What Should I Wear? To Meet Someone…NOW!

Pamela Lutrell with What Should I Wear

Welcome to What Should I Wear Wednesday where I brainstorm different situations we all face with our clothing and present ideas and options to solve the challenges.  This recently happened to me, so it made me think…perhaps it happens to some of you too. 

I was working around the house wearing these JJill cargo pants,  an over sized comfy tee, house shoes and no makeup when a friend called and said…I am in the area near you…come meet me now for a glass of wine…but hurry! I really wanted to see her so it was worth the slight panic when I looked in the mirror and said out loud…I can’t go out looking like this!

Pamela Lutrell for Fish City Grill

As you can see, I changed to a nicer top, a denim jacket (really for warmth), changed house slippers to my Via Spiga flats , and touched up the makeup.  I was there by the time the waitress served the drinks.

Over 50 Feeling 40 with What Should I wear


Making “Spur of the Moment” work

Here is what I recommend for times when you need to grab and go:

  1. An organized, clean closet is a must.  I can easily see what I have and how I can coordinate it very quickly when my closet is organized the way I like it.  I have told you before that I hang my garments in families.  That way I know where to find this leopard print Chicos top…it is with the Chicos Family.  If I was just looking for “a top”, then I would get overwhelmed and lost.  These pants hang with the JJill Family. The way I always remember my clothing is by brand or where I purchased it…that is why it helps me to hang them together.
  2. Extra Tip: I have three scarves which are already tied like the one below and ready to just slip over my head quickly.  This also helps if I am running late for work!  I decided to go without the scarf and necklace on this particular day. If I had gone with a neutral top then I could’ve worn the scarf below with the shoes and mixed the patterns for an interesting look.  If they are in the same color family…then they GO.
  3. Shoes need to be easily identified and I do this by keeping them in boxes with the type of shoe written in maker on the end of the shoe box. 
  4. Don’t try to do your entire makeup routine…I only used mascara, concealer, blush, and lip color.  
  5. Of course, brush hair, spritz some cologne, and put on a big smile!

Pamela Lutrell on accessories


I have a WHAT DO I WEAR situation in process for a good friend.  She asked me to help her find a Mother- of -the -Groom dress for her son’s wedding in October.  It is a destination wedding on a beach.  The bride has selected colors to wear as navy, light blue, white and gold.  She wants the wedding party to be barefoot for the wedding.  I found the dress below at Soft Surroundings (will put in the slideshow) and we believed it to be perfect.  However, when it arrived the blue was not close enough to the light blue of the wedding.  However, she loves this dress and is going to wear it in Coral at the Welcome Dinner the night before the wedding. It is very flattering with a special design and piece that covers the tummy area in the front beautifully.  We also found the shell necklace at Soft Surroundings for her to wear either with this dress or with another one we find for the wedding.  We do have time.

Over 50 Feeloing 40 for Soft Surroundings

My question to you, friends, is do you believe navy to be too dark or heavy for this situation?  Should we stick to a dress in the light blue, white and gold area?  What would you do?  We are truly looking for a resort type dress and not a formal one.  So, I will keep you up to date, but would love to hear about what you feel on wearing navy for this.


I hope you enjoy today’s slideshow…  Thanks for being here and always, always


REMEMBER, there are only two more days to enter to win a $35 gift card for SHEEC socks…and make your feet in flats very happy, not to mention very stylish!

By Pamela Lutrell


  1. Hi Pam,
    You are so sweet to help your friend find a dress. The coral is lovely! I would say that since the bride has approved navy…and if you can find one that is casual/beachy and if the color flatters your friend… go for it! I wouldn’t do gold or white, and there should be a lot of navy options out there for you. Keep us posted!

  2. The dress is gorgeous, something that she could certainly wear later as well. Since the bride has listed navy in the colours list, she will not be the only one wearing it most likely. She could lighten it up with the light option shoes/sandals and necklace. There will be lots more of this type of dress on offer before summer in case it is still a maybe. Personally I would get it now and if something else pops up then she will have 2 fabulous dresses. Since I am a dress person this would not be a problem for me. How much fun is that with the bride wishing for certain colours to make the pictures cohesive. I am personally in love with the first shell necklace in the slide show.

  3. I think navy would be just fine since it is one of the chosen colors by the bride. The material is what will make it beach appropriate. You are definitely on the right track with the dresses shown in the slide show. The shell necklace is also a nice touch.

  4. I’d go with the color that is most flattering for her. Navy is one of the bride’s colors and as long as the fabric and style is resort wear, I think it would be lovely.

  5. I personally would use navy as an accent color, A sheer navy scarf or large sheer shawl tied around the shoulders would make a love eye-catching addition to a white or pale blue dress. A large gold cuff would be great. The wedding sounds beautiful! How nice of your friend to try and be in keeping with the bride’s wishes. Can’t wait to see what you two decide.

  6. Good Morning~ Beautiful dress! Since retiring and joining a gym and walking daily, I would appreciate the socks for my tennis shoes. Thank you! I was touched by the blog post of you and your husband enjoying a night away. Precious times. ❤️

  7. I would rethink wearing navy. Like black that dark color is super absorbent of heat from the sun and standing or sitting for long periods in the sun could get very uncomfortable. Since the bride has no problem with white I think a nice navy/blue scarf would be lovely with a white dress—or even the pale blue if you found the desired shade. A scarf is easily shed if it gets too warm or bulky, unlike a dress in which you’re stuck!

  8. I would go for navy and here is why. At my daughter’s wedding I wore a beige dress. It seemed fine in person but in ALL the photos I look heavier than I think I was. Dark colors will be more slimming in the photos. If you friend doesn’t care about that, fine, go for the coral. But every time I see those photos I wish I had gone for the darker colors.

  9. Since the bride has expressed her preference of colors I too feel navy would be appropriate and most likely easier to find. However I would be selective not only in the choice of fabric but also the style particularly if the destination is the tropics as even in October humidity can be ‘extremely’ high and worse if on a beach front. i.e: Perhaps a sun dress with a light wrap (that will take her into the evening) since the attire is not formal and the wedding I assume may be during the day. (I might also suggest because of the occasion, she might wish to take some hair spray as a precaution against ‘the frizzies’ … ☺. My hair is ‘straight as a poker’ and its the only time I even have to consider it otherwise I wear a hat.) -Brenda-
    P.S.: Excellent ‘spur of the moment tips’. Do practice the one of pre-tying scarves since a staple in our winter climate and often in various weights ‘n colors so saves lots of time as alternate them.

  10. First off you look adorable running to meet an old friend for a glass of wine ! I gave those shoes on today and they are so versatile! I usually have a few go to outfits fir last minute “Dates”with either friends or my husband. What? My good jeans, white vneck tee and a fitted blazer or sweater blazer.
    On your question, yes navy can be beach bound if the fabric is flowy and light in texture. It could be navy wide leg chiffon palazzo with a silky blouse or paired with a sleeveless high neck silk tee. The right jewelry is a must! Maybe a silk navy jumpsuit with attractive mid length sleeves or sleeveless with a Delicate floral shawl?

  11. The coral dress is really nice. I love navy and feel it’s ALWAYS appropriate and would definitely work in a light fabric for a beach wedding. The coral dress would be great in navy.
    I could and would put an outfit together quick for a last minute wine session with a girlfriend. Nice outfit for the wine date!

  12. I love this destination wedding question! Not sure where this beach wedding will be, but as a frequent traveler to Mexico that’s how I’m imagining things . . .in which case I would love to see your friend look for a white cotton dress or skirt + blouse with some embroidery either in the gold color, or navy, along the neckline. It wouldn’t have to scream “peasant blouse” but would instead whisper, “I love that we’re HERE.” In the case of a Hawaiian beach wedding, I’m picturing a simple white dress, with a cummerbund style wide soft fabric belt in a beautiful Hawaiian style print incorporating the blues and gold. BTW, LOVE the blue batik off the shoulder dress for myself and next trip south of the border!!

    1. uhh you shouldn’t wear white unless you are the bride OR the bride is ok with it. Many brides would not be happy about a guest in a long white dress.

  13. My son and daughter-in-law were married on the beach several years ago. I wore a black sundress and felt entirely appropriate. So I’d never say navy is too dark or heavy. Wear what you like and feel good in! My dress (from J Jill Wearever collection) has gotten so much use before and since, it wasn’t even new! My other daughter-in-law who was the matron of honor was in a beautiful black and white sundress. The pictures are gorgeous with the blue of the ocean, the sand, and our formal attire in a beachy setting! The coral dress is beautiful and could certainly be worn for a beach wedding in any color. I guess some people think dark colors send a bleak message, but my son, the groom, was in a suit with a formal hat and looked so handsome, so we were going for the contrast of formal in the very informal environment.

    You offer good tips for dashing out on the fly. I’m afraid I’d still so the makeup. You’re lucky you look so pretty without it. I wear eye makeup to the gym and to the pool, actually it’s the first thing I do when I get up 365 days a year! Lucky you, seriously! Clothes I can manage in a split second, but not the makeup!

    1. Thanks for the advice and sweet compliment. The women who see me at the gym would probably not agree! ?

  14. Great tips today! I always wear a little bit of makeup even if I am just staying home. It makes me feel better.
    I think a navy dress in a light weight fabric & soft style would be fine. I personally would stay away from gold because it can be a difficult color for some to wear.

  15. Given the bride’s choices, I would definitely go for navy in a lightweight fabric and a comfortable, non clingy style. I’d be looking for something carefree, yet elegant. I look forward to seeing what you and your friend settle on.

  16. I sure wish I could have know this 5 years ago at our son’s wedding on Maui in November. My d-in-law said to just wear a casual maxi dress. I hated what I wore, but couldn’t find anything else. I would have loved the dress you picked if it were in a different color. Also, I hadn’t done much online shopping and live 2 hours away from any shopping.
    My advice is, try to find something non polyester. It doesn’t breath and you end up feeling like you’re in a sweatsuit if it’s hot at all. Now for summer wear, the first thing I look at is the fabric content. If it’s poly, I don’t even try it on. There are so many better fabric choices now. I also think navy is just fine, especially since it’s the bride’s choice. The photos will be gorgeous!

  17. I agree with the idea that she should wear whatever she is most comfortable in. I second-guessed my choices (all color-appropriate) for what to wear at my daughter’s wedding and ended up in something that I was tugging at all afternoon and evening. Augh!! In hindsight I wish I’d gone with the option in which I felt best. For me in this case, that would be navy, but what would she feel best in? ❤

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