Friday, November 6, 2009

Leather and Suede Care

Have you seen all the leather pieces available this fall and winter? Leather is a must have for fall/winter 2009. It is seen in gloves, jackets, coats, dresses, belts, and boots. Your leather purchases are investment pieces you will enjoy for years to come as long as it is cared for properly.

These general guidelines are from the Leather Apparel Association, a non-profit industry group of manufacturers, retailers, tanners, and cleaners. Following these simple steps will assure you years of pleasure from your leather pieces.

  1. To maintain the garment’s shape, store it on a broad hanger, not wire.
  2. If your garment becomes wet, air dry naturally.
  3. Wrinkles will hang out. If ironing is desired, cover the garment with a brown grocery sack and use the low setting. Do not ever use steam.
  4. Hems may be fixed with a tiny bit of rubber cement.
  5. Avoid spraying perfumes or hairsprays while wearing leather.
  6. Do not apply adhesive name badges or pins.
  7. Wipe away dust and dirt by rubbing lightly with a soft dry sponge or cloth. Brushes designed specifically for suede are also available. (Suede is leather finished by a special process originally applied to kid, whereby one side is buffed on an emery wheel to produce a napped, velvety surface).
  8. For ink stains rub gently with an art gum eraser.
  9. For grease spots sprinkle talc powder on the spot and allow it to remain for an hour or so to absorb the great or oil spot. Reapply if necessary, then shake garment or brush gently.
  10. Matching garments should be cleaned at the same time since a slight variation in color or texture may occur as a natural result of the cleaning process. The garment may shrink slightly, but will stretch again with wear.

Enjoy your leather garments. Wear them often. Life is too short to save anything for good.

Friday, August 21, 2009

2009 Fall Trends

Fall Clothing has always been my favorite. There are several trends this year I'm very excited about. As with all trends, adapt those that work for your body shape, personality, and age group. Here are a few of my favorites:

1. Leather: Nothing feels better than buttery leather. This season there will be lots of it with gloves, full leather dresses, and thigh high boots. The boots aren't for me, but you'll probably see me wearing gloves- in every color.

2. The color this Fall seems to be Pink. Neon pink will be very strong along with wearing red and pink combinations. Basic colors are still strong such as black, navy, and gray.

3. The 80's are back. You'll see sharp shoulder lines and padding along with sexy cutouts on dresses and blouses. Now I just need the 80's big hair to come back strong.

4. Legwear will be seen patterned, textured, and lace in a variety of colors.

5. Houndstooth, tweed, plaids, and herringbone Patterns are strong.

6. The Cocoon coat is back. This style is perfect for diamond and oval shape bodies.

7. Fur, hats, and peplum jackets top off my list of favorites.

8. White is now being worn year round. Don't worry about wearing it after Labor Day, just be sure it is not in a summer fabric.

Happy Fall Shopping!


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Private Label Shopping

Are you tired of going through the malls looking for the right outfit for a special occasion? Are you fed up with salespeople telling you how beautiful something is on you only to take it home and your family hates it on you? Are you tired of shopping boutiques that cater to smaller sizes? Are you ready for some good old-fashioned customer service?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions then private label shopping is for you. PLS has been catching on over the years. I personally didn't experience it until 2004 with the Juliana Collection. Other PLS companies include Doncaster, Carlisle, Worth, Cabi, and the new Jana Kos Style Partners.

When shopping with private labels, you are invited into someone's home or boutique for a shopping experience unlike malls or boutiques. You are either one on one or with a small group of like minded women. In most cases, the wardrobe consultant is trained on what would look best for your particular body type and over time comes to know your personal style. PLS will carry two or four collections per year. Fall is shown in June, July, and August. Winter is shown in September, October, and November. Spring is shown in January, February, and March. Summer is shown in April and May. Your consultant will have on file previous purchases for you to build on what is already in your closet.

I love PLS because it is relaxed, comfortable, and fun. I used to shop with a PLS company just because the consultant was so much fun to be around. I looked forward to my visits with her and knew she was always being honest with me on what did or did not look good on me. Unlike traditional stores, most consultants are very concerned with how you look in their private label clothing because it is a reflection on them. If you look good - it makes them look good.

Some consultants will pay for your alterations, deliver to your door, have giveaways, and will always work your appointments around your schedule. The only catch is that you have to order your clothing and wait for it to arrive which isn't a problem - who wants to wear their fall purchases in July? This isn't for the impulse shopper - it's for smart shoppers who want to make smart purchases. As I always say - it's about having less clothing in your closet, but more outfits to wear. With PLS, you can accomplish just that.

Happy Shopping,


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

House Guest Etiquette

Many years ago, several of my family members decided to take a road trip to visit relatives in Odessa, Texas. These Texans always roll out the red carpet for us and this trip was no exception. With the struggles many have had with the economy, I have heard of several families visiting relatives and making it their summer vacation just as we did several years ago.  For those of you who will be house guests this summer, here are a few things to think about when staying at someone else's home. 

  1. Keep in mind that this is not a hotel.  Bring your own toiletries. 
  2. Not everyone loves your pet like you do.  Don't even ask if you can bring Spot.  Find a nice kennel for him. 
  3. Don't show up unannounced. If you are going to be earlier or later than your scheduled arrival time,  phone ahead.  Your hosts could be out shopping or cleaning.  
  4. This is not the time to take a long hot shower.  Be considerate and keep showers short, turn off lights when you leave the room, turn off television and other electronics.
  5. Depending on how long you are staying, bring a gift.  The longer the stay, the more personal the present.  You could always send something after you return home.
  6. Treat your hosts to dinner.  Either take them out or offer to purchase the groceries and cook the meal in the home.  When my family went to visit our relatives in Texas, I cooked a “Derby” meal for my cousins.  Another night they treated us to their version of Tortilla Soup.  To this day, I am asked for the soup recipe every time I serve it at a dinner party.
  7. Pick up after yourself.  It would be nice for you to help sweep floors, wash dishes, make your bed every morning, etc.
  8. Be “financially sensitive.”  Don’t expect the host to pay for all dinners, movies, or any expenses on an outing. 
  9. Pack everything you will need, don’t borrow things. 
  10. Keep the hosts informed of your daily plans.  If you won’t be back for dinner, tell them in advance.
  11. When getting ready to head back home, ask the hosts if you should strip the bed or leave it unmade.  If you strip the bed, fold the sheets and blankets and place them at the foot of the bed.
  12. Don’t forget to invite your hosts to stay at your home in the future.  

My family has not only stayed with the Texans, but with my aunt and uncle in California, a friend in Walnut Creek, friends in Maryland, Mississippi, and New York.  Vacationing with family and friends is a wonderful way to reconnect, see the sights with the locals, save on hotel expenses, and share your vacation with others.  

Safe Travels, 


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Bathing Suit Season is Here

There is so much to love about summer. Besides the obvious - longer days, no school, going to the beach or pool, and grilling outdoors - the possibilities are endless. Do you have your bathing suit selected? Ready or not - bathing suit season is here.

I have mixed feelings about some of the suits I've seen such as the "Trikini". This so called one piece covers less than my daughters bikini. The cut out style is very trendy and not recommended for the beach introvert.

Thanks to Michelle Obama the necktie is back - even in a one piece bathing suit. I've seen some that are so cute you could wear them with a skirt to a summer picnic.

Many of the one piece suits are belted at the waist and above the waist. Make sure you have a waist that should have attention drawn to it. Just because it's trendy doesn't mean you can wear it. Only wear a trend if it enhances your body type.

There are some very edgy looking high neck one piece suits. High neck and summer don't seem to fit in the same sentence.

Check out all the dramtic prints, adorable skirted suits, and one shoulder romantic looks.

Whatever you decide to wear this summer, make sure it fits properly, supports your coloring, you love it and feel good wearing it. Then go out and have some fun in the sun.


Monday, May 11, 2009

Pack It All In

For Mother's Day, I spent the weekend in Indianapolis shopping and eating (my two favorite activities) with my two daughters. Going for a weekend doesn't require a lot of packing, but as I unpack, I find myself transferring to another suitcase - my extra large, pink, you can see me coming from a mile away, suitcase. I am leaving for the AICI Conference on Wednesday. AICI is the Association of Image Consutlants International. Can you image being in one hotel with Image Consultants from 26 other countries? It is exciting but gives an entirely new meaning to "what will I wear"?

At some point this summer I'm sure you will be packing for business or pleasure. Here are a few of my travel tips:

1. I started putting outfits together a week ago. You might not need a week but don't think you can begin packing at 11:00pm for a 7:00am flight. Doing this is like going to the grocery store hungry - you'll throw anything in the suitcase "just in case". Not only have I planned my outfits but had my manicure, pedicure, botox, tan, and will have my hair colored tomorrow. I know I sound high maintence - but it's all these little things that add up to one happy, confident, traveler.

2. In the perfect world, you would choose a "color of the week". This minimizes the amount of shoes, handbags, and jewelry needed to pack. Rotate pants, jackets and skirts. Try on all the outfits to make sure you still love them and they still fit. Darker colors are easier to dress up and down - such as the little black dress or black suit.

3. Once I decide what it is I want to wear, I take a look at my schedule and write down what outfit I am wearing on each day. Perfect planning makes perfect. I can get up each morning at conference and not have to think about what I'm going to wear and why I packed a piece of clothing. Visually going through the week keeps me from forgetting to pack something and keeps me from packing too much. Check all garments for loose buttons etc. This eliminates any surprises when getting dressed in the hotel room such as a missing button.

4. Once I have my game plan, I like to lay everything flat in my suitcase. I find there is less wrinkling when I do this. You could also roll your clothing if you prefer. Pack shoes in seperate plastic bags. If you are a frequent traveler you will want to have duplicate makeup and skin care products in travel size bottles in leak proof bags. I pack only costume jewelry in a jewelry pouch. A friend gave me a lingerie bag years ago for my birthday - love it! Keeps lingerie together and free of snags.

People don't dress up anymore while flying so I like to wear something comfortable yet stylish. If you need anything such as directions, help with luggage, a taxi, or a door held for you, you don't even have to ask if you stand out above the crowd.

Don't forget to pack your wardrobe plan. Pack something for extreme weather and you'll have yourself a worry free trip.

I'm looking forward to seeing all my AICI friends from around the country. I'll tell you all about it next week. Have a wonderful week.


Friday, May 1, 2009

Beauty in the Bluegrass

This past Tuesday I was at Churchhill Downs participating in a Morning Line Radio Network. I was interviewed by several regional radio stations about Derby Fashions and Derby Hats.

What I found interesting is the "awe" that out of town folks experience when seeing the beautiful women at Derby. Louisville takes center stage this weekend with the running of the Oaks and Derby but the women's fashion and hats get as much commentary as the horses.

Derby 2009 will see an explosion of color. Fushia, tangerine, (those two colors combined) yellow, pink, and aqua top the list. You will see more dresses than suits however, suits are always a sure bet. It is the year of the tiny hat and tall heels. You will see hats called "fastenators". These are small hats attached to the head with an elastic strap - perfect for the car, elevators and ladies room. I personally love the large brim hats - they give a chic, sophisticated look to any ensemble. You will see checks, dots and stripes in interesting combinations. You might even see a few "Barbies" in the crowd. Mattel came out with the 135 Kentucky Derby Barbie. Hat desinger Christine Moore has replicated Barbies hat - can't wait to see who is wearing one.

The Bluegrass state does produce beautiful women. Not only an outer beauty but an inner beauty as well. Women all across the state are opening their homes to guests, party goers, and everyone who wants to be a "Kentuckian" for a day.

No one comes close to being as stylish as Kentuckians, and on Derby Day - everyone is a Kentuckian, regardless of where they live. Kentucky has a rich legacy of horses, food, and bourbon - a real Southern charm oozing with warmth and character. I'm proud to be part of Kentucky's rich tradition.

Happy Derby,

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Pretty Impressed

In January a girlfriend attended the Miss America pageant and purchased a book for me called Pretty Smart by Penny Pearlman. Penny is a former Miss America. Her book has insights from twenty-two former Miss America's she interviewed. I didn't take the time to read the book until a couple of weeks ago when I was on spring break with my family. It is a wonderful book and I recommend it to everyone. I just wanted to share a few things I took away from the book.

1. Heather French Henry (Miss America 2000) and Phyllis George (Miss America 1971) have both commentated fashion shows for me that I produced. After working with both of them I walked away wondering how they could be so nice. They were approachable, genuine, basically as sweet and nice as they could be. There was nothing forced about being nice. In her book, Penny explains that there is a power to being nice. The power and influence of a Miss America is truly to enforce positive change in others and our society. Be Nice!

2. It is amazing how intelligent the Miss America's are and have to be to wear the crown. They are outspoken about the issues that matter to them and aware of everything else going on around them. Reading and life long learning is a theme in this book. Readers are Leaders!

3. I've never thought about the thick skin these gals must have. Fox and Friends co-host Gretchen Carlson (Miss America 1989) talked about people feeling like they have a right to say anything about them because they are in the public eye. It seems to be a form of entertainment today to put people down. I can think of several television shows that have high ratings because of blunt, negative, mean statements that are made. I don't think I want to participate in that. Be Positive!

4. Most Miss America's didn't grow up on easy street. Many of them have overcome personal struggles. Make the best of whatever does occur. Be Resilient!

There are so many other lessons I learned from this book. The words that I read over and over were words such as focused, disciplined, integrity, detemination, perseverance, authentic, genuine, compassionate, kind, honorable, committed, responsible, ... you get the picture.

As soon as I finished the book I went back to my hotel room to email Penny. Of course she promplty responded and seems as nice as Heather French and Phyllis George. You can purchase her book on her website

This Pretty Smart book is pretty impressive. Let me know what lessons you learn from it.


Saturday, March 7, 2009

You Go Girl!

Yesterday in The Wall Street Journal, there was a story about women selling their personal clothing out of their closets. Women who have a lot of clothing and then find themselves without a job are posting their advertisement on Craigslist suggesting women not shop in stores but to shop in the advertisers closet. I had to laugh as I read about one seller complaining about her first five customers making a mess looking through the clothes, leaving them on the floor or hanging them over the rack. Welcome to my world. However, I look at "the mess" as a positive. The more clothes a customer tries on the more fun we have. Sometimes it takes a woman an hour to finally find what makes her body happy. However - I am there to serve my customers and these gals selling out of their closets just want the money. In the article it talks about how they serve wine, beer, and water to customers. That is one glorified garage sale.

This article made me realize how resourceful women are during tough economic times. Doncaster Apparel was started during the great depression over 75 years ago by a woman - Millie Tanner. Jana Kos just started her new trunk show company, Partners in Style, in January. A frind of mine sells Cabi and is doing better than ever. I have no doubt that these companies will thrive during this recession - because of the customer service these consultants give customers. Women are not going to stop purchasing clothing but they do need to make smarter choices. Wardrobe consultants are perfect for helping women make smarter choices.

This Thursday, Doncaster Louisville, is celebrating a grand opening in a new location. We have a lot to celebrate. A small, determined, group of us invested our time and money into creating a charming studio that allows us to better serve our customers. We have a great location, plenty of parking, lots of studio space with plans for serval special events. Doncaster clothing works for any lifestyle and special event. Stop by and see us - at noon is the ribbon cutting followed by an open house until 7:00pm. Bring a gently used suit to donate to Dress for Success and you'll receive a 10% off coupon.

If you are up early Monday morning, WHAS will have a live remote from the studio during their morning news 5:30-7:00am.

Ladies, however you are being resourceful, stop and congratulate yourself. Helen Redy's song ....if I have to I could do anything - I am strong (strong) I am invinsible (invinsible) I am Woman! keeps playing through my head along with I can bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan, and never ever let him forget he's a man - cause I'm a woman.... Okay - enough. You get the point.

You Go Girl!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Happy Birthday Barbie

Barbie needs no last name - like Cher or Madonna. This is the gal we grew up with - perfect full bustline, tiny waist and hips, long legs, successful in her many careers, lots of cute friends, and the perfect man - Ken. Like her or not, Barbie has been the standard of beauty for the average female - however she isn't the girl to model ourselves after. She's just to...plastic.

Barbie is turning 50 - so am I. A friend today suggested we have a Barbie birthday party for my 50th. I was thinking more in line with a week at the Golden Door Spa. Actually, what I would really like is a Barbie outfit I saw on television from a recent fashion show. This show, held in New York City, featured original Barbie designs from various designers. It was fabulous. A dream come true. I never had the pink convertible Barbie car - surely I could get a Barbie designer ensemble.

I cherish all the Barbie clothes my mom made for me as a little girl. My mother was all about appearances - I suppose that is why I am an Image Consultant. Barbie and her friends taught me how to dress, fix hair, and be a true girlfriend. I spent hours with my Barbies and loved every minute of it.

I wish Barbie all the best and another 50 fabulous years. I make a toast to the gal that never stopped trying different careers, kept a smile on her face, and put up with Ken all these years.

You go girl!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Transition Clothing

Yesterday I promised my friend Julie I would write a new blog. I suppose I'm showing my age when I mention how fast time seems to fly between blogs. When I looked at my last blog the title was "Winter Blahs." Yesterday it was 65 degrees in Louisville. This morning the wind chill is 18 degrees. How is a gal suppose to dress for these extreme temperature changes? Are you like me and tired of your winter clothing? Ready to get out the spring threads? Not so fast. Now is a good time to think about transitioning your wardrobe.

I remember many years ago when it snowed on Derby Day. Derby is the first Saturday in May for anyone not from this area. Fortunately, I viewed that Derby from my hotel in the Bahamas. The way this winter has been - I'm terrified of a repeat of that Derby forcast - only this time I will be the one at the track in the snow.

There comes a time in late February or early March when I can no longer don the winter coat, sweaters and boots - even if it is 18 degrees outside. My mind knows spring is around the corner and I'm ready to celebrate that with what I wear. When transitioning from winter to spring or in my case - day to day - there are three things I keep in mind:

1. Color
2. Texture
3. Fabric Weight

Color is one of the easiest ways to transition. Color can kick the winter blues out the door. You don't have to use color just in your clothing - you can take your winter blacks and browns and brighten them up with colorful accessories and scarves. Keeping your spring colors closer to your face will brighten up your look and your attitude. Pop a dull outfit with a fun, colorful handbag or shoes. A great pair of sunglasses can make you feel like your soaking in the island sun.

When it is cold outside but I want to think spring I have to be practical. This is when I pack away the black tights for gray tights or another lighter color. Black is slimming, versatile, and very elegant in the evening but women need to break out of the black hole. There are plenty of fun tights available in many different textures that can not only provide warmth but a lot of style

I'm a very tactile person and love the feel of fabrics. How clothing feels on my body is very important to me so when I find a perfect basic that not only looks great but feels great - I'll purchase several. I own three wool sweaters - all the same style - just different colors. The sweaters are 100% wool but a very fine, soft, smooth wool. I own a black and aubergine color - great for fall and winter and I own a rose color - perfect for transitioning to spring.

Here are a few other perfect transition pieces:
* cardigan sweaters in different colors, weights and textures.
* blazers - especially piped jackets (piping consist of white or black outlines - very stylish)
* trenchcoat - look for one with a zip out lining - a trench is a timeless look
* dresses - add leggings or straight leg pants on colder days.
* jeans - perfect all year long.

It's time for me to take this cold morning and warm it up with something fun. I hope you do the same.

Have a magical day

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Winter Blahs

Are you feeling the winter blahs? Today my state of Kentucky is in a state of emergency. So many are without power and we are told not to drive if it isn't necessary. I am so thankful that I still have electricity. Being in the house for two straight days does get old - if you're like me and on the go all the time. I started thinking about some things women could do to wipe out the winter blah's. Here are a few of my thoughts.

1. Today is the perfect day to experiment with eye shadow. Go sapphire and blend it with some violet. Line your eyes with color and apply black mascara.

2. Today is the perfect day to experiment with your eyebrows. Eyebrows are the only part of the body that actually gets thinner as we age. Fill them in with an eyebrow pencil. Really fill them in. Go for the Brooke Shields look. Then use eyebrow set if you have it - your entire face brightens up when you lift your eyebrows.

3. Today is the perfect day to try a new hairstyle. I loved the big hair in the 80's. If you're like me - pull out the hot rollers and give yourself a new dew.

4. Today is the perfect day to paint your nails a deep blue, or purple. If your nails haven't been manicured for awhile - go for it. While you're at it - give yourself a pedicure too.

5. Today is the pefect day to turn on your favorite music and dance. Dancing releases endorphins and makes you feel better.

With the lack of retail therapy I'm experiencing and missing two days at the gym - I think I'll go downstairs and turn on my Partridge Family Greatest Hits. I think I love you.. so what am I so afraid of....I can't remember the words - gotta go listen.

Today is the perfect day ... to be happy.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Swap Parties

Just yesterday I was asked to facilitate a swap party. For those of who who have never heard of a swap party, it consist of women gathering together in hopes of filling in thier wardrobes by trading clothes. Swap parties are the next big thing in the height of fashionista's living in the land of "On a Budget." It also has overtones of recycling so women feel "green" with pride being earth friendly. Personally it sounds like a lot more fun than Bunco - which is just an excuse for women to get together to eat, talk, and possibly go home with a present. In a swap party you can eat, drink, and go home with some new threads.

Swapping clothing would be a natural extension for women who are already masters of exchanging recipes, phone numbers, babysitters, music, and magazines. All women change sizes or get tired of clothing. Swap parties help to update or freshen your wardrobe in a fun, relaxed, atmosphere. No high pressure sales in swapping.

After listening to President Obama's speech, I agree that we are all called to serve and sacrifice. It is my responsibility to teach others how to buy less, wear it more, and practice focused shopping. This can be accomplished in the form of a swap party. (I learned from my mother to add the word "party" after everything. She was famous for painting parties, clean out the woods parties, and do the dishes parties. Life is short - make it a party.)

I see swap parties becoming the chicest party in town. Contact me if you would like more information.

Party On!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Life of an Image Consultant

My Grand Glam Makeover winner, Ginny Costello, just left my house after a body and personality analysis. Ginny has a triangle shape body so I walked her through Doncaster's spring 2009 collection explaining what would best highlight her beautiful triangle figure. We reviewed her colors, I showed her several ways to tie a scarf, then we sat and talked about what it means to transform.

In my middle 20's I started a modeling school and agency with my friend Julie. We were shocked at the number of more mature women that attended our school. The local newspaper even wrote a story about these ladies. One of them was over 70 years old. These more mature women opened my eyes to what transformation was all about. As these ladies became confident putting on makeup, fixing their hair, and demonstrating proper walking and poise, I witnessed changes I didn't expect. Many of them went back into the work force, some were confident enough to get out of marriages they should of left years ago. I received notes thanking me for the confidence they felt and the new life they were leading. They became better mothers, daughters and friends.

Once again tonight I was reminded by Ginny how powerful transforming can be. Ginny shared that she is searching for the woman she use to be before she allowed being a mother, wife and care giver to take over her life. Like most women, she doesn't regret doing what she does for others. Our regret is that of losing ourselves in the process of caring for everyone else. We forget that we have to care for ourselves and when we do, it benefits those we love and care for.
It isn't about losing ten pounds, knowing how to dress your figure, proper makeup application, or what colors are best for you. It's what you learn about yourself on the journey.

I love my job. I love helping others discover their true, best self. I love when individuals feel joy on a daily basis.

I am so happy for Ginny. I love being part of her journey. She is journaling and I'm sure will share some of her experiences at some point.

I could make a lot more money in another career, but in my opinion, the life of an Image Consultant is the richest career anyone could have.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Scale Down

In January, to scale down can have a number of meanings. Besides the scale on which we weigh ourselves, January sees a lot of individuals scale down on spending, eating out, entertainment, and clutter.

Are you one of those who was not born with the organizer gene? Do you have books and magazines stacked up next to your bed? We are a society with garages we can longer park in and walk in closets you can't walk into. To scale back can be easier than you think once you have a plan.

Starting the New Year with a strategy on how and what to scale back will do wonders for you. You suddenly feel lighter because you've purged excess. You feel generous because you've either given some things away to friends and family or donated them to a worthy cause. You might feel richer having made some money off objects or clothing that had been collecting dust. Once you've purged you can breathe, stand taller, and find everything faster causing less frustration.

My favorite things to scale down are closets and drawers. It's amazing what you can find when you shop your closet. The thought of going through your closet, house, garage, or office might overwhelm you but with a few tips you can be on your way to organizational bliss.

1. Decide what you need to tackle. What is the immediate need? Your closet, garage, drawers, basement, attic, etc. Remember you can't do it all at once and you don't want the entire house or office in disarray.

2. Like the saying goes - how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. If you decide to tackle your closet, start with one season. If you tackle drawers, make it a goal to clean out one a week. Chunk it down. Before you know it you'll be ready to tackle the next project.

3. With most projects you have to decide if it should be put away, given away, thrown away, sold, or saved in a sentimental box. Don't be afraid to let go of items you are never going to use again. If you find yourself looking at something thinking you might need it at some point but you haven't used it or worn it in over a year - get rid of it.

4. If all else fails - call a professional. As an Image Consultant I work with organizing closets and building closet capsules (related pieces of clothing where you have less clothing in your closet but more to wear). There are professional organizers who specialize in garages, offices, or homes. It will be worth the investment.

Make 2009 the year you scale down. If you do, let me hear your story.


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Healthy Goals

This time of year a lot of individuals vow to lose weight and get in better shape. In writing my story for The Voice Tribune's Grand Glam Makeover I discovered a lot has changed over the years in food and fitness.

The height and weight charts of the 1950's are no longer an indicator of our health. Now, fitness is assessed by your body composition, cardio, muscle tone, and flexibility. It's not about a "magic number" on the scale.

Robert Kipp, personal trainer for Physique Institute at Louisville Athletic Club, had a lot of great tips for my makeover winner - Ginny Costello. You can read them in this Thursdays edition of The Voice Tribune. Here are a few of my favorites:

* There is no secret to being healthy - do what healthy people do.
* Flush the junk out of your system with an Eat Clean Diet.
* Make yourself a priority. Most individuals waste 15-17 hours a week on television. It's not selfish to take care of yourself. It sends a positive message to our next generation.
* Have realistic expectations.

Let me know if you have started a new fitness program or diet and how it is working for you. I know it's challenging to incorporate new habits but you can do it. As Nike says "Just Do It."

Happy New Year!