How to find clothes that make you happy

How to find clothes that make you happy

Today, I am answering a reader’s question about how to find clothes that make you happy.

First let me say…when we dress with confidence it will help to feed our joy, but true joy comes from within not merely on the outside.

Yet, there is something about looking our best and wearing clothing which puts a smile on our face that helps us to have more joyful days.

This is something we are in control of…and can Choose to do each day when we get dressed. 

Too often, we look in the mirror and think…This will have to do…then go out feeling grumpy.

Let’s determine to change that!


How to wear clothes that make us happy

1.I wear clothing which says…this is me!

For my new phase of “work-at-home-life,”  I have adjusted my Foundational Five style adjectives to be creative (dramatic); strong; intelligent; joyful; and current.  

If I dress every day with the choice to communicate all five of these adjectives with what I am wearing, then I will “fashion” Pam-style for my current lifestyle.

The creative flair in this Karen Kane top is of course found in the sleeves…and also the accessories.  

I originally purchased this top at Dillard’s on clearance for a Mexico beach vacation, and I really like it…it is fun and makes me want to smile. 

2. Fit is very important for confidence and joyful dressing.

A flattering fit helps m e feel good...if I feel like I look good in the clothing, then I will smile and go out with confidence.

3. Clothing which is fresh, current and youthful keeps me smiling.

I firmly believe one of the ways to avoid feeling frumpy is to stay abreast of current styles and trends.  Adding youthful touches to our style can be great confidence-builders.

NOTE: Two of my favorite warm weather tops are by Karen Kane.  Here are some beautiful selections on the racks right now:


How to find clothes that make you happy

Happy feet for me must include stylish comfort!

Yes, I like a stylish shoe or sandal this time of year, but I have personally said goodbye to heels and wedges.  Thank goodness so many fun flats are on the market now.

I recently picked up these Grasshopper Windsor Flats in Tan at Rack Room Shoes and love them for spring!  They are currently on sale.


How to find clothing which makes you happy

Today, I want to inspire our fabulous reader, Janet. D.

Janet wants her clothing to tell the world that she is confident, bold, competent, smart and relaxed.

This was a fun one…I love to work with the adjective BOLD.  Remember I am looking for garments I believe speak all five. 

I hope the slideshow made you happy, Janet.  Would anyone else like to describe a garment which makes you really happy and tell us why.  Please share…then make sure you….


P.S. If anyone else would like a slideshow, just send your five adjectives to  More to come…..

By Pamela Lutrell


  1. The slideshow made me happy! Your first look here with blue and white wide stripes also makes me happy.
    I know when I look at a piece on a hanger or folded on a table if I’ll be wearing it with joy! It’s recognizable now- but took many years to hone this skill.

    1. I am the same way, Paulette. It took time for me to stay true to my adjectives, but now the clothing is recognizable. It is possible to train our happy style.

  2. The one piece that makes me happiest is my leopard sweater blazer. The spots are natural colored, but a bit oversize. I like it for many of the same reasons you do: I like that it has some structure, so it flatters, but it’s a cardigan (technically), so it is very comfortable. It’s interesting without being stuffy (it’s current). It says I’m confident (how many people are willing to wear an oversized leopard print?). It’s so versatile: I’ve worn it with black trousers, camel faux suede pants, dark washed jeans, and frayed hem very light wash. I’ve worn it with black clogs, tan calf boots, and black mules. Jewelry can be anything from delicate chains to my chunky amber beads. It makes me happy to get lots of wear out of a piece, and also to be able to make it my own. I even wore it with a bright red tank for Christmas! I agree, when something truly hits all your style adjectives, you feel like your best self, and feeling like your best self sends you out the door with a smile.

  3. Love those shoes you’re wearing!! And the top is so fresh and fun, really a great outfit! I wrote down your three tips to transfer to my style notebook. These are tips that work regardless of our changing styles and the current trends. My current challenge is looking pulled together on my puppy sitting days. I signed on for the long term with this guy, and being that he’s a breed of mastiff, he needs lots of outdoor time and walks. I want to show up looking nice and not ratty, but still be able to accommodate drool (!!) and playtime. We spend lots of time at the park. Have to think through this one!

    1. Casual options today are so cute and fun, you should be able to achieve your goals with dog walking. I know the breed is super loving…but there is lots of drool. Look for clothing which will hold up to many washes!

      1. This is good advice Pam, thank you! I’ll look for things with washing in mind, even casual shoes!

        1. The BZZES brand I often promote is sold at several retailers and they are cute, comfortable and WASHABLE shoes. You can find them at DSW, Macys, Zappos…to name a few.

  4. I love my Johnny Was peasant tops with embroidery! When the 60s styles were in at that time, I worked in a stock brokerage firm and I needed prim and proper office wear. Now I can wear what I want! The tops may not be the mast flattering now since i put on about 10 lbs, but I will keep them in my closet and do wear them from time to time. They always make me happy!

  5. 2. Fit is very important for confidence and joyful dressing.
    Oh to find anything to fit. Being short waisted, having broad shoulders and petite but not a size 6 means you wear what you can find, not what you would like to wear. Nothing belted, nothing with a border print, nothing made from a material that doesn’t hem easily, etc. Buying on line is impossible. Even if you think it can be tailored it doesn’t always come out the way you expected and you’ve paid twice the price. I’ve been searching for 5 adjectives and the best I can come up with is presentable.

    1. Linda, forget about the size challenges for just a moment. What would you like to tell the world about you with what you wear? Don’t let limitations influence you with this. Jot down those adjectives and email them to me.

  6. Excellent tips, Pamela. As one who leans towards “classic/tailored” I feel it is important to add ‘fun’ styles to my wardrobe as well, whether it be in the choice of a garment or an accessory as it can energize you. Do love your KK Mexico vacation top and your friend Leigh Ann rocked in those jeggings she modeled yesterday. -Brenda-

    1. Leigh Ann and I have been having fun shopping together…she did rock those jeggings. I have classic styles that make me just as happy, Brenda. Some of my happiest outfits are neutral outfits. I can find joy in both.

  7. As paradoxical as it might sound, one piece of clothing that never fails to make me happy is a long-sleeved black top. It’s a knit blend and very comfy. It washes well and never wrinkles or fades. I can wear it year round for the most part (aside from a hot/humid summer day). I can wear it with jeans or a dressier skirt and it never fails to make me feel great and smile! I get compliments on it frequently, although I think my happy attitude is what makes it work!

    The jeans you have on with your happy top look great on you, Pam! Fabulous look!

  8. I agree with your list, Pamela! I would add COLOR- it is #1 on my list. I focus on color first when considering any garment – its got to be cool & preferably in one of my best colors. This helps me eliminate a lot of garments & saves me in the long run. If the color is “off” the item just doesn’t get worn.

  9. I spent the first year or so of retirement wearing things that were serviceable because of thinking “This is fine because I’m just cleaning the house or doing laundry or whatever.” I finely realized that my husband deserved better than that, & frankly, so did I. I am happy to say that now I only own things that fit properly & make me feel good. I feel happy in a classic white blouse. One of my adjectives is classic, & a white blouse tops that list.

    1. I think we all go through that from time to time, Becky. I know for me when I begin to slump a little, I always feel amazing when I begin to fix up for the day again. Thanks for sharing that.

  10. Ohmigoodness! I am so glad I checked in today (I try for daily but don’t always make it) or I’d have missed my own slideshow! LOL! You’re such a sweetie, Pam. And yes, you hit the button on so many of those items! The funny thing is that I was thinking about my Style Adjectives literally this morning as I was grabbing something out of my closet — they’re not quite as easy to pin down as you think they ought to be, are they? I’m still not entirely happy with mine even after the third (!) revision, although I like your vision of each of those words. It’s such a fascinating exercise!

    And I love your whole approach of wearing clothing that makes us happy (that blue striped top you’re wearing makes ME happy!). If we stuck to that alone I think all our closets would be in great shape. It makes us ask what makes us happy in such a way we have to think about how we see ourselves & how we present that “self” to the world. Comfort is such a big one for me. And not blending into the background, especially as I age & am increasingly dealing with a society that still undervalues older women. I don’t mind ageing that much, but anyone who thinks I’m going to fade away quietly is in for a shock 🙂

    Thank you SO much, Pam! You seriously have made my day.

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