over50feeling40: November 2015
Fashion and Lifestyle Blog for women over 50 to help achieve strength, confidence, joy, inspiration, and, of course, head-turning personal style!

Nov 29, 2015

Hit Your Style Sweet Spot: The Casual Holiday Office Party

Welcome to a new collaboration with Jennifer of A Well Styled Life and Pam of over50feeling40.  We desire for all of us…the grandmothers, the professionals, the retirees, the volunteers… the fabulous women over 50 …to look and feel our best each and every day.  After years of blogging for this audience, we have heard from so many of you about your discouragement and despondency when you look in the mirror every morning.  But, we both know just how transformative style can be and we hope to encourage you with specific, step-by-step guidelines right here every Sunday.  We would like to see all of us empowered with strength, joy, and confidence!
Each Sunday, we will bring to you a scenario we face each week and show you our step-by-step process as we decide what to wear…you will see on our individual blogs how we handle the challenge and seek our personal sweet spot for the day!
This week we are styling for a casual office party.  The majority of businesses will hold smaller functions rather than dinner and dancing.  These stunning poinsettias were gifted to me by guests for Thanksgiving Dinner and I use them to remind you to take a hostess gift to parties in homes.  It is such a nice touch...flowers like these are a great way to honor the hostess ...or...consider...
One of these faux fur collars from SOFT SURROUNDINGS along with a bottle of wine or champagne.  
Now, back to the clothes!

My Old Frumpy Thinking...kept me from going to many parties during my 40s.  I was not confident in my clothing, so I would avoid attending many events.  I did not think I measured up to other women my age.

My New Healthy Thinking...I go out with confidence and a smile...in my sixties...at my size...wearing a style which reflects who I am. I do not let negative messages keep me from enjoying life...Life Is Short!

My Old Frumpy Thinking...followed old rules.  Such as, don't wear white after Labor Day; women of a certain age should not wear sparkle...women of a certain age look silly in booties.  Let's throw all those out the window!  There are a few style rules which have merit...not these.
Here is a casual outfit which helps me to feel fun, festive, and confident.  I love the white sweater in contrast to the green sequined tank.    

TALBOT'S SWEATER (purchased last year) 
LANE BRYANT GREEN SEQUINED TANK (purchased four years ago)
JJILL SEAMED PONTE KNIT PENCIL SKIRT ( I have two of these in black and brown and I LOVE these skirts.  Great for any occasion; comfortable; looks great!)LIZ CLAIBORNE BOOTIES FOUND AT MARSHALL'S FOUR YEARS AGO

The last year before Coldwater Creek closed the physical stores, I found this brooch at Christmastime.  It was the last one and I liked it so much, I asked a sales associate to climb into the window and take it off the mannequin.  She did and I am so glad she did!
It will please me every year when I take it out for special occasions.
Remember, white is an acceptable and elegant holiday color.  You can wear it on tops or bottoms.  Also, sparkle is acceptable...just keep it under control!

Now, let's go see what JENNIFER is wearing to the party!


Have a sparkly holiday week!

Nov 28, 2015

Bobbi Brown Holiday Eyes

This is the Bobbi Brown Greystone Eye Palette only available for a limited time just to get your eyes holiday- ready!  Find the BOBBI BROWN EYE PALETTE HERE!
I have worn these beautiful colors the last two years around party time and I really love them.  Just the right touch of shimmer...not too much and gorgeous color.   

Now to see what clothing JENNIFER and I would wear to a casual holiday party, come back tomorrow for the next edition of ....

We will see you then! (It will look great with the eye shadow!)

Have a wonderful Saturday!

Remember, to support your small local businesses this year!  SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY

Nov 27, 2015

Thoughts for the Day...

Midlife bloggers were asked to give out thoughts about aging for AV HOMES WEBSITE...it is fun to see what everyone said!

This will be my first Black Friday from the retail side!  I am sure it requires patience and a smile.  

Are you shopping the sales?  If so, what is the top item on your list?  Are you going to stores or shopping online?  Please share!

Then...Have a Fabulous Friday!!

Nov 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

For all who celebrate this day, I hope you enjoy every minute of it! My turkey is dressed up and in the oven; cornbread is made and ready to be turned into stuffing; and all the guests arrive this afternoon.  We have so much to be thankful for...

I am so thankful for all of you!  And my heart is also in another place with those who are not with us today...

Have a delicious day!

Nov 25, 2015

Soft Surroundings Beauty & Osmotics Skin Care

I have the pleasure of greeting customers as they enter the door at our Soft Surroundings location in the Shops of La Cantera as one of my many jobs.  My favorite reactions are to watch customers who are joining us for the first time.  They breathe deeply the fabulous aromas, and they delight in the true beauty of the store itself...especially, the beauty department.

The department is well stocked with some of the top quality products on the market in skincare and makeup. 

Recently, Soft Surroundings asked me to try the Osmotics Skincare line.  I have been using the BLUE COPPER 5 FACE LIFTING SERUM, and I really like it. You can feel the firming and tightening in a gentle way.  There is something very reassuring about using products developed with quality, safe ingredients.  
The EYE SURGERY cream is appropriately named.  When I began to use it, I needed something which would bring a marked difference underneath my eyes...this does.  I say a change in the dark circles and puffiness.  I would highly recommend this one...this is the best eye product I have tested all year.

You might also want to try the ANTI-RADICAL AGE DEFENSE MOISTURE COMPLEX...products made just for us!!

If you are near a SOFT SURROUNDINGS location, stop in and and they will give you samples to take home.  If you are near The Shops of La Cantera on La Cantera Parkway...come in and we will greet you with a smile!

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Disclaimer:  I was provided products to test for this post.  The words are my own.

Nov 24, 2015

Gratitude and Personal Style

I think a heart of gratitude has a lot to do with our personal style...please join me today on MIDLIFE BOULEVARD to the discussion.

Let's sit down with coffee or tea around the table in ....

Have a thankful Tuesday!!

Nov 22, 2015

Hit Your Style Sweet Spot For Thanksgiving Dinner!

Welcome to a new collaboration with Jennifer of A Well Styled Life and Pam of over50feeling40.  We desire for all of us…the grandmothers, the professionals, the retirees, the volunteers… the fabulous women over 50 …to look and feel our best each and every day.  After years of blogging for this audience, we have heard from so many of you about your discouragement and despondency when you look in the mirror every morning.  But, we both know just how transformative style can be and we hope to encourage you with specific, step-by-step guidelines right here every Sunday.  We would like to see all of us empowered with strength, joy, and confidence!
Each Sunday, we will bring to you a scenario we face each week and show you our step-by-step process as we decide what to wear…you will see on our individual blogs how we handle the challenge and seek our personal sweet spot for the day!
Today, we are discussing what to wear this Thursday for Thanksgiving dinner!  I will be the host home for around eight family members.  So, my challenge is to wear something fun, comfortable, confident, and functional sense I am in charge of the turkey, gravy, dressing, and mashed potatoes.  The rest of meal will be brought by others.

MY OLD FRUMPY THINKING: I am embarrassed to admit in the past I have showed up to meals I was in charge of in really, really casual clothes...my frumpy thinking said if it can be stained, don't wear something nice. After all, it's my house...these people know what I look like!

NEW HEALTHY THINKING:  I will be more confident about the meal, decorations, everything if I look and feel my best.  Aprons are great accessories and will protect my nice things.  Also, I am choosing a dark color to wear this year...because it will hide a possible splash of the gravy on my top! (I got the squirrel and mouse when we had our first Thanksgiving with children...they kind of stuck around for every one after).
OLD FRUMPY THINKING: In my 30s and 40s, I would try to dress for the season with either theme sweaters and vests or the traditional colors of the season.  I love decorating for the event, but really those things need to stay in the decorations and not on my body.  A turkey hat or theme sweater is good if you want to communicate humor...fun..silliness...but, not good if you want to communicate chic hostess!

So, this is what I plan to wear.....

 This black Sequined tank is a few years old and was purchased at CHICO'S. A touch of sparkle always works at holiday time.


 This dark blue Cardigan is by a San Antonio designer and is at DILLARDS (has pockets and I love pockets)

Shoes are very important, because I am on my feet all day...cooking and serving my guests.  ROCKPORT sent these beautiful TOTAL MOTION HIDDEN WEDGE BALLET FLAT IN BLACK SUEDE. Not only is this a chic shoe, it is designed to handle impact in the heel area and is very comfortable.  Perfect for the occasion.  ROCKPORT has some incredible shoes for women and men this season.  Just check the styles out HERE.

This is a very comfortable style and I feel confident in the look.  Blue on black is one of those chic combinations which just works so well together!  It is important to wear what you feel confident in. My hair appointment is Wednesday...then I will be ready!

Now, here is a special treat.  A couple of my friends are modeling styles from the SOFT SURROUNDINGS at THE SHOPS AT LA CANTERA and these are perfect to wear on Thanksgiving!

Barbara is modeling.....

Sandi is modeling...


What are you planning to wear this Thursday?  Please share your ideas and comments...and also know, I am thankful for each one of you!  

Now, let's go see what Jennifer is wearing...HERE


Have a wonderful week!

Disclaimer:  The shoes were sent to me from Rockport.  The words are my own.

Nov 21, 2015

Hit Your Style Sweet Spot Reminder

Happy Saturday, everyone.  Hope you are warm and toasty this beautiful autumn day!

I wanted to remind you to join JENNIFER and I tomorrow to see what we plan to wear for Thanksgiving dinner!!  I can't wait to see what Jennifer is wearing.

Please join us for this popular new series....

See you tomorrow!

Nov 19, 2015

Listen to Our Blab....and the Poise Experiment Continues!

On Tuesday, I confessed HERE ON MIDLIFE BOULEVARD in our weekly column, that I was convicted about how I dress at home.  The book, POLISH YOUR POISE WITH MADAME CHIC, has convinced me that even when all I do is stay at home.  I need to dress in such a way as to reflect poise and respect for myself and family.  This is one of the ways poise becomes a learned behavior.

I do believe I get more done when I dress as if I am working somewhere else and I also feel better about the day, life, and my work!

So, I have tossed out some of my comfortable, ragged duds in an effort to have less options!  On this day at home, I chose to wear:


As all things, this will take one day at a time.  I do reserve the right to take a few days off during the holidays, wrapped in a warm robe, drinking coffee and watching Christmas movies...that's called needed rest!
Now, here is one of the things I have done at home lately...appear on BLAB with Jennifer...listen to us

BLAB LINK HERE  (we were on the air as the sun was setting in Texas, so I got darker, and darker, and darker!  Will have a new broadcast location next time!!)

Happy Friday!!

Meet Susan Kanoff...Another Over 50 Fashion Blogger!

I would like to officially introduce you to Susan Kanoff of THE MIDLIFE FASHIONISTA.  Susan allowed me to toss some questions at her and, so, we begin with just getting to know her:

I’m a 54-year-old wardrobe stylist, style blogger and part-time social  worker (whew!) from the Greater Boston area.
I have two children from my first marriage, Neal, 25 and Alyssa 29 (who is married to a great guy Sean). I’ve been married to Richard for 11 years --he also has two grown kids Leah and Tuan. 
Oh and I can't forget my grandbabies Guinness Burrito the Black Lab and Magner Taco Bunny.

      How did you go from social work to stylist?
Good question. When I tell people what I do, they seem to look a bit dazed and confused! As far back as I can remember I’ve always had a passion for clothes mixed with a love for helping others.
When I was in high school I decided that I wanted to be a hair stylist.  However my father (who was a Harvard graduate) wouldn’t hear of it and he strongly encouraged me to attend college. I ended up at The University of Massachusetts where I pursued the next best thing to the beauty world…social work.  I graduated from college, had children, and worked for various social service organizations, but I never lost my passion for clothes. 
About nine years ago, I dressed a friend for her brother's wedding and my work got noticed! People wanted to know if I would also help them, so with my friend’s encouragement I started a business!
Within a short time, I had a clientele and was even styling for television. I later became the Style Editor for a local magazine and have collaborated with such stores as Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, J. Jill, Macy’s, Lord & Taylor.  Not too shabby for a social worker!

When I’m not in the stores or on photo shoots, I run The Family Self-Sufficiency Program (a federal program) for a local housing authority. It's hard to believe that I've been at the same job for over 21 years, but I truly love the work and I strongly believe in the mission of the program (moving families out of poverty through education and employment). 

 When did you begin blogging?

I've been blogging for years, but over the past several months I stepped things up by collaborating with a photographer (who just happens to be my best friend!). I changed the name of my blog to The Midlife Fashionista and revamped the site to give it a cleaner and more sophisticated look.  I chose the name The Midlife Fashionista because I want midlife women to know that we CAN rock modern and stylish clothes! The blog is a great way for women to get fresh new ideas that they can incorporate into their own wardrobe. I try to link to the pieces I’m wearing or give suggestions for similar styles. I like to think of the blog as a type of online style magazine for us “midlifers”.
I also try to make my posts relatable by infusing my own life-experiences…we are all in this together!

  What are your top 5 pieces of advice when working with 50+ women to make changes in their overall style?

*Go for a professional bra fitting. Our bodies change over the years—especially during weight shifts.  A supportive bra makes a huge difference in the way clothes fit and can actually take pounds off! 

*Weed your closet often. Get rid of outdated clothes that are past their prime.  Only keep the pieces you love, make you feel fabulous and fit well.  I see a lot of women hanging on to clothes that are too small because they’re hoping to shed a few pounds someday. This is emotional blackmail.  Why beat yourself up every time you look in the closet? Plus why take up valuable closet space with clothes that no longer fit? If you insist on keeping clothes that are too small, I recommend storing them outside of your closet.  If you end up losing weight, you can revisit them. However my experience is that when women shed pounds, they want to treat themselves to a shopping spree and rarely want to keep the old stuff!

*Know your best styles and colors and stay away from frumpy or dated clothes. As we get older it’s even more important to dress well. Understand your body shape and choose styles and colors that flatter you. Play up your assets (if you have great legs, don’t cover them up) and camouflage the areas that you’re self-conscious about (for many midlife women, including myself, it’s the mid-section).   Choose modern designs and cuts and avoid patterns, fabrics and styles that are aging.  I believe, as we get older, we should invest in quality vs. quantity. 

*Avoid the bargain trap. There are so many great sales out there and it’s easy to fill your closet with bargain pieces that don’t get worn. I go with the $10/$100 rule. A $10 bargain worn once (or never worn!) is no bargain. However, $100 piece that gets worn over and over again is a great deal.  Shift your mindset from “bargain” to cost per wear.

*Find a great tailor.  A fabulous tailor will become your best friend. A little nip, tuck or hem can give you the perfect fit.

 Your favorite garment to wear to a holiday party is…

It may sound cliché, but a fabulous little black dress.  A LBD is always so classic and chic...plus it's versatile, easily accessorized and can be worn just about everywhere. Depending on the event, I’ll make it edgy with a fitted leather jacket, tights and suede boots or dress things up with crystal chandelier earrings, heels and a statement coat. One of my favorite black dresses is a J. Crew silk shift dress that is so simple but always chic.

By the way, if black is not your color try navy or charcoal gray. I’m also loving merlot this season!

Thank you, Susan for sharing a little about you...I hope everyone will visit her blog to say hello!

Have a joyful, warm Thursday!

Nov 18, 2015

This and That....

On Monday's HIT YOUR STYLE SWEET SPOT, I was holding these two books in my photos.  I just received them and look forward to reading




Also, our first cold front for South Texas blew in yesterday, so I am excited to use these XPANDA SOCKS!   Cute and they stay up...They look like a keeper!

Finally, this afternoon, Jennifer and I will be on another Blab discussing confident fashion after fifty!  Please subscribe and join in with THIS LINK HERE!

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Nov 17, 2015

Discover Everything Thanksgiving at La Cantera Resort

Thanksgiving is about family...and nutmeg...and football...and pumpkins...and turkey...and laughter...and beauty...and, of course, gratitude.  And...I discovered it all at LA CANTERA RESORT tonight.
Bloggers were invited to a SWEETFIRE KITCHEN Thanksgiving banquet served family style in comfortable, hill country elegance.

The menu included a succulent turkey, which was soaked in brine for five days and slow roasted to perfection.  Served alongside a peppered, slow roasted prime rib, both meats were accompanied with delicious gravy and the Chef's specialties for horseradish and cranberry sauce. 75% of the food is from local growers and producers.  

Everything on this menu was perfection...but my favorite was perhaps his special dressing, with the cranberry sauce, of course!
This is a wonderful option for your Thanksgiving meal...some of you will want a delicious, intimate, special dinner and you will find it at LA CANTERA surrounded by the beauty of hilltop views. 
You don't give up anything...not even the pumpkin pie...and it is a meal to remember.  

SweetFire Thanksgiving Buffet
$65 Adults
$25 Children 5-12
Children 4 and under Free
Call 210-558-2479 for

I am thankful they invited us to dinner!