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What Needs To Be Always New, Or, Saturday Morning at 9:23am

Having always, always sought novelty, I do believe I’m starting to repeat myself. This is good, when it comes to life accoutrements, and I’m happy to have settled on what to wear and where to find it.

A short list below. (I’ve linked to the currently available products from above, and also my new sneakers not seen. If you’re curious about any of the other items below, just put the terms into the blog search up there in the top right hand corner and past posts with examples should magically appear. I appreciate your interest in my style. We do like to see how our cohort ornaments, do we not?)

  • H&M sweatpants
  • Designer sweatshirts/cheap sweatshirts in fun colors/sweatshirts that support causes
  • Random tees from 3 decades (Bruce Springsteen may have to go soon, sadly)
  • UNIQLO tees (for graphics. The Basquiats are my absolute favorite, but they do sell out quickly)
  • J Crew tops (for the sophisticated colors, above)
  • Eileen Fisher lantern pants: the ponte (above in brown), cotton pills too much
  • Sneakers: current brand is HOKA and am finding them super comfortable and more stable than my old Nike Airs
  • Comfortable not-sneakers: Paul Green, Grenson (above)
  • GraeCove linen dresses
  • J Crew bathing suits
  • Birkenstocks
  • Haviana flipflops
  • Mephisto wedge sandals
  • UNIQLO down jackets
  • MaxMara good coats
  • Other jackets from Vince (above), J Crew, Barbour etc. For these I have no brand loyalty; they are determined by the set of trousers and shoes that I can comfortably wear; comfort being defined by identity presentation as much as the thickness of a sole.
  • Cashmere/silk scarves
  • Hiking and workout gear from hithah and thithah (said in a Boston accent for no particular reason)

That leaves dress-up stuff, the indulgences, the clothes and accessories that verge on art. Christopher Kane, Prada, Chanel, Loewe, Greyson and Jimmy Choo. Having bought these once, in the times of salary, no need to repeat. Such things tend to endure, both in ethos and material. I’m still wearing the Dries van Noten dress and my Gucci tiger slides, although not together because that would look weird.

Even skincare, notoriously something I’ll snag in hopes of solving something unsolvable, I’ve begun to rebuy. To the items in this post I’ve just added the expensive neck cream from Brian+MW and I’m both pleased and annoyed that it actually seems to firm up the crepe. I’m waiting for the next Sephora sale to rebuy the Tatcha cream, Drunken Elephant soap and Cipacair. However, important note, this time I will buy the mini Cipacair. Product in the large size starts to separate before it’s finished.

Oh, wait, one thing I haven’t settled on, concealer. Turns out that even with the Cicapair I would like something for extra coverage here and there. Any recommendation?

I do not, however, want to give up novelty in thought.

I’ll be taking August off. Partly to frolic, partly to think. I’ve reached the querying stage for my romance, and I want to take a little time to consider my next long-form writing project, which doesn’t exist yet except in fragments like confetti on the wind. I’ll also be thinking about the blog, so if there’s anything you’d like to read, any topics you’d like my peculiar take on, requests happily received.

BTW, yes I did photoshop a black rectangle to cover something not mine to show in the photo above. The sheer creative novelty astounds. I left my pile of Havianas, Birkenstocks and beat-up Glerups because this is all as true as I can make it.

Have an excellent weekend and may your August be absolutely glorious, my friends.


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25 Responses

  1. I just recently became aware of HOKAs. When my husband was hospitalized, I noticed that everyone on the hospital staff was wearing them. I even wondered if they were given a monetary incentive (such as a huge discount) to wear them. Either that or they must be incredibly comfortable. Now I am seeing them everywhere! Enjoy your annual August break. I look forward to your return in September. Happy summer!

    1. I googled what to wear for plantar fasciitis, which is what I was beginning to feel, and HOKAs were recommended. Endorse:) Happy summer to you too!

  2. I love HOKAS–best lace up shoes ever. I can walk miles in them while traveling. I am going to take a look at the linen dresses you like. I need additional hot weather clothing here in Texas!

    1. You might get a kick out of this: my sister and I went for a walk with my stepmother as part of her birthday celebrations and we all turned up in HOKAs;)

  3. I’m the same – used to seek novelty, but now rely on reliables. However, always on the hunt for my perfect blue jean. The best concealer I’ve ever used (and I’ve tried all of them) is by Typology. Just look for your color.

    Yes to always continuing novelty of thought!

    1. Ah the perfect blue jean:). Typology, OK, thank you. Does it cover dark spots? That’s my issue, more than under eye.

  4. Lots of thoughts:
    — I used to love Cle de Peau concealer, but now my skin is just too thin/wrinkly under my eyes for it to go on smoothly. I’m going to to try the new Jones Road face pencil which Bobbi Brown swears is NOT cake-y.
    — In the morning, P50 toner (every other day, actually) followed by a smear of Skinceuticals Vitamin C over face and neck.
    — at night, Tretinoin plus whatever night cream I have on hand (Cerave, Mario Badescu).
    I have tried two other high-end products that are nice but I’m the end not worth the cost: 8th Day regenerative serum and Augustine Bader The Rich Cream. I’m saving my $$ for Fraxel!

    1. Do update me on the Fraxel, if you’re in the mood. And thanks for the info on Augustine Bader, I am happy to know I don’t have to do an expensive Insta-experiment;)

  5. Love your list of old reliables and new favourites! Are you fully retired now – ie do you need any semi-business outfits – nobody wears the old formal office attire anymore, so many people work from home nowadays.

    I’m semi-retired – work part-time as a landscape designer, so I need unfussy, washable but still presentable outfits for touring the client’s garden, and slightly more formal attire when presenting my landscape design solutions, both verbally (outdoors) and graphically (mostly indoors, including Zoom when I design remotely).

    Clothes must convey authority as well as friendliness, approachability and creativity.
    Summer: linen (handkerchief weight), linen and more linen! Good brands: Habitat, Cut Loose, Cherish, and many Italian-made brands.
    Fall/spring: heavier weight linens, light fabric coats and jackets. If you can still find them, Robert Kitchen clothes are enduring “wearable art”, some new designers include Claire Desjardins, Dolcezza, Leo and Ugo.
    If you want custom clothing or enduring classics at an affordable price,

    Shoes: open-toed if you are going up or down hills (like Carmel-by-the-Sea). Close-toed of course, if you are doing an in-garden consultation, or supervising a job site. Party shoes with sensible heels- who can party with pinched feet? If you must, also bring your high-heeled shoes in a shoe bag, only to be used for photo ops.

    Ah…about mature skin. The only products I’ve found that work for me are LaRoche Posay for skin care -their hyaluronic acid products for plumping up the eye area and the facial skin work like magic even in the skin-sucking dryness of a Canadian winter. Must be their mineral water content? Anyways, their combined sunscreen and hyaluronic acid gel makes it a pleasure to apply SPF 30 in the morning rush – it’s so easy to use, and so protective, I never skip it. Like you, I like Tatcha products: I use Tatcha camellia oil cleanser at night for gently removing every last speck of foundation (Ellis Faas, SPF 15 approx) and blush (Laura Mercier) and concealer (Chantecaille).

    Less is more at our venerable age (I’m in my mid-70s), so I’d suggest you want to look like a slightly younger version of your best self…I’d say aim for 10-15 years younger than your chronological age, and leave it at that. Enjoy who you are and how you got there! Some wonderful things only happen with age – experience, wisdom, maturity, grandchildren, travels, and if you’re lucky, a circle of loving family and friends who’ve been with you through thick and thin. You’ll do the same for them, too.

    1. M, I am fully retired, but I agree, if I still had to put on a professional face I’d have some different options. Thank you so much for sharing your ideas! And you are the second to mention Chantecaille concealer, so I consider that a good augury. I am not trying to look younger, per se, just as though I have not been more damaged than I wanted to be by the life I’ve lived.

  6. You’re right about the Cle de Peau concealer, it’s only for smooth, firm skin, but it is beautiful if you can use it. I find I can’t wear it anymore under my eyes, no matter how much moisturizer I use – I’m in my mid-70s now.

    So, I’ve tried both the Chantecaille (Le Camouflage Stylo) and the Sisley (Stylo Lumiere), with a slight preference for the latter. Both are eye-wateringly expensive, but you use so little, they will last for months; they do make the eye area look more youthful, but no permanent miracles at our age.

    1. I’ll check into Sisley too. I think a morning at the shopping center is in order…

  7. Hi Lisa–Your Eileen Fisher ponte pants link goes to “J. Crew Vintage Rib Polo Shirt.” Enjoy your August respite!

  8. Sorry but I dislike (meant hate) Hokas. I’ve tried several different styles and each one killed my feet. At their price it’s not worth being uncomfortsble for the latest “thing”. I ll stay with my less expensive but super comfortable Easy Spirits.

  9. I have many of these items in my closet but struggle to put them together — I love how you’ve done it!

    I use Elta MD sunscreen and mix the tinted with untinted to try and conceal my under eye bags and sun spots. “Try” being the operative word. When I can I splurge for Revision Skincare. I’m 65.

  10. I’d been looking for the perfect concealer for over 50 years (I’m 66) and finally found it – the Jones Road face pencil. I no longer wear foundation; just this. Have a restful August!

  11. Your choice in clothing and shoe options covers all the bases. Quality being key, I like your selections. Enjoy your August and time to reflect, plan and just have a good time.

  12. Your recommendations always intrigue. Finding concealer that works under eye is my holy grail. My latest success is with Jones Road Beauty (Bobbi Brown’s incarnation and very clean) face pencils. Send their make up artists online a selfie and you will receive shade suggestions.

  13. I enjoyed reading this blog post and enjoyed your past post about your 2nd wedding, such a lovely post and beautiful photos of the day!
    I was turned on to your blog when one of your reader found out about my neck creme and purchased it a couple weeks ago. I’m Brian, the creator of Brian + MW, soon to be rebranded to BY BRIAN. I offer Workshops, Cosmetics including Skincare and Makeup, and write a blog named Brian’s Journal, which is my writings about my classes, techniques, products and my opinions. I’ve been lacking this year writing. I loved reading that you’re happily using the Firming Neck & Chest Creme and seeing the results! I know it’s not inexpensive and it works! A few of your readers have purchased it since this blog post. I want to thank you for sharing about it here on your blog.
    Oh, now about concealer!
    This is a cosmetic and topic I love teaching and talking about in my workshops. I have a strong opinion about concealing and about application techniques on covering, camouflaging or what I like to say softening brown/dark spots, the under eye area and providing overall skin/face brightening and softening. I recommend something different then “concealer.” I use and teach how to use a foundation exclusively, for the challenges of spots, under eye and the face. I only use a “concealer” to brighten one area of the eye. And…maybe only teach an advanced technique for deeper valleys on the face.
    Pls, for me I love reading the comments and suggestions of what others are using and what they have found to work and the challenges and aha’s experienced. I’ve learned so much over the years from reading comments and while teaching, watching my participants, in my classes, apply there skincare and makeup.
    Thank you again.

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