31 Oct 2016

Personal Style: The Easy Don’ts

Personal Style, The EAsy Don'ts on vickiarcher.com

Finding personal style is an evolving business.

I don’t believe style is automatic or that it comes easily to everyone.

It doesn’t; personal style requires work. If it did we would all look impeccable every hour of the day? Those who do are lucky and either have help in the way of personal stylists or know themselves extremely well.

I believe personal style evolves as we move through life and while some traits are in evidence from our early years I do think finding our own fashion comfort zone is down to many factors. Every decade, even every 5 years, our lives change. We not only look different but our fashion interests change. When I was younger I dreamt of the latest everything and couldn’t imagine wearing anything other than the “in” fashion. Now I am all about what suits me and works with my lifestyle.

My personal fashion style has become about adaption; adapting all the pieces of the puzzle I can control with those I can’t. It is about acceptance; accepting who I am and having the confidence to wear what I like and feel good in. I don’t try and change what can’t be changed anymore. I can improve, I can accept and I will forever adapt but what I won’t do is force myself into a fashion drama just because the designers, runways and magazines say I should.

Thinking about this question has me working backwards.

Trying to simplify the quest for personal style has me making a list of what won’t work.

Small reminders to be with me each day when planning an outfit or shopping for a new one. It really helps to have this information in the back of my mind. xv

Personal Style: The Easy Don’ts

Maintain the allure.

Call me old school but these days the super short skirts and the death defying cleavage are best left to the imagination. A little mystery never hurt anyone.

Comfort is king.

What I mean is, let’s not stagger around in 10 inch heels and look awkward. There are so many gorgeous boots and shoes available we don’t need to stomp like glamazons to look fabulous. The “too, too tight” is not our friend and nor is the ill fitting. Feeling comfortable makes everything look better.

Beware of mix and match.

I know Iris Apfel does it beautifully but wearing a multitude of miss matching pieces can either look very clever or downright disastrous. It might feel dull at times but when in doubt monochrome is our best friend; think French and go simple.

Accessorise with caution.

I absolutely love accessories but I remind myself not to wear them all at once. If there are a lot to be worn they need to work together and to be of the same genre. The bangles in the image above look so put together because they are of the same feel; more is merrier.

Minimal make-up.

Expertly applied make-up to look discreet is the most successful.  I am all for a vibrant or deep lip colour but not with rosy cheeks and pastel eyes. In my experience too much make-up only emphasises my skin flaws.

My fear is the one where I look like a painted doll, leave the make-up all over my collars and cuffs and have an orange jawline divide.

Be yourself and don’t copy others.

We all learn from each other and take advice where we need but the success is when we use what we learn and adapt it to suit ourselves.

Copying exactly never works; it’s how we put it together in our way that ultimately creates our personal style.

Personal Stye: Round Up

derek lam ‘luna’  //  **valley ‘skapula  //  fendi round

image advanced style

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Oh Francesca, I used to wear high heels practically every day until, at 65, I tripped and broke my shoulder (unfortunately in low wedges). Since then I’ve been frightened to wear heels so I stick to flats – or small chunky heels, say, for boots, – but I try and find the most interesting shoes I can – and those which are also comfortable to wear STRAIGHT AWAY – the latter requirement being quite difficult to find!!


Exactly . …you nailed it…everything I’ve been tussling with, was I not confident enough, was I beening, “old”. No I wasn’t being true to myself! After years of business dress . ..I was ‘finding ‘ my new comfortable ! Thank you !


Hi Vicki
PERSONAL SYLE THE EASY DON’Ts should be posted at every shopping mall and high street. Especially ‘Be yourself and don’t copy others ‘ in particular celebraties that have no style to begin with. Albeit some old time celebraties had the wow factor – Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn, Jackie Kennedy and more recently our own Duchess of Cambridge. Glamour with super good taste and style. No boob jobs, no tattoos, no pout trout pure glamour and taste the transcends the generations .


Very good points! Especially the last one:be yourself and don’t copy others. It is so important to stay true to yourself!

Our French Oasis

Great advice. One I adhere to the most is all about jeans. In the winter I love wearing jeans, they can be super chic with the right jacket or classically elegant and simple with a black cashmere turtleneck. However, I think it’s important not to settle for mummy jeans! It’s worth taking time to try on lots and lots of pairs, find those that fit really well and they will do you nothing but favours. Personally I love shopping with my teenage daughters, and 20 year old daughter, they are brutally honest!

Anita Rivera

I agree with all of the above. Don’t be a “hurt” on someone’s vision. Choose colors carefully, make-up to a minimum to enhance what you have and THINK FRENCH! I have two new pairs of boots now that are so comfortable but look amazing. Oh how I love to reinvent my wardrobe!


Hi Vicki, As you’d know, most Australians will stop whatever they’re doing at 3.20pm today to watch the Melbourne Cup – not only the biggest sporting (racing) event of the year, but probably the biggest ‘fashion’ event as well. There will be a wide variety of ‘personal style’ on show at the Racecourse, and splashed over our TV screens tonight – always good fun to see the outfits worn at the Track – from the sublime to the ridiculous. And by the way, back in the ’60s in Sydney, when I did the requisite June Dally-Watkins deportment course – and also thoroughly drummed into by my mother – always wear good underwear (their rationale was that you never know when you might have an accident on the way to work)!! Mary-Jill xx


Healthy skin is the basis for natural, flawless make up. Take care of your face and neck everyday and you will beautifully age. Smile, don’t frown. Fewer wrinkles, more friends!

Wendy Going Forward

Great advice! As for heel height, I am enjoying the newer low chunky square heels. They are so comfortable and come at many price points. Definitely less is more at this stage of life


“My fear is the one where I look like a painted doll, leave the make-up all over my collars and cuffs and have an orange jawline”. I had the best laugh reading this line. Have we not all had this fear at some time. It was the the fear that began my search for the approaching my own make up in a way that complimented and to find the muses who knew the ways. Vicki you bring the muses.

Deborah Peterson Milne

As of late, I feel like plain Jane with my minimalist style dressing. I get the rebellion of dressing for yourself & not a number. I applaud that, but I can’t do the ‘more is more’. I love the fact that at the threashold of 60, I am happiest with being the classic, understated Deb. Sometimes the Deb that throws in a slight twist for the heck of it. Another great article for thought Vicki. Thank you xxx


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