OT...kinda...need help with what to wear

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Squattie
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 669
   Posted 3/6/2010 1:23 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm totally lost in my closet. I actually have stuff from the 80's that I have been saving because it's nice stuff. However, I've been living in sweats for the past several years and have totally lost any perceptions as to what is appropriate anymore because 20 years have gone by.

I never go anywhere I don't absolutely have to. I'm currently unemployed as my doctors don't think I should be working at all. I am saving my dress up clothes for if I ever go to Vegas again. I call them my "dream on" clothes...you know, the velvet skirts, sequined vests and smart looking suits, etc.

I still have leotards with wild patterns, etc. that I used to wear with boots and long sweaters. But now I'm 58 (thin and still have mostly brown hair), and don't know that they are age appropriate, or even in style anymore.

I have wonderful little crop tops that are cute that I used to wear with shorts. Are they age appropriate anymore? And I'm not even going to ask about the mini skirts. I know I've seen my last days with them.

All of my jeans are baggy and are not comfy around the waist. If I'm hanging around the house I want to be comfortable.

I do have some boring "regular" pants that have elastic waists. I feel so old when I put them on to go shopping or to the doctor.

Sometimes I will wear my sweats and hoodies (which I refuse to give up) to go to town and do food shopping, etc. But I just feel so dumpy in my comfort clothes. Come summer I'm usually wearing t-shirts and longer shorts.

What can I keep and what should I ditch? Any ideas?
.....Squattie


ivy6
Elite Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 10404
   Posted 3/6/2010 2:41 PM (GMT -7)   
Squattie, I spent the better part of a decade bed & housebound because of severe Crohn's and found myself in a similar situation once I started to become mobile again. It didn't help that I had changed shape because of medication and nothing fitted anymore.

I started by flicking through magazines (at the library and online, to save $) to get some idea of what was in style. However, I still felt really overwhelmed because I didn't even have one foundation piece to build a new outfit on, and I had no idea where to start.

I ended up going to a reasonably-priced shop where I knew that the salespeople were kind and helpful, and explaining my situation, and asking them to help me. They were *fantastic*. I didn't have the money for anything too expensive; was in too much pain to wear anything tight; so they set me up with a pair of soft knitted black trousers, a few good-quality long-sleeved t-shirts in colours that suited me; and then selected a few accessories that I could use to dress the outfit up or down, or adapt to the weather. For me, this was a modern shawl / scarf, a knitted vest, and a funky jacket.

This has become my basic outfit for wearing to church / cafes / doctors appointments, etc. Once I had that foundation, I was able to buy shirts in a different colour with matching cardigan (this became outfit #2) and a few more black trousers, in different weights, so that I can now keep wearing the basic outfit in every season.

Now that I have my basic errand clothes sorted, I am now hoping to start improving my at-home wear and my shoes. After that, I hope to be able to find something dressier to wear for special occasions... but it's a gradual process, and I know it will take time.

My suggestion would be to pick a few basic colours for your "daily" wardrobe, and start from there. A good tip is to choose one neutral colour for your foundation pieces, and then a few contrasting colours for variety.

If you haven't done so, you might like to work out what your basic colour palette is, so you know what clothes will work for you and what won't. (Try Googling "colour me beautiful"). F'r instance, I know that I look better in jewel-like colours, so I have a basic foundation of dark bottoms (trousers etc) with bright shirts & jackets, and then I throw in some matching accessories to add some funkiness.

You might look better in pale shades, so blue bottoms and white tops might work better for you... it all depends on your climate and your shape and your colouring, I think.

The other thing is that if your basic wardrobe is fairly modern, you'll probably be able to get away with wearing some of your favourite vintage pieces to add a bit of contrast and personal style and funkiness. You'd probably look weird if your whole wardrobe came from the '80s, but a great vintage shirt worn with some contemporary trousers might look great. You'll have to experiment and see.

Me, I wouldn't think so much about fashion, but more in terms of what styles and colours looked best on me. As an example, I find that the baggy trousers that were fashionable from the '90s never looked good on me, so I probably should ditch them (and am working on it!) and you might have obvious things like that to toss too. I'd suggest doing it gradually, and only when you feel comfortable about getting rid of things. As you build a new wardrobe that "works" for you, you'll have a better idea of what you're likely to wear and what you won't, and then you'll feel happier about streamlining your clothing collection. You'll get there...

If you haven't done so, I think your best bet would be to get yourself fitted for some new bras first, as anything you buy will look wrong if your foundation garments are wrong. You might also like to visit an expert and get matched up with some new makeup, as our colouring can change after illness, and a new foundation might improve your self-esteem no end.

Good luck with it all!

Ivy.
Co-Moderator Crohn's Forum.

Medications for Crohn's ~~ Diet and Nutritional Therapy for Crohn's ~~ Dealing with Abscesses and Fistulae ~~


ivy6
Elite Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 10404
   Posted 3/6/2010 2:44 PM (GMT -7)   
ps. If you look carefully you ought to be able to find knitted trousers that will be dressy enough to wear out on errands etc that won't look like sloppy track-suit pants.

That way you can be comfortable, warm and dressy - it's all a matter of looking around (which you can only do when you're reasonably healthy), trying lots of things on, and finding something that's comfortable *and* flattering for your figure.

Again, it might help to ask the shop assistants for advice, as they know what they have in stock and what might work for you.
Co-Moderator Crohn's Forum.

Medications for Crohn's ~~ Diet and Nutritional Therapy for Crohn's ~~ Dealing with Abscesses and Fistulae ~~


Zanne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 3/6/2010 3:26 PM (GMT -7)   
Let me start by saying that I have 2 daughters, 19 and 22, who put me in my place if I even attempt to wear something that might be out of date. So they keep me pretty in style and age appropriate. Ivy has some wonderful advice. I would add that when I was really at my worst and couldn't possibly wear jeans or regular pants, my life saver was Lands End sport knit pants. They have elastic waist and come in several leg openings, multiple colors, and sizing so you can find the style that is right for you. They are a nice weight and can pass as a dress pant, but are comfy for Crohnies, even though the style would suggest a sweat pant. I used to wear them to work as a manager of a showroom and look very professional. And they are Wash and Wear! You might be able to find them at Sears, but online would give you the best selection. Then as Ivy suggested add multiple style and color tops to create several basic outfits swapping accessories to dress up or down as needed.

Also check out TLC's What not to Wear, and the Style network's How do I look, if you have cable TV, or you can check out their websites. They give great tips on what styles are in fashion, what shapes flatter which body types, makeup, hairstyles, accessories, basically everything you asked about. Even how to mix in vintage pieces. You might have to dig a bit on the websites, but the info is there. Sometimes the hosts are a bit harsh, but the people always look so much better, so they must know what they are doing. Plus its good entertainment.

Lastly, You save those "dream on" clothes! We all need those!!!!!
Suzanne

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!


Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....


ivy6
Elite Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 10404
   Posted 3/6/2010 3:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Zanne, are you able to provide the websites here? They sound really useful.
Co-Moderator Crohn's Forum.

Medications for Crohn's ~~ Diet and Nutritional Therapy for Crohn's ~~ Dealing with Abscesses and Fistulae ~~


Zanne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 3/6/2010 4:02 PM (GMT -7)   
http://tlc.discovery.com/fansites/whatnottowear/whatnottowear.html

http://www.mystyle.com/mystyle/shows/howdoilook/index.jsp


Here are the Websites. I don't know how to activate them though. Hope they help. I'm off to make dinner. I'll check in later, so If they don't work, let me know and I'll see what I can do. wink

*I activated your links:)*

Post Edited By Moderator (Nanners) : 3/7/2010 8:11:06 AM (GMT-7)


Squattie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 669
   Posted 3/6/2010 5:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks Ivy and Zanne! I did a copy and paste for the web sites. Good stuff.

I also watched an episode of what not to wear this afternoon. Had to laugh. The clothes they threw out of this poor girl's wardrobe! They still looked better than what I've been wearing the past few years. Oh Lordy, I can't even dress up to what's being discarded!

Oh well...sometimes it's nice just to start all over again. Maybe I'll just design a toga from my micro fleece blanket. I really am into comfort. Or I'll start watching "How to Look Good Naked." LOL!
.....Squattie


sickandlucky
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 253
   Posted 3/6/2010 6:50 PM (GMT -7)   
I agree with Zanne, What Not To Wear would be a great resource for you!!
My advice (I'm a 19 year old student so I don't know how relevant my opinion is on this) is to invest in a few staple pieces for your wardrobe... such as a good fitting pair of jeans, a nice button up white shirt, a nice pair of black pants and a well fitted blazer. Cause you can mix and match anything with those and they will look good and never go out of style. It doesn't really matter what you wear around the house as long as you're comfortable! But sometimes it can be a confidence boost to look nice to go shopping or to the doctor if you don't have much else going on.
My mom is 50 and dresses way cooler than me! Very age appropriate but also really stylish. She mostly wears well fitting jeans or pants and casual button up tops and blazers or jackets. And always high heels since she's only 5"0!
I do think one of the most important and overlooked things to do though is to wear things that fit you. It sounds really basic but so many people are wearing things that are too big or too small and it can be really uncomfortable and makes things look "off".
I don't know if that was very good advice but good luck to you I hope you find some good outfits! : )
female 19, diagnosed crohns december 2008
entocort/pentasa previously, now prednisone(tapering) & 100 mg imuran, probiotics, calcium w/d3, biotin, folic acid, zinc, omega 3s, digestive enzymes & prenatal multivitamin


ivy6
Elite Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 10404
   Posted 3/6/2010 7:06 PM (GMT -7)   
:-)

My feeling is that track pants are working for you, so maybe you just need to shop around and upgrade to a dressier version, as both Zanne and I have done.

Once you have sore gut, fistulas, bloating etc, it really can be difficult to cope with those trendy jeans with their thick seams and solid fabrics.

Ivy.
Co-Moderator Crohn's Forum.

Medications for Crohn's ~~ Diet and Nutritional Therapy for Crohn's ~~ Dealing with Abscesses and Fistulae ~~


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 3/7/2010 8:17 AM (GMT -7)   
I am 52 and cannot wear jeans anymore as they just hurt my stomach TOO much. For work I wear dress slacks that have a zipper and button top. They CANNOT be too tight in the waist line, so I generally wear them a little bigger. I never wear dresses anymore as I cannot tolerate the tight pantyhose. I can guarantee myself a stomach ache if I do. If I wasn't so Irish and white I could get away with sun dresses, but I am not a tanner, so those don't work for me, but maybe if you tan easily those are something you could wear. High heels are definetly out for me too, as I have bad knees, and if I wear them they cause my knees and hips to hurt. But some cute flats can always be found.

Squattie, the 80's clothes will probably not work anymore. I tend to keep my smaller clothes, but only the stuff that stays in fashion(sorry nothing from the 80's). Also, just want to let you know I feel your pain. Hugs!
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease & Anxiety/Panic
Crohn's Disease for over 34 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, Calcium, Vit D, and Xanax prn. Resections in 2002 & 2005. Also diagnosed w/ Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, & Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission, but my joints are going crazy!
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

Squattie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 669
   Posted 3/7/2010 8:57 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks Nanners!

What are pantyhose? I haven't worn them in a hunnerd years. They're great for storing flower bulbs, though.

I still have my wedding shoes from '76. Only wore them once, but they are heels and my knees are always going out on me so any heel is out of the question unless it's a 1 inch block heel. Plus my feetsies have gotten wider from wearing tennis shoes mostly and I can't get into pointed toes. Oh my God. Now that I think of it, it's probably been my wardrobe that gave me Crohns to begin with...when I think back on all the tight fitting stuff I had to endure. LOL!

I am a "tanner" so I can get away with nekked legs. But they're kinda thin. And there's always someone on hand to say "Wow, you're too thin." I always reply "Really? I had absolutely no idea. Thanks for letting me know!" I wonder why people feel so free to point out when someone is thin, but wouldn't point out being overweight to an overweight person? Opposite ends of the same stick. Nobody wants to experience either one.

When I was horribly sick and weighed 83 lbs., my body builder hubby said "I never thought I'd be wishing for a fat wife!" He was so scared. The most I've ever weighed was 117 when I was a junior in high school. Then I settled in at 104 and kept that weight for over 30 years...didn't matter what I ate or didn't eat. My weight didn't fluctuate until 8 years ago when I lost it all. Now I weigh 92 lbs., and it's been a long haul putting the weight back on. I've lost a lot of muscle tone, so that's part of the problem. I'm finding that digestive enzymes have done the most for me in gaining any weight at all.
.....Squattie


MMMNAVY
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 6927
   Posted 3/7/2010 9:46 AM (GMT -7)   
Squattie,
At the other end of the spectrum, telling someone they are thin is another way of saying someone is beautiful. It is the goal we all work towards.
If you live in the states:
Hush puppies are generally decent priced and comfy. Soft style angel is a small heel that I actually ran more then a 1/4 mile in. I was late.
Eddie Bauer is also another generally tasteful and age appropriate option. Especially for shorts and kacki trousers.
I also like Dillards (litterly have "Investiments" brand pieces) /Nordstrom for their elegance, but they are fairly expensive.
Coldwater Creek is also generally a good moderate option for women's clothing.

I think it is a pretty good idea to donate about everything from the '80s. Unless it is a plain cashmere turtleneck sweater in a color that flatters your skin/hair.
Forum Co-moderator - Crohn's Disease/Thyroid Disorders:_All comments have the caveat contact your local health care provider.

I will find a way or make one. –Phillip Sidney 1554-1586

All that I am and all that I shall ever be, I owe to my Angel Mother.

The Bucket List- Have you found joy in your life?  Has your life brought joy to others?

Make sure your suffering has meaning…


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 3/7/2010 10:06 AM (GMT -7)   
Oh my gosh Squattie, I have a weight lifter hubby too. Actually pretty funny as exercise and I have never been good friends. My ex was a jock too. I guess opposites do attract. Hahaha!
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease & Anxiety/Panic
Crohn's Disease for over 34 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, Calcium, Vit D, and Xanax prn. Resections in 2002 & 2005. Also diagnosed w/ Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, & Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission, but my joints are going crazy!
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

Zanne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 3/7/2010 11:20 AM (GMT -7)   
Yup, my hubbie lifts weights and runs too. Nanners more ammo for that twin thing!

Squattie, I wear jeans on most days, but I always have a pony holder in the pocket. If my tummy gets bad, I do the button hole expansion trick. Loop the elastic through the button hole and over the button. It gives you an extra inch or two and since I never tuck a shirt in no one ever knows.

I usually wear flats, cute ballet flats or wool clogs, sometimes I'll tuck my jeans into flat boots (skinny jeans or leggings too). In the summer I wear flat sandals, lots to choose from. So just because you have to wear flats doesn't mean you can't be in fashion. Plus keds and converse are back in style, doesn't get much more comfy than that.

And I say wear whatever you want at home. As soon as I am done for the day, even if it is 1 in the afternoon, I am in my comfy sweats! As long as I could as the door if the door bell rang, I figure I'm good.
Suzanne

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!


Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....


dinkydee
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 201
   Posted 3/7/2010 11:42 AM (GMT -7)   
Squattie,
I too think it helps that my daughter is 22. (& getting married this month yeah!) What I have recently started wearing is leggins. I found some that look like denim jeans, black and brown ones. Then I wear with long sweaters & boots or if its nicer out, with flats (pointier ones are cute!) Then I bought some little dresses on clearance. And I wear those. For summer I can wear them with long tops! I love them, thought they might be too young at first, but not! I've gotten so many compliments! So comfortable too! I wear sweaters or dresses that are short, that have a belt or accentuate the waist. I find alot of stuff on clearance at Kohl's or Target! Just 2 pair of tights/leggins, sweaters, & 1 pair of good fitting jeans & I agree a cute jacket. I bought a jean jacket & I can wear it on top of the dresses..so cute!
I feel so much better if I dress & wear make up when I go to the store or anywhere! Plus I always want to look good for my husband, more than anyone else!!! Hope that helps!!
Oh and cleaning out my closets was so much work, but it has been great! I was able to bless other people by giving some away. And then the rest went to Goodwill. (which is another good place to look!) My daughter shops at thrift stores mostly and looks so cute!!
It is so freeing to get all that stuff out too!
Diagnosed with CD 2006.  Refused to take meds until recently started Colazal. 
 Currently on Prednisone 40mg. Tapering down, now on 20mg.
Colazal 3xday, Antioxidant strips
 Off of the Prednisone!!
I live by faith and not by sight....


Valerie3
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 529
   Posted 3/7/2010 12:32 PM (GMT -7)   
Haha, I was going to say that leggings are a definite staple, but it looks like the last couple of people have said that. I'm 21, but it stays pretty much the same for all ages, especially if you're thin. Leggings are super comfy, and I love to wear them with either dresses if it's cold out, long sweaters, tunics, etc. They look great with black boots and with flats as well. If jeans are bothering your stomach, I'm wondering what rise they are? I've never had any problems with mine bugging my stomach. They sit exactly on my hips. I love my skinny jeans, haha. For me, they would only bug me if they're too tight - my jeans don't even touch my stomach, only my back and my hipbones. They're actually more comfortable for me than when I'm wearing yoga pants around the house. Other than what I've mentioned, cardigans are really "in" right now, including longer ones. It's really great because if you buy a few colors of cardigans, you can wear lots of different cute camis underneath and stuff like that. I'm Canadian so I can't help much with stores unfortunately, haha, but good luck :)
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