Read Surveys (By Author)
1. When do you feel at your most attractive?
When I am naked in bed and just waking up in the morning
2. Do you notice women on the street? If so, what sort of women do you tend to notice or admire?
Yes, I notice women and I look at their figures and wish (often) that I loked like them. I admire slim women with subtle clothing. (not overt exposure, etc)
3. What are some things you admire about how other women present themselves?
Colors which complement their personal look and coloring. I like monochromatic in some ways. Like I saw a red-hair-d woman wearing a reddish top and darker reddish bottom and boots--she looked cool. I also admire women who are heavy or 'not perfect" wearing daring outfits; like they ae saying: "This is ME, I like me, take it or leave it, I dont care"---
4. Was there a moment in your life when something “clicked” for you about fashion or dressing or make-up or hair? What? Why did it happen then, do you think?
I am 57. When I was younger, in my 20s, I had an aunt who died and I was sent a bunch of her clothes; they were amazing vintage things she either made or bought---I loved them and they fit me. Every day I woud put one of those cool things on and get lots of comments and compliments. Later--(now) I dress for comfort and not "reaction". My big thing now is that, as a dark-brown hair person who has dyed-out the grays for 20 years..I have started to let the gray back in and it looks amazing. I love it.
5. What are some shopping rules you wouldn’t necessarily recommend to others but which you follow?
Sales: Buy something you might never have thought about before (if its on sale) then if it doesn't work, take it back. But take some risks.
I also try to not buy anything made in China...Quality suffers and sizes are unreliable.
6. What are some rules about dressing you follow, but you wouldn't necessarily recommend to others?
I try to dress to look slimmer even though I am slim. I wish I were freer to "show off". i would tell others to embrace their bodies. I jsut have never been to that place.
7. What is the most transformative conversation you have ever had on the subject of fashion or style?
When I was younger someone told be I shouldn't wear black, it didn't look good around my face. I used to wear almost all black. It was a hard lesson.
8. Do you have a unified way of approaching your life, work, relationships, finances, chores, etc.? Please explain.
I am spontaneously careful...Cautiously optimistic, and a positive thinker with an edge that everything could fall apart at any moment.
9. Are there any clothing (or related) items that you have in multiple? Why do you think you keep buying this thing?
T-shirts. I keep thinking someday I will find a cute t-shirt which looks good on me. I teach fitness so I wear t-shirts every day. I hate them all. ;-)
10. Have you ever successfully given someone a present of jewelry or clothing that you continue to feel good about?
Oh yes! My husband and sons love my clothing choices for them, and my mom wears a necklace I gave her 5 years ago EVERY single day! I think she likes it...
11. Is there any fashion trend you’ve refused to participate in and why?
No trends for me. The trends are for the 20/30-somethings. I will add that I never ever will wear a heeled shoe over 1.5 inches. Ever.
12. Can you say a bit about how your mother’s body and style has been passed down to you, or not?
Not. My mom is tall (5'9") and I am short (5'4"), she is long-waisted and slim (no bust), I am short -waisted and curvy (bust). I always wanted to look like her (body) and she always wanted to look like me. (body). Luckily we ignore these things now.
13. Have you stolen, borrowed or adapted any dressing ideas or actual items from friends or family?
When I was younger I tried to emulate my mom's hippy-style Gypsy outfits. It was a bad look for me.
14. Was there a point in your life when your style changed dramatically? What happened?
I think after I had my kids I switched to not worrying about fashion. I wanted comfort, jeans and T-shirts. When I'd go out, I'd wear a dress or skirt, etc---bt I was totally jeans and t-s after kids.
15. Is there anything political about the way you dress?
16. Please describe your body.
5'4", striaght/athletic, short-waisted, but with boobs. There is almost no indent between my ribs and hips...Very muscular, strong slim legs, I am very strong from a lifetime of fitness but all of my fat is in my middle/torso. I weigh about 125.
17. Please describe your mind.
I am educated, intellectual, creative thinker, musician. Former actor. I am a dancer...that is a lot of mind. I love to learn and i am passionately interested in other people and their stories. My mind never stops it's curiosity. I hope I never lose that curiosity.
18. Please describe your emotions.
I am pretty much in control. I don't beak down often. Sometimes there's a was of sorrow form a loved one lost, But mostly I have it togeter but I dont deny my feelings. I am fortunate tp have a partner with whom I can share My heart and feelings with.
19. What are you wearing on your body and face, and how is your hair done, right at this moment?
LOL! I have a t-shirt I have worn all day through a long road trip in the heat, (smelly!), old shorts, no shoes...my hair is down, I have old make-up on I put on this morning. My plan was to take a shower after this suurvey!
20. In what way is this stuff important, if at all?
I have always wondered why I neer fit-in with the fashion-forward people to whom that mattered. I mean to whom fashion mattered. I just don;t "care"and yet--I care that I am lackong a gene or something. I eman, I dont even wear jewely although i have been given a lot over the years. It's almost like I am trying to negate my attractiveness by "not caring" and yet...i think I DO care. But I dont act on it partly b/c I dont know what ooks good on me...ya know?
Thanks for asking these questions; they have made me think deeper.
21. With whom do you talk about clothes?
22. How do institutions affect the way you dress?
I work in fitness so I wear fitness clothes
23. Do you think you have taste or style? Which one is more important? What do these words mean to you?
I think I have taste. I think "style"would be more a "group-think"
24. Do you remember the biggest waste of money you ever made on an item of clothing?
25. Are there any dressing tricks you’ve invented or learned that make you feel like you’re getting away with something?
I always by inexpensive/sale things so I guess that would be it...
26. Do you have style in any areas of your life aside from fashion?
I think I have a personal style of self.
27. Can you recall some times when you have dressed a particular way to calm yourself or gain a sense of control over a situation that scared you?
Yes but i think I usually wear things which cover me up in these situations.
28. Would you say you “know what you like” in the area of fashion and clothing? If so, do you also know what you like in other areas of life, that is, are you generally good at discernment? Can you say where your discernment comes from, if you have it? Or if you don’t have it, why or why not?
I think I do for my ]self, but I think a lot of the style comesfo]rom caution. I am much bolder when it comes to my actions in other parts of my life.
29. Did your parents teach you things about clothing, care for your clothing, dressing or style? What lessons do you remember? Or did you just pick things up?
No, I watched my mom, who was gorgeous...and I knew I could never be like her...so I think I was discouraged at a very young age.
30. What sorts of things do you do, clothing or make-up or hair- wise, to feel sexy or alluring?
Shower, be clean and loving. If going out, I always wear lipstick and Channel #5 (and clothes, LOL)
31. Many people say they want to feel “comfortable,” or that they admire people who seem “confident.” What do these words really mean to you?
Self confidence in attire? I have obese people in my fitness classes wearing form-fitting outfits. i admire that; they are proud of themselves...they aren't hung-up.
32. If dressing were the only thing you did, and you were considered an expert and asked to explain your style philosophy, what would you say?
Be comfortabe, LOL! Oh--and wear COLORS!
33. What is really beautiful, for you, in general?
Self confidence and a cheerful spirit.
34. What do you consider very ugly?
Malicious, angry and vindictive people. Those who set out to harm others.
35. Are you generally a good judge of whether what you buy will end up being worn? Have you figured out how to know in advance?
Yes. I hardly ever shop....what I but will be worn.
36. When you look at yourself before going out, and you are trying to see yourself from the outside, can you describe a bit about what this “other person” is like? What do they like, dislike, what sorts of judgments do they have? Is this “outer eye” based on someone you know or once knew?
Wow. Yes, I try to se myself as "they " will see me. try to look nice but not invasive. I don't want to take atention away orm anyone and put it towards myself bt I try to look "pretty" --- b/c then I think I will be accepted. But I also don't want to look Vapid, as I want to be taken seriously. EX I won't wear a low-cut top or short skirt, etc.
37. What is your process getting dressed in the morning? What are you considering?
I teach fitness; I brush teeth, put in contacts. Put on some mascara and lipstick---face cream w.15 spf as I ride my bike to classes I teach. Thats it. (my clothes ae shorts and t-shirts) I am consideing what I can wear to sweat in for 4-5 hours and still look OK.
38. What are you trying to achieve when you dress?
39. What, for you, is the difference between dressing and dressing up?
Dressing up is any time I am not tecahing. Even wearing jeans , for me, is dressin 'up"
40. If you had to wear a “uniform” what would it look like?
Shorts and a t
41. What would you say is “you” and what would you say is “not you”?
Not me: formal wear!
42. What is your cultural background and how has that influenced how you dress?
Not influenced. I am a white female born and raised in the SF bay area
43. Do you remember a time in your life when you dressed quite differently from how you do now? Can you describe it and what it was all about for you?
Yes, younger I dressed in "codtumes" to amke a "statement" about my coolness.
44. What sorts of things do you do, clothing, make-up or hair-wise, to feel professional?
ot much--try to be clean and showered, groomed, etc
45. How do you conform to or rebel against the dress expectations at your workplace?
I think I rebel. I think I am the only one who doesn't wear the fancy Lulemon/whicking/whatevers.
46. Do you have a dress code, a school uniform, or a uniform that you wear for an extracurricular activity?
47. Are there ways in which you conform to or rebel against these uniforms?
48. Do you find it comforting or constraining to have a uniform?
49. What is an archetypal outfit for you; one that you could have happily worn at any point in your life? What do you like about it?
Jeans and a T.
It's me It's comfy and cute.
50. Do you ever wish you were a man or could dress like a man or had a man’s body? Was there ever a time in the past?
Yes! I loved that hese men can get up in the morning and put on the jeans and they look amazing.
51. If there was one country or culture or era that you had to live in, fashion-wise, what would it be?
Probably 1940's USA for fashion b/cause of my shape..but in reality I'd go to the Italian countryside right now.
52. Do you consider yourself photogenic?
53. When you see yourself in photographs, what do you think?
I am attractive; more so than I think in real life
54. Are there any figures from culture, past or present, whose style you admire or have drawn from?
Not that I can think of
55. Have you ever had a dream that involved clothes?
Probably but dont recall
56. What would be a difficult or uncomfortable look for you to try and achieve?
Fitted or "business'
57. If you were totally comfortable with your body, or your body was a bit closer to what you wish it was like, what would you wear?
Nohting different than what i wear now...but maybe a little snug (more ) in the tops
58. Is there anyone that you are trying to attract or repel when you dress?
No; I am trying to be neutral
59. Are there any dressing rules you’d want to convey to other women?
Dress for what makes YOU feel good, not anyone else.
60. What do you think of perfume? Do you wear it?
Yes I wear Channel #5 when i go out (NOT TEACHING FITNESS!!)--I wear a subtle amount. I cannot stand it when ppl drown themselves in perfume.
61. What are some things you need to do to your body or clothes in order to feel presentable?
Showermake sure things fit well.
62. How does makeup fit into all this for you?
I onlty wear mascara and lipstick
63. Is there a certain look you feel you’re expected to like that you have absolutely no interest in? What is it? Why aren’t you interested?
yes, much of the fashion-forward stuff, it just isn't me.
64. Can you describe in a basic way what you own, clothing and jewelry-wise?
jeans, purple stretch fitted jeans, some Indian style tunics and some long sweaters
Silk shirts in several jewel colors,
a few skirts (black), tights, flats, a few necklaces which I rarely wear--all were gifts, My main clothes are fitness wear so the above mentioned are my non-fitness clothes
65. What is your favorite piece of clothing or jewelry that you own?
My purple stretch jeans .
66. Tell us about something in your closet that you keep but never wear. What is it, why don’t you wear it, and why do you keep it?
I have a vintage 1930s dress and Tuxedo jacket (women's) hand-made by my late aunt. They used to fit me but no longer. They are beautiful; I keep them for sentimental reasons.
67. Looking back at all your purchases over the past five to fifteen years, can you generalize about what sorts of things were the most valuable to buy?
Fitness shoes. I need them.
68. Is there an item of clothing that you once owned, but no longer own, and still think about or wish you had back? What was it, what happened to it, and why do you want it back?
I had a wonderful red and black checked "hunters" wool cap which I LOVED and I left it on a greyhound bus in 1976. I have missed that thing forever. My good friend gave it to me during a rough period many years before.
69. If you had to throw out all your clothes but keep one thing, what would you keep?
My aerosole sandals
70. Building up your wardrobe from nothing, what would you do differently this time?
I'd hope I wouldn't feel so awfula bout my body and buy things which were fun and flattering and not just for"hiding".
71. What’s the first “investment” item you bought? Do you still own or wear it?
No, I never have done that.
72. Was there ever an important or paradigm-shifting purchase in your life?
No. I watched my husband buy a beautiful Italian leather jacket in Florence and I thought: I should buy one too" but I just couldn't justify it.
73. What item of clothing are you still (or have you forever been) on the hunt for?
Somethin that fits and looks good...still haven't found it.
74. What are your closet and drawers like? Do you keep things neat, etc?
I am neat with a rough-hue. I throw things into the drawers but the drawers are organized. I hang up everything.
75. Were you ever given a present of clothing or jewelry that especially touched you?
-My grandma's wedding ring after she died; I wear it every day.
76. Did you ever buy an article of clothing without giving it much thought, only to have it prove much more valuable as time went on? What was the item and what happened?
Only a few practical things. like a fleece jacket I wear every day I didn't think I'd use much. Also some clogs (shoes) which I got online for about 10$ and wore them until they wore-out.
77. How and when do you shop for clothes?
Usually I walk into a ROSSstore when i need a new sports bra...and then if there's something else there I can use, I'll get that too. I am NOT a "good shopper" as I hate to shop.
78. Do you like to smell a certain way?
79. How does how you dress play into your ambitions for yourself?
Again, I dres for my work.
80. How does money fit into all this?
I dont have much so sales, etc. are a huge thing.
81. Is there an article of clothing, a piece of make-up, or an accessory that you carry with you or wear every day?
I wear Jergen's tinted moisture for my legs and arms, I wear Covergirl mascara and I wear lipstick. I also wear a 15sunscreen or more moisturizer for my face
82. Did anyone ever say anything to you that made you see yourself differently, on a physical and especially sartorial level?
I stopped dying my gray hairs about 6 months ago because I got so sick of doing it every week at that point to cover my grays. Now people are complimenting me on my beautiful gray hair---hmmm.... we shall see if i "buy" that!
83. Do you remember the first time you were conscious of what you were wearing? Can you describe this moment and what it was about?
I was 4. I forgot to wear my skirt over my pants in Kindergarten during winter and was the only girl wearing pants all day. I was mortified!
What’s your birth date? Where were you born and where do you live now?
11-24-1956 Born in Oakland CA and live in San Francisco CA
Say anything you like about your cultural/ethnic/economic background.
white. Middle class.
What kind of work do you do?
Fitness instructor and musician
Are you single, married, do you have kids, etc.?
married, 3 grown sons. (adults)
Please say anything you like about yourself that might put this survey into some sort of context.
I wish I had a clue of how to dress, and I wish i "cared" about it in the way so many women do,...
How do you feel after filling out this survey?
I am grateful ; I think it lit a fire under me as to looking into why I am so confused
No thanks, but thanks for doingthis.