After my color and style training with Red Leopard, I feel as though I’m seeing everything with fresh eyes. I’m looking at color in relation to seasonal palettes (though am also just enjoying seeing MORE color this spring than I have in a while). And I’m looking at various styles with an eye toward Who might wear them, and When and Where.
I’ll be writing more in-depth about the Style Personality Profiles (or Essences), but since my return from London, I’ve been thinking a lot about regional style differences, and how we perceive style based on locale.
Style and the city
A few of you mentioned that you thought my recent travel wardrobe was “too casual” or too “country” for London. For the most part*, I think it was fine for the activities and venues on my itinerary. While there’s a lot of variety in how Londoners dress, I do notice more tailored or carefully coordinated outfits on the people I pass in the street.
It got me thinking about regional style differences and how clothing “reads” in different locales. If I were to go out running errands in my neck of Los Angeles in a very tailored ensemble, I’d feel stuffy and out of place. But what feels perfectly put together here reads as casual in London (and many other cities). What flies in Dallas might look overdressed in Seattle, etc.
Even within a city, the style “default setting” can vary widely. In Paris for example, you’ll see more tailored, upscale looks in the 8th arrondissement, while in the 6th you’ll see more relaxed styles (and even more variety in other arrondissements). New York’s Upper East Side looks quite different from the East Village. And here in L.A. too, the “look” can shift (sometimes dramatically) from neighborhood to neighborhood.
How much you dress in accordance with your surroundings or march to your own style drummer depends on your comfort levels with standing out. My comfort zone is feeling appropriately dressed. The bottom line for me when traveling isn’t to try to “dress like a local,” but to look neat and put-together.
*Still, I’d like to have a few more polished/dressed up pieces to pull from, and will be looking to fill those gaps in my wardrobe. These are often hard for me to find off the rack. So I had a couple of pieces made by Amanda Thompson Couture during my stay in London, will be sharing those soon.
Do you adjust your clothing to the locale when you travel, or do you stick to what you’d wear at home?
Shifting gears for a moment…
For the most part, I stick to talking about style, travel, and lifestyle here. I know for many of you, reading une femme is a break from whatever else is going on in the world. I understand that and usually stay away from writing about current events, even though I try to keep up with them.
But it’s been utterly heartbreaking to watch what’s been happening in Ukraine, and I feel I need to acknowledge it. It’s a humanitarian crisis, and I fear things will get worse before they get better. I don’t want to open up a political discussion, but have been looking for ways to help and organizations that are assisting. So I thought I’d share a few that I donate to or that have been well-rated on Charity Navigator.
World Central Kitchen. Chef José Andrés‘ WCKitchen is often one of the first organizations on the scene after natural disasters or refugee crises. He’s been on the ground in Poland and in Ukraine helping to feed those impacted.
Medicins sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders). I’ve been a donor to this organization for many years now.
Samaritan’s Purse. They’re taking donations and also looking for volunteers (medical and non-medical) to aid with the refugees.