When Jackie Kennedy became First Lady, fashionistas couldn’t get enough of what she was wearing. She was only 31 when she became First Lady but she had an amazing sense of style for a woman of any age, let alone someone as young as she. Of course she grew up in “blue blood” society but her sense of style was extraordinary.
Jackie’s skeletal figure was complemented by garments tailored as a pieces of sculpture; the perfect choice for her shape. Of course she was beautiful and poised, always presenting the ideal image for the First Lady. When President Kennedy traveled to France, she introduced him to the audience with her perfect French. She had the crowd in the palm of her hand.
Our First Ladies have each had their own style and have played an important role in supporting their husbands but there is something special about a beautiful, young leader in the spotlight. The British love their queen but Kate and Will capture the majority of press.
Now we have another young – age 46 – and beautiful First Lady elect. Having been a model, Melania Trump understands which styles look best on her curved hourglass figure. And, just as Jackie Kennedy, it has not been her custom to shop at Target or Walmart. Melania’s wedding dress is reported to have cost $200,000! Born in Slovenia, Melania speaks six languages fluently. She follows Louisa Adams (1825-1829) as the second First Lady to be born outside the United States.
Now we will be waiting to see what Melania chooses for her inauguration dress. Michelle Obama chose unknown designers for her inaugural gown and other gowns, helping to launch their careers. Based on her role in the campaign, I would anticipate that Melania will not seek to be in the spotlight but the spotlight will undoubtedly seek to be on her!
Big is not always better! Over-sized purses have been the dominant style for the past several years. We’re talking BIG! Although it certainly is convenient to be able to throw your sneakers in your purse along with work that has to be taken home, and anything else that will fit. Of course, that adds to the weight you are carrying around resulting in trips to the chiropractor.
During the spring runway events, we saw designers abandoning the oversized handbags and shifting to smaller ones. I, for one, am delighted to see this shift. Handbags should be in proportion with the wearer. That one accessory can throw off your entire look. Imagine how a tiny little purse would be adorable for a petite five feet tall lady who wears a size 2. Then again, it would look absurd on a lady who was a size 16 and six feet tall. Proportion is a key element to consider when choosing accessories or patterns.
Of course, size is but one of the many factors one needs to consider when choosing the perfect handbag. I like to carry one basic purse most of the time. For those of you who change out purses with different outfits, I congratulate you! When I try to do that, I nearly always discover that I have failed to transfer reading glasses, wallet, lipstick or one of the myriad items that I often need when out and about. Thus, a basic purse needs some forethought before taking the plunge to buy.
The tote is roomy and user-friendly. The down side is that everything settles at the bottom so retrieving car keys or lipstick in a hurry can be challenging. Most totes do not close at the top. These purses are easy pray for pickpockets. We were in Italy a few years ago, waiting in line for a tour bus when I saw a hand in my tote. I jumped and exclaimed, the man quickly moved away but it still gives me chills. Fortunately, I had zipped my wallet and travel documents inside interior pockets but this is not an experience I would want to repeat.
Clutch bags are great for evening or dressy occasions. It is difficult to juggle a plate of nibbles and a drink but there is room for necessities. I like the little clutch pictured with the handle. It appears to be a little larger and more versatile than many.
Shoulder bags give you the freedom of using both hands. I especially like the short shoulder bag because it can be kept close to the body giving better control and security. I recently found a bag like this with a detachable longer strap to use as a cross-body or long shoulder strap. It is a good scale for me and the color will go with most of my wardrobe. I can easily access my cell phone and can get the majority of what I like to carry to fit. Is it perfect? No but if you ever find the perfect purse, let me know!