Playing With Polka Dots

August 11th, 2014


The SC and Daniel set off on another adventure, and landed at Confluence Park HERE , an urban “playground” in Denver’s lower downtown area.  My ensemble for the day featured polka dots, which made our time together playful and lighthearted.

I’ve found that outfit choices have the ability to change or set a mood.  Polka dots have the uncanny power to lift spirits, with their repetitive dots displayed on a background of a range of colors and in this case, white on black accompanied by white on red.


My white cropped pants have made frequent appearances this summer, as I continue my exploration of white as a wardrobe staple.


The estate sale black vintage straw headpiece by Schiaparelli has appeared at two parties this summer. There is no question that it will permanently reside in the hat room!

Curtise of The Secondhand Years HERE asked the question in her comment on Hat Attack last week regarding my process of downsizing hats.  Decisions are difficult, as there have been many examples of hats having been in my collection for years and unworn.  Suddenly I develop a love for a chapeau, and wear it frequently for a season. This speaks to changing tastes and  unknown factors that I can’t explain.

Valerie of the Idiosyncratic Fashionistas HERE, who has a beautifully mischievous sense of humor, has mentioned that downsizing a hat is like giving away one of your children, and I resonate with that concept.  Serious consideration must be taken here. But realistically, adding hats at this point means making choices about which beauty can go to the rack in the basement, and off to another life with someone else.  If I’m not here, will my hats be orphans?


I don’t find this internal discussion to be morbid, but rather a function of living fully. To be aware of the impermanence of life facilitates my focus on creativity, and to write about it as part of aging gives me freedom.  Our culture does not appear to encourage and approve of such musings.  All the more reason to do so!


On another note, I discovered this polka dot tunic at my yoga studio’s boutique and I quickly surrendered to temptation.  The diaphanous fabric attached to an opaque slip with bows at the wrist walked out the door with me without a second thought.


Estate sale vintage polka dot pumps provided grounding for crone feet on our journey through Confluence Park.


Photos By Daniel

To add to my flight of ideas, I’ve been wearing silk scarves on my bags this summer, as in the photo above.  This estate sale vintage polka dot Bill Blass wonder was blinking at me from the scarf installation, and found itself tied to the estate sale vintage red chain shoulder bag.  I finished off this composition with estate sale and flea market bangles/bracelets, pearl earrings and pearl necklace; moonstone ring from D Forsythe HERE; gifted watch and crystal pendant.

On another note, my computer has been playing tricks on me, and recently I’ve lost several emails from readers, which is the reason why I haven’t answered.  I appreciate all communication from those who read and comment on Style Crone.  Please resend if at all possible!

I’m heading over to Patti’s Visible Monday HERE at Not Dead Yet Style.  I noticed that her guitar hat is back by popular demand!

Hat Attack #13

August 1st, 2014



Whenever I travel I have my eye out for hats.  It’s second nature and part of my DNA at this point.  So when in San Francisco, I called milliner DeAnna Gibbons HERE, with the intention of visiting her studio.  She generously suggested that I visit Hats On Post HERE, a delightful hat shop tucked away on the sixth floor of a building close to Union Square HERE, blocks from our location.


I was not disappointed.  I discovered the above headpiece by Celine Robert Hat Design France HERE, who is “famed for her chic bandeau and turban style hats.”  In the process of researching Celine Robert, I found the site LOVE HATS HERE, which provides access to headwear by many talented milliners and the ability to virtually try on a chapeau.  One thing leads to another for seekers of all things millinery!


Photos by Daniel

Yes, it now has a perch in the hat room!  Its complex and intricately twisted black straw form is sprinkled randomly with raspberry colored beads, and I’m in hat heaven. But as I have resolved, I will be downsizing one hat whenever one is added.  I have a rack in my basement studio for just that purpose.


Thank you DeAnna Gibbons, for your referral to Peggy Purcell at Hats On Post, in the photo above wearing a whimsical wide-brimmed fantasy.  Thank you Peggy, for a fabulous San Francisco hat experience and for the “hat chat” that was engaging and hat affirming.

I’m linking up with Sacramento’s Share-In-Style: Flowers HERE at Mis Papelicos.  I think my hat will have to represent a flower!  I wouldn’t want to miss the festive party.

Now it’s your turn to throw a little headwear love my way!

Please display your hat, headwrap, headpiece, fascinator, hair flower, headband or other adornment for your head that you adore, give The SC an AUGUST HAT ATTACK and kindly link to Style Crone somewhere in your post.  Can’t wait to see the beautiful contributions that you share throughout the next week. Participation will be open through Thursday, August 7th.

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The SC and Mr. J traveled to San Francisco last week for a visit with friends, fun, frivolity and a health related appointment on the side.

My new strategy for carry-on involves the wearing of scarves as skirts.  I have a number of large vintage square silk scarves that I acquired at estate sales, and I can’t think of a better way to display their patterns than to wear them over a simple black background.  Add a hat and accessories, walking boots that fit for the temperate weather and voila.  No need to check a bag!


Pocket watches are the theme of this vintage estate sale scarf, which has been in my collection for  years.


We explored many areas of the city, including the waterfront.  My San Francisco scarf came along for the ride, along with the Laurel Fenenga San Francisco collapsible hat perfect for travel, purchased at a Denver boutique in the 80’s.


A highlight of our adventure was spending time in Berkley with Mr. J’s friends, Barry and Debora Barkan HERE, who for many years have been involved in changing the culture of aging through their organization, Live Oak Institute HERE.   Their mission is “to develop communities that help all elders, even those who are the most isolated and disempowered, learn, grow, develop and shape their future.”  One of their projects, the Elder’s Guild HERE, focuses on conscious aging for the greater good.

It was a privilege to meet this creative and brilliant couple, and to learn about their lives and impressive body of work.  I’m continuing to integrate what I discovered regarding their “elder definition” HERE and their vision for change.


Thank you San Francisco, for your tantalizing restaurants, diversity of people, panoramic views, introduction to Home Made Jamz Blues Band HERE, sophistication and humanistic view of the world, and the opportunity to unplug and unwind.


Thank you and a tip of the hat to Mr. J, for taking photos and for introducing The SC to fascinating friends.

The SC is off to participate in Visible Monday HERE at Not Dead Yet Style, where Patti is “mad for summer plaid!”  I’m also sharing my yellow hat with the creative Anne’s 52 Pick-me-up: Sunflower HERE at Spy Girl.

HAT ATTACK #13 will be featured this coming Friday, August 1st.

Whoever wants to can join in!  Just compose a post that includes any hat, headwrap, headpiece, fascinator, hair flower, headband or other adornment for your head and join the party.  Participation will be open for one week, or through Thursday, August 7th. Follow the directions HERE provided on Style Crone to post your photo and hope to see you there!


White Out In City Park

July 21st, 2014


The SC and Daniel traveled to City Park just a block from home to wander its summer vistas, explore the gardens and laugh along the way while taking photos during an overcast July afternoon.  I’ve explored City Park on Style Crone several times over the past years, and today I visit its vast beauty in celebration of my four-year Blogiversary.


I can’t remember a time when I’ve composed an outfit in white.  Wearing black is an easy background for me to embellish with whatever catches my eye in my closets.  It’s familiar and comfortable.  However, this summer I’ve noticed a number of bloggers adorning themselves in white, so I decided to give it a try.  Shopping my own closet provided me with pieces that I had not thought of putting together, be it not for the community of bloggers that are a constant inspiration.


Perhaps it was the color white that I wore from head to toe in nursing school in the 60’s that created resistance to the concept of wearing it in my life in the here and now.  The utilitarian shoes.  The white hose and uniform with my name in blue letters stitched above my school’s insignia in blue and yellow on the pocket of the bodice. The large white fabric hat representative of my school of nursing, heavily starched into shape and extending upward, pinned firmly into my hair sprayed hair, no matter the caregiving task or medical procedure that was part of nearly every day over 50 years ago.


However, my consignment store Pucci hat bears no resemblance to the headwear that I wore as a nursing student in the 60’s.


The silhouette that it creates from every angle is very different from the nursing “headpiece” that wandered the halls of a large teaching hospital in Minneapolis, Minnesota in the early 60’s.  But the colors and the pattern are reminiscent of that era of time.


I have my memories of wearing white a half century ago and the experiences are a part of who I am today.  I treasure and honor most of what I recollect.  Whether painful or filled with great pleasure.

My ensemble today is a contrasting expression, as I focus on caring for myself instead of caring for the many that crossed my path over the years of my career.  It’s a transition that is unfamiliar and at times confusing, but overwhelmingly I feel curious and excited about life’s unfolding journey.


I’m finding my 71st year to be filled with much to savor.  A time of growth, expansion, learning, listening and an opening to the new.  Which includes a “White Out” in the park.  And the beginning of another year of expressing myself with outfits and words, written or spoken, on Style Crone and in my life in 3-D.


Photos By Daniel

Pucci hat – Minneapolis consignment store years ago, white silk blouse with yellow trim – Zoe’s Consignment Denver HERE, white cropped pants – Florida retail sale two years ago, metallic bag, vintage Vera scarf, white/black patent leather heels, vintage silver earrings and bracelet – estate sales, ring with moonstone – d Forsythe Jewelry HERE, crystal pendant and watch – gifted.

How magical that Sacramento’s Share-in-Style HERE theme this week is white!  I’m taking my ensemble directly over to Mis Papelicos to join in the fun.

Edit – Linking up to Sheila’s Shoe Shine HERE at Ephemera.  Thanks Sheila, for this glorious shoe party!


I love lace in all of its permutations.  Especially vintage lace.  The delicate lace top in these photos had been hanging in my closet for years, waiting for the perfect composition.  There was a small hole in the back beneath a shoulder seam, which was insignificant to my eye, because vintage has its flaws.  However, when I gently pulled the sleeves on, the lace covering the underlying nude fabric disintegrated in several areas.  Imperfect and a bit tattered though it now appeared, I decided to go with it as is.


In the midst of this decision, I thought about a story that a dear friend told me years ago about weavers in various cultures who intentionally weave flaws into their art.  I have always remembered her words and was fascinated by the concept.


Today I’m practicing imperfection HERE and studying its beauty. “The best way to get better is to stop worrying about perfection and, counter-intuitively, begin practicing imperfection because it will actually get you closer to the goal of perfection.”  My garden and my home are in a constant state of evolution and imperfection, similar to my life.


I’m not ready to let go of this “lacy” piece of vintage art.  It accompanied me out to dinner on Friday evening with a black taffeta vintage bolero jacket.  It reminded me that life is far from perfect and that if I strive constantly for perfection I will never start anything new.  Style Crone would never have been created.

The disintegration of the lace stimulated my creativity and took my thoughts in a playful new direction.  At least for the moment.  And that’s all that we ever really have!


Photos By Daniel

Vintage black lace top, vintage straw hat with taffeta bow and trim, and vintage Robert Clergerie silk fabric covered heels – estate sales; vintage black jet dangle earrings and vintage silk embroidered skirt with ruching and silk ribbons – gifted, lace hose – don’t remember!

I’m taking my imperfections over to Patti’s Visible Monday HERE at Not Dead Yet Style, where Patti is wearing a gorgeous dress that she purchased from Bella’s Etsy shop HERE.  The blogging community is a never ending resource for the new and inspiring.

The SC is linking up with Anne’s Spy Girl 52 Pick-Me-Up HERE, with the theme of Fairy Tale.  This vintage lace top’s destiny is to live happily ever after!

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