The Year Of Reinvention

April 30th, 2012

Photos by Diana

A close up of the Francois!

Vintage Francois multicolored fur felt fedora – consignment shop, vintage gloves, vintage YSL pumps, vintage jewels and vintage black wool jacket – estate sales, and the black ruched jeans that have been my uniform for the season.

The SC once again wears the outfit that she wore at the YSL exhibit (details were vague under the pink bow) and it may be the last felt hat before the spring/summer hats begin their appearance on a regular basis.  As long as the weather is chilly, felt is the favored option, even though the calender may disagree.

This past year has been a transition and at times a lesson in survival as I wandered through the wilderness of grief.  I have decided to move forward to the year of reinvention, yet at the same time aware that feelings related to loss do not magically disappear after one year. The first step requires that I direct my attention to my home which has suffered from neglect as I focused on whatever appeared before my eyes.  The scaffolding of my life needs reinforcement!  The fence surrounding my garden, which is deteriorating, will be replaced. The worn and damaged hardwood floors upstairs will be refinished and the rooms will be repainted.  I am in the process of going through every item in my inventory with the sorting categories of keep, maybe and GO.  I have already found many pieces that I had forgotten about, which sparks my creativity.  My attention is easily distracted from sorting to playing with long lost friends. And then I hear a gentle internal reminder assuring me that ‘letting go’ of items that no longer serve me will become easier with practice and that peace of mind is really the goal. I am learning to live without chaos, within myself and within my living spaces.

This morning, with amazing synchronicity, my yoga teacher quoted a Chinese proverb, “Be not afraid of growing slowly; be afraid of standing still.”

Now I’m taking this hat over to Patti’s Visible Monday HERE and Monday Mingle HERE!

26 Responses to “The Year Of Reinvention”

  1. Patti @ NotDeadYet Style

    Ah, what a marvelous proverb to contemplate. I too, become distracted when doing a sort, but it’s all part of the process. You look elegant in black with your splashes of color!

  2. Shelley

    That is a great proverb, and gives me some hope that I too will be able to clear out some of the clutter, both in my living space and in my life, over the next little while. I love the colours in that hat–it may be winter fabric, but the colours are pure Spring!

  3. pao

    You look amazing!

    Your writing really hit the mark for me at this time – I have planned this Spring to take the first step of directing my attention to my home which has suffered from my neglect – which involves sorting through my dressing room, studio, and supply room that are in such chaos. Instead of brow-beating myself about my many diversions from this goal, I hope to keep in mind your gentle message of self-affirmation. Thank you so much.

  4. Lonnie

    Beautifully said, as usual. Going through….enjoy the re-discoveries and memories. They are riches many lack.

  5. Jean

    Thank you for this timely reminder. Your outfit is beautiful and I’m sure your projects will bring you a sense of peace and harmony. I know it will look lovely when it’s all finished and you will be nutured by the beauty.

    Love, Jean

  6. Terri

    The jacket is such a beautiful fit on you! I appreciate the closer look at what you wore to YSL exhibit. DH and I live in a huge old home (1940s). He is a carpenter by trade and has done most of the work on our home himself. Initially, I imagined that one day the entire house would be perfect and we no longer would need to be perpetually working on it. That attitude has given away to understanding that to care properly for an aging home is a never-ending process. I’ve come to think of our house in organic terms.

  7. Carol Mills

    Judith, My favorite Feng Shui thought for sorting through & letting go of stuff: Has this item served it’s purpose for Me? Be gentle with yourself!

  8. Melanie

    I think that the reason you look so stunning in your outfits comes from who you are as much or even more than the clothes themselves. I often imagine outfits on other people – and this one, if I were to throw it on any number of other beautiful women, would probably fall flat. You really carry what you have on, and vice versa I suppose, the way that all harmonies work. The colours in your fur felt hat are dazzling. How fun to find forgotten treasures – I hope many of them get new life! I agree that the process of freshening up is as rewarding as the transformations that result.

  9. Tamera Beardsley

    Judith, once again such a beautiful and moving post…your outfit..perfection… because of the personal elegance you bring to it… and oh the hat!

    I have spent the last year reinventing myself, (or finding myself again), after raising three wonderful children over the last 20 years. My time as full time mother, now over, I have been transitioning to my ‘what’s next’. I have edited house and home, taken out trees from our gardens, while always looking for a balance of letting go and holding on. Still a little shocked that my children have grown up and onto their own life paths, (one would think I would have seen it coming 🙂 ).

    Each post of yours I read…I am further in awe of your beauty and spirit. Thank you so very much for sharing your heart and soul.

  10. Josep-Maria

    Lovely outfit, I love the jacket and pants set. The detail of the hat is delicious. Are you charming.

  11. rose

    Yes, it probably is a good time to “let go” of those things that no longer serve you. This whole year has been one of massive upheaval that was thrust upon you, and you have coped so beautifully, so heroically. As you move forward into the next year, no doubt things will unfold for you.

    Much love from England always,


    Always wise, comforting and BEAUTIFUL, ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
    My dearest Judith.

  13. Sylvia @ 40PlusStyle

    A beautiful look and absolutely loving that hat. What amazing colours. So nice with a basic black outfit. Also really liking that quote. I must copy and remember that one….It’s so true.

  14. Sarah

    For the past year, your observations — and style — have been a colossal inspiration to me as I cared for my dying husband. Two weeks after his passing, I read your words this morning and was heartened by the possibility of moving forward or — as you say — reinforcing the scaffolding of my life. Thank you for being a lifeline for me. So very grateful.

  15. Pam@over50feeling40

    You inspire me so, Judith….and so often speak to things I am pondering, though our situations are very different. I have spent this school year attempting to grow in new directions, and learning how NOT to impede that growth. Change is a challenge no matter what the change is…mine is watching my husband struggle through unemployment, letting go of my life as a fulltime mom, and having my best friend, my daughter now live on the other side of the world. There are moments the pains feel sharp, but fortunately in order to live life to its fullest, I do not allow the pains to grow, but control them and grow myself instead. I only hope to go forward with the grace and dignity you model for us daily!

  16. Sheila, Style Agent 909

    Hi Judith, just read your bio and your most recent post. There’s really no adequate words for comforting someone for the loss of a loved one, but it sounds as if you’re recovering nicely.
    I really like your style and would like to see more, so I’ll be back!

  17. WendyB

    Damn, I love this hat! And your writing, as always.

  18. megan, the frugalista diaries

    So inspiring!

    I love that hat on you, it look amazing with the entire look! Tres Chic.

  19. Serene

    Oh Judith, I never see you inelegant! You look beautiful and you wear your hats with such aplomb! Bravo to you for your year of reinvention! It’s probably a good idea for all of us to reinvent ourselves and lives from time to time….your projects sound exciting and like a lot of work! But you’ll feel so wonderful going through and giving away things, that as you say, no longer serve you well. Big huge hug to you my beautiful friend! ~Serene

  20. Vix

    Oh, I adore your writing and the way you live your life, Judith. It sounds like you’ve already made great headway with your reinvention, recognising what needs doing and tackling things slowly but purposefully. You look so elegant in that beautiful hat, warmth but in a cheery Spring-like shade. xxx

  21. Carol

    Judith, I love that blue hat.

  22. Valerie

    Fabulous and very daring hat! Perfect counterpoint to the suit. Who else could do that?!

  23. Kristin

    I’m dying over the fabulosity of that hat!

  24. Greetje Kamminga

    You look fabulous. As usual. And I think it is because of your amazing figure and posture. You can wear a plastic bag and look great in it. But perhaps you als look great because of your strong mind.
    I admire you for the way you are trying to shape your live after your loss.
    I salute you.

  25. Joan Price

    Wow, beautiful post. Grief doesn’t have an expiration date. I love this: “Be not afraid of growing slowly; be afraid of standing still.” You’ve never stood still — except to pose in your lovely outfits!

    My warmest wishes to you,

    Joan Price

    Author of Naked at Our Age: Talking Out Loud about Senior Sex and Better Than I Ever Expected: Straight Talk about Sex After Sixty.

  26. Susan Partlan

    I don’t know how I missed this one. That’s a good proverb. It can be so easy to focus on how slowly things evolve. I love that hat! Beautiful colors.

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