The Cans and the Cannots

My sense of personal style can be easily divided into 2 categories when it comes to keeping up with the latest fashion trends.  The Cans and the Cannots.  Its VERY simple.  As a young minded 40-something, there are looks I know I can pull off and some that, quite frankly are a stretch.  The latter are those looks that either (a) I simply cannot wrap my head around, or (b) look completely ridiculous on me.  There are lots of trendy fashion statements that I love (ie: the boyfriend jean – don’t ever quit me, the small leather backpack, fabulous over-the-knee boots) that I hope NEVER go out of style.  But there are some trends of late that I just CANNOT DO:

1. Ankle Boots with a Skirt – I want to do this.  SO. BAD.  But this is simply a case of not being able to wrap my head around it.  I love to see this look on other people or in magazines but when its my turn I just can’t do it.

2. High Waisted Jeans – well, this is a given.  To wear these you have to follow the 25 rule.  You cannot be over 25 or wear anything larger than size 25 jeans.

3. Really Low Waisted Jeans – for two very simple reasons.  #1 – I have a high butt crack.  This requires no further explanation.  #2 – I have a mommy belly that comes from birthing 2 live humans.  So suck it.  That is all.

4. Overalls – that old adage that you should never wear a trend twice is true.  By the time something like overalls comes back in the picture, it’s been 20 years and we are now far too old to pull this off.

5. Cut-Off Jeans – couldn’t do it when I was 15, couldn’t do it when I was 25 and I SURE AS HELL am not doing it now.  PS – why are they SO short this year?  I mean, I’m not a prude but to quote my grandmother “You can see everything she owns.”  Under NO circumstances is it ok to reveal labia.

Grandma's version of a perfectly acceptable outfit.

Grandma’s version of a perfectly acceptable outfit.  Elbows covered please!

6. Denim on Denim – aka The Canadian Tuxedo.  I feel like this is just TOO much denim.  It looks like a mistake.  “Everything else was in the laundry.”  Maybe I’m old school and since this used to be a fashion faux pas, I just can’t get into it.  Which is even more bizarre since I am clearly ok with my purse and shoes not matching, and I think mixing gold and silver jewelry is cool.  But for the record, I do struggle with white after Labor Day.

7. Hats – because, well if you read this you would know.


Hats Off!

Can we talk about hats?  Like as a fashion statement.  I like a hat.  I really really do.  I envy those airport paparazzi shots of Hollywood starlets looking all cool after a trans-Atlantic flight sporting a jaunty hat and sunglasses.  It looks good.  I treasure the image of my grandparents out for the day circa 1964 in camel hair overcoats and matching fedoras.  Its a pretty bad ass silhouette.

But I just can’t do it.

I own hats.  I think I even look good in a hat.  But I can’t.  I feel like a douche.  Maybe if I moved to Europe, I could reinvent myself and incorporate the hat into my daily street style rotation?  Is that it?  Would that work ok?  Otherwise, I’m the lady with the hats in the closet collecting dust.

Shorty #1 and I have some fun shopping.

Shorty #1 and I go shopping.

Maybe I should have been born into royalty, then I would feel more free to express my hat love more openly.  Good for you Katy Cambridge, you lucked out to marry into a hat wearing family.  Go for it sister.  Expand your horizons beyond that little fascinator and rock out a wide-brim why don’t you?  I know people judge you for what you wear but you can actually pull that shit off.

The truth is that a hat is a pain in the ass.  They are a nightmare to pack (I’m looking at you Mr. taking up half an overhead storage bin with your Tilley Endurable).  They make my forehead itch.  And seriously, when we’re inside and need to take the hat off – HAT HAIR.  WTF!  Any minuscule amount of fashion props we’re getting for rocking a great hat goes immediately out the window when you’re sporting a crushed blow out.

So, I guess I’ll just save you my precious for a day at the beach.  The rest of you are getting donated to the School for Johnny Depp impersonators.

Ode to a Boot

Roses are red

My boots are black

I love my Fryes

More than my flats


I was messing around online and stumbled across this post on and it made me think about just how much I love my Frye Harness motorcycle boots.  I picked them up 9 years ago in the heat of August at a Nordstrom annual summer sale.  They are a little battered and beaten but still comfortable as hell.  The scuffs and scrapes only add character to these beauties.  They look great with jeans, with a little dress, anything goes.  Really, what’s not to love…

…Except that they are heavy as hell.  I wore them when I was pregnant and nearly went into labor.  I remember stopping in the mall and sitting on a bench with contractions.  I went home, took the boots off and laid down and the contractions went away – so you can be a slave to fashion even in your third trimester.

The truth is that Frye makes great boots.  They are solid and they hold up well to the shit-kicking I put them through including several rainy Pacific Northwest winters.  They are not cheap, but when you factor in how many seasons you can pull out of them, the amortized rate makes them a bargain.

In addition to the Harness, that I love so much – Frye make other super cute styles.  I have a pair of the Melissa Button riding boots that I bought almost 5 years ago.  I still wear them every fall/ winter.  They never go out of style.  Unlike the Harness, I have had to have them re-soled, but that was worth every penny as they are still in great shape.  The more you wear a pair of Fryes, the more comfortable they get.  The more beat up they are, the cooler they look.

Trust me – they’re worth the money.  And they didn’t pay me a dime (or a boot) to say so!