Dressing To Impress in Foster City

Columnist Eugenia Budman gives her take on this season's fashions.

If you ask me what is the most favorite place in my house, my answer is easy—my closet, a spacious walk-in enclosure where no one is welcome. It's mine. My daughters, who like to borrow my stuff occasionally, know better than to just reach into it without a proper explanation. 

"May I borrow that blue tank top? Remember that time when you borrowed mine?" That is how Val usually tries to approach me, her voice whiny and face adorably sad. 

"Mom, any time you need anything in my closet, just ask! But only this time, I promise, can you let me wear your jean jacket?" That is Michelle's way of asking. Both of my daughters are well aware that I wouldn't hesitate to give them everything I own, including my life, with one exception: the clothes in my closet. 

I have been collecting my clothes slowly, selecting only the best. All of my blouses have flattering colors and cuts; my summer and fall/spring shoes (there aren't any other seasons in Foster City) are mostly classic and comfortable. My dresses and pants emphasize my best body parts and camouflage the rest. I update my collection a few times a year, donating the clothes that haven't been worn for a couple of years and buying a few current pieces.  

I love clothes, and know a lot about colors, textures and cuts. Long ago I tested the styles that look good on my body, and by now I rarely make a mistake. Shopping is a serious and pleasurable pastime of mine, and I always make time for it. 

This means that I am watching attentively for new fashion trends, adapting them to my taste, lifestyle and age. 

Here are a few new pieces that I am considering: 

Leather and Lace

The 'motorcycle style' is only called new, but I have owned a couple of leather jackets for years, and a nice bomber jacket has been in my wardrobe for a while too. So I will wear my leather pieces with silk sleeveless blouses more frequently now, and consider myself very fashionable. 

Bohemian style

Just a few seasons ago I donated all my long skirts and hemmed the rest to confirm to the current then-trends – minis (knee-length for me).  However, I think one skirt is still somewhere in the back of my wardrobe, waiting to be rediscovered. It is made of inexpensive crinkled cotton with colorful flower prints all over.  I can’t recall where I got it, most likely from a beach vendor in Mexico or Hawaii. That’s my Bohemian style. The skirt will go very well with my see-through peasant blouse with a Costco tank-top underneath, plus a couple of colorful wooden bracelets I’ve owned for years. I am set! 

Glamour of the 70’s

Wide leg slacks and palazzo pants that belt at the natural waistline: finally! I have been waiting too long for these trousers with a true waistline. To tell you the truth, I have never felt comfortable in these drop-waist pants that emphasized my belly and hips. They made it difficult to wear a neatly tucked-in shirt. However, checking in my closet, I was surprised. All of my pants, including my jeans, are narrow-ish, and low-waisted.  There isn’t a pair of those flattering high-waisted or wide-legged pants. Thank God for Bridgepointe Marshall’s! I am sure I can find something there. 

Classically elegant, draped blouses with ruffles and bows

Since the 80’s (and only for interviews) I have not worn those ruffles and bows. They remind me of my too busy, focused-on-small-kids and intense-career life.  I am much more relaxed now, and when I want a bow, I’ll wear a scarf.  So I think I’ll skip this trend. My daughters, on the other hand, are welcome to try it. 

Speaking of fashion, I don’t think there is such a thing as ‘ageless’ style, i.e. fashion for any age, any body and any mood.  If a woman wants to look good, she understands that fashion is something that constantly changes, and she needs to work hard adapting contemporary styles to her needs, tastes, and ever-changing body—the weight loss and weight gain,  pregnancy, the "I love exercise” and "I hate exercise” phases, ”I have a job” and ”I stay at home” periods. 

Thank God this work is so enjoyable, and it is time for me to update my closet for summer and fall. 

I think I will be giving you my take of the new fashion trends once a quarter or so.

Paul June 08, 2011 at 04:13 AM
"....including my life, with one exception: the clothes in my closet." I've never understood this clothes' addiction...I might understand addiction to cars, baseball, even chocolate! But clothes? Well...I have to give a credit to Eugenia: the story is light, humorous, and entertaining! But I suspect she is also honest: this is the best part of the story! Ok, ok, so Eugenia, what are your recommendations for us, MEN?
Jessica June 10, 2011 at 04:57 PM
Great story! I don't invest in clothes as much because I am the generation of throwing away :p


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