Style Refresh 2021: From the beginning

Style Refresh 2021 from the beginning

It’s time!  Time for me to fill you in on my Style Refresh 2021: From the beginning!

There are some new readers, so please allow me time for a brief background recap of where I find myself today.

I began this blog almost eleven years ago because I went through a major style reinvention at age 50. At that time, I finally began to place ME on my priority list!

The first half of the blog’s life, I was a high school journalism educator, with long dark hair, and a very creative look….lots of accessories and color.

In the second half of this blog’s life, I became a member of corporate America…cut my hair and began to dress with a more youthful, contemporary style as a professional communicator in a younger world.

At the beginning of the second half, I was told by a professional color expert that I was a WINTER and should only wear winter colors

I rejoiced!  I loved wearing black and it fit into my new professional world…so I embraced black and wore it often.

Style Refresh 2021: from the beginning

Then…along comes the pandemic.  I was included in a layoff of several hundred people at the college where I worked.

I decided at that time to stay home to work indefinitely and throw all I have into professional blogging….at age 67!

But the more I looked at my wardrobe and at my current style…the more it did not seem like me.

I tweaked and tweaked my style adjectives which have served me so well…but I could not find that combination I believed was who I wanted to be in my new phase of life.

Honestly, with more time at home, I kept looking in the mirror and thinking that I looked tired and much older (yes, I know I am older, but I mean MUCH older) …but wasn’t sure what was going on.

I needed new direction…where would it come from?


Style Refresh 2021 From the beginning

Susan Blakey was a blogger (une femme d’un certain age) I was drawn to immediately at the time I began to blog.

She was creative…loved Paris….had great style…and loved to wear black as I did.

However one day…….

Style Refresh 2021 from the beginning

Susan announced she had met with color experts in London and was completely changing her style.  Black was out and vibrant color in!


Style Refresh: from the beginning

Susan went from dark and classic to fun and funky!  

Full disclosure:  I was one of the ones in the beginning who questioned WHY WOULD SHE DO THAT?

It was such a drastic change for her…I did not know if it was the right call…and several readers let her know they didn’t either.

But she had discovered an “it-factor” which was greater than what anyone else thought and she was confident it was the right call.

Style Refresh: from the beginning

So, after spending more time with her images during the pandemic, I noticed she was much more joyful…wore a consistent large smile…enjoying life more.

Her complexion was brighter and she was vibrant.  She also stayed true to the new Susan and did not go backwards at all.

After owning her new style and colors, Susan joyfully tells everyone…This has been life changing!

Style Refresh from the beginning

One of the women who initially worked with Susan in London was Annie Castano.  Susan recently hosted an Instagram interview with Annie.

This interview captured my attention like nothing has in a long time, and led me to do research on the power of color In fashion.  

The next step in my style refresh would include Annie Castano.  I hope you will return tomorrow to meet her.

What I want to encourage all of you to do as you walk through this with me, is be teachable, have an open mind, and see what might be here for you to learn. 

There are going to be times we question foundational rules of the fashion industry….but let’s take the ride together and see what lies ahead.  Hope to see you back tomorrow….


By Pamela Lutrell




  1. I’ll be following along, certainly! I feel like you mentioned, sometimes looking in the mirror and thinking it’s time for a refresh. I’m really interested in your journey and how you plan to make changes. I know your hair is part of this, and some style changes are showing up in your posts, but I’m glad you are going to be posting about the process because that is helpful for those of us who may also feel ready for something different. Anxiously awaiting future installments!!

    1. Thanks Karen! I think the process is very important in order to understand the decisions I am making!

    2. I saw Susan’s Red Leopard video too and it is fascinating. I’m excited for you to do this. I am seriously thinking of doing it too. I can’t wait to see what they tell you.

  2. I can’t wait to see the new YOU Dear Pamela.. it’s life changing once you know your best colours, shapes and the styles that are suited to your personality 🧡🌈❤️

    1. You have been such a help and inspiration, Annie. I can’t wait to share all of your wisdom with others.

  3. I too was “diagnosed” as a winter way back when “Color Me Beautiful” was so popular. And I do enjoy wearing black, and jewel colors, I realized that my previous color choices of browns, yellows and oranges were not doing me any favors. As a science teacher, I most often wore a white lab coat over my school attire so it did not really matter much what I wore under my lab coat. But now retired I enjoy wearing something unusual or quirky or funky when I dress…be it a pattern, piece of jewelry, article of clothing. I think that you often do the same, and I have purchased several articles of clothing that you have worn because I liked them on you. I look forward to your thoughts of deciding on your “it-factor” as I might move in your direction too.

  4. Looking forward to tomorrow. This sounds like fun. I have followed Susan through her journey as well and find she is now the person she had inside. I was told many years ago that I too was a winter and for years it suited me, but now black does me no favours so had a redo and am now told I am a summer. It is so enlightening when added to the personality and lifestyle changes in style. So much to learn and such fun to discover. You will find people who do not think this is necessary and those who are champions for your changes, so do what makes you ‘smile’ and enjoy the process. I am excited for you.

      1. Can’t wait for more on this topic! I enjoyed Susan’s video with the gals at Colour & Style Red Leopard in England on Instagram. It was an eye opener how the right colors can either energize and flatter or drain and make us look ill. I didn’t realize there is more than just being a Winter but there are Bright Winters, Dark Winters, etc…… I am staying tuned to your post tomorrow 😊

  5. I ll certainly be back. Yesterday was my last day of work. I’m retiring and will be looking for a refresh in my wardrobe. I’m looking forward to learning from your journey

    1. Perfect timing, Pamela. I am going to be methodical about taking us through this and journal about the changes in several posts.

  6. Hi Pam, I can’t wait to see the new colors and styles you unveil. Thanks for including me, and I’m humbled and honored to have inspired you. My color and style analysis put me back in touch with aspects of my style (and myself) I’d shelved for years.

    Annie is wonderful to work with!

    1. I am learning already that I am back in touch with a me I had shelved…that is so interesting you mention that Susan. Annie is amazing. Thanks for the inspiration and example you set for the rest of us!

    2. I’m right there with you. I’ve moved from Vermont to South Carolina to Florida and now in Colorado! The West is capturing my slight lean towards “Western Boho”- is that even a thing? LOL I’ll try it though!

      As I approach 60, I’ll reinvest and reinvent myself.

      Love your updates and your energy!

      1. That’s awesome, Cindy! Keep us up to date with your progress as well…and I glad you will be following along!

  7. I’m certainly interested in following your journey. I’m hoping beyond hope though that you are still a winter. I know I am and always have been. If I put on beige, orange red, lime green and others, in another generation’s words, I look like death warmed over. I know this not just from the mirror but from others saying, ” Are you feeling O.K. today?” LOL

    1. The journey will be uniquely me…as you are uniquely you Linda. Though I may end up dressing differently, I will still be bringing ideas for all the seasons! This audience is made up of them all.

  8. Pam, when I look back on your past Instagram posts, you are sometimes standing next to people wearing vibrant colors. Now I’m realizing how great and alive YOU would look in colors! I think many of us are ready to ditch the black. Looking forward to your future posts!

    1. Thanks for the encouragement, Anne. Looking over the past ten years of pictures with this blog was very eye opening for me…I am going to discuss that soon.

  9. I really enjoy your posts and I’m always eager to open up my emails from you. I have one small suggestion (not a criticism): rather than aim for youthful, how about going for modern or current. The word youthful doesn’t resonate now that I’m in my very late 60s.
    With appreciation,

    1. Great comment Jean! I have actually removed youthful from my style adjectives! I think you will like the new direction. More on that next week including new adjectives!

  10. Wow! This is exciting Pam! It’s amazing that this happened for you during the pandemic. So interesting! I can’t wait to follow along. A long time ago a girlfriend and I went to a NYC color expert for a seminar. He had recently written a well-known book. I heard about him on the radio! That’s tells you how long ago it was! Anyway, long story short; my girlfriend was a clear winter. He analyzed me as a spring, but I so wanted to be a summer, because I liked his recommended summer color palette better. So, in the end he “let” me be a summer! Lol! I’ve been confused ever since. So, I know what you’re talking about when you say that someone told you you were a winter! I always wondered if that kind of color analysis was still around. As I said, I’m so excited to see what you reveal.

    1. I was so glad to meet a professional who actually has a system that makes sense to me Nancy! Now, I can’t imagine someone saying just wear summer colors if that is what you want to be! Why do that if you can look your absolute best?!

  11. I will definitely be following your journey & want to thank you for sharing. I think any change begins from the inside out & as you said, is unique to the individual.

    1. I will have to ponder what is changing on the inside…thanks for giving me something to think about, Becky!

  12. Well, this is a cliff hanger! Waiting for the next installment! I too have enjoyed Susan’s journey and somehow I suspect you are not a Winter after all.

  13. I knew Susan did the right thing when she did it. Black didn’t do her justice. I like black, too, but it should never be my main wardrobe staple. We can wear colors we like, even when they aren’t our best. It’s just a lot more work to look good in them.

    1. I am on a new journey and will share what I have learned…then everyone can decide if there is something there for them. Thanks for stopping by!

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