Thinking of my two grandmothers and how they dressed, I clearly remember that they ALWAYS dressed as a lady. Now I could get accept it as part of ‘the good old days’, but I think there is more to it than that.
Dressing like a lady
I remember all those cosy winter Sundays where my grandmothers came to our place. Two extraordinary women who lived in time so different from ours!
One of them would find a comfortable place on the couch and help my mother with all the mending that needed to be done. My mother would gather it in a basket. If you come from a larger family, you know that five children produce quite a pile of socks, shirts and other stuff that need some kind of repair. One thing I still don’t understand: my grandmother would mend my ballet tights in a way you could not see! Incredible. This is an art we do not know anymore. (Note: my grandmother was not a seamstress).
Than the other grandmother. When it was cold, she would be dressed in a fur coat with warm boots. Warm, but still beautiful. When she entered our home, she needed some time to dress, as she said. This was my favourite time to spend with her, talking without any disturbance of other brothers and sisters. She would change her warm boots for elegant pumps. She would comb her white hair, which she wore with pride, and then she would just add some powder to her nose. That was it! Nothing more. But it was executed with care. It was only then that she would enter the room with guests.
What it showed to me, was her way of respecting the people she would meet. She would make sure she was presented at her best, ready for a wonderful conversation! You could always find something to talk about with this lady, because she would read the newspaper and learn a new language (Russian, at the age of 90!).
To me, the dressing part was just ‘a part’ of her being a lady. Nevertheless an important part and I wonder where we, as a society, lost this beautiful tool of communication.
Basic dressing in wintertime
So where to start? How to dress like a lady in wintertime, the ultimate season where you want to feel comfortable?
The picture above shows two ways to dress. The left set is more like day dressing while the right set is suitable for a dinner party as well. If you choose your accessories well, you might change this around if you want.
As you see, the colour scheme is quite simple: grey and black. Nothing special. But thoughtfully put together, both make an interesting everyday look which is comfortable and full of style!
What adds comfort to your dressing?
- choosing warm materials, like wool
- wearing boots with a woollen lining
- changing to warm tights
- adding woollen shawls
- wearing fur
How to dress beautifully?
- staying close to your own colour scheme
- choosing practical footwear when outside and carry your ‘wow’- shoes for your meetings, dinners, etc.
- looking for cardigans with a special ‘touch’ to it (embroidery, sparkles, stones)
- playing with different textures in your clothing
Saskia ter Welle designs Women’s Wear and Advises on Personal Colour and Style. She teaches French Haute Couture Embroidery techniques and organises inspiring events on Personal Branding.