Am I Still a Winter?

Often people tell me that they had their colors done many years ago, saying “I’, a winter” – or whatever other color has been identified as their season.   They often ask if the “season” changes as they age.

As we mature, our skin softens and our hair becomes grey – even if we choose to color it – there is a natural softening of the appearance.   Thus we will want to make adjustments in the colors we wear.  Being cool or warm in coloring does not change with age but the intensity of colors that are most becoming will change.

I think women are more beautiful as they mature.  Life experience brings more depth and complexity to one’s appearance, giving such richness to ones appearance.  In addition to making some adjustments in colors, there are other changes that will give a more beautiful look.  Let’s look at some famous people and evaluate what they do right and what they could improve.

Barbara Streisand was never a beautiful woman but how she presents herself as she has gotten older projects a beautiful, confident woman.  (I will never forget her youthful disaster of the see-through outfit at the academy awards.)  She, as many of us, has chosen to color her hair but in a softened the tone to complement her softer skin color.  She still wears her hair long but has switched to a side part, softly framing her face, rather than the hippy middle part.  I think most people look better with slightly shorter hair when they are more mature but it depends on the individual.

Hillary Clinton has struggled to project herself in a way that matches her position.  She has never been interested in clothes but has taken the advice of image consultants with positive results.  Where are those consultants now?   As she has aged and added more pounds, her jowls have widened.  The long, seemingly uncared for hair, simply adds width at the jaw line.  A shorter cut was much more becoming, bringing attention to her blue eyes.  Her present designer continues to dress her in prints, textured suits and suits that hang away from the body, adding width.  Clinton made a wonderful decision during her first term as First Lady by choosing pantsuits.  Her legs are not her best feature.     She looks best in a simple, tailored suit jacket in a lightweight fabric, skimming her body and cut long enough to cover her hips.  Her coloring is cool but she often wears bright orange and other unbecoming warm colors.

Helen Mirren is in her early sixties and presents herself beautifully.  Notice how lovely she is in this evening dress.  There is depth in the color to support her soft coloring while not being so saturated that it overshadows her. The mound of the bosom should be half way between the chin and waist.   Notice that hers is close to two thirds down from the chin.  Often as we grow more mature, especially with a fuller bosom, this balance shifts downward.  By wearing a deep neckline, more skin exposed so that one does not notice how low her bosom is.  If she had been wearing a turtleneck with no jewelry, the proportion would be very obvious.

One last tip, if you choose to enjoy your naturally gray hair, it can be beautiful.  Just keep in mind that gray added to a darker colored hair creates a pattern.   You might be best to wear solids or do color blocking rather than try to choose a print that will work with the pattern of your hair.

 

Would you like to start the New Year by discovering which colors and styles are your very best?  We are offering mini-workshops for groups of 5 – 10 ladies.   Contact Beryl for more information at 404-428-2527 or Beryl@StyleWithAplomb.com.

Who wears pantyhose any more?

 

Pantyhose have been demonized over the last several years.   Bosses who insist their women employees wear hose are considered ogres and face rebellion in the workplace.   If an image consultant (or worse yet, a mother) suggested a young woman would have a more finished look they were discounted as old-lady and out of touch.

Kate Middleton to the rescue!  The new Duchess of Cambridge, who is anything but old-lady or frumpy, wears pantyhose.  She was criticized for wearing hose with a shine but the vast majority of reviews I have seen have been very positive.

I think pantyhose give a more finished look, important for professions where a suit is daily attire or for a dressy occasion.    Of course, the future queen of England will spend the much of her life in the eye of the public, something few of us will ever experience.

The average woman may want to rethink her absolute aversion to pantyhose and consider a more moderate approach.  In the summertime when your legs are tan, it is generally acceptable to go barelegged.  If your legs resemble the Pillsbury Dough Boy (I’m talking color) pantyhose or tights will give a more finished look.  Another consideration is to achieve a long leg line.  If you have dark shoes and bare legs, or boots with a span of bare skin, you have created visual breaks, which shorten the leg.

Consider these pictures of the Duchess.   The white and black is dramatic, which she can carry off, but notice how the black shoes and black hose or tights make her appear to have such long legs.  The other photos just give a beautifully finished look.

Now let’s look at the picture in shorts.  Really!  Those shiny hose look ridiculous!  This is definitely a time when tanned bare legs would win, hands down!  If you don’t tan well or don’t have time, there are always self-tanning creams that work wonders.

So, if you are in the anti-pantyhose crowd, how about keeping an open mind.  If not pantyhose, how about tights that create the same long-legged look?