Renew and Revitalize for 2011

Photobucket Renew and Revitalize for 2011
Revamping your wardrobe

It's not just a new year, it's a new decade. That means a new era of fashion trends will be ushered in, while others will be "so Y2K."  Make sure your wardrobe is ready for the new year, new decade and new trends.

Just as you get your oil changed and change your furnace filter, your wardrobe needs a little servicing every month or two. So while you might not be seeing that engine oil light come on your closet door, if you haven't taken a full look at your wardrobe lately, now's the time to do it.


Going Shopping in Your Closet


As you take an inventory of your wardrobe, think of it as the most inexpensive shopping trip of your life. Just as you would in the store, try on all your clothes. Have a full-length mirror available so that you can see how it looks, and you even can have a friend take some pictures, as mirrors can be deceiving.


This gives you the chance to fall in love with your clothes all over again. But if you wouldn't buy it, don't keep it. Start a pile for consignment/donation.


While you try on your entire wardrobe, have a little fun experimenting with mixing and matching pieces, including accessories. This will help you come up with some new looks that don't cost a dime. Once you find a look you like, take a picture and create a flip book of some go-to styles for when you think you have nothing to wear.


Making Sure You Have Quality Basics


Every wardrobe should have a set of basic pieces that you can change in and out of several looks. "Find some really good six things that when you go to those items, you enjoy wearing them and they fit really well, and all the other stuff, that's where you can really start saving your money and putting things in that aren't going to be so expensive," says Beverly Nelson, owner of Bella on the Avenue.


While each fashionista has a slightly different variation on what those basic pieces are, Nelson gives you a starting guide to cross check against your closet:


Nice fitting cardigan: "You can't ever go wrong with those because they never go out of style," Nelson says.


Great pair of fitting jeans: "If a bootcut jean is more flattering to you, then buy a bootcut jean. For somebody my size, a skinny jean isn't going to work for me," she says. "If a skinny jean works for you, then buy a skinny jean. I would always recommend, though, that it always be a dark jean because that is always the most flattering."


Scarf: "You can pair it with a cardigan. You can pair it with a T-shirt. You cannot go wrong with any kind of scarf," Nelson says.


A really nice white shirt: "Most style experts will say a button-down shirt, but I also think it could be a really nice T-shirt.… When I do T-shirts, I always buy one really nice T-shirt that's going to clean really nice, that's going to iron really nice, that's going to travel really nice," she says.


Some kind of skirt: "Short skirts are really in right now because you can pair them with a pair of tights and a pair of ballet flats or a pair of boots, but quite honestly, there are some women who are not comfortable wearing a skirt at their knee, so whatever skirt works best for your body type," Nelson says.


A nice jacket: "A nice jacket for me is more of a casual jacket than a dressier jacket, so like a khaki jacket. But again, pick something for your body type.… Pick a color, like army green is really big, a khaki color, a navy color, and the thing with that is that even though it's not dressy, you can pair it with a pair of black pants and dress it up with a nice brooch," she says.


Filling the Gaps


After your at-home shopping trip, you should sit down with your closet in front of you and write a list of pieces that would help fill out your wardrobe. Then get ready for a real shopping trip.


With a full list of pieces following a full list of Christmas presents you bought, you and your bank account might be a little intimidated, so before you head out the door, figure out how much you have to spend for the day. As you are shopping, keep that budget in mind and don't expect to get all of the pieces in one day.


To help the cause, though, Nelson's Bella on the Avenue boutique can help. This upscale consignment shop gives you the chance to shop for quality items without the big price tag. Nelson holds strict standard for the fashion finds so that you don't have to worry about finding a stain or a hole in your potential purchases.


Also, as you make your way to the fitting room, grab Nelson to help you out. "There have been times when someone has come into my store and tried something on and it doesn't work for them. It may not be the right color for them. It may not be the right fit, style, whatever," Nelson says. "One of the things I take pride in is that I'm going to tell somebody if it doesn't work for them." She prides herself on this fact because she wants her customers to be happy with their purchases when they get home and be confident in them when they go out with their friends.


Scheduling Your Style


Just as you get a sticker on your car to let you know when to get another oil change, you can preset dates to service your style. Now that you've gone through your first closet check, mark a day on your calendar every couple months to re-evaluate your closet. It doesn't have to be something you do on a daily basis, and if you mark your calendar now, all you have to do is give yourself a couple hours on those couple days throughout the year.


If something else comes up as the date approaches, do not cancel. Reschedule your closet inventory for a different time, and using a little self-control, do not allow yourself to reschedule twice. Rescheduling into oblivion doesn't do anyone any good.


For more information about Bella on the Avenue and how they can help you revamp your wardrobe for a fraction of the cost, check out their Facebook page or head to 318 Fairfield Avenue in Bellevue, Ky.



Photographer: Neysa Ruhl
Model: Beverly Nelson
Location: Fischer Homes

Linda Palacios -

Linda Palacios is the editor of Cincy Chic. Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .Read More >>

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