Photos by Daniel N

Preparing for Thanksgiving is difficult this year.  Our favorite holiday always, filled with family, friends, food, fun, fashion!  Standing on the staircase in a 60’s orange dress with faux persian lamb trim, black wool leggings, vintage handcrafted wool hat, 90’s black suede boots, black fingerless wool gloves and vintage jewels, I recall memories of last Thanksgiving with its celebratory yet tentative tone.  It was in the month of November 2010 that it became clear that Nelson’s disease had taken a brutal turn in a direction that showed little hope for improvement, and the future was painfully uncertain.  Now it’s a question of whether to go up the staircase or down, as many decisions arrive with complexity and ambivalence.

According to Emily Gems HERE , ‘ Orange is a power color and is one of the healing colors. It also stimulates enthusiasm and creativity. Orange means vitality with endurance.’

I wore the orange dress to the 27th floor of the downtown Hyatt, the Peaks Lounge which overlooks the city, to gain a different perspective.  During the day, from this location, the majestic Rocky Mountains present snow capped beauty and sweeping splendor.  But during the mysterious darkness of the night, the breathtaking view with shimmering lights amidst towering structures as far as the eye can see, reminds The SC that the world is vast, limitless, open and expansive.  A Presecco toast to Nelson, announcing the arrival of the first holiday season in decades without his physical presence.


  1. I love orange, it’s such a vibrant color, and from this I can see that it’s YOUR color too. You were made to wear orange! Those first holidays without a loved one’s presence are a very high emotional hurdle. Here’s wishing you strength and support to not only get through it, but make it a warm and loving occasion.

  2. Oh my dear, how brave you are! Yes, you are going forward, because no one can travel backwards in time. Or at least not yet! I believe what you wrote about orange being a strong colour, and also about the mystery and limitlessness of the world. You honor Nelson every day in every way, while still going bravely onward.

    Much love from England,

  3. It’s not always about a decision to go up or down the staircase… One can always take a break on any step to experience the world from that vantage, and of course, we can always vary the pace of the journey. As you say, “the world is vast, open, limitless, and expansive.” Yet, we experience it one small step at a time. — Best wishes as we enter the winter holiday season. There is much ahead for you…and for all of us.

  4. I will be thinking about you this week Judith. I know there is nothing anyone can say that can make it easier. But I believe Nelson would be so proud of your strength and dignity. You are an amazing woman. I also have on orange in my post today…thank you for sharing all of the meaning s behind the color. You look incredible and I am proud to wear the color along with you. Be thankful this year that your life is blessing so many others.

  5. Pensive poetess putting perspective precisely in orange… The world, it is expansive, a wonderful place to be when you are ready to go there. Meanwhile, keep us awake with your poetry, thoughtfulness and color…

  6. You and Pam are wearing orange today – two very special and, yes, powerful women. My thoughts are with you, as holidays without our loved ones are so different and challenging. You look very beautiful and radiant, and well-loved.

  7. I think you look radiant in any color, including orange. It hard to imagine what it must feel like facing the holidays without your beloved Nelson. You are so brave! I will be thinking of you and Nelson this week of thanksgiving.

  8. You look wonderful in orange – my colour therapy crazy aunt always said that orange is the most “social” colour in the spectrum so maybe this is a sign that you are ready to go forth and seek the company of others again, x

  9. Yes, you do look beautiful, as always, with just the right touches. Glad you were able to be out, toasting to your Love.

    Thinking of you and yours. …………J.

  10. Oh Judith, I’ve missed you! I don’t think I realized how much until I read your post and saw your picture! This color is lovely on you and it’s one of my favorites! I like your last line where you toasted your dear Nelson and reminded yourself that while he’s not here in body, he’s always with you. We take our consolations where we can…. Much love to you! I hope your holiday is special in a new way for you this year! ~Serene

  11. You look fabulous in orange. You do realise it is the Dutch national color? So take it if you ever go there and people will adore you. Wishing you lots of strength during this holiday season and hoping that you can find many moments to enjoy the beauty of what life still has to offer.

  12. Dearest Style Crone,

    I’m a resident of LoDo, and when I searched “style AND Denver” you popped up. I have been lurking for about a year, and your stories have touched me as much as your photographs have delighted me.

    While content to lurk, Orange on the Staircase jolted me to comment. I cannot not let today pass without commenting on “upstairs or down?” What a wonderful analogy for your journey. As always, you make the trip in style.

  13. Wishing you strength through the holiday season.
    I do love orange too and this outfit is totally stunning. I always say the world needs more orange. Its a great color to meditate on!
    The best to you on Thanksgiving~

  14. Hi again – I just checked in with the Advanced Style blog and there are fabulous ladies including yourself decked out in touches of orange. As always, you are a style icon!!

  15. Dear Judith,
    One is always tempted to say, onward and upward. In other words, you must go up the staircase. But maybe there is something better down the staircase. You could always go up the down staircase. Anyway, you look marvelous.

    Thanks for linking to my blog. I will reciprocate. If you get to New York, please give me a call.

  16. You are a Goddess, Judith. Your well of strength is amazing and inspirational. I love your blog and hope not to miss another single one. I can’t wait to tell my friends about it! Love and honor to you on this day of Thanks.


  17. Hello Judith,
    Orange was the perfect choice to greet the holiday season – Nelson would have heartily approved of your zest and endurance the colour is said to have. You certainly look strong and loved in your beautifully chosen outfit. xoxo

  18. I can’t top what everyone else so eloquently wrote, so may I just say, “A-men!” I adore orange, it’s my fave color, and it was a photo on Seth Ari Cohen’s blog, of a fabulous woman in a fabulous maxi coat of lilac and black and yes, ORANGE, that gave me my first glimpse of you & your fierce and unique style. It suits you so well.

    I never believed in color therapy, but after I began dying my hair red – which opened up possibilities of all sorts of colors I could never pull off as a drab brunette – I really noticed how wearing those new colors: chartreuse, turquoise, salmon, caramel, ORANGE, made me feel. Made me feel better. There is something to it! So keep at it, Judith. Keep wearing this wonderful color! Let its vitality carry you thru this difficult season of “firsts” w/o your beloved Nelson. Here’s hoping there will be much music and peace and discovery ahead, as painful as it is right now, and guidance on when to climb, descend or just stay put. You have my prayers for peace in this season…Hugs!

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