Wednesday, October 11, 2017

A New You....Progress through the year

 
 

 My year of finding a New Me has been an interesting one.
 
I started by investing in the French Chic Academy, and all I can say is, it's been a total game changer for me.
 
Seen above left, is a skirt I liked very much, worn at the start of the year, with a black t-shirt and patent ballet flats. I actually thought this looked okay, and it wasn't too awful. But using the very lovely Carolina Herrera (top right) as my inspiration, and the advice of Marie-Anne Lecouer of The French Chic Academy, I have found a more flattering length for this very same skirt, including peeptoe heels, a button down shirt, a hat and a strand of pearls to lend height and length.
 
Gone are my shapeless shifts, three-quarter ripped jeans, and flat shoes...
 
 
 
...which I had previously felt entirely comfortable in. What I didn't see was that these items were totally unsuitable for my height and shape, and that I really wasn't doing myself any favours by continuing to wear them.
 
I stopped shopping at the nearby upmarket thrift store. I was previously a weekly, if not twice weekly visitor, justifying my spend-ups by comforting myself with the idea that if I only wore the items once, it didn't matter. Meanwhile by wardrobe was bulging with clothing, and I still had 'nothing to wear'. The savings of $50+ per week, were channelled into paying for my French Chic Academy course, and investing in some genuine Baroque pearls, an item I'd longed for since my honeymoon twenty years ago.
 
 
A sleek hat was procured for those days when I might require a little shade on my nose, which here, is most days. This was far more flattering than the tennis style visor I'd previously worn, and has served me well, from beach to lunch events for many months.
 
 
Learning from Marie-Anne Lecouer and The French Chic Academy, I've become a student of 'what suits me'. Not what is fashionable, or what looks good on someone I pass in the street or see in a glossy brochure. Me. Just me.
 
I've learned to use prints and optical illusion to magic myself taller and slimmer...
 

 
 I've reassessed my ideas on what is 'dressy casual'. Previously the aforementioned shapeless shift had been a key item in my wardrobe. Again, not entirely terrible, but not fabulous either.
 
Now it's more likely to be skirts and pearls and heels. I've learned that I really can wear a small heel most days, and it was more a case of getting out of the habit of wearing them, that made them uncomfortable.
 
 
Little button down shirts have found their way into my wardrobe too, and I am enjoying showing off my silhouette, in preference to hiding it under swathes of fabric.
 
My passion for black is slowly being tempered with quite a few items in Navy blue, and I am finding that yet again, Marie-annes advice is sound. It's softer and more flattering for certain.




 
Those pearls have been one of the best purchases of my year. I try to wear them daily if I can, and feel wonderful no matter what I pair them with.
 
I even learned that switching accessories with this single outfit, can make a difference
 
The look here with nude heels and pearls,
 
 
is different to the same skirt with a long scarf and cardigan,
 
 
and that even the cardigan over the shoulder, with pearls, is better sometimes exchanged for the cardigan worn properly with a longer glass bead necklace to add length to the torso. A subtle difference in the accessorising, but a dramatic one in the wearing!


My latest purchase, having enjoyed success with my skirt and shirt combo, is this dress. Not something I would have looked at twice a year ago, but which now I am confident, I can carry off successfully.

 And likewise this one here as well.
These both need a little tweaking and adjusting in length and neckline, but again, I've learned this year, that if the silhouette is right, I can adjust things like length, and width easily with my trusty sewing machine.
 
For now, I am thrilled with the progress I've made. I continue to learn and grow, and am forever thankful for Marie-Anne Lecouers support.
 
I truly am, A New Me.


How have you changed or grown this year?
 
...Mimi...

23 comments:

  1. Love it Mimi! Gorgeous as always. I can totally relate to the denim capri pants. I've lost my way these last couple of years. Being in love took over who and what my style was. I need to get back to that. Surely I can be in love and stylish at the same time? Thanks for the inspiration!

    Anne xx

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    1. Anne, I think we all go through phases where we lose our way...for want of a better term. Being in love can be all encompassing at times, that's for certain! But to 'stay in love', I truly believe we have to love ourselves too. That way, we set our boundaries (especially we second-timers;o), and have better expectations for ourselves and our loved ones. So, yes, we can be in love and stylish! Love, Mimi xxx

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  2. You look wonderful Mimi I will when I lose weight.

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    1. Ah, but Em...the idea is to NOT wait till you lose weight. Make the most of your gorgeous self, no matter your weight. That's what I'm doing. I'm trying to lose 10kgs, but be damned if I'm going to look like a frump while I'm at it. Not saying you're a frump by the way...lol! Love, Mimi xxx

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  3. Mimi I have told you of friends who saw me in pencil pants and a button down shirt wondering when I had lost all the weight. No I hadn't lost weight I was just more 'streamlined' as my friend described it. I am still wearing skirts and shirts but the shirts are now more fitted and shaped rather than sack like and floaty. I have also taken to wearing shoes and nice sandals rather than just thongs. Thanks to you I feel quite a lot better about myself and about my presentation.

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    1. Dear Jane, this is truth for sure. The simple idea of longer ankle brushing pants instead of capris, and a button down shirt rather than a t-shirt, just makes one look more pulled together. I'm not surprised you had compliments. Yes, streamlined is the right term, I think. Even rounder folk like me, look better with a tailored shirt over a floaty one. That's been a lesson that's taken me a long time to learn! Being the shoe nazi, I've always tried to wear nice shoes, even if they are my Gizeh Birkis, which my sons lovingly call Granny Orth shoes. But to my mind, when I'm home or simply grocery shopping, at least these look neat and cute, over just 'surgical'...lol! I'm glad you feel better about self. Can I say me too? Love, Mimi xxx

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  4. Dearest Mimi,
    you look truly gorgeous, so beautiful and glad, your smile is filled with such a inner joy, thank you for sharing your sweetness !!!

    I pray your week is a blessed one

    XOXO Dany

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    1. Dearest Daniela, you are one of the reasons I am wearing hats! Your gorgeous post on bonnets recently, got me thinking. Love, Mimi xxx

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  5. I've really enjoyed your wardrobe journey. You have provided us with plenty of ideas and great photos to demonstrate the effect. Personally I have hardly purchased a thing. I'm really analysing what I already have which, like you, is a wardrobe full of clothes but still struggling to find things to wear. I have successfully modified some things and done a bit more mixing and matching. I'm afraid once I pair a shirt with a shirt or pants then that's it, I rarely change the theme but I have discovered some better combinations by taking the time to experiment. I gave my jewellery drawer a good clean out and made up some long necklaces out of beads that I never wear by pulling them apart and restringing them. Hope you continue with the wardrobe advice next year. I think I take more notice when it comes from a real everyday person rather than a glossy magazine.
    Thanks and all the best. Janiebabe

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    1. Janie, there were several things in your comment that resonated with me. Analysing what we have and shopping our own wardrobe for 'new to us' outfits is always a good one. I think we're all a bit guilty of assembling an 'outfit', and then never deviating from that assemblage. I do it too! But you are right when you say that my experimenting with other combinations, you can really find some successful and flattering ensembles. Well done too, on restringing the beads. I recently broke one of my favourite vintage strands and really must do the same. Melting the ends of lipsticks and repotting them into recycled lip balm pots is another idea along the same lines. I hate it when I use a favourite down to the tube level, and KNOW there's at least as much lippy in there again that I cannot get to without a lip brush. I will be continuing this theme next year. It's really kept me on my own toes! Thankyou. Mimi xxx

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  6. This is such a fabulous post, Mimi! You are correct, your old looks were just fine but why be fine when you can be fantastic?! You definitely took it up a notch and you look absolutely amazing! I love your style!

    Shelbee
    www.shelbeeontheedge.com

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    1. Dear Shelbee, hey thanks! Hi praise from you! Yes, I was 'okay' the way I was, but who wants that when we can be zhooshing up the neighbourhood with our personal fabulosity! Mimi xxx

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  7. Hello Mimi and thanks for joining up with Visible Monday. Love your pearls and your style! xo

    -Patti
    http://notdeadyetstyle.com

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    1. Hello Patti, and I am so pleased I've found some like-minded folk to get to know. Thankyou! Mimi xxx

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  8. Nice to meet you Mimi! A very chic look! I especially love the asymmetrical dress. I've never been a fan of ripped jeans, I'd be sewing patches on those! :-)

    ❤️carmen

    https://fashionableover50.wordpress.com

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    1. Lol Carmen...yes, lesson learned on the ripped jeans saga. What can I say. I am suitably chastened. Mimi ;-)

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  9. What a difference! You've really developed a lovely style of your own. Well done my dear!

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    1. Dearest Laura, you say the loveliest things...Mimi xxx

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  10. I love your new look, Mimi! Well done and very flattering! So classic, too. I like the idea of wearing pearls every day :) xo Karen

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    1. Life is short Karen. I say why not wear pearls as often as you can if you like them. Love, Mimi xxx

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  11. You look so nice! You have great style now! I love your hair too!

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    1. Vickie, you are lovely to say so...Mimi xxx

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  12. I too have followed along with your journey and then started my own. I didn't join an online course, but I did begin to actively study my shape, what suited it, what felt good upon me and what made me feel fantastic. I have embraced my inner girlie girl at long last! Like you, I found I was instinctively doing some things right and some things were just wrong. I began to question why something appeared off and what I could do differently etc. Result was that this year, for the first time in nearly 23 years I bought a dress. A little black dress. A dress that is not shapeless nor a form clinging thing either. It hits me just at the knee where no dress ever seemed to hit me anywhere but at mid-calf in the past. I always looked and felt dumpy in those dresses hence why I stopped wearing them. This dress fits properly. I tried on another in Navy which I like a lot with my skin and hair tones but the shape was off and I didn't see how that could be adjusted without a complete renovation of the material into something else, while the black dress truly was flattering.

    Now I'm taking my dil in hand. She's always been a little careless in her dress, quite pretty, but not suited to the professional that her husband is now. I'm taking into account her need to be budget minded and comfortable (nursing one baby, and a toddler to raise as well) and 'upping her game' so to speak. I hit target with her when I mentioned that she'd been quite right in upgrading their home from college dorm to young professional and now it was time to do the same with her wardrobe. I've shown her examples, mentioned things in her closet that will carry forward into the new image very well and encouraged her to look about her and try new things. All thanks to you starting a journey you wanted to share...

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I love hearing from you! I always respond to comments, so don't be shy! Mimi xxx