16 May 2012

A Style Journey.. do you have one?


Yesterday I wrote about how much I am starting to sound like my mother...I catch myself saying and doing things I never in a million years thought I would be doing 30 years ago. In fact, I am pretty sure I swore I never would. I recall sitting in the back of our station wagon as a scrappy teenager, me and my five younger siblings who were squabbling over some silly thing. I recall looking out the window in frustration and vowing to myself that I would never have kids, I would never be involved in the PTA (Parent's Association), I would never own or drive a station wagon, I would never live in a small town and I think I threw in that I would never marry as I was going to be a woman of the world ( it was the 70's). So hurrah to all that. I had made up my mind.

Thirty years on... I am married, I have four children, I was President of a PTA, owned and drove a mini-van for several years and I just might qualify as a some version of the woman of the world I wanted to be due to our expat lifestyle. Small town...I dream of it...somewhere in Maine. I threw in a career into the mix before we started travelling twelve years ago and haven't looked back. I count my blessings everyday.

Where is this all going? My wardrobe. We evolve, I get that. Our tastes change, our shapes change..I get that. Some of us reinvent ourselves several times as we move through our 30's, 40's. 50's and beyond.. I get that...but I am stumped. I open my Pinterest 'Style Notes' board every now and again and laugh. I wonder if I am living the wardrobe or dreaming the wardrobe or is it a little bit of both? I wonder if I am showing my age, I must as I love hanging out on my 'Style Notes' pinboard...I feel 'cool' when I do. The fact that I just said that would be enough for my kids to say that I am most definitely showing my age. But that's ok...


I use to dream of Africa and safari style clothes...I still do.

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Lauren Hutton was my style guru...she still is.

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Jeans, T-shirts, over sized men's shirts, 
 Katharine Hepburn style... it all still works for me.



But every now and again, 
I just want to be dazzled...




wear caftans...



 and funky bling..

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I would like to stride around town 
wearing groovy glasses...


and throw on an outrageously expensive 
but beautiful Naeem Khan coat.

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Long skirts? 
Yes and Yes.

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Purple Paisley Palazzo Pants?
Without a doubt!

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and hats??

You do not want to get me started...
all this fashion talk is starting to make me giddy.

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I often wonder what my sixteen year old self 
would think of my fifty something self. :)

Has your style changed over the years?
Do you ever yearn for a walk on the wild side?
On that note, I will leave you with this thought.

Thanks for following me on my Style journey.
I think I just avoided an identity crisis..
or maybe I am having one..
:)

Ah...the joys of life.

30 comments:

  1. Jeanne.

    I think we all look back once in awhile and remember things we said about the future and laugh...I too said I was never going to marry...I dated my husband for ten years before we married. Never wanted children, now have two step children and although I am not there mom I love them as if they were my own.

    I actually think my best traits and the ones where I am exactley like my mom and her mom before.

    As for style, I think I have evolved to love comfort but am still a classic dresser. I always was, the little black dress, the white shirt, the loafers, etc.

    I LOVE HATS, SHOES and BAGS!

    I hope you have a wonderful week, take care and thank you for sharing your memories.

    xx elizabeth

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    1. THank you Elizabeth...I am with you on hats, shoes and bags and realised after I posted this that I left them out. I will have to come back and correct that one day. :)

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  2. I love those caftans. I'll have one of each please.

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    1. I found them on Etsy Carina... http://www.etsy.com/listing/23397144/fitted-caftan-pink-love-poppy
      :)

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  3. Hello Jeanne
    I love your style and with those outfits and hat you will turn many heads.

    I have always loved good leather boots and long coats and equestrian style.

    Have a wonderful week.

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    1. I like your style Helen...I am thinking you would look fab in an Opera coat too! Here are a few that might interest you.... http://cashmerejeans.blogspot.co.uk/2011/12/swagger-and-dash-devotion.html

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    2. Hello Jeanne

      Yes, you have spotted my style. Those coats are beautiful. I particularly love the style of the turquoise one with the pleats and the fitted waist. I had an off white wool coat like this when I was 25. I used wear my hair-up and I wore turbans and always with my false eyelashes and high heeled boots. I wore my hair down too, which I always had to lift when I sat down as it was to my bottom. The construction workers went crazy when I walked past the site. Hee Hee. I tend to stick to black and or white for coats.
      I love the description of Heather's opera coat and I hope you take her up on her offer of borrowing it before departing the U.K. Now that would be a wonderful post or series "Clothing borrowed from my bloggers"
      Between you and Vicki Archer you have both made my day

      Helen xx

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    3. I loved reading about your style back in the day Helen...turbans, false eyelashes, high heeled boots...you would be a fashion statement today as well!

      I love writing between the lines in these comments...feels like we are writing in a secret world.... :)

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  4. Fashion is fun isn't it?
    Oh if I were to escape my reality and travel somewhere exotic I'd love to have the perfect wardrobe.

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    1. Leslie...based on what you have shown us, I would say your wardrobe is pretty perfect as is! :)

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  5. Hi there! I am 65! When I hear myself sounding like my mother.......I am delighted...and try to remember from whence it came!

    I lost her at 33!

    I think what you wrote here is so healthy and ironic, and progressive! It all sounds wonderful to me!!
    Bravo!!!

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  6. Nice post Jeanne,
    You have described it all very well.
    I have always worn what i feel good in. I have never followed fashion. If i like it I wore it. It could have been from a designer or the local clothing shop or market.
    My mother was a great dresser and living in Africa, our clothes were outside summer wear.
    Very nice choice of clothes.
    Just go with the flow Jeanne.. I can imagine you always look great.
    Happy tuesday.
    val

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  7. Jeanne, I am aware that as a newbie to your blog I am running the risk of sounding overly gushy but I had to comment again today. I made the exact same promise in response to a (very odd now that I think about it) teacher asking each member of the class to state their worst fear. Yes, mine was to grow up being a PTA Mom with a station wagon full of kids! I kid you not! The exact same expression. Perhaps it was part of the times? Children actually didn't end up being in the cards for me...but I have had other adventures.

    As for clothing, I was such a wild young thing in NYC, sartorially speaking. I loved the link to the video that you included--I used to know one of those fine ladies and have been inspired by all of them. However in my own life, I am amazed to find that I have let all of that go. I have a simple life now and dress accordingly. Cashmere sweaters, jeans and boots in winter or white shirts and linen in summer. Basta. But I do go up to visit my "old friends"--my sequin Stephen Sprouse jacket, my 50s velvet evening coats--from time to time. If you are correct in that we keep evolving then perhaps my life will change so that I will wear them again some day!

    PS. If you haven't seen Penelope Bianchi's post, run don't walk. But bring your hanky.

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    1. Heather...I love all that you said here, you have confirmed that I am not crazy! We share the same wardrobe..only mine is going in reverse to yours.
      A 50s velvet evening coat sounds wonderful, I would most definetly be searching that one out.
      I mentioned the Opera coat to Helen... have a look, I think you will love this too.. http://cashmerejeans.blogspot.co.uk/2011/12/swagger-and-dash-devotion.html :)

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    2. Helen WOULD look amazing in an opera coat, of that there is no doubt. And yes, it is settled, we have MANY of the same influences and probably do have the same wardrobe! I wear cashmere even in summer! I hope that you aren't that far gone. As for the velvet evening coat, if you ever really need it, just let me know and I will send it to you (but this would have to be before your trip as it is velvet lined in heavy satin and is very warm). Because are you ready for this? It is the color of your eyes! Or at least quite near--a soft periwinkle. I actually got rid of my other evening coats and capes but kept this last one. Just in case. :)

      And Ps. I would like to be that beautiful Carolyn designer woman when I grow up--may I?

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    3. I know...isn't Carolyn something! An inspiration. Guess what...I wear cashmere in summer, over my silk PJ's... I feel like a Hollywood starlet from days gone by. :)

      Soft periwinkle...sounds much better than blue! :)

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    4. I feel like I am with you Jeanne and Heather and how lovely it would be if we could be sitting with a cuppa and chatting in person.
      Your velvet coat Heather sounds incredible and I can imagine how Jeanne would carry it off so beautifully with those blue eyes. I am sure it also looks equally as good on you Heather with your beautiful red hair. What fun. I have always loved fashion and good tailoring, particularly Italian designers. For about ten years I had my own design knitwear business. Once in fashion, always an interest.

      Helen xx

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    5. It would be wonderful to sit over coffee wouldn't it Helen. Another one of similar style to the three of us is Pamela @ The House of Edward..she loves Carolyn's opera coats too. :)

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  8. I sound like my mom. I look like my mom. I don't dress like my mom! She wears matching sporting clothes. I love wearing long dresses in the spring and summer and jeans in the fall and winter. My 16 self would hate the dresses (she loved mini skirts!) and would say my jeans are too high, too dark, and too loose!
    Happy week to you Jeanne!

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    1. You mean you don't like the 'Nanna' look Carole? :) I know what you are saying...we each need to have our own style. :)

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  9. I think I know exactly where you're coming from because I feel the same way. For my fall trip to Paris, I'm thinking about being a bit more bold with the bling and style than is called for in my everyday wardrobe. After all, if only for myself, where else would I want to look more stylish than in Paris!

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  10. Except for a rather unfortunate Laura Ashley phase in the 80's, my style has pretty much stayed the same. Fairly classic with moments of theatricality thrown in on occasion. That Naeem Khan coat makes me swoon, I must say.

    And I simply adored your Mother's Day post! Those photographs were so charming. You look exactly, and I mean exactly, the same today as you did on that boat in the Mediterranean!

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    1. Can I say 'aw shucks'? You are so kind...just love those rose tinted glasses you wear Pamela...magic! :)

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  11. You know my story...leaving corporate life, village life and single life in one fell swoop had me staring into an empty closet wondering what to wear, who I was and how to be me in my new place. After searching my soul and spending (wasting)$$, I came full circle in understanding that my "basics" have never changed. There is comfort in familiar colors and favorite looks that you carry with you as you travel through life...picking up interesting bits and pieces along the way. Your challenge being to incorporate climate & culture with your fabulous style. I will be curious and look forward to following you on this path.

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    1. You have great style Lisa...I am sure it makes the woman of Stowe...very envious. I am with you on the basics, I could not live without them and really and truly when it comes right down to it...I am a sweater and jeans girl at heart. :)

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    2. Perhaps Viet Nam will never be the same after they've been introduced to Miss Jeanne! I'm thinking that this next phase will open you to collecting unique accessories and a silk wardrobe. As for me...I'm still working on introducing Stowe to leopard flats!

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  12. AMAZING POST:) love it. I really like your blog and I want to follow..do you have twitter or FB??

    If you want some swedish decor inspiration, you can check out my blog:)
    Have a great week.

    LOVE Maria at inredningsvis.se
    (Sweden)

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    1. Love your blog Maria...magical wedding photos, fairy book weddings. :)

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  13. I loved reading this post :) XX

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Can I just say....that I so enjoy what YOU have to say. Just a few words or a few paragraphs, no matter. If you would like to write to me directly, I would love to hear from you... jeannecollageoflife@gmail.com

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