The SAG Awards…aka, Bad Stuff

There were so many bad dresses on the red carpet at the SAG Awards that this post is dedicated to the worst of the worst.

Rose Byrne, doing her Elvis immitation

Busy Phillips, whose first name says it all

Judy Greer, apparently auditioning for “Big Love”

Zoe Saldana, whose expression reflects the dress

Emilia Clarke, channeling Big Bird

Lea Michele–entirely TMI

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Glamour at the Golden Globes

There were so many stunning dresses on the red carpet last night that I’m not going to do my usual bash on the bads. Here’s my overview of the very, very goods:

Angelina Jolie in Atelier Versace

Salma Hayek in Gucci

Sofia Vergara in Vera Wang

Helen Mirren in Badgley Mischka

Claire Danes in J. Mendel

Jessica Alba in Gucci

Special kudos to Jane Fonda, whose body, at 74, is nothing short of magnificent.

Age-Appropriate Dressing…Or Not

Looking like we’ve raided our daughter’s closet is one of the greatest fears of the baby boomer woman, and it’s no wonder. It’s hard to figure out what’s right and what’s not as we age, and we certainly can’t use our own mothers as a guide. Mine, for one, dressed in pretty shirtwaists and heels when she was the age I am now, but that’s hardly going to work in 2012. So the dilemma continues…

Can we rely on a style that has served us well in the past, or is it time to rein in…to be more conservative…to turn away from high fashion—or any kind of fashion, for that matter?

Sometimes, the fear of invisibility is so great that we feel compelled to dress younger. But sometimes we just love a particular look, and there’s nothing more to it than that. It’s not about trying too hard. It’s not about an attempt to recapture one’s youth. It’s simply a matter of being flat-out crazy about something that makes us feel good when we wear it. Period.

I feel that way about my Doc Martens. Yes, some would say I’m about 30 years too old to own a pair, but that doesn’t stop me. They’re fun and comfortable and they make me smile, so I just tuck in my skinny jeans and go.

These have an inside zipper, so getting them on and off is easier than it is with the traditional lace-up ones. Also, the shiny leather on these adds a bit of polish to the usual matte-finish nubuck, which I think takes them up a notch. Or perhaps that’s simply my rationale for not being willing to let go of the motorcycle/military look just yet.

I don’t wear my Docs with skirts or dresses, so that’s something to my credit. I have a respectable collection of heels that range from Stuart Weitzman to Cole Haan to Christian Louboutin, so I know how to handle girlie footwear. But every now and then, the Docs beckon. And I always heed the call.

Everyday Lingerie

Finding the perfect bras and panties shouldn’t be a chore, but it often is. I’ve seen more than one woman in the gym fussing with panties that don’t stay put during serious exercise. I have a friend who hates thongs but opts to wear them anyway, since her theory is that half an inch of material sitting between the cheeks beats two inches of material bunched up in the same spot.

Bras are no better, since they have to fill so many needs: lift, support, and absence of the dreaded back bulge. Even if you’re not carrying extra weight, the looseness of skin that occurs as we age can cause a pooched-out look that is anything but flattering. Just when I thought all hope was lost, I discovered Soma Intimates.

Soma carries a lingerie line called Vanishing Edge and Vanishing Back. Panty lines are a thing of the past, thanks to breathable, stay-put silicone at the leg openings that promises—and delivers—an absolutely invisible look and a no-ride fit.

Bras offer a completely seamless, full-coverage back that smooths to absolute perfection, and are available in both lined and unlined options.

Perhaps best of all, prices are reasonable. I’ve paid close to $100 for bras that don’t even come close to Soma’s fit, flattery, and comfort. There’s a sale going on now, so it’s worth checking out.

Blinging in the New Year

I love bling. This is a relatively recent delight for me, since for years I was a fan of understated elegance. More often than not, I’d accessorize with simple bits of gold: a delicate chain around my neck or wrist…earrings that made only a soft and subtle statement. I’d always believed that gold was best suited to my olive coloring, so it was the only metal I ever wore.

Then one Christmas my husband gave me a pair of diamond stud earrings from Tiffany. Just seeing the little blue box made my heart race, and I was thrilled. They were set in silver, and they marked the beginning of my departure from gold. My dear friend Kim Vo had told me years earlier that people with olive skin have the advantage of being able to wear both gold and silver, so I started to experiment with the latter. Silver led to bling…serious bling…and I’ve never looked back.

I wear a lot of black and grey. I rarely wear patterns, so serious statement jewelry can make the difference between a plain, monochromatic look and a bold one. The pieces shown here aren’t very expensive—in fact, with only one exception, they range from about $30 to $125.

detail:

This is the only truly pricey piece, but since it was a tenth anniversary gift, the cost is irrelevant. (Kinda.) It’s a one-of-a-kind necklace designed by Lulu Frost, and it’s made from antique brooches.

Perhaps the best thing about bling is that it can take simple clothing to greater heights without costing a small fortune. It’s also a great way to keep clothing age appropriate without making the wearer disappear into the background.

I’ve found fabulous pieces at small, local jewelry stores…Bloomingdale’s (particularly the Aqua brand)…flea markets…online…and even at a funky little tourist shop in Omaha. To me, discovering an interesting piece at a reasonable price is like solving a crossword puzzle. It won’t change my life, but it’s certainly a satisfying experience.