RenataOur forum is full of ladies successfully traveling through their own personal style journey. The forum members generously inspire and help each other and I’m always impressed with the motivation and end results.

One such forum member is Renata, who lives in Saskatchewan, Canada. Renata is a full time hair stylist, wife and Mum, who came to the forum four months ago feeling drab, frumpy and very uninspired with her daily look. But she got her fashion and style ducks in a row chop-chop and was soon proudly sporting her own creative ensembles and inspiring others by posting them in the forum.

Renata entered a recent forum challenge called The YLF Uniform Project. Participants had to take an LBD (in Renata’s case, a little brown dress) and come up with three different looks for it: “hanging out”, “office style”, and “date night.

Her outfits blew me away. So much so that I seized the opportunity to interview Renata and ask her a few questions about her style journey.

Angie: How did you find YLF?

Renata: I was looking for ideas as to what to wear to my niece’s wedding in August. I stumbled across YLF and have been an active member ever since.

Angie: How would you describe your old sense of style and why were you inspired to change it?

Renata: When I hit my mid forties, I fell into a what I call “the middle-aged invisible women slump”.

I found my old sense of style boring. Working 5-6 days a week, comfort became my first priority, and with it came style that wasn’t standing out. I was wearing plain t-shirts and jeans almost every day. I suppose my inspiration to change was when I learned that I could put together a practical outfit that looked good, without compromising style.

Angie: How did you get started?

Renata: I started out by reading plenty of books and magazines, along with blogs and forums. I did my best to learn which colors and items complement my body, and which don’t.

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Angie: What have you learned? How did YLF help you along the way?

Renata: I learned that questioning myself (e.g. Is this outdated? Am I too old? Does this age me? Does this look just plain wrong?) is a very good thing, and if I can’t answer those questions I know I can turn to YLF forum members for help. It’s like having a cheerleading team! Support is there, you just have to ask for it. My first success with YLF was when I read Angie’s blog on how to pick a perfect pair of specs. I couldn’t have done it myself. When I wear them I feel instantly fab!

Angie: Where do you like to shop?

Renata: Honestly, with the limited budget that I have I can say that my favourite place to shop is Winners (Canada’s version of TJ Max). I really enjoy their selection of handbags.

Second hand stores are also great. The lure of cheap prices and one of a kind items is enough for me to brave musty smells and crowded stores. Lately I have been searching for skirts, dresses and jackets. I also love local boutiques.

Angie: You rocked the last YLF forum challenge, which was to showcase the versatility of a LBD (in your case a little brown dress) by wearing it across three different lifestyles. You came up with six fabulous outfits and I’m impressed. What inspired the outfits?

Renata: Oh, that was so much fun! Shortly after forum member Laura posted about mom on the go formula #3, I was on the lookout for a casual dress. I lucked out and found three in one week.

The inspiration for my “hanging out” outfits was Angie’s Mom on the go formula #3. I love that one, it’s so easy to follow! For office wear, I just made it little dressier by adding appropriate jackets and footwear. And date night, I guess that one was all about the right accessories, which I was missing, so I had to go shopping. But without accessories those outfits wouldn’t be fab that is for sure! I would have never guessed that my own creations would send Angie “into ORBIT” but I’m so glad they did. She is a good teacher and I’m a good student! LOL.

Angie: How will you continue to evolve your style?

Renata: I have to stay motivated and continue to tweak and perfect my own style. I intend to visit YLF for my inspiration and information. I call YLF my fashion medication!

Angie: Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Renata: I’m so glad that YLF came into my life. It’s highly addictive but in a good way! LOL.

Angie: I’m wow-ed. Thank you for your time, Renata. It has been a pleasure observing your journey, which I see is taking more of an arty and eclectic turn each time you post. You look radiant and happy. Well done.

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