Saturday, January 25, 2014

2014 Appearance Goals

Hey y'all! We are now several weeks into the new year. What kinds of ways am I trying to focus on improving in my life? I have spiritual, physical, and habit goals/ideas for the year, but I also have a few "appearance" goals that I'd like to aim for. Although a few of these also deal with character issues, they have to do with how I run my closet, so I figured they'd be worth sharing here and y'all can keep me accountable. Trying to be open and honest here.
Spend Little + Save Much
          I was really, really bad about how much I spent on clothes in 2013. I didn't (don't?) know how to say, "I have enough" when I see cute clothes! I am heartily ashamed at my thoughtless spending, so I hope to curb my habits and become a really good girl when it comes to being responsible with my resources. My goal is to cut my clothes "budget" by a third. I'll be carefully tracking every purchase with my fancy phone-accessible spreadsheet and hopefully start paying in cash instead of with a debit card when I can. That should help me feeeeel the burn of paying real money for stuff. Envelope system, wot?

Take Care of my Things
          One reason I felt like I needed to buy so new many clothes this past year was that most of the clothes I already had were starting to look worn and old. I'm afraid I sped that aging process up by leaving clothes wadded in baskets and laying on the floor most of the time. I would like to be a better steward of the things the Lord has given me and I purpose to no longer be lazy in this area. Time to grow up and learn to keep house. Plus, when the closet is neat and tidy, it takes a lot of stress away from our morning routine. Also in this area of taking care of things, I've decided to venture into the world of having a few items dry cleaned instead of risking their integrity by throwing them in the washer. I had never done that until last week when I took some special dresses to the little shop in town. I'm glad I did, even though it was expensive.

Follow my Color Season
          Are y'all aware of the idea of "color seasons"? I hadn't heard of it until a reader inquired about it here on Fresh Modesty and I had to look it up! Since then I've been exposed the theory even more and have decided it's a good way to be purposeful about the clothing I buy and not just going for the Pantone color of the year or what catches my eye. Basically, you analyze your features and see if you are a Spring, Summer, Fall, or Winter, and whether you are on the warmer or cooler side of your season. There are a ton of quizzes on the internet to help you figure out your color season.  I downloaded an iPhone app called "Color and You" which helps me keep my colors with me when I'm shopping. Although it's not a complete list of all the hues that compliment your natural beauty, it certainly helps to narrow down the possibilities and keep your wardrobe perfectly suited to you. 

Explore Textures
           I'm not sure why, but "Texture" is one of my favorite words and has been since I was a pre-teen. It makes me feel deep, woodsy, plush, sophisticated, pepperminty, and thoughtful. It reminds me of wicker, fishing line, stainless steel, embroidery, cable-knit and room diffusers. It sounds insane and random, I know, but inspiration can come from anything, can't it? I want to diversify my wardrobe by mixing different elements of texture in it. Sequins, leathers, denims, knits, furs, cottons, silks, tweeds. etc. I won't be going crazy mixing tweeds and tulle, because I want things to make sense. So, I doubt you'll see fur with short sleeves or silks with chunky knits, but within outfits I would like to try to not mix cottons with cotton and knits with knit.

Improve my Nails
          Living out in the middle of mud woller holler can take a toll on the level of "lady" that one feels. Oftentimes your skirt doesn't get ironed and the humidity plays with your hair, but proper nail grooming is something that no matter how the rest of you looks, it always raises your level of class. I am a nail-gnawer and my cuticles are less than fabulous, so I would like to pay them a little more attention this year. I have already begun the habit of moisturizing frequently since the winter months are so harsh on skin, and I can tell a difference in my nails' health in just a few weeks. My hope is to keep clean, filed, strong nails without getting too prissy about them. ;)

So, spending little + saving much, taking car of my things, following my color seasons, exploring textures, and improving my nails are my 2014 appearance goals. What are yours? Any tips for me?


  1. I think it might work, too, to spend a little more on fewer items. I noticed that the boots that you put some serious dough in are serious quality (and gorgeous, by the way!) and I think that you're already great at remixing items. It might be an idea to start paring stuff down, overall, and spend a little more money on individual items, but buy less in general. I started working on that last year and I noticed my wardrobe classed up a LOT very quickly, and the basics (like 3/4 sleeve shirts or long-sleeved shirts - we have a dress code at work where I can't show much of my arms) are much higher quality when I spent $30 on them instead of $6, haha. (I say that as I still have threadbare Target T-shirts hanging in my closet.)

    My grandmother had that "color season" book! "Color Me Beautiful", I think? I found it in her bedroom when I was about 11, and I still think about some of those guidelines sometimes. I've noticed that the colors I look best in are either summer or fall - I think I'm stuck in-between somewhere in there. But I will definitely look at a super cute shirt sometimes and think, "Yeah, that color is just going to make me look jaundiced." As a guideline, those swatches are super helpful.

    Also, I am guilty of the "wad up on the floor" thing, too. Sigh. Every two weeks or so I make myself hang everything up, and I feel awesome and everything looks great, and then two weeks later it's all on the floor again. Oh well. New Year's Resolutions, right?

  2. I studied color seasons a awhile back - it's definitely helpful when shopping because I don't even need to look at something that's not in my color palette. Color really can make a big difference, when my mom started wearing her colors you could see the change. Just a thought here, but what if when you posted an outfit this year you pointed out how it fit your color season and texture goals.

    Thanks for sharing and posting this!

  3. Thanks for posting this Olivia. This was an eye opener. ~ Sarah C

  4. Wow, Olivia! You are just like me! Whenever I am shopping (especially with my mom), I always see something that is a "I Just Have to Have It" item! And my mom always tells me I already have enough, but of course, I find amazing excuses like "But it has polka dots" or "Mooom, it's SO cute!" :P Thanks for another awesome post!


  5. I usually just put on something appropiate for the day. Like today will be giving the dog a bath day. LOL!
    I desparatly need to care for my nails better. They break when long but I have a bad habit(yes done this since I was young) is chew my nails when I'm nervous, excited, or bored. I did stop chewing on my nails but in school I would chew on my pencil. Mom made sure I stopped that quick.
    I'm saving my money to get maxi skirts and some nice modest shirts because some clothes are getting tight. So that is for spring.....
    Hope you will achieve your goals! I'm so bad at that so I admire girls who do....

  6. I have never seen that many pieces of clothing in one spot before, in my life! It looks like goodwill!

  7. hey! I haven't looked at your blog for two weeks and you have really been posting! Good job! Thanks!


  8. Very good!

    Would you mind sharing what app you use for your spending/budget spreadsheet, please?

  9. I did a color season quiz, and found that my season is autumn. So I've been trying to go for more more muted colors rather than the bright colors I used to wear (such as lime green and hot pink). My nails are pathetic. Lol! I use them for everything...opening things, cleaning things, etc. hehe... Anyway, I enjoyed reading this! =)

  10. I am a warm. Unfortunately, I don't like half the colors the are entailed by that.

  11. I need to have some sort of clothing restraint; I have some sort of extreme emotional involvement with clothes and shoes shopping that it just about kills me to let the perfect thing go (I am veeerrrrry picky, so that is part of it; I use my season, summer in the old, old version, and I only like natural fibers for the most part).

    I need do keep my nails nice too. My nails tear easily, and I tend to pick at them and tear them . . . and then forget to file them smooth. I think it is probably some sort of nutritional deficit . . . my toenails are messed up too (they used to be healthier). I want to try oil and herbs such as horsetail for strengthening (I am trying to avoid the awful conventional stuff. . . the polish doesn't stay on my nail anyway).

    I need to be more careful of my things as well. I am really rough with my stuff. I do have the ironing habit down (I really have to since most of what I wear is natural fiber), but I also want to start using starch.

  12. I had heard of color seasons before, but I'm now going to go see if I can find out what season I am :)

  13. I've been enjoying your blog for quite some time and though I've never left any comments to say how much I've enjoyed it, it's one of my favorites!
    I was wondering if, once you get your nails in the place you'd like them, if you could do a post on basic nail care. I know I'd find it most helpful!!!
    Thanks for a great blog!

  14. I first remember hearing about colors and seasons on the Boyer Family Singers blog. The funny thing was that most of the colors that I look 'good' in were colors that I already have some of! :)

  15. I just wanted to say that I enjoy your blog very much Olivia. Seeing as you have found so many cute clothing from thrift stores, I'll have to visit them more often. - Megan from Illinois

  16. I'm apparently the type of person that way over analyzes everything. I'm terrible at personality quizzes and figuring out what body shape or skin tone I am. I wish someone could tell me which colors, etc. to wear.

    1. Sounds like you would benefit from this quiz, then. :)
      It's a great quiz!

  17. I'm a cooler colours person. I read Colour me Beautiful a few years ago, and I'm a cool winter. Most of us in the family, are. I echo your goal to improve your nails! My nails are in need of a bit of extra care, I have found. They look less than ladylike at the moment.

  18. Sounds like good goals there!
    I know the feeling about buying massive ammounts of clothes simply because they are adorable. I shop at the local thrift store constantly, and since the items are so cheap, I tend to buy WAY more than I need (or even can fit in the closet sometimes!). So, my plan now is that every time I get something new, I need to get rid of at least one item. My other new idea for 2014 is that I've gone through my closet and found clothing items that I've not worn much in the past year (if at all). I pinned sticky notes to those items, and will make a tally mark each time they are worn throughout the year. If they are worn very little or not at all, I will give them away.

  19. Those goals sound amazing!
    I'm at the same point right now- cutting back on "stuff", choosing quality over quantity, spending less, and sticking with MY right colors (not what looks good on Suzie). I'm so thankful for my Titus 2 mentor, and now you, who brought up these things. They definitely help in being a good steward! And that's what we're supposed to be, both as Christians and as ladies. We'll be running households, Lord willing, and we need to learn how to make the most of what we're blessed with. Thanks for the great article, Olivia. Very encouraging!

  20. Not spending as much is a definite goal for me as well! I went a little crazy in the last few months of 2013, and I'm so far doing ok in 2014. I am having to buy more gifts for other people as I have a lot of friends and family with birthdays at the beginning of the year, so that's keeping me from buying stuff for myself...even if it does mean that my bank account still is pretty sparse, but at least the money's not going toward myself. ;)
    I do have one note for you; make sure you read the ingredients of any nail-strengthening products you use. Most of them have terrible ingredients, including but not limited to formaldehyde and formaldehyde-releasing products. It's a good idea to look the product or individual ingredients up on Skin Deep (they have an iPhone app now too!) before purchasing. That goes for nail polish too...I encourage you to look into more natural nail polish products, even if you have to spend a bit more than the $.99 ones at Walmart. It's worth it for preventing cancer and reproductive issues!!

  21. Ever heard of . Carol Tuttle is the author and she helps you decide if you're a Type 1,2,3, or 4. It's different from Color Me Beautiful in that you discover your personality and then dress , style your hair and accessorize according to your type. She has a course you can buy, but you can just sign up for the free videos that are really helpful in determining your type.

  22. Hey Olivia, I also am a hardworking country girl whose hands are often less than perfect ;) but I have found that rubbing coconut oil into my nails help keep them strong and long, I will also use Shea butter for my hands, or you can also use coconut oil for that too! and Castor oil also helps with dry cracked nails.
    ~ Hannah

  23. Wow! This post is awesome! Just a throwout..... Just because you are a certain season, doesn't mean you are restricted to just those colors. I'm an autumn, but i can also wear blues, greens, purples, pinks, and plenty of yellow. Sometimes, it just depends on personal preference. Base your wardrobe on the colors you do look good in, and you'll have an awesome wardrobe in no time :)


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