Finding Y.O.P.S.

I missed my own personal deadline of writing a post last week. It wasn’t that I forgot. I actually thought about it most of the days and nights, especially when I couldn’t sleep. My brain was very busy being indecisive about what I wanted to write about and I have this sort of deal with my self that I will never just “phone it in” and write one just to write one. I like to be inspired and hopefully inspire you if you are going to take the time to read it.  And last week I had lots of thoughts but none were cohesive. Had I posted something it would have looked like someone with severe ADD at 3 in the morning on a combination of Mucinex-D (the one where you have to hand over your license to get it) and Claritin was having a brain dump. It might have entertained a few of you but I don’t think anyone would have learned anything. Except maybe not to combine those two medicines together.

There was one pattern of thoughts that seemed to be screaming at me the loudest.  Frequently when I tell people what I do or when I go into their closets they question I get is “Can I wear this?” My answer from there is always “Well do YOU like it?” If yes then we go into what is holding them back. Of course if it is fit or the color makes them look like they are carsick then we see if we can find a better version. But sometimes the person is just worried about it not being in style. Now if their goal is to update their look by looking what is considered current then the conversation takes a different turn. But what is considered “in style” comes and goes with every season. It’s the merry-go-round of the industry and designers coming up with new ideas, or new spins on old ideas. True style is all about getting to know yourself and how you want to project yourself to others. Y.O.P.S. (Your Own Personal Style). Rachel Ray has EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil), Gwyneth Paltrow has GOOP (I have no idea what it actually means), so I am jumping on the bandwagon and creating my own acronym.

You absolutely cannot dress with the thought of what other people will think of you. Unless you have developed the technology to create mind control underwear you cannot control the thoughts of other people. And even then I hope you created a matching mind reader bra to go with it so that you can make sure you actually know what they are thinking. How many times have you said something complimentary about someone’s outfit only because you were trying to be polite and not hurt someone’s feelings?

“Oh cousin Andy I love your Christmas sweater!”
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You have dress for YOU and what YOU like. Finding YOPS isn’t always easy. Some people do seem to be born with it.

Others have to cultivate it over time with a series of hits and misses. It takes a while to know the inner you and even more time to get the outside to match who you are in the inside. One of my favorite things that happens when working with a client is when we put together an outfit and they look at me like this.

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And then they scream.




I am also aware that the so called rules of fashion are frustrating and intimidating. What’s in? What’s out? What’s always in is confidence. What is always out is trying too hard. Oh and maybe nude pantyhose. Unless you are Kate Middleton it is very hard to wear them and not look grannified. I always suggest a tight, patterned hose or going bare-legged instead. Even if it is dead of winter just slap on some moisturizer with self-tanner and you’ll be good to go.

Jergens Natural Glow Revitalizing Daily Moisturizer, Medium/Tan Skin Tone
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If you are too afraid of the brown knee effect from sloppy application of self tanner try the Sally Hansen Airbrush for legs . My kids gave me wonderful roadmaps of spider veins all through my legs and I swear by this stuff. Its like foundation for your legs.

Sally Hansen Airbrush Legs Light Glow Leg Makeup for Fair Skin Tones
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I actually have bigger qualms about some of men’s fashion. Sweatpants out of the house? Ewwww…just ewww. And I don’t mean windpants, that’s fine. I mean sweat pants that always seemed to be paired with boxers and the guy’s junk looks like a 9 month old fetus trying work its way out of the womb. I feel like I don’t know you enough to see you that way. And even if I do know you I don’t want to see your bits and pieces that way. Put that thing away!

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And if you ever see a man wearing denim shorts of any kind please issue a citizen’s arrest and stop the visual assault on our eyes.

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I don’t care if it is Jake Ryan from Sixteen Candles wearing them. Where are you Michael Schoeffling? We need a current photo!

They should never be manufactured, sold or bought. Never, ever, ever. Just. So. Wrong.

By the way Sixteen Candles is my favorite movie EVER.

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Wearing something out of your comfort zone? Be prepared with some come back lines for those obnoxious people in our lives who just have to make a comment.

“Ohhhh…..Sally, you actually have a dress on today instead of pants! Look everybody in the office at Sally – she’s wearing a dress! What’s the occasion?”

Now you could say “Your funeral,” as you kick her in the face but that would be considered inappropriate by most people’s standards.

Respond with a simple “Wow, I am so flattered that you take so much time to notice what I am wearing!” And then simply smile and walk away.

*Insider Tip – Stuck on finding what your own style is? Take a walk around your house. Nine times out of ten when I go into a client’s home their wardrobes are very in sync with their decorating, right down to the color schemes. Do you like alot of textures? Clean lines?  If you are in a style rut think about what you have been thinking about experimenting with in your home. More patterns? Brighter colors? Try the same out in small doses in your wardrobe.

*Insider Tip – Try out a trend on the cheap. Forever 21, H&M, Charming Charlies all bring you what is up to the minute in trends with a low-cost commitment.  And no one will kick you out of the store if you are over the age of 30, I promise.  The quality and fit are a challenge to say the least but there are amazing finds to be had. Make a beeline for the jewelry and accessories. They are baby steps into a trend and you can take them off if halfway through day you decide that wearing a bib-style necklace makes you feel like an overgrown baby.  And it only cost you $10.

*Insider Tip – Life is short. Don’t wait forever to make your statement. Life is your own runway so enjoy the walk!

Oh and just in case you are wondering….I did find my own Jake Ryan and he was in fact wearing a sweater vest the very first time I met him.

Published by suziegaffney

owner at Suzie Gaffney Styling

12 thoughts on “Finding Y.O.P.S.

  1. I complimented a women today at wawa, she looked fab in jeans a silk creme shirt and tan sweater…..she rocked it and was delighted with my compliment! I agree with you, life is short rock it every day and pay it forward complimenting a look every now and then!
    Loved the blog! P.s. I may have the sweater vest photo 😉

  2. OMG… my husband was wearing a sweater vest when I met him, too. Good guys wear sweater vests. LOL! Thanks for the tip about Sally Hansen airbrush for legs, I am going to try that. This morning I cleaned out my clothes closet… always think of you when I do this task. I don’t like to do it but when it is done, I feel great!

    1. Ceil – Yeah for the sweater vest guys!! There must be something about that…
      So glad to hear you did your fall cleanup. So much work I know but you do feel so much better after!

  3. Whenever I wear an outfit or item that Patrick hates, I typically respond with “You don’t know what you are talking about, I get SO many compliments on this” … and he typically responds with “that is because don’t want to get caught looking @ it without saying SOMETHING” … I have to admit it always makes me second guess all the compliments I have received!

  4. I really need to proof read … that is supposed to read “that is because THEY don’t want to get caught looking @ it without saying SOMETHING”

  5. I actually wore something other than yoga pants to my evidence lecture today and some girl said “ohmigod, you actually dressed up today! what’s the occasion?”

    and I DID want to say ‘your funeral’ and kick her in the face.


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