Friday, November 20, 2015

Mature Fashion: Monochromatic "uniforms"

Hello Fashionistas and Stylinistas;

It occurred to me to post a "runway" of the uses of a particular design element; we covered monochromatic dressing in the post, but this will give you a chance to see a variety of monochromatic uniforms I basically wear several times a week. Several of these have been taken from my last season's style book, however, they are still on trend thru this season (one benefit of the mature women; we can look modern with last year fashions; so many of the young crowd are used to seeing older women in ten or more years past fashion.)

(Learning curve here: can't seem to line the pictures up the way I want)

In the upper left hand picture,  I have used the dark olive as the base color; the top camouflage print is in values of green and grey and so are the shoes.  Head to toe, one base color, monotony relieved by the print.

To the right, various shades of caramel browns and deep brown. This is an example of using various textures to break up the use of one color. To the left, black vinyl pants and a layered silk and cashmere boat neck sweater over a windowpane black and white silky blouse.  Just a peek of the blouse at the hip and at the wrists break up the solid black. Black patent loafer add to the texture mix and extend the line and prevent me from looking too short.

Two different shades; one of dark reddish brown and the other a basic China red.  In the picture on

the left, notice the change of textures again, also the checked scarf and jewelry.  This outfit was worn with a black leather 3/4 length coat and a black Indiana Jones wool felt hat.  

The outfit to your right also uses a print with the jacket to create one line of color.  I could also wear red ankle boots (which I will this season) to update last winter's rage for riding boots.  I could also wear navy heeled ankle boots to extend the blue in the printed silk blouse.I would wear a red handbag if I wore the navy boots, and a navy handbag is I wore the red boots.

This uniform composition is a medium grey cable knit cashmere over a dark red shirt and worn with narrow legged deeper grey stretch pants.  I have on grey socks the same shade as the sweater.  The pop of black based with bright graphic printed scarf relieves the monotony of the grey while the black loafers pick up the black background of the scarf. The colors of the scarf add just the little bit of edge for this season's almost clashing color scheme with the maroon shirt whose sleeves just give a bit of pop at the wrists. (no, I would not wear red in my socks or shoes because with this color scheme it would break the line-the black shoes recede so I am okay).  I could also wear my gray suede wedge boots with the ensemble, but the black loafers are "comfort shoes" and I was on my feet a lot the day this picture was taken.

One of my Lolita compositions; I am not sure this will get worn this season because I haven't the right occasion where I would wear this.  Party, anyone?

The outfit to the left is composed of a black flared skirt and a sporty sweater with a mustard stripe around the neckline.  This color scheme is exactly matched in the heeled pumps.  I will wear black tights and a black knee length black cashmere coat with this ensemble.  Simple but striking.  I can't wait to wear it.

(I make my style books up before the season starts.)

You may have seen this outfit before.  Head to toe royal blue popped with what I call my garish blouse.  It has too much color and would over power my body frame worn by itself.  It is great for just a frame around the face and a peep at the hip line.  The shoes are also a royal patent print with the exact red tones as in the blouse.  I carried a royal blue handbag with me that day.  I know, I know, today's "rules" say not to match shoes and handbag; I make up my own mind on that rule. I want the matchy-matchy look with this outfit.  The wild colors of the blouse add the only touch of "fad" I want in the outfit.  (note: remember the red outfit in the previous picture was composed of "old" classic pieces.  If I updated the boots I would alternate the color scheme to update the very classic look. Garish colors is a fad; not matching purse and boots is a fad.  Because of my age I am careful not to put too many current fashions into one look.  That is a Geneva rule based on my age, personal style, etc.  Make up the rules that work the best for you.

The outfit on your left is the "new" (very old) cropped flares. I will wear totally monochrome in this outfit because I am short.  I will also wear grey tights and grey heeled ankle boots to offset the shortening effect of the pants.  I am wearing a crew neck top to add the maximum amount of grey (both top and bottom in the same shade).  The white mock turtle neck that will peek out just at the hip line and the "V" caused by the black cross necklace gives a very "hip" look to the outfit, but is starkly elegant, as suits my age and aesthetic. I will further carry out the gray theme with a gray snakeskin purse and a grey ankle length wool coat.  Very austere, very sophisticated.  I can also wear a short faux fur vertical striped hip length jacket should the occasion be more relaxed.  For younger mature fashionistas who can wear this style, I would also suggest sporty footwear and a gray cardigan sweater for a very "now" look. (there is a vast difference in being a mature 40 and a mature 70 in what makes a good fashion fit; it still blows my mind when I realize Gwen Stefani is on the shady side of forty and looks wonderful, even in extreme fashion forward ensembles.)

I trust the above combinations have given you ideas for how you can use monochrome dressing in ways that will not be boring.  Based on your age and imagination, you can use color to design looks that will be both youthful and flattering. Remember that monochrome dressing is probably not your best choice if you are very tall and slender.  Other uses of color would usually be in your best interest.  Check out your body type, then your closet for possibilities.  I will be creating a few more personal runways to demonstrate other design elements such as line, texture, scale, and proportion (note: you have seen some elements of using texture in the monochrome displays.  I work with texture a lot because it updates the tired look of dye vat dressing that can occur with matchy-matchy dressing using a "suit" with both top and bottom of the same materials-so 1980-early '90's career girl look). You might want to scroll back through previous runway posts to view additional examples of monochrome dressing.

Remember to check out my other blogs; they are all tied together. addresses general topics for mature women in all three disciplines of up to date styling issues; attitude and personal style, styling issues for the specific roles within our lifestyle (,) and how we can best flatter our bodies for these role.  We also share "how to" tips on diet, exercise, and other related issues ( to let us "Rock our age." Rockmyrunwaay addresses styling examples of our topics from my own closet and represents my body type.  Of course, many of these examples can apply to anyone. 

Happy styling,

Friday, November 13, 2015

Mature Fashion: Holidays 2015

 Happy Holidays, Stylinistas;

As always, I begin any fashion season by shopping my closet;
Here is what I have on hand, and I have already received my first Christmas party invitation.  I have not shown jewelry with most of these styling combinations because I will choose based on the nature of the event.  The same could apply to choice of shoe. The pictures show the entire "capsule" collection of garments I use for holiday.  I do not attend a great many social occasions where I need to diversify my wardrobe and further.  It is "bare bones: by intention.

To the left is the "tatoo" transparent cardigan you have seen before; it is perfect with the textured velvet and lace trimmed camisole and filmy wide legged lingerie pants (I'm getting a jump on this springs rage for lingerie dressing)  I will wear this with the velvet shoulder clutch and velvet high vamp heel for a more modern touch than the strappy heel usually expected.

I have shown a collection of appropriate changes I could make for other occasions (this kind of capsule dressing is ideal for cruise and other events where you have many "dressy" affairs but must limit your wardrobe. Obviously, all of these tops can be worn with the two pair of pants displayed.

More tops, all in satin; an alternate heeled shoe in velvet. I also have two turtle neck thin sweaters with glitter threads in lilac and
deep blue that are not shown.

More tops and accessories.  I have shown additional cover-ups, a red lace turtleneck, and silver heels should I wear the jacket.
I am really not happy with the photography detail of these materials;( more learning curve, I see.) I have also decided to eliminate the green and silver top and jacket and the harlequin heels.  Although they work with the above item, they are really not cohesive with the more modern looks I would wear. The jacket is a bit "tired", also.

The tatoo cardigan over a black velvet camisole. I love this little cardigan (jacket)  I wear it as a cover up in warmer weather also to disguise my rather heavy upper arms.

Black velvet slim pants worn with a silver and black velvet overblouse, the clunky high vamp heels because this combination is really a bit "old" in its 1980's look..  I have a shoulder cape in black wool I would wear with this to update the look. This picture does not do the combination justice. I am also thinking about a look I saw in one of the fashion magazines.  It uses a piece of black net veiling over the eyes.  That would give a bit of edginess to an older classic look.

A purchase I made this summer on sale at T.J. Maxx; a gold dress that I can wear with the gold sandals and this small dull gold bag; I will, however, get busy looking for just the right gold heels which I would like better.  I will be willing to bet, however, that some of our "young" mature ladies would prefer the gladiators.  This is a beautiful dress.  Just the right amount of bling. This dress will also work for some upcoming weddings I anticipate.

The ever basic black long lace dress with matching evening heels.  I always wear a lace jacket over this. (shown next to the red lace turtleneck in the above picture-same lace, same detail). I last wore this dress to a formal Masonic dinner.  You cannot see the detail on the front very well, but it is immensely flattering I doubt I will be wearing it this season, but you never know. I may try and make an occasion!  I really feel glamorous in the dress; especially when I wear my wool shoulder cape. 

Gold and black glinting tops, and sparkly layers of jewelry.  On hand for any last minute dress up. The gold sweaters are just the right shade for my coloring; not too brassy. They wear well with anything from dark wash jeans to velvet pants.  The jacket really is classic; I have had it for many years and it still looks fresh with the accessory updates; love it.

Black sequin skirt and top.  All of these items are mix and match; jewelry, if any,  depending upon event.  Jacket or cardigan works with any of the above. To be worn with glittery or black sheer tights, the rage this year. More likely to be worn if I attend an expected lively party.  The skirt may soon become a garment I would discard because of lack of wear.  I will probably keep the top as long as it remains in good condition and fits me well.

Any festive holiday event is covered with some combination of the above garments, However, you can see why I will  take inventory before any future holiday season; After taking the inventory, (primarily to write this article) I realize that I really need (want) a gold pair of comfortable dressy heels to match my dress .  I only have three pair of shoes I would wear with the dress, the above gladiators (fine for this year because of the trend, but not what I would choose to wear).  I do have dull gold loafers (not appropriate with dress), and nude patent heels, which would be appropriate for a day wedding, but not my choice for an evening social event. I believe I need just the right gold shoe (My personal style still likes monochrome; it suits my body and can always be accessorized to keep up with current trends).  I also want to purchase both a silver and a gold evening purse.  I also need a better velvet jacket and a pair of glittery tights.  I have lace ones that would be okay, but that is what it would be; make do.  Of course, until I try it on, I won't know.  All over glitter might be too much.

Happy Holidays to you and your family;  new collections after Christmas; I will soon be releasing my potential stylings for the upcoming spring and summer anticipated fashions. This will give us a chance to pick up garments we might want at a price point less than when the fashion is in full swing. ........Geneva White