By the time I was three years old, my mother could no longer dress me.  She says from that moment on, she was ready to get me a subscription to Vogue Magazine.   That was the beginning of life as my own fashion stylist, and my need to express myself through my clothing—color, style, and overall look.  It had to be “mine.”  It’s not that I love to shop; I’m an ok shopper.  I’ve developed a kind of “kamikaze” style of shopping - go in with my idea of what I need, and get out as quickly as possible. It’s more the fact that putting outfits together is my creative and artistic expression. It’s something I do whether I try or not.  My mind is always going.  I can’t stop it.

So, if you’ll indulge me, I look forward to sharing my fashion experiences with you, from time to time.  It’s my pleasure! 

It’s January, the start of a new year, and of course, a time for making resolutions.   I try to do the simple resolutions every year; be kind, be more mindful and peaceful, and make healthy life choices.  And I do, return to my winter fashion mantra:  keep colorful and avoid the winter fashion blues.  It’s a difficult time to dress oneself.  The weather is harsh and cold, and not only do you have to think about your inner outfit, but you must consider pulling everything together with your outer gear.  How does one do it?  Watch the elements, while at the same time, looking pulled together and chic?  I, like so many other women, love the simplicity of black, and its simple lines.  I’m often wearing slim black pants with a sweater, boots, and my black jacket.  But, the one thing I try to do, is give my standard look a pop of color, with accessories.  A great scarf is bold and dramatic, as are hats and gloves.  Lately, I’ve been having a lot of fun with the 80’s style leggings (color and black), to add interest and texture to my slacks, and I have a pair of purple ankle boots that I treasure.  Keep it fun.  I also read once, that in life, you must follow the shiny things.  This works well with fashion choices. Adding sparkle is a great way to keep your spirits up in the cold winter months to come.  A hint of gold, silver and bronze, will lift an outfit, and handbags are full of these touches.  And, if you can lift your outfit, you can lift your own spirits.

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Happy New Year to you!  I wish you a shiny start to your year.

Melissa Kaplan Guarino lives in Summit with her family of boys, including two teenage sons and a male cat.   She still insists on dressing herself.