikea to Storables.

What I'd like to offer are three basic tenants that can help organize any closet of any shape and size. 

  • First up is the hanger. Years ago I invested in bunches of slimline velvet hangers, all in one color. Not only do they look pleasant but they give more room to every rod in my closet and they prevent slippage of garments to the floor. However, there are alternatives such as wooden and now plastic non-slip hangers. Whichever you like, investing in a good hanger and using the same hanger throughout the closet is well worth it
  • As much as possible, keep like items together in the closet. I know right where to look for all my pants, skirts, dresses and tops (I even separate out the kinds of tops like tees, turtlenecks, sleeveless layering pieces). This saves me lots of time and effort in finding an exact piece but it also helps when I want to put together a layered outfit.

  • And… lastly, color your closet. By that I mean within each group of clothes (be it tops or pants) hang them from the lightest of colors to the darkest of colors. As I re-hung all my spring collared blouses I started at one end of the rod with white and went to pink, yellow, orange, green, blue and finally black. Wow! I actually have one collared blouse in all those colors. Big surprise! Not only is this aesthetically pleasing (almost as much as a consistent hanger) but it too helps me find just what I’m looking for or finding the right color to go with something that I’m trying to match.

I hope my two-parter here on closets has been of some help when it comes to both downsizing the wardrobe and to putting back and re-organizing all the items you decided to keep.

Just remember… this doesn’t have to be a day long or two day long project. Pick one season’s clothes or one particular kind of item such as pants or tops and start there. The rest will follow when you see the happy result.

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