Style Reinvention Update – Part 1

Style Reinvention Update

Hello, everyone!  Welcome to my style reinvention update (from last year) Part 1!

I appreciate the patience of those who have been through this style reinvention process with me…especially those who began reading this blog when it was born in 2010.

There are a few new followers, so just for them, please allow me to bring everyone up to date as briefly as possible.

To make sure everyone knows what is going on, I believe I need to fill in the gaps every now and then with updates when possible.



Style Reinvention Update


When I turned 50, I was a bit of a mess.  I had neglected me for years and as a working mom, placed me at the bottom of my priority list.

A wake-up moment opened my eyes to take a hard look at me. 

With the help of the stylists on the popular television show at that time, What Not to Wear, I was motivated to take back me and leave frumpy behind. They helped me see the importance of taking care of myself and building my own confidence so that I could actually do more for family and for others.  The journey was fun, life-changing, and exhilarating!

I became a rapid-fire student of style, fashion and beauty books and a walking experiment of a style reinvention over 50.  As a journalist, I only wanted to learn and know more.

Pleased with the results and the response to the results, I started sharing with friends everything I had learned and applied.  One of my closest friends then said…you should start a blog.  I was at such a low point with my self-esteem at age 50 that I wanted to encourage others who might be experiencing the same feelings. 

Style Reinvention Update

At 50 I was fat, frumpy and forlorn…until I took back the reins. So, here we are….18 years after the initial wakeup call.  OK…honestly…I am still fluffy in the middle, but frumpy and forlorn are in the past!  I no longer allow “imperfections” or comparisons to shut me down. I make sure sure I am not at the bottom of my priorities any longer.

Over those years in addition to blogging, I was a high school teacher, a magazine editor and a communications director.  Often, my role determined my style and the system I had invented worked well to help me through that time with confidence.  (More about “the system” tomorrow)

The first summer of the pandemic, I was laid off by the university where I worked …along with hundreds of others.  Suddenly, here I was thrust into a new lifestyle at 68. The picture below is how I typically looked while working at the university.

Style Reinvention Update

I am now a full time writer and website producer of a blog to encourage women over 50.  I also work predominantly at home.  This means I need a wardrobe of casual chic clothing I can wear out for work and comfortable casual for living more at home.

The blog was born in 2010, but became my everything profession in 2020.



Style Reinvention Update

I really prefer to call what I went through last year, a Style Refresh.  I think the first time at 50 when I literally changed everything was a complete reinvention.  But the word, reinvention, seems to be one that resonates with more women. 

If you read these posts,

Style Refresh 1

Style Refresh 2

then you will be caught up on my new style journey with the help of color consultant/stylist Annie Castano.  She noticed that I was dressing in the wrong color palettes and that the right one would turn my style around. Annie was a joyful, knowledgeable, experienced professional. I related to her immediately. And, she was right, so I made the decision to listen and follow her advice.  It really was exactly what I needed at a new time of life.  The new colors brightened my complexion, gave me a youthful glow, new confidence, new direction and showed me how to create a wardrobe that is budget-friendly and works!  It truly is amazing what wearing your best colors will do for you.  It is so freeing…and especially freeing to know that these are my colors the rest of my life, no matter what I do to my hair.  I simply feel like my best me wearing them.  

Style Refresh Update

Once I had the color wheel for me, it was simple…just wear the colors and get as close to these colors as possible!  If another consultant suddenly changed the name of these colors to another season or anything else, I would still just wear these colors!  Simple and fun…and not restrictive at all.

I learned to look at colors I wear in the best light and see if they are casting shadows on my complexion or brightening my complexion.  That is how I knew something was wrong…my beloved black looked bad on my face and it took too long for me to see what was happening when I wore it.  The same with “white.”  I tried and tried to look good in white tops and I never did.  Now, I know why.  I was completely mis-read by the professional who told me I was a winter.  That is why you must be careful with who you work with on color consultation.  It is good to ask a lot of questions up front and be careful of those who try to make it very complicated…it is simple.

Style Reinvention Update

The update then?  My new colors are a perfect fit for me and I am still wearing them every day.  However, Part Two of this saga tomorrow will discuss the Style Personality and how I have decided to “fashion” my style during my new life!  I hope to see you then.

It hasn’t been as easy as the color side of the story. 

I believe this entire journey was important for me to discover confidence and just how empowering it can be.

Style Reinvention Update

The overall morale of this tale is: Low self esteem is a bitter enemy and takes down the strongest of us…I did not want to be a victim.

However a humble, joyful confident woman is a strong and empowered woman who can accomplish just about anything and does not give others permission to control her.

The blog was born to be of encouragement and inspiration and my mission is just that.  I want you to always look and feel your very best.

Any questions so far?  Please share….and hopefully I will see you tomorrow for part 2.


By Pamela Lutrell

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Over 50 Feeling 40 in 2022


  1. Honestly, this is a topic I could revisit every day, it is so fascinating to hear of other’s journeys and experiences. However, it is difficult to weed out the analysts who have not spent enough time on the subject. I will be awaiting tomorrow to see how you are doing with the feminine\bohemian side of things. Personally, I find it is always a challange to avoid the more structured items and walk away when it does not suit.

  2. Thanks For being here, Diane. I try to remain teachable and feel as though I am always learning…but it is fun!

  3. I’ve only been routinely reading your blog for about four years so I have been along on part of that journey of renewal . I look forward daily to seeing what you are doing and always marvel at your ability to go, do, write, share so much with us readers. You always bring your material with such a joy and feeling of happiness. You share your life with us, and I definitely feel a kinship in your attitude and slice of life which I suppose is why I tend to respond daily. Thank you.

  4. Thank you being here, Celia…it is wonderful to have readers…friends… to journey alongside.

  5. Excellent post, Pam. I’ve been with you several years now, and you are ageless, as it should be! As a (usually, just not at the moment) plus size woman, I’ve had to work harder at style and long ago decided not to wait to lose weight to look my best. I too find personality typing challenging because none really fit me vs the color palettes. And I’m wondering if it is even that useful; I look forward to your thoughts on that. With retirement starting to sink in and become “normal” vs feeling like an extended vacation, and part time work substitute teaching put off due to the pandemic, I saw the need to redo my five adjectives this year. Three have been with me for years and the other two seem to vary with my stage of life.

  6. Hi Linda, Thanks for the encouragement…we will be looking closely at adjectives tomorrow!

  7. Enjoyed reading about your incredible journey this morning. Can’t wait for tomorrow! LOVE the picture of you outside in front of the black railings in your leopard print top, sweater and jeans. You look radiant. Proof positive right there that you’re wearing your best you. In all ways! Thanks for the inspiration!! Have a great week.

  8. Pamela, the picture of you in the leopard top here is absolutely beautiful. You are inside & out…so I love seeing this!

  9. I too have been following you for a couple (more) years and wow- the journey you are on has truly inspired me to purge my closet iof anything that fits poorly, that does not flatter me, and is meh! I’ve added accessories again, many replacing those dated items from my working days.
    I’ve lost about 12 pounds since celiac disease and tend to keep pants and tops that are just too large. I’m short so 12 pounds means a lot. I need to donate certain expensive items out but I’m having a hard time with this task. Anyone else?
    I love your nw look and new colors!

  10. Thank you, Paulette! You are an inspiration to me as a woman who has taken control of her health! Congratulations! I will be sharing more tomorrow!

  11. I have followed your blog from the university days and through the new colors. You have given ideas on cleaning our closets, working on your hair, etc.
    While I am a petite summer, I am enjoying your journey and used the ideas that I can use, including the recipes. Thanks Pam, always the best.

  12. Applause – take a bow! You have worked hard & it shows! I would love to see you do a couple of essays on scarfs – different styles plus different ways to wear them. Thanks!

  13. It’s always nice to take a look back at the beginning of your journey. It’s inspirational. I have long ascribed to your Foundational Five concept and recently tweaked my adjectives, just a little bit. Also have been taking a serious look at what is flattering at this stage of life, taking into account my current lifestyle. It was very difficult to leave my working wardrobe behind, so I figured out a way to keep favorite pieces and still enjoy them. Much of what I am inspired to do comes from reading your blog and incorporating ideas. One thing I’ve found over the years of reading your blog is that we keep moving forward and make necessary changes as we do. You have definitely helped me reinvent several times as I’ve followed along with you!

  14. You. have been amazing support, Karen and so wonderfully faithful to be here. I think you will enjoy tomorrow’s post!

  15. Paulette asked if anyone else has a difficult time getting rid of expensive items . . .and I was someone who did, until I watched the entire Marie Kondo series a couple years ago. I found watching those extremely helpful, in particular her advice to “thank” the item for its service to you and then let it go – hopefully to someone else who will be equally blessed. I was able to donate my wedding dress, several beautiful evening gowns I had loved wearing to the symphony, and a couple of gorgeous suede coats I had barely ever worn (Oregon climate is much too rainy to safely wear suede with confidence). In any case, I felt happy imagining that several other women would be wearing the best I had to give, and I then felt free to take my wardrobe in a more casual direction. Hope that helps!

  16. I have only been reading your blog for a couple of years, it is nice to fill in the blanks of how you started. Love your positive outlook on life.

  17. Thanks for sharing that Connie! I felt the same way as I said goodbye to the majority of my beloved black but knew others would be blessed to have it!

  18. Hi Pam,
    I have only been aware of your blog since you picked up with Annie, whom I adore following, so I appreciate the recap of your journey. As a deep autumn, I relate well to your color choices, but I would appreciate your blog even if I were another season. You offer such an array of of information that can be transposed to any season and to any woman who is interested in looking her best. I want to comment on your aspect of joy. I am in my 69th year, and I have to admit that I don’t always like what I see happening in the mirror. Your knack of finding joy and spreading joy has helped me with my reconciling of what aging can do to our outward appearances and how attitude and smiling can blur the wrinkles. I look forward to your thoughts every day.

  19. Paulette, I’m another one struggling with donating expensive work wardrobe items. The times I’ve done it, still have more to go, I donated to a place that I know women shop who can’t afford the higher priced stores, and I get a wonderful feeling thinking about the woman who is going to see those things and be so excited to have them. It’s really helped me let go.

  20. Thank you, Deborah. I hope tomorrow’s post will help you even more. I cannot stop the aging, but I can sure have fun while it is happening!

  21. I began reading your blog after I retired in 2010. I had fallen into that frump phase in my forties. My working wardrobe was fine, but my at home look was sweatpants & sloppy tops. My self-esteem & confidence were at an all-time low because I was going through some personal problems at home. That is why sweatpants & joggers will never be a part of my life again. When I retired, I feared falling back into the frump look again. I took me quite some time to find my new style, & it is still a work in progress. Thank you for being candid with us, as it has helped me find & refine so much of life.

  22. You are not alone, Becky. Most of us in this stage of life have been wondering what to do. I hope you will be back tomorrow!

  23. I’ve been following your blog for at least five years, probably more, and enjoy following you along on your journey.

    Your positivity is inspiring and your blog is one that continue to look forward to each day.

    Thank you for being there for us!!!

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