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Saturday, February 6, 2016

Philosophy of Style

For lots of people, wearing a hat can be scary. I wrote before about how to wear a hat. It takes confidence. It also takes having a sense of your own style ... which is frankly, kind of hard to do.

My ideal style is a mixture of eclectic and classic. Vintage inspired with a touch of quirkiness.

But in reality, what I wear tends toward warm and comfortable. So I throw on a sweater and a pair of jeans. Let's face it: I live in Vermont where, (a) it's often cold, and I run about 10-20 degrees colder than most people and (b) ... well, not that many people care about fashion. (People regularly wear jeans and sneakers to expensive restaurants.)

One day I was searching #vermontstyle on Instagram. Surprise! There's not much there! But it did lead me to discover Stasia of Thrift Me Pretty. Her philosophy of style so resonated with me. 

I love sequins. I've loved them since I was 4 years old, when I would collect them from the floor at shopping stores and save them in a treasure box. As I grew older and became an "outdoorsy" gal, I broke up with sequins. I didn't think they fit my outdoor-vibe. It wasn't until I was almost 40 that I realized I could LOVE the mountains AND sequins!!! Seems silly, doesn't it? But I hear this kind of stuff ALL THE TIME!! "I can't wear THAT because I'm THIS kind of gal living in THIS community." To heck with that you guys! It's made up and it's pretend. IT'S NOT TRUE. So right now, tell me one thing that you LOVED when you were little that you broke-up with as you grew older?? How does it make you feel to think about that thing? Giddy with excitement? Weak at the knees? Yea, then do it!! Wear it!! BE IT! Shine on, girl!! Don't let any boxes hold you back!! ✨❤️✨❤️✨
A photo posted by Stasia • Stasia's Style School (@stasiasavasuk) on

Stasia is a style coach who focuses a lot on thrift-shop finds. (Hooray for not contributing to "fast fashion"!) But more importantly, she talks a lot about finding a style that's authentic to you. When she posted the above photo, I was saying "YES! This!"

Even on my laziest days, I always throw on a cute hat to finish off the outfit. Sure, you're not going to wear some bejeweled, beplumed extravagant concoction to the mall. But a fedora or cloche or beret goes with almost everything. Even in Vermont, where people "don't have anywhere to wear a hat."

Stasia in a cloche by
Silverhill Creative Millinery.
After I commented on her post, Stasia contacted me about a collaboration. I sent her some hats on loan. This was my first collaboration with a style blogger or style coach. I was a little nervous and a lot excited.

It was a thrilling success. By that, I don't mean that I sold hats to every one of her followers. I didn't. But I did get exactly what I wanted: Someone whose style philosophy compliments mine perfectly demonstrating how a hat can be a casual accessory that adds just the right amount of sass.

She took photos in them and talked about how to wear a hat on her own blog. Look how easily a simple cloche pairs with a denim jacket and a casual dress and boots. It doesn't even look out of place in a snowy Vermont field! (Oh, and extra benefit of cloches: They keep the tips of your ears warm.)

A photo posted by Stasia • Stasia's Style School (@stasiasavasuk) on

I didn't realize until I read her blog post that Stasia was a little intimidated by the fedora ... because the message she sent me said: "In LOVE with the fedora! I've never worn one before, and girl, I've been missing out!!"

I have a sneaking suspicion that if more people gave hats a try, they would discover that they, too, are missing out. ;)