7 Fashion Mistakes Ruining Your Style

We’re currently being bombarded by sales here, there, and everywhere so I thought I’d share some things to keep in mind before you “add to cart”. Here are 7 fashion mistakes ruining your style and how to avoid them. They’re not rules, they’re suggestions for you to consider before you add new things to your wardrobe.


Not Embracing Your Silhouette

Buying clothes that don’t flatter your body shape asks more of the garment than they’re able to supply. Until you come to terms with and accept your body shape, you’re likely to continue to buy clothes that don’t flatter it. The goal is to focus on the parts you love and dress to divert attention from parts you’re less fond of. You also need to buy and wear clothes that fit your current size. Uncomfortably tight or overly loose clothes don’t look stylish on anyone.what's the best neckline for your face and body?

The Most Flattering Neckline For Your Face and Body

Following Too Many Trends

A small touch of trend is fun and keeps us looking modern. Jumping on board with too many of them puts you at risk of looking like a fashion victim and is costly. Anchor your wardrobe with tried and true styles you know flatter your shape, then pepper in trends sparingly. Trends do cycle back into popularity, but they always look different enough to carbon date them.

woman sitting on curb in hat and jeans

How to Nail Your Personal Style Over 50

Buying Clothes In Unflattering Colors

Whether you enjoy having a personal color palette or not, it should be pretty easy to tell if a color sucks the life out of your complexion. If you love orange, but your face looks sallow next to it, wear it in shoes and skip it next to your face. Gray hair will not change your most flattering colors but it will change the intensity of what flatters you.

why your contrast level is important

How To Find Your Personal Contrast Level And Why It Matters

Bright color is more memorable than neutrals, so be sure you’re buying them in drop-dead flattering colors and shapes that look great on you.

Buying Styles That Don’t Fit Your Lifestyle

This one is so tempting. It’s best to allocate at least 80% of your wardrobe dollars to what you wear on a daily basis. If your life involves a lot of Black Tie Events, you should be spending more money on those items. If you attend them rarely, buy one really good, classic outfit and wear it for many years. If you’re retired or work from home, you need to be investing in more casual outfits than the woman who works outside the home. If you golf every day, be sure you’ve invested in golf clothes that look fabulous on you.

Not Buying What You Love

Buying just ok and practical items all the time leads to a pretty boring wardrobe and that’s no fun. Purchase fewer items of better quality which allows you to treat yourself to things you really love. Waiting for those items to go on sale can be a gamble and you need to be prepared to miss out on things.

Saving Your Best Things

Expensive clothes often fall into this category but the truth is, buying less but spending more on them, will elevate your style immediately. It’s too easy to leave our favorite and best things in the closet because we might spill on them or the day doesn’t seem special enough. You deserve to feel fabulous every day so wear the heck out of your best things. This includes underwear too. No one may see it, but you’ll know you’re wearing your newest bra and will feel better in it.

Buying Loners

This happens when you buy for a lifestyle you’re not living, or experiment with random colors that don’t coordinate with what you already own. These are often impulse purchases you’ve not thought through. A good rule of thumb is to think of 4 outfits the item could complete that you already have the other pieces for. Here’s where a color palette can help because it prevents outliers that don’t match anything.

Do you follow the 80/20% allocation for your wardrobe dollars?

Thanks for reading and remember to wear what makes you feel confident.






  1. Very informative post, Jennifer! As to the 80/20% formula, don’t think I have ever paid much attention to it as I always have divided my wardrobe into four categories (home wear, work/street wear, occasion wear, travel/holiday wear) and as my life style has evolved so has their priority. In other words; not saying I’m not guilty of some which you mention …. 🙄….. but I have always tried to be selective and disciplined in my choices.

  2. I find online shopping to be a big contributing factor to my fashion mishaps. Too often I keep an item that doesn’t fit/look as good as should because I think that I may be able to make it work, or worse, I’m too lazy to ship it back. I miss the days when we could go to a retailer, have plenty of selection, try on the items you think you want, and then leave the store with only the ones you love!

    1. Donna I have done this way to many times. I hate that some stores make you call or email to get a return tag/sticker. I almost always wait to long, then I’m “stuck” with the item.

  3. I always buy (and pack) with the intent of a garment contributing to at least 2 outfits. It’s usually more but 2 ways keeps me from buying items that are too similar to each other and allows me to extend a little outside my comfort zone occasionally.

  4. Today’s post was great! Reminded me to be more aware of what I purchase during heavy sales days. I am currently eliminating from my wardrobe those pieces I wear infrequently. Thanks for the tips!

  5. Excelllent today. Jo, love the garanimals for adults 😂.
    Have made many if not all of the mistakes.

  6. Such an enjoyable post! I like the idea of selfies, I need to try that. I’ve been gravitating toward looser relaxed tops that skim the mid-section, but there’s a fine line between relaxed and too big.

  7. Thanks for the helpful post, especially this time of year when there are so many sales going on and the shopping temptation is great.

  8. This is such a smart and useful post. And I love this: “asks more of the garment than they’re able to supply.” Haha, so true! My pitfall is compromising all good sense because an item is on a good sale. I need to print out this post and post it on my mirror.

  9. An extension to the loner concept for me has been buying at thrift or consignment stores. While I have found some great bargains, I have also found over time that those purchases tend to be things I don’t get a lot of use from no matter how fabulous I thought they were at the time I bought them. I think some of the problem there is just that by nature they are one off buys – no options for other size or other color.

  10. I think we have all been guilty of some of these mistakes. After going through my closet I’ve decided to buy just things I love and not worry about paying more.

    1. I am getting to that place too, Rose. I get exposed to so many clothes in my job, I get tempted by things that don’t belong in my wardrobe.

  11. Very helpful post! I love the rule of thinking of at least four outfits the potential new wardrobe acquisition would complete before buying it, and I plan to use that going forward.

    As a professional organizer, I often work with clients who have disorganized, overstuffed closets — a result of many/all the pitfalls you outlined in this post. I also see clients who have trouble donating/discarding an unflattering clothing item because they paid a lot of money for it (“sunk-cost fallacy”), as if holding onto something they will never wear somehow makes them feel better about having spent the money in the first place. In that case, I explain that the money they spent is gone, regardless of whether they wear the item or not, and we try to find someone to give the item to (think daughter, granddaughter, niece, neighbor, co-worker, friend, etc.) so that they’re not reminded of the poor decision every time they open their closet.

  12. Hi Jennifer, thank you for your warning about loners! I am going to remind myself of this label. I have a closet full of items that can be paired with absolutely nothing else. I’m starting to think I need garanimals for adults.

  13. I also “save for good”, even underwear! What am I waiting for! Thanks for the nudge to enjoy these pieces today. As usual, Jennifer, you offer useful advice which we can apply regardless of our budgets and for every shape, size and age! Thank you!

  14. I really enjoyed the article on “contrast”. I am a part time artist, so I should have known it!! Loved the examples of clothing and the differences. Amazing. I read ALL your stuff!!

  15. This advice is so good. I had to laugh at saving ‘good’ items for a special event. I have a really nice casual sweater that I bought last year at this time and have yet to wear it! Today, I’m actually wearing a shirt I bought at the same time, and it’s only the second tie I’m wearing it. SO . I am taking your advice to heart: wear my nicer things more — and invest in new gardening gloves LOL.

    1. I’m guilty of saving things too. Even though I tell myself not to, it happens without me being conscious of it.

      1. Oh, me too! Then my husband will ask if something I’m wearing is new. And I’ll confess that well, not exactly. It’s been in the closet for a year.

    2. This was easy to do during Covid though. I just pulled out a pair of unworn white sneakers I purchased just before Covid hit. I rarely wore real shoes during that time let alone something new!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *