Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A Great Article Regarding High School Reunions

It seems we are deep in the heart of high school reunion season. Facebook is boomin' with pictures of all the festivities and my best guess is this will continue into the fall.

I receive an email newsletter for Lauren Battistini at Color My Closet and she featured an article addressing this very topic.

Take a peek and don't be 'that' girl.

'Nuff said.

Avoid These Common Wardrobe Mishaps When Heading to Your High School Reunion

The thought of attending a high school reunion can conjure up all types of sentiments: panic, fear, dread, joy, excitement, nervousness, or anticipation. I will be attending two high school reunions this summer, as I transferred to a new high school my junior year. This will be my first time to attend any such reunion, and the idea of attending brings about feelings of both excitement and nervousness for me. On the one hand, I want to play it cool and look like I threw my outfit together without so much as a second thought. In other words, I want to look like I'm not trying too hard. On the other hand, a lot is at stake so there is a bit of pressure. I have not seen many of my former classmates in twenty years! What if I'm overdressed or under dressed? Some of the same feelings of insecurity I experienced as a high school student could easily come creeping back up, but only if I let them. I have decided not to let past fears and insecurities get in the way of my having a fabulous time with my former classmates. I also have a great wardrobe plan for the night. Here are my stylist tips on what not to wear for your high school reunion.

1. Just because you can doesn't mean you should

I don't care if you are a swimsuit model with a figure to die for. Please do not put your entire body on display with skimpy outfits that leave nothing to the imagination. Opt instead for age appropriate outfits that are well-fitted but provide some coverage. By all means, show your curves with well-tailored clothing, but don't show all of cleavage and/or legs! Why not try an asymmetrical top that is baggy with some dark skinny jeans and heels? Balance your look by wearing either fitted on top and baggy on bottom, or baggy on top and fitted on bottom. The exception to this is if you find a dress that hugs--not clings--in all the right places!

2. Casual doesn't mean flip flops and cut offs

Many high school reunions consist of weekend long activities ranging from barbecues to golf tournaments. Too many people take the term 'casual' to extremes by looking sloppy and altogether inappropriate. Forgo the flip flops, logo t-shirts and cutoff shorts. You can never go wrong with white denim or Bermuda shorts. White denim can be dressed up or down, and it is universally flattering in a boot cut leg. Bermuda shorts fall either mid thigh or knee length and can be worn with espadrilles, nice sandals, or even ballet flats.

3. Save your sexy bling for the bedroom

Skip the tight bejeweled tanks and shorts, some of which are adorned with phrases like "Naughty" and "Too Hot To Handle." Where on earth this is appropriate I do not know, but I can tell you that a high school reunion is certainly not the venue for this sexy attire.

4. Face the fact that you've gained weight since high school and don't stuff yourself into a tight dress

Just as tacky as the model thin woman in a skin-tight dress is a plus-sized woman squeezing into junior sized clothing. Most women do not look as trim at their high school reunions as they did in high school, and that is quite alright. Dress for your size now and not the size you used to be. Select an outfit that skims your curves and be sure to get it altered to perfection. Many women do not realize this, but store bought clothing fits less than one percent of the population perfectly. Over 99% of women should get their clothing altered, and you are likely no exception!

5. You do not have to look like you are on the runway in Paris

Being trendy and being stylish are two different things entirely. Trends will come and go, and some trends are not meant for your body type and/or age, so pick a stylish ensemble for your reunion. A stylish outfit is one that you can conceivably wear for more than two years and still look sharp. Wearing a radical trend from head to toe only makes you look like you are trying too hard. If you must be trendy, then choose one trend and use it sparingly. If you must wear neon pink--though I plead with you to reconsider that choice--wear it in the form of a bracelet or watch. Accessories are a refined way to incorporate this season's trends.

6. Take the outfit on the mannequin and mix it up

The folks who dress the mannequins in department stores like Macy's and Dillard's are there to give you inspiration and ideas. They do not intend for you to copy their look from top to
bottom. Everything does not have to coordinate and match to perfection. In fact, looking too 'matchy matchy' translates as looking geeky--to use a word from my generation. I encourage you to take what you see on the mannequin and try to find a similar look using pieces from different brands. Experiment with textures and colors to create your own spin on an outfit.

7. Waiting until the last minute to shop guarantees failure

You have enough pressure as it is to look good for your reunion. Don't add to the pressure by waiting until a few days before the reunion to go shopping. Shop at least a few weeks in advance, and be sure to buy the outfit and any other accessories beforehand. Go home and try on your fully accessorized outfit, then get a second opinion from your most trusted fashionista friend(s). Shopping in emergency mode is always a recipe for disaster!

8. Reinventing your whole look through a new hairdo and makeup palette is also a tricky idea

The time to experiment with new hairstyle and makeup colors is not just before your reunion. What if your stylist dyes your hair a strange shade of red and you look like Ronald McDonald's long lost sister? Restrain yourself and go with a look that you know works. Go for some subtle highlights and a trim instead. Keep your makeup palette simple and refined.

9. Speaking of makeup, more is not more--less is more

The quickest way to look ten years older at your reunion is to pile on the makeup. Foundation, powder, blush, loads of eye makeup and lipstick showcase every nook and cranny on your face, including those pesky lines and wrinkles that likely have begun to appear. A much more youthful look can be achieved with tinted moisturizer, an illuminating powder with light deflecting properties, and an appropriate amount of color on the face. Go dramatic with either smoky eyes or a bright lip color, but please don't do both. That would be overkill.

10. Playing it safe with a plain outfit is just - well - boring

You don't want to look like you are trying too hard, right? I feel similarly, but let's not play it too safe and wind up looking boring. Stay away from all black or just neutral colored ensembles. Mix in a bright color like turquoise or red. Let the color add interest to an otherwise simple outfit. Add some unique jewelry to make a basic t-shirt come alive. Keep the silhouette simple but add interest with details such as ruffling, stitching, jewelry, and color.

The most important thing to remember about your high school reunion is to walk with confidence and just be yourself. Relax--okay, try to relax--and have a fun time reconnecting with your classmates.