Sunday, September 16, 2012

"Kentucky Fashion" is NOT and Oxymoron

The definition of oxymoron: [(ok-see- mawr -on)] "A rhetorical device in which two seemingly contradictory words are used together for effect: “She is just a poor little rich girl.”" When I chose the name "Kentucky Fashion" for my Facebook, Twitter, Polyvore and Blog name it never occurred to me that someone might think it was an oxymoron. I thought it described what I was attempting to do....bring a little fashion and style advice to my Friends in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Nearly a year later I realize that not everyone believes there are fashionable women in Kentucky but that's their perception not mine. I have received a lot of favorable feedback from people who read my pages and view my Sets on Polyvore so I will continue with my rewarding "hobby." As I have traveled around the country I have shopped in some very fine establishments. Quite often I am asked where I am from. No doubt my "Kentucky Twang" is revealed when I answer. Occasionally, I sense the sales person assumes I am a hick or a country bumpkin. I try to smile so she will see that I have all of my own teeth since that is often in question. Salespeople, who treat me with so little respect, will not enjoy the commission from a possible purchase. I am sure they are trained to weed out those who appear to be serious shoppers from those who are just curiousity seekers. I have studied the history of fashion, read many biographies of the most famous fashion designers, have a subscription to "Vogue" and "W" magazines and keep up with fashion trends on the Internet. I am always clean, well dressed with make up applied and my hair fixed when I go shopping. If I choose to visit a designer boutique it stems from a passion for the work of that designer, not just because I want to look at "bling." Below are some tips for people who would like to browse designer boutiques and retail shops that offer high end merchandise. Kentucky Women are not backward but we may be shy about entering an establishment only to be greeted by icy stares or someone who makes us feel as if we don't belong. When I visit a designer boutique or high end shop I am always very careful when I handle the fine fabrics used to make the clothing and scarves. Instead of grabbing and pulling on a hanging garment I use the back of my hand in a vertical position to gently go in-between the garments. I move the hook of the hanger by sliding it to the right or the left. If I handle the fabric I start at the inside of the hem. Not only does this protect the fabric if my hands have oil on them from lotion but it also demonstrates to the sales staff that I respect the fine fabric and construction of every garment I touch. I was fascinated by the tiny chains that were interwoven in a "Chanel" tweed fabric used for a long jacket. I carefully brought the jacket closer to me so I could see it better. I ask the sales staff a lot of questions so they will know that I am serious and not there to waste their time. I would never try on a pair of designer shoes unless I was planning to purchase them. If you do be sure to ask for a "footie" or whatever they offer to cover your bare foot. Never stick your bare foot into an expensive designer shoe, it is very rude and disrespectful. I always ask the sales person to open and close handbags or pull scarves out of the display case to spread out on the counter. I put my hands behind my back to show respect for their products. I ask them to bring only one jewelry item out of the case at a time. Again, this shows respect and creates trust. I think it is a good idea to take children and grandchildren into stores that sell high end goods. They need to learn how to behave when surrounded by items they don't normally see.

Nude Hosiery

Nude hose. They've gotten a bad name over the past few years as women opted for a bare leg look. That's fine if you have perfect looking legs. Tanning helps too but we don't always have the time. I like nude hose as long as they are a "body match." I learned about this while judging Junior Miss pageants years ago. If you can find hose and shoes that match your skin then your legs are going to look better. If you have varicose or spider veins the nude hose will smooth them out visually. Department stores always have samples of their hose near the displays. Put your hand inside the samples until you find your "body match." Always check the size chart on the back because all of them are different. If in doubt and if your budget allows buy a pair from at least two different manufacturers. If one fits save the packaging so you will know what to buy the next time. My Grandmother Ruby taught me to put on a pair of white nylon gloves before handling my hosiery. She said it keeps them from getting pulls and runs from rough fingernails and rings. They last longer too. The gloves are sold in Bridal departments and Bridal shops. I launder my hose in a lingerie bag in the washing machine and hang them up to dry. I don't like hose worn with open toe shoes or sandals. I have a pair of hose without toes in them but they tend to cut off my circulation. The gloves work well for handling opaque tights too. I'm still wearing some that I've had since 2005.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Designer Handbags

Designer handbags: A lot of women I know would never dream of spending $$$ or $$$$ on a handbag. Even though the quality and style could never be matched in a less expensive bag. A high quality handbag can be worn with everything but a cocktail dress or an evening gown. It will be your constant companion and is large enough to hold everything you need while at work or running the grandkids to ball games. It is an "investment" piece. It will raise your self-confidence by making you feel put together even if you aren't. A designer handbag in black or brown will go with just about everything in your closet. I know this because my husband bought me a beautiful black designer bag for my birthday two years ago. I've carried it every day since. Using "fashion math" I took the price of the bag and divided it by the number of days I've used it. It came out to a very insignificant amount per day. The bag is well designed and comfortable to carry. There are no rough edges and or too much embellishment. It looks sleek and is just the right size to carry everything I need. Christmas is right around the corner so do a little browsing on your favorite designer's website. Stop and look at the higher priced bags in local department stores. Let your family know you would like one and maybe everyone will pitch in and give mother/grandmother a beautiful designer handbag for Christmas or her next birthday. ♥

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Some Tips From My Dressing Room

To make your manicure last longer or if you just like your nails to have some shine I recommend "Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat." If your coat hangers leave bumps on the shoulders of your tops, keep a travel size spray bottle of water handy. I spritz the area and smooth the bumps out and the fabric is dry and flat before I leave the house. I also carry one in my luggage to spritz my hair and to get wrinkles out of my clothes. If I don't have time to do my hair before leaving the hotel room I just dampen it with water in the spray bottle and use a wide tooth hair pick to rearrange my hair where I've slept on it. My sewing basket has needles pre-threaded with at least 10 different colors. It's easy to make quick repairs and replace buttons. I don't like panty lines and I refuse to wear thong underwear at my age so the compromise is "Bali Skimp Skamp" panties in black and nude. They are soft and slick so clothing glides over them and they are very light weight so you can't tell you are wearing anything. They are especially comfortable if you are long waisted like I am because they stretch to fit. The lady at Von Maur told me that a new panty called a "shaping shortie" is flying off the racks. The tag reads: "maximizes comfort while giving you a hug around the middle."