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5 Secrets the Most Stylish Women Know

2024 Style Series
January 8, 2024
2024 DFMD Style Series

I want to be a stylish woman. That does not mean I’m obsessed with fashion, especially love shopping or want to spend a lot of time or money on my wardrobe and outfits. It does mean that I know the value of dressing stylishly and looking my best, and I’m willing to learn the principles of good style so I can accomplish that. If that describes you, join me as we unlock 5 secrets the most stylish women know.

5 Secrets the Most Stylish Women Know

Welcome to the 2024 Dressed for My Day style series, Define Your Style…Refine Your Wardrobe. Today we’ll begin with broad brushstrokes as I introduce our topic. But you can expect practical, hands-on take-away in future blog posts and videos. And I’ll also provide downloadable and printable helps as we continue through the series, so make sure you’re signed up for my daily or weekly newsletter so you’ll have the password to access the Library. And by the way, the password WILL change throughout the series.

Intro Blog Post Define Your Style...Refine Your Wardrobe

The photos in today’s post are pulled from other previous blog posts. I’ve provided links in the captions of the photos so you can visit the original post if you’d like more information about the outfit shown.

Throughout the year I’ll be sharing the Dressed for My Day Style Principles. Honestly, I’m building this list as I go, so I don’t know how many style principles we’ll have on our list ultimately, but I’ve already got 9 and I’m not even half way through creating our style series outline. I’m assuming we’ll probably have around 25-30 at year end.

Today I’m sharing the first 5 Dressed for My Day Style Principles as we kick of the Define Your Style…Refine Your Wardrobe style series. And those first five principles are secrets that I believe every stylish woman knows.

See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

DFMD Style Principle #1We all have a personal style that communicates to others who we are and what we think of ourselves.

Notice that first principle is that we all have a personal style. It doesn’t say we all have good style. But whether we put in the effort or not, we all dress fairly consistently in a way that says a lot about us.

Late to the Trend
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

The way you put yourself together tells people a lot about who you think you are, how you see yourself, how you intend to relate to other people and even where you want to go in life. Your style even communicates things like whether or not you care about other people, whether or not you want any attention at all, how you feel about your body and how much you value what you “bring to the table.”

Styling a Pleated Midi Skirt 2 Ways for Fall
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

Stylish women know that style is personal, and they’ve taken charge of their own personal style to make it reflect well on them, not poorly.

slip skirt // sweater // earrings // necklace // bracelet // pumps no longer available

DFMD Style Principle #2Stylish women know that first impressions matter and repeated impressions tell their story.

It’s true regardless of how we feel about it: People size us up in the first 7 seconds of meeting and, because people instinctively get very attached to their first impressions, it’s difficult to change their opinions once they have been formed. (SOURCE) “They” do it, but so do you and I. We were wired to measure people we meet quickly. So rather than get mad about it, we need to accept this principle as true and use it to our advantage.

Linen Shirt Over a Column of White
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

If we know that first impressions matter, it should compel us to put our best foot forward. And if we know that repeated impressions just solidify those initial ones, we are wise to consistently present ourselves in a way that reflects on us well.

Mix Business and Pleasure
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

And yes, those first impressions are mostly formulated based on what someone sees, not what we say or do. After all, generally we don’t have the opportunity to say or do much of anything in just 7 seconds. So appearances matter, whether we want to come to terms with that or not.

Column of White with a Linen Shirt
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

The stylish woman knows that it’s not enough just to put together one great look to wear on, say, Sunday or the first date or the job interview or the first time you meet the in-laws. Stylish women have taken this second principle seriously and have developed the skill of dressing themselves over and over and over in a way that makes good first and lasting impressions.

double-breasted wool-blend coat // black slacks // red turtleneck // black block heel booties // earrings // similar shoulder bag and more economical option
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

DFMD Style Principle #3You can define your personal style to tell the story you want to tell authentically and consistently or you can default to a style that communicates a false narrative.

Black and White Spring Outfit
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

So yeah, we can get mad about the principle of first impressions or we can use it to our advantage. We can understand that appearances matter and then use that information to shape the way people see us through the appearance we put together. Or we can play the victim, throw our hands up in disgust and say people shouldn’t judge on appearances. Lord knows, literally, that they (and we) shouldn’t. But we do.

Belfast triple-fleece English peacoat
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

So the good news is we get to define our style. Maybe you’ve been defaulting to the style in which you “used to dress,” one that hasn’t evolved as you have grown and matured and changed, or as the times and fashions have moved forward. Or maybe you’ve been defaulting to the way other people have defined you. Maybe you’ve heard someone – even someone close to you – say something like, “Oh no, that’s not you. I can’t see you wearing that.” Well guess what. They don’t get to decide your style…unless you let them. You can define your style to tell the story you want to tell.

See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

Now the wise woman won’t try to tell a story that isn’t true with her personal style. Truly stylish women know that good style can’t be a costume. It has to be authentic. Yes, we want our clothes, accessories, hairstyle and makeup (or lack thereof) to tell the story we chose, but the truly stylish woman makes that story believable and all the more beautiful by defining her style in a way that…fits her.

See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

So during this yearlong Define Your Style…Refine Your Wardrobe style series that will be our goal: to define our styles in a way that is authentic, it fits. Otherwise, you’ll soon grow tired of what you’ve created and ditch it, only to return to the false narrative you’d defaulted to earlier. And I’m not going to teach you how to dress in my style. That would be silly. I want you to develop and define your own personal, unique style.

Red and Black Outfit for Daytime
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

DFMD Style Principle #4Defining your personal style helps you shop smarter, dress more authentically, build a more cohesive wardrobe, feel more confident and enjoy getting dressed for your day.

See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

Stylish women know the value of defining their personal style. If they’re going to put in the time and effort it takes to make good first and lasting impressions, then they want their efforts to count for something. You see, good style is not about vanity. Sure, there may be some fashionistas out there who are motivated by vain things. But truly stylish women know there are bigger dividends to personal style than having their egos stroked.

See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

When we take the time to define our own personal style we gain so much. We shop smarter because we’re no longer feeling the need to buy “all the things.” Instead, we’ve narrowed down our shopping list to match our style. It’s so freeing…and cost effective!

denim button-up shirt
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for more details.

With our style defined we can dress more authentically every day. We can feel like ourselves in our clothes. For that matter, we can feel like the best version of ourselves. That’s empowering!

How to Wear a Lady Jacket and Look Modern, Not Matronly
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

When we pause to define our own style we become equipped to build a wardrobe that is more cohesive and enjoyable. Things go together and mix and match. And we’re able to carry much from our closets to the next year and the next because, while we may enjoy trying a trend or two, we don’t feel compelled to recreate our style with every passing fad.

Floral Dress for a Brunch, Shower or Tea
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

And when we define our own personal style, we gain a sense of confidence. We own our style and we politely say no to the styles that don’t resonate with us. That doesn’t mean the other styles are bad; they’re just not ours. And so we can enjoy wearing our clothes and feeling good in them. And that leads us to our fifth DFMD Style Principle.

Green Linen Dress for Summer
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

DFMD Style Principle #5A stylish woman is one who has intentionally and thoughtfully defined her own personal style and leans into it consistently, expertly and confidently.

What to Wear to a Graduation this Spring
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

The truth is it takes a little time, effort, practice and money to define our personal style. This won’t happen overnight. But as we think through a few things, make a few choices, try some things on, look at ourselves in the mirror and photos, try some more things on and say “no” to some things, we’ll eventually nail down our personal style. The stylish woman has put the work in.

Black Linen Dress for the Coastal Grandma
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

And part of that process is learning to be okay with not wearing some things, maybe even some things that you really like…but you don’t so much like them on you, if you’re honest. The stylish woman has learned to lean into her own personal style…even when pretty things catch her eye or other people try to convince her to wear something or, worse yet, someone tells her she’s too old for something. (Oh my…)

Wearing and Caring for Linen
See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

As we start this style journey together…

This is totally optional. But if you’re one of my readers who is really trying to nail down her style and get her wardrobe in shape, I’d like to recommend a few things.

First, invest in a good full length mirror if you don’t already have one. Don’t know where to put it? The guest bedroom or on the back of a bedroom or bathroom door are great options.

Second, learn how to use your cell phone to take mirror selfies. No, I’m not going to tell you how to do that here. Find a young adult or teenager and they’ll easily show you how. Or Google it!

See the ORIGINAL BLOG POST for details.

Third, maybe even invest in a tripod to take selfies without a mirror or at least with better lighting. I use this selfie tripod with remote to take my photos. It’s really not that expensive, and it’s worked great for me. I sometimes even take it shopping with me, and I definitely travel with it (because, you know, I gotta do all the blogger stuff!). You can see the remote in my hand in the photos above. It connects with my cell phone by Bluetooth, so you will need Bluetooth capabilities on your phone or device.

I suggest these things because I can’t express to you clearly enough how much taking outfit photos will help you. Having photos to see yourself in outfits is a game changer. I ALWAYS take photos of myself in the mirror when I shop. I daresay, many stylish women do, too. Mirrors lie; photos tell a more accurate story.

Define Your Style...Refine Your Wardrobe

If you enjoyed today’s post and you’re looking forward to our yearlong style series, Define Your Style…Refine Your Wardrobe, I’d love for you to spread the word to other women. You can email or text friends a link to this post. Here it is; just copy and paste: . And you can also pin the image above to your Pinterest board. There’s a Pinterest icon at the end of this post under the email signup form. In fact, you can share on Facebook, too.

Thanks so much for reading today. Finally, I would like to encourage you to sign up for my daily or weekly email (you choose the frequency) so you’ll be notified each time I share a new style series post. Have a great day!

Don’t Miss a Post:

If you like what you’re seeing here at Dressed for My Day, I invite you to subscribe to my email list. You can receive an email each time I post (about 6 times weekly) or just on Saturdays. You choose! But you’ll also receive the password to open up all the subscriber freebies I offer.

Would you like to subscribe to Dressed for My Day?

next up, How to Define Your Personal Style (click to access)
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Blessed for My Day

If you ever question whether or not you are rich, stop counting the money in your bank account and instead number your blessings. Foremost among those blessings are things God has done in your life. Consider the numerous times He has miraculously answered your prayers, made a way when you thought there was no way, guided you through stormy seasons, sent people into your life who proved to be instrumental in your growth and joy. Can you add to that list the times He has spoken to your heart, whispered assurances over your anxious mind, provided the courage to move forward or gently held you back, preventing you from making a terrible mistake? Isn’t it amazing to look back over our lives and see the handiwork of God?

Even when we didn’t yet know or follow Him, He was there. And when we look back now we can see His fingerprints throughout our lives. Our stories are really just vignettes of His story. And when realize that His glory has been displayed through our hardships and our joys alike, we understand what a rich privilege it is to walk with Him. If you can look back over your life and count the blessings of God only to realize that they are too many to name, you are a rich woman indeed.

In the way of your testimonies I delight as much as in all riches. ~ Psalm 119:14


xoxo, Kay
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28 thoughts on “5 Secrets the Most Stylish Women Know

  1. I think I am going to really like this series. In the past I sometimes find myself buying items that are on trend. I get them and then do not like them on me on matter what the influencer or person at the store says. They are just not me and I end up-not wearing them, Giving them to epilepsy foundation, salvation army or sell at secondhand store, where I get a fraction of the cost. Wasting money, I could have spent on other items, clothes more my style. Anxious for this series. Missed the BFMD.

    1. Oh my word. I don’t know what happened to the Blessed for My Day. I wrote one. And it was a good one! 😉 Sometimes it just disappears and I have no idea why. Thanks for letting me know. I’m

  2. I’ve really enjoyed this blog today.
    I recently had to send back a beautiful wool “Lady Jacket” from Talbots. It was too large on me but also the round neckline just did not work with the need I have for a “V” neckline. I was so sad to have had to send it back, since it was a beautiful herringbone light grey jacket. I decided it was a learning moment and just enjoyed the time that I wore it. (smiling) In one of your photos today, you have a black trimmed jacket unbuttoned at the top, but I don’t think this hack would work with this jacket, sad to say.
    Any way, I would have never learned this had I not ordered this jacket, and tried it on for myself.
    Thanks for all you have and are teaching us to apply to our own personal style. You are a blessing.

  3. I’m looking forward to this series. I may KNOW my style, but I don’t always know how to SHOP my style. I too, can be influenced by salespeople and others. I have so many mistake purchases. I’m not sure I’ll ever learn! Thank you for all you do.
    PS is it only me that has problems with loading this page and KEEPING it loaded? It’s always going back to the beginning & reloading. Anyone know how to correct that? I use an Apple iPad.

    1. Hi Peggy. It may be because the post has so many photos on it. But I really think it’s an Apple bug. I’ve noticed my Apple phone has been doing the same thing on other blog posts (other influencers, not just mine) and retail sites. So I think it may be a problem with Apple. But I’m so glad to hear you’re looking forward to the style series. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Kay, you’ve given me several things to think about. This a deeper series than you’ve done before and I like it! Many people tell me I look like a teacher, but I retired 4 years ago!! So, I’m ready to define my style and work on it. I’m going to have to reread this post

  5. Thank you, Kay. I think this will be a fun series. BTW, you look smashing in that red silk skirt. The length and style are super flattering.

  6. I’m so exited about this series! The opening paragraph reflects my thoughts perfectly. I’ve been a subscriber for several years and your guidance has been a tremendous help. Looking forward to refining my style and wardrobe even more. Thanks Kay!

  7. This is going to be an amazing series, Kay! I’ve been trying to get my style and wardrobe nailed down for the last 6 months. We moved several months ago to a new house but my husband and I share a not so big closet. So, I decided this was the perfect time to figure it all out.
    I’ve been sorting my clothes and only hanging up about 30 clothing pieces that I think will work. After a few weeks, if it’s not been working, then I tweak it again.

    This morning when I woke up I realized that DEFINING my personality style would help me REFINE my wardrobe currently and in the future. What a surprise when I saw your post this morning. We’re on to something here………

  8. I wish I knew my “true” style, but I don’t. It’s kinda classic, kinda preppy, kinda ???? I hope to figure it out during your new series. My role changed when I retired. I don’t like sweats or really casual schlimp-a-dump garments. I want a belt, a fitted sweater or jacket, jewelry and makeup with my hair shiny and styled. !!!!!

    1. I could have written the exact same comment. Even though I took early retirement some years ago, I still dress for my day with care. I wear “outfits” as opposed to “clothes,” with appropriate accessories such as belts, earrings, scarves, or whatever. I may or may not wear any makeup if I’m staying at home that day, but I feel good and ready for what the day brings. Although it’s an oxymoron, I think “modern classic” defines my style.

      1. Thanks for your comment Elizabeth! I concur with your comments too. While working from home during Covid years I even wore fragrance. It makes me feel feminine and polished.

  9. Looking forward to this series. I know my style but need to buy more wisely. This year I am going to shop my closet more. I’m going for quality too.

  10. Kay, I really like this new series. I took your advice from a post last year where you recommended we take photos of ourselves in different outfits. You are right. It is a game changer.

  11. WOW! Kay I Love this ! ❤️I Loved the Secrets of Stylish Women and the Psychology of 7 seconds First Impressions , it blew my mind !! reading it and yes you are right we ALL do it , we don’t want to but we do . I have loved following you on your DFMD since I started just under a year ago and have loved all of your Styling Inspirational Tips and This new Define Your Style is definitely something I will Totally Love following ❤️❤️❤️Thank you Dear Kay for all your hard work , style , inspiration and a huge dose of common sense too and how beautifully you present this to us ladies Xx

  12. I am excited for this series.
    I have been following you for about a year, and yes, I read every post. You have helped me try some new trends, but what you’re saying in this post is so important. I can’t just think they look great on you, or others, they need to look good on me and make me feel good. I want my personal style to evolve, but I don’t want to lose “me” in the process.
    And I think defining a personal style is harder than I originally thought. The nerd in me is going to start taking notes in a small notebook as I read these posts this year!

  13. This series is coming at just the right time for me. I recently got an app called Open Wardrobe. I saw it from YouTuber Alyssa Beltempo. It is free, and I use it to create outfits and I do take mirror selfies. I was just going to email you to ask how you do them, because I saw the remote in your hand. Very timely. I have a wardrobe that I really like, and I just wanted to wear more of my pieces in new ways. Very often, I will look through a catalog or website, and see an outfit and realize, I have all of those items, (or similar enough ones) but never thought to combine them. This app is so much fun. I feel like I am playing paper dolls, but with my real clothes. Other people play games on their phones, well I create outfits.

    As a final comment, I know what you mean about knowing your own style. I look at a lot of capsule wardrobes, and many list a Moto jacket as a must have. So I spent time to find just the right one. I bought it, and whenever I wore it, (I think maybe twice). I felt like an imposter. My style is not that edgy. So I gave it to a friend. Also, I don’t wear blazers, I have one, and I am really trying, but they just seem way too dressy for my casual style. I am trying with a cashmere hoodie and jeans and white sneakers, which helps a lot. I looked at my closet recently and know for sure, I am a button down and cardigan girl. Loved your post about how to wear a cardigan in a more modern way.

    On last comment, I promise. My mom passed away in 2021, and she and I loved to go shopping together. It got to be comical because we would both see things, and say, “This is so you.” Her style was fun and way more sparkly than my casual, athletic, minimalistic style. But she would see something, and most times was right when she saw a piece she knew I would like.

    Take care, Happy New Year, and keep up the great content.


  14. Oops…sent my previous comment before I added that my “outfits” are NOT always dressy. I wear jeans most days! But I prefer them to look a bit elevated by what I wear with them.

  15. I’ve been watching your videos for about a year now and, though you probably spend more money on one outfit sometimes than I can spend all year, I consider your principles valuable enough to recommend them to any woman who wants to dress thoughtfully and intentionally rather than defaulting to the “jeans and random t-shirt” uniform that too many women seem to think is their only real option.