Posts Tagged ‘layering’

Quote of the week: “I say, dress for yourself. Listen to your inner muse and take a chance. Wear something today that says. . . Here I am” ~ Iris Apfel

“I’m too old to wear that!” is a comment we often hear from customers as they shop the store. Think about that. Have you ever seen a clothes tag that says “must wear by” (a certain age). I hope not or I’m in big trouble.

Granted, common sense applies here as, of course, there are certain trends that belong to the young. However, all too often we see women put themselves in that “I’m too old” category and it keeps them from considering wearing a cute and possibly flattering new piece of apparel. Frustrating to us because we don’t see them in the same mirror as they see themselves. We know that they would look fabulous in the exact top they are rejecting because of age.

In my mind’s eye there are two ages. Perceived age is how you feel about yourself and what you wear and how you meet and greet your world each and every day. Okay… someone 65 (true age) who acts like they are 25 is a bit silly. But… 65 and aiming for 50 is a total other story.

It’s your perceived age that counts when it comes to dressing for the day and not letting yourself be deterred by preconceived “rules” of your true age.

Most fashion style and even current trends can be worn by many ages.

Let’s focus in on one.

Women’s fashion has seen a huge resurgence of the graphic tee in the past few years. It would be easy to see how the graphic tee might fall into that youthful even juvenile category and one might consider one’s self too old to wear a graphic tee. Graphic tees are quite versatile and can be worn in more ways than you might think.

How often do we say to our customers… “it can be dressed up or down”? I, for one, plead guilty.

Well… here I am to say it again.

Self expression abounds in a graphic tee. Just pick one that is true and meaningful to you or that just captures your eye. The dressed down part is obvious… jeans and sneakers or flip flops. The dressed up part is where the fun begins.

But let’s start with the tee itself. Once you’ve chosen the appropriate graphics for you, check out the fit. Your graphic tee should be slightly contoured to your body, not too long or too wide. Consider tucking it in for a slimmer waistline. I know… that challenges my sensibilities as well. So, if you don’t want to tuck it in, consider partially tucking it in or tying a knot in the front or off to the side just to give some form to the tee. Either tucking or tying adds instant sophistication to an otherwise everyday tee shirt.

Now we’re ready to style your graphic tee. For that I need some. . . ‘graphics!’

As with fashion in general, layering is the word of the day! Let’s start with adding structure to the tee by adding an outer piece. This can be anything from jean jackets to moto jackets to blazers to boyfriend cardigans and even kimonos. What’s great about the outer piece is that the graphic tee becomes part of the whole outfit and not the main attraction.

What about the bottoms you may ask? So… while jeans are the obvious go to bottom for tees in general, let’s think outside the box. Any pair of pants, from tailored suit trousers to wide leg pants to ankles and crops will work with the tee. Even consider a bolder color that brings out a color in the tee or combine it with stripes or a pattern like animal print. And, if you’re feeling on the more feminine side that day, put the graphic tee with a flowy skirt. While these suggestions may seem like oxymorons, that’s what makes the outfit more flirtatious, interesting and fun.

And for the third layer… let’s think accessories. Believe it or not, add a scarf with complementary colors and tie it so that it doesn’t cover up the graphics on the tee. Bold earrings and even multi strand pendant necklaces will work with the tee. And, of course, the shoes. Beef up the entire outfit by dressing up the shoes. Consider dressy sandals for summer or leather penny loafers for winter. Even a t-shirt and jeans can get dressed up with your choice of shoes. Or, and this is also fun, once the graphic tee shirt has been “dressed up” then keep the shoes a comfy pair of white sneakers and that works too.

Okay class! Your assignment should you choose to accept it: If you’ve already got a graphic tee, see it with renewed creativity and go to your closet and play. If you don’t already have a graphic tee, check out the selection at Sound Styles and consider adding one to your wardrobe with maybe a jacket or cardigan or accessory for layering.

You know that old saying…”do as I say not as I do?” I must admit that while I do have a couple graphic tees in my wardrobe, they have been relegated to my pajama drawer. Time for me to step up to the plate and take my own advice here. I shall “style” a graphic tee and show it off soon. What do you say. . .let’s do lunch?

I must give special thanks to Neil Reid, our blog guru, for all his help on the “graphic” picture illustrating the text.

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