I'm very fortunate to have a large circle of friends. One of them being the "fabulous" Kathy Gibbs, whom I've had the pleasure of working with for nearly thirty years. A few months ago in my blog, Why Camo Kathy Never Ages, I shared that in "Kathy World", everything is always roses and sunshine—no matter if it's pouring rain, or she comes into the office sick as a dog. When you ask her how she's doing, her reply is always the same: "I'm fabulous!"
The photo above was taken a couple of years ago in Cancun, Mexico when Kathy and I celebrated our twenty-fifth anniversary at JDC Enterprises, LLC, along with our spouses and friends and colleagues, Deborah and David Newman.
Over the years, Kathy, Deb, and I have attended too many association luncheons/dinners to count. (This also means that the three of us have eaten more than our share of overcooked or undercooked chicken!) I'm pretty sure Kathy and Deb were with me when we heard a motivational speaker, offering his advice on clearing out your closets. (Hmm, can a guy even relate to why women hang on to so many things?)
"You should get rid of anything that doesn't make you feel like a 'ten'," he preached emphatically from the podium. "How can you be self-confident and make a great impression if you don't feel like a 'ten'?"
Truth be told, I probably didn't hear the rest of his presentation. I was thinking about the myriad of clothes I owned—fat clothes, skinny clothes, 'corduroy shorts might come back into style clothes'—you know, the usual. Here are a few more that might sound familiar:
Things I told myself when I've bought clothes I've seldom (if ever) worn:
* These pants don't fit now, but in a couple of weeks . . .
* This color will be fine as long as I wear a cami underneath it to tone it down . . .
* The fabric might be scratchy but I can live with it . . .
* It's a bit short, but maybe with some black tights . . .
* This top looks great! I'm sure there's something in my closet that will go with it!
* If I buy the right accessories, this can totally work!
In my 2020 Closet ClotheSure Challenge, one of the hard and fast (and self-imposed!) rules is that I must get rid of anything in my closet that doesn't make me feel like a "ten". Over the past forty weeks, (including when we were "sheltering in place" and not even going to the office), I've soldiered on, wearing things in my closet that haven't seen the light of day for a year—or in some cases, over fifteen years!
Interestingly enough, I've found that I've reached a point where I can look at something and know that it's not going to make me feel like a "ten" before I even put it on. Sometimes it's because I associate a sad or negative memory with the outfit, but most of the time it's due to the fact that I should never have bought the garment in the first place!
There've also been many outfits that my husband (and photographer), James has encouraged me to get rid of because he didn't think they were up to the "ten" level. And, while I've appreciated his input (as well as his patience with this admittedly insane project!), the decision is all mine. I think there've only been a handful of things that I've donated that he's objected to.
"I really like that one!" James will say.
When I tell them the outfit is a goner, and why, he doesn't argue. Clearing out our closets is something he's completely on board with—although he's been pretty shocked at the abundance of clothes that keep manifesting in front of his eyes each week!
I know. So sorry!
I believe I'm far enough along on this journey to share the following things that make me feel like a "ten":
The first thing starts before I even slip on my chosen outfit for the day. It's important to me to get my head and my heart in the right place each morning. Since I'm an early riser, I try to set aside devotional time for God in the quiet of the morning.
Secondly, each morning I spend between twenty and thirty minutes doing some kind of exercise. For the last few years, this has been done predominantly on our vibrating platform. If you haven't read my blog, Sending Out Good Vibrations, I'd encourage you to do so to learn more about this incredible workout tool.
Thirdly, the outfit that I'm wearing must be well-constructed and fit my body-type. These days I'm keeping mostly garments with more classic styles. Like this Ann Taylor/White House Black Market combo from Week 13:
4. The colors I wear must compliment my skin tones. (I love ALL colors, but the fact is, they don't all look so hot on me!)
5. Accessories are an important addition to any outfit. Selecting the best jewelry to wear with things is as important as the outfit itself. I'll choose my accessories when I'm selecting which outfit I'll wear so that everything is pulled together before I get dressed.
6. Shoes, shoes, shoes!!!! I think I've also told everyone that I'm kind of a shoe-horse! I've found that an ill-fitting shoe can KILL my overall look. During Closet ClotheSure I've donated nearly twenty-five pairs of shoes, ridding my closets of worn, uncomfortable or unacceptable footwear. These days, I'm going with the less-is-more approach, investing in only leather shoes, and although I'm five-ten, I still dig high heels! In my opinion, blocky heels aren't as sexy as classic heels but are definitely more comfortable if you're going to be on your feet a lot. (I keep a pair of flats under my desk at the office in case I need to make a quick-switch!)
7. I guess I should include hair and makeup as part of what makes me feel like a "ten". Call me vain, but I seldom leave the house without makeup—even on weekends. Most days I'm still rockin' "eighties-hair"—my hair has a mind of its own and although I do try to tame it now and again with a flatiron, James likes it wild and curly (which is way-easier anyway!) So, that's how I usually wear it.
There you have it! All the things that go into making me feel like a "ten"! (can someone scream: HIGH MAINTENANCE?) For the record, I know that seems like a lot! LOL! I'm sure my list is completely different from everyone else's, and that's okay. Also, I don't consider myself to be a great beauty or anything, I just try to play up what I've got and strive to look my best—so, please don't think I'm full of myself because trust me—I'm not!
Fortunately, I have a stellar husband who thinks I look beautiful no matter what I'm wearing. He tells me I'm always a "perfect ten" in his book! But don't get me wrong! The last time I thought about going sans-makeup on a lunch date with him, James gave me a surprised look and asked, "Babe, don't you think you'd like to put on just a little mascara and some lipstick since we're going out?"
Hmm. Well . . . I never said he was perfect!!!!
Closet ClotheSure Week 40
It was easy for me to say goodbye to this one! The wrap-around top from New York & Company is one of those high-maintenance garments that is more trouble than its worth! The billowy sleeves get hung up on the arms of my desk chair and it's also a bit high-waisted for me.
The capri pants are cool in that they have zipper pockets. I picked them up at Ann Taylor a few years back and have seldom worn them as they're pretty baggy on me.
Also, the black cage shoes have hit the highway as well! So, pretty much everything in the Monday photo is gone!
This one was a little harder for me because I adore the color of this pocketed turquoise dress from New York & Company. The fabric is super soft (I refer to it as my diaper dress!) and it's really quite comfortable to wear. Unfortunately, it really isn't flattering on me at all so it's also gone!
Sidebar: I love pairing red and turquoise. The awesome red heels by Jessica Simpson are for-sure keepers!
One of my all-time favorite dresses by Lauren. This beautiful blue and white dress was given to me by my friend Jan about five or six years ago. It's a true classic and the cinching along the side make it really flattering. It's also very soft - a combination of cotton and polyester. I wish I had this dress in every color!!!
Thursday's dress, from White House Black Market wasn't a hit on social media, but it's a keeper! I like the peek-a-boo sleeves, the color and the length of it. I'm not always a big fan of horizontal stripes, but it works well on this well-cut number! If it had pockets, it'd be the perfect dress!
From The Garden
Not a whole lot going on in our yard right now. Our granddog Dallas has consumed most of the pumpkins and all the beautiful, potted mums we had have done their thing. (We've planted them down by the creek)
With the time change this past weekend, our evening walks near the lake have afforded us the opportunity to witness some incredible sunsets.
I continue to pray for peace over our nation, in spite of all the turmoil this year. We must all remember that God is in control and hope is on the move!