Personal Style Over 50: The Art Meets Science Cocktail

 Have I piqued your interest with the “art meets science cocktail,” and what it has to do with personal style?  Well read on….the last week and a half have been about relaxing, doing things I love, and getting back to my old self again.  I had allowed stress and work to wear me down.  As I explained last week, I moved my home office upstairs and reorganized.  Amidst that re-organization, I re-discovered some books I love.  One of them is “Forever Chic: Frenchwomen’s Secrets for Timeless Beauty, Style, and Substance,” by Tish Jett, a journalist, author, blogger, wife,  mother, grandmother, and American living in France.

This book helped me to learn what felt right when I was dressing.  I learned that my love of neutrals was more than fine, and not boring by any means.  “Think about it,” Tish writes. ” With neutrals, a woman can always pull something out of the closet and pull herself together without hysteria in record time.  Everything goes together naturally, no mess, no stress.”

“Frenchwomen of a certain age have built their wardrobes upon a foundation of neutrals.  They add spice with a few magical, highly personal finds.  That way they “own”  the look.  They are masters of the art-meets-science-cocktail.  Science is the structure.  Art is the refinement, the individualization of the whole.  It’s the artistic twists that transform the ubiquitous into the unusual, the unique.”

According to Tish, Frenchwomen believe “it is all about feeling good in your clothes.  That’s when a woman has style.”

My wardrobe is built on a solid foundation of neutrals, and I often go that direction more than any…though I have learned to love prints, colors, and artistic fashion.  However, an outfit like this one just feels like ME.

The Joan Vaas Leggings are from Marshalls

The cream tunic by sejour is a thrift find at The Garment Exchange (My final piece from last week’s shopping) . (Note:  The Link is for her Ebay shop!)

The gold Tory Burch flats were from a Nordstrom sale a couple of years ago.

The Marie Necklace by Kathleen Nowak Tucci was created from recycled rubber fabric and is available at Artful Home.

I have owned this clutch so long that I really have no memory of where it came from…sad, but true.

This is how I neutrals (the science) and mix it with my own form of art.  If you are interested in Tish’s Book…it is HERE.

I also found some fun pieces for your consideration below.  But, tell us…what does a typical outfit for you look like when you are wearing something that feels like you?  Do you know?  Does the science/art theory make sense to you?  Please share……and, as always,




  1. This is so true about neutrals. It makes dressing so much easier and you will always feel pulled together. Your look is classy and interesting with that necklace and those great shoes! I feel like I have two lives, probably because I do, so I’d say for work I feel most like me when I’m in a fit and flare dress with a topper of some sort (for air conditioning) with heels and a statement necklace. When I’m not at work it has to be a neutral tunic (or at least a longer shirt) (currently loving gray and olive) with leggings or slim fitting jeans and flats, usually with a scarf. I don’t like to look like I tried too hard nor do I spend too much time putting together an outfit. This is where having a wardrobe that is mostly neutrals will come in handy! The advice in the book is true, have a neutral wardrobe and make it ‘you’ by adding accessories. Thank you for the affirming post!

  2. You look attractive and still comfortable. Your accessories, always pull you into the ‘dressed and ready for the day’ look. It is my philosophy that comfort should be the 1st item ticked in our wardrobe selections. After that, all the other things you mentioned. Once we figure out what colors and styles work well on our body shapes and natural coloring, it’s just a matter of how to put it all together. Since comfort is number 1 for me and am retired, I pretty much live in jeans. So, that’s my ‘neutral’, I use. LOL! These days, most all the jeans are made with a little bit of stretch, which I am thankful for. No more stiff Levis, that I lived in as a teenager. My almost everyday look is a pair of jeans, (I have different colors and styles of boot, baby boot, straight and slim, some are even slightly distressed,), and a comfortable top, the style of the top depends on the temperature. Shoes depend on the cut of the jeans and the weather. Going out of the house, I throw my hair up into a bun and put on a pair of hoop earrings. Done.

    1. I love jeans, Diana…and I do consider them a neutral. I think they go with any thing and be dressed up or down. I agree it is good to have more than one cut of jean as long as it flatters our figures and gives us confidence. I am always comfortable when I feel confident! Thanks for your comment!

  3. Currently, neutral colored ankle pants, tops and jackets are what I prefer. However, I don’t feel like “me” without earrings and a necklace. I put little emphasis on shoes except comfort. I don’t change handbags often. Definitely admire your outfit today! You accessorize so well.

    1. You are so kind, Linda. Really, you describe what I wear most often. Comfort shoes are now everything to me…but thank goodness there are fun ones on the market!

  4. Great look, Pam! I so enjoy your blog and I have an “off topic” question. We have the same patio table and chairs on our patio here in Oregon. I love the white decor you have on the table. Can you let me know where you purchased it. Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Mary Ann, thanks for being here. My table decor is a Goodwill find! We have great Goodwills in San Antonio and I always find fun treasures! Sorry I cannot send you to a place to find it. Have a great day!

  5. My go-to reflects my job as a junior high school teacher, but over the years I’ve come to prefer it for most days off too. I wear slim pants (usually black or another dark neutral), a colorful, solid color tank, and a denim jacket or, more likely, a flowy open cardigan (linen knit in spring, blend or cashmere in fall). I make elaborate bead embroidered jewelry and wear a statement, wild, or just plain huge necklace, or a scarf and thick beaded cuff. I have over a hundred scarves and delight in tying them various ways. I love shoes and have many, in neutrals, leopard, suede, bright colors. Like a lot of women, I just prefer to make my style statement through accessories.

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