Recalibrating

Susan B. of une femme d'un certain age wears a red summer sweater, light wash jeans and leopard print sandals.

Staying home…

Whew. It looks like we’ll be continuing to hunker down at home for the foreseeable future. So focusing on the positive, I’m glad we held off going out to eat or doing any in-person shopping beyond twice-weekly grocery runs. That we have avoided crowds. And that (knock wood) we remain healthy.

Earrings (similar) | Top | Necklace (similar) | Ring | Jeans | Sandals

We’re very fortunate: I work from home, le Monsieur is (now) retired, and we have a lovely yard where we can spend time when we need to get out of the house. I don’t forget for a minute how much we have to be grateful for.

Staying comfortable…

Susan B. wears a red summer sweater, light wash jeans and leopard slide sandals. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Even staying at home, I feel better if I’m dressed. That usually means street clothes, a couple pieces of casual jewelry, and maybe a little makeup and fragrance. But it all has to be comfortable.

The weather pattern known as “June gloom” has hung on, so I’ve been getting a few more weeks’ wear from my lightweight sweaters. This one is a cotton-linen blend, and comfortable in fluctuating temperatures, so I can wear it all day. It’s a roomy cut; if you want a more fitted look, I’d advise sizing down.

While I don’t want to live in sweats, I also can’t bear to wear anything stiff or constricting. Jeans are my go-to, but they have to have some ease and stretch, which these do.

Susan B. wears a red v-neck sweater and Murano glass bead necklace. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

Both the necklace and earrings were purchased on our first trip to Venice in 2011. I recently re-discovered the necklace during a closet re-organization, and can’t believe I’ve let it languish unworn for so long!

How are you balancing comfort and style these days?

Stay in touch.

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42 Comments

  1. Chris
    July 1, 2020 / 4:17 am

    Who makes your eyeglasses frames?

  2. Margaret
    July 1, 2020 / 4:27 am

    You look great! Staying home agrees with you. Love your hair as it grows out.

  3. Charlotte Gibson
    July 1, 2020 / 4:31 am

    You look fabulous. Love the wide strap sandals. Here in Alabama it is so hot and humid that I find I am taking three showers a day. I am desperate for something to wear that looks as nice as you do in these pictures. Jeans? Forget it, too heavy and hot. Light sweater? Hahaha I need something light, airy and flowing .

    • susie
      July 2, 2020 / 4:18 am

      Hey neighbor Im here in Georgia and about to melt. One good idea are the linen blend tops from J Crew. I have really stayed cooler in those, as well as linen pants. I carry wet rags around with me to wipe down with and I wear a wet rag around my neck ( I work alot outside). Helps. If I have to dress up it is all linen!!

  4. Rosemarie
    July 1, 2020 / 4:58 am

    Yes, you look amazing! You’ve made me revisit my own colour palette and only buy what really suits me. You’re a great example of the difference wearing the right colours make.

  5. Karen
    July 1, 2020 / 5:12 am

    I love your look. It is important, I think, to spend a little time on yourself even when holed up at home. I rebooked my September 2020 Russia river cruise to September 2021. Also hoping to head to Paris May of 2021 and use the voucher I got from our canceled trip. Working on my trips is helping me weather the storm.

    • Jill Ann
      July 1, 2020 / 7:20 am

      I’m in the same boat (ha) as you; rebooked our Danube river cruise from October 2020 to August 2021. Sadly, I’m not 100% confident it will be safe to go even then! But at least it’s something to look forward to. We’ve discovered that every day at 5 pm, our PBS station shows an episode of Rick Steves’ European travel show. So at 5:00 we pour a glass of wine, and sit down to watch beautiful places we’ve been, or want to go.

      • Chris Reynaud
        July 1, 2020 / 2:18 pm

        We live in Switzerland and were planning on celebrating my 60th in our “happy place” in Florida with a family holiday end July… we are re-booking again for July 2021, but not holding our breath…
        Trying to make more modest plans in between times (i.e. visiting Switzerland!!!) to boost morale.

  6. Laura
    July 1, 2020 / 6:12 am

    That necklace is gorgeous! It was the first thing that caught my eye in this morning’s post. Bet you are delighted that you “rediscovered” it!!

  7. Chris Reynaud
    July 1, 2020 / 6:15 am

    Red and leopard print make a fabulous combination!
    I saw somewhere that there is a shade of red for every skin tone, and this is definitely the one for you!

    • Lagatta de Montréal
      July 1, 2020 / 3:54 pm

      That is true. It is a beautiful sweater and the orangey-red suits Susan perfectly. I LOVE red, but mine has to be on the bluer, cooler side. Cherry, I guess. Not referring to bordeaux or maroon.

  8. Pam
    July 1, 2020 / 6:40 am

    You look so vibrant in all your clothes now. I think if you were dressing in all black you would be depressed now. I, like you, have been getting dressed and wearing makeup, etc. every day. For me it keeps things more normal. My husband is a cancer patient, so we are being very careful. Another blogger I follow just came down with COVID 19. She started going out to eat a couple of weeks ago. I imagine that is how she got it. For us, we are just enjoying our time together. No one is guaranteed a tomorrow.

  9. Pamela
    July 1, 2020 / 6:43 am

    You look gorgeous and happy in Beautifully colored clothes
    So glad you had your colors done, you are an inspiration!!

  10. July 1, 2020 / 8:13 am

    I usually wear work out clothing in the morning as I always work out then. Then after lunch I change in a dress or skirt. Don’t wear a lot of accessories when I’m just at home, but always put on my makeup. Love to do that!

  11. Jan Whichard
    July 1, 2020 / 8:34 am

    Great look! Mostly we hang around home or I go into the office where I am generally alone. Husband does all the grocery shopping. Luckily we are underlying healthy people. Our trainer comes to our home now. We have been out to few restaurants we trust and to our private social club. I play golf every Tuesday at our country club with great women and we do what the tour pros do…one per cart, distance, and all that and we laugh a lot although everyone is feeling the tension from the imposed rules which are ever changing in CA.

    I wish I could post a photo for you of our yard and the koi pond.

    Life is short so we have our grandchildren regularly and happily their mother is extremely careful. We see my brother and his wife who live near us. I need to keep a well thought out balance between various aspects of life and make risk benefit choices.

    Susan, you keep me going in the appearance department because I could easily look like a bag lady every day. Hey…how about moths…anyone have tips and tricks?

  12. July 1, 2020 / 8:56 am

    I love these photos of you at home:).

  13. candice clement
    July 1, 2020 / 9:04 am

    I love remembering where I found the jewelry when I put it on, best part of collecting.

  14. lily
    July 1, 2020 / 9:31 am

    i am very lucky. My life is little changed. I continue to go to work every day (It’s just my husband and I. Most of our customer contact is online.) I miss my son who lives in another country. This disease is so contagious. Young people who do everything “right” still get it..

  15. Rose
    July 1, 2020 / 9:49 am

    Susan—I agree with everyone that have said you look wonderful and vibrant with your new color palette. Question for you—do you purchase the regular or petite jeans from Chico’s? These don’t look that cropped on you. I’m about your height but have long legs and shorter torso.

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      July 1, 2020 / 9:53 am

      Hi Rose, thanks! These are the regular size. I also have long legs for my height, and find that “cropped” in many regular sizes is a nice ankle length on me. And if I want shorter, I can always cuff.

  16. July 1, 2020 / 10:53 am

    Oh the benefits of Covid and cleaning your closets haha. Lovely necklace (and earrings). The orange jumper is so nice and looks so good. I have never had any linen blend jumpers. I wonder whether they sell them here.
    Greetje
    PS Has the lock-down in your area become more strict again? We have to Facetime…

  17. Laura
    July 1, 2020 / 12:17 pm

    Susan, that’s a great picture of you. I envy your being able to enjoy your yard. Here in West Florida it’s way too hot to sit outside and read now.
    I also very much like your “look ahead” photos. Although I try to be very mindful of how fortunate we are to be safe and comfortable, it’s uplifting to think someday we may be traveling again.

  18. MARLA PATTERSON
    July 1, 2020 / 1:23 pm

    Yes, you look MAHVALOUS!!! Your hair is really cute….I personally think this slightly longer style is most becoming and soft. Great colors and great eyewear! Hang in there! We are just a little bit south of you in OC.

  19. Jannie
    July 1, 2020 / 2:14 pm

    Oh, Susan, you continue to make my day! Live in Pennsylvania where it is very warm but lovely in the morning! Haven’t worn a sweater in ages and living in shorts and tops and flip flops…I do dress every day but only put on moisturizer! If I go to the grocery store, I do my eyes :):) So miss going out to dinner but we love to cook and want to be safe. I’m 70 and my husband is 72…LIFE IS GOOD…we have wonderful birds in our lovely backyard. Take care and stay safe.

  20. Linda Simpson
    July 1, 2020 / 2:44 pm

    Our local YMCA opened up its zumba class three weeks ago, so I head to that in the mornings on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. We are social distancing; otherwise, I would not be going. I really haven’t been wearing any makeup except for lipstick and mascara, but I do love dressing purposely. I either put on white jeans and a t-shirt or a maxi dress or skirt with fun sandals and jewelry. In St. Louis, it’s been pretty humid and hot, so the dresses and skirts are being favored more right now. Even though, we are staying home, like you, Susan, we have a lovely yard and deck. I love spending time out there watching the birds, rabbits, squirrels, you get the idea. I also have two raised garden beds, so I go out daily to see what is ripening. I’m like a little kid when something is ready to pull off the vine, and I get to fix it for lunch or dinner.

  21. July 1, 2020 / 3:07 pm

    I would love to know how your are maintaining, your hair color, so beautifully. I had my last hair appt. ,for a root touch up, and highlights, in February. I am looking at grey roots, of 2 plus ,inches! Please let us know, how you are keeping your color, so vibrant! Thank you, Nancy

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      July 1, 2020 / 3:13 pm

      Hi Nancy, thanks! I just had an appointment with my hair stylist/colorist (who is also a friend). He works with clients privately and has been doing our hair (color/cut for me, cut for le Monsieur) at our house for several years now. After many weeks of all of us social distancing and staying healthy, we felt it was safe to schedule some maintenance.

      • July 14, 2020 / 11:06 am

        Thank you, Susan, I just reached out to my hair stylist. She is coming to our house, to cut my husband’s hair, and cut and color mine, in our backyard! ! Can’t wait !!! BTW, your color is just stunning! Your stylist t does a wonderful job!

        • July 15, 2020 / 8:55 am

          Susan, one quick question, since your stylist comes to your home, how does the rinsing out of color, happen? As I mentioned, my stylist is coming to our backyard, to, take care of my husband’s haircut, and my cut, and color. We are now wondering, how the shampoo part, will be done? The garden hose, just kidding? Thank you again, for the inspiration, and love, love, your hair color!

          • Susan Blakey
            Author
            July 15, 2020 / 8:56 am

            Hi Nancy, I’ll rinse/shampoo inside in the kitchen sink.

          • July 15, 2020 / 9:25 am

            Thank you, Susan. Meanwhile just heard from my stylist. I am feeling, reassured. It sounds like she has the whole process, figured out. I guess this is a sign of the times, backyard hair styling, with mobile stylists. Who knew, it would come to this. Sadly, there seems to be no end in sight, to the the pandemic. We are all adapting. Best wishes to you and your husband, for good health!

  22. Cheryl
    July 1, 2020 / 3:43 pm

    I’m trying to think of an upside to going back into quarantine. Georgia opened much too early, and now we are paying the price. If I have to shelter in place for another month or so, maybe I will get around to all the projects I was supposed to do in the first quarantine!!!!
    Your look today is fabulous. It’s hot and humid here and will stay that way until September, so no sweaters until then. But, I love the look.
    As info…ordered from Chico’s the metallic linen jacket you featured the other day. Got it in the silvery gray ( to blend with my hair and coloring). Arrived yesterday and it is terrific! Fits perfectly and looks so cute!
    Thank you for showcasing it ( and I went through your blog to order).
    Take care, and stay healthy!

  23. Kay
    July 1, 2020 / 4:02 pm

    I’m glad I went to my favorite restaurant (safely) last week since it appears much of California is shut down again. We, too, have a beautiful yard where we can relax and dine, and I’m so grateful for it.

  24. Eve
    July 1, 2020 / 4:33 pm

    I love my porches and especially my back porch that overlooks a woods. It makes me feel like I’m not so shut in. My husband went for his first haircut since the shutdown. He says it made him feel lighter.
    I absolutely love your style and the color is just the thing we all need right now. What month did you start your new journey into color? . I want to pick up there and get caught up on your blog. Binge reading is my plan. LOL

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      July 1, 2020 / 5:05 pm

      Hi Eve, thanks so much! It was almost exactly a year ago (July 2019) that I had my color analysis and began updating my wardrobe.

  25. July 1, 2020 / 4:54 pm

    So sorry to know that numbers have gone up where you are, and I hope that most people will follow your sensible lead and hunker down as much as possible — at the very least, wear masks when they go out (although not everyone rocks a mask as stylishly as you! 😉
    Your attitude is admirable and I wish you all the contentment and rejuvenation you can garner in your beautiful garden. xo

  26. July 2, 2020 / 7:41 am

    Great casual outfit for you and yes, I favor comfy denim too– makes a big difference to my mood and my productivity to wear “street clothes” even if I’m not leaving the house. And I’m discovering the colors I need from month to month to support me — sometimes it’s a quiet color and sometimes it’s my dramatic to give me more energy — color plays such a key role in how we feel and how others perceive us. I’m using it to help me get through the shut-down.

  27. Anna
    July 2, 2020 / 10:25 am

    You just look great. I love the orange top, your new color palette, and your attitude. Thanks for mentioning gratitude, too.

  28. Brenda
    July 2, 2020 / 10:26 am

    You look gorgeous – thank you as always for your posts, and so sorry that there is still a need to stay home to stay healthy.

    Perhaps because Canadians are generally more used to complying with government health orders (?), in BC, we now have very few new cases and are able to “open up” much more, although we still need to practice basic preventative measures (wear masks when needed, wash our hands carefully, social distancing, fewer faces/bigger spaces). We own property in the US and have lots of friends/relatives there – we hope some day it will be possible to visit again – for now, we are content that the closed border (for non-essential travel) is helping protect us from the way things are being handled in so many States.

    • Susan Blakey
      Author
      July 3, 2020 / 7:42 am

      Yes, I saw this article yesterday and agree. I’ve written before about how French women are not a homogenous block, even though the stereotypes persist. I think that style has become both globalized and fragmented, and much more individual. And that’s to be celebrated!

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