Friday, December 7, 2012

Whatever happened to STYLE?

Rest in peace

We recently attended the memorial service for a beloved local resident.
Raised on an isolated ranch - she moved into town and met the love of her life.
Together they raised three kids and built a business that spans the nation.
In between she found time to serve her community and give back.

Prior to the service all viewed a slide show that chronicled her life.
Love, laughter, joy, and happiness emanated from the screen.
But what also stood out were images from the fifties and sixties -
God did she look amazing!

Babe Paley by Horst 1948
It's obvious
that back then everyone
tried a little harder.

Elegance and style
defined your station in life.
The time and effort
put into one's appearance
demonstrated pride
and self confidence.

In those days
no matter where
or how you lived -
you could (and did)
dress well.

Today the majority of Americans have embraced "comfort".
And considering what they're wearing - I highly doubt style is a priority.

Some of this can be attributed to a lack of resources.
Money is tight and here in Lewistown few apparel retailers are left.
But I would argue that most of the problem is simply apathy.
And... maybe just a wee touch of laziness?

Don't get me wrong - there are still many elegant people around.
I can think of three women in my life who truly stand out.

Rene Gruau
The first lives in Lewistown.

She is her late 80's
(don't tell her I told you).
Beloved in the community
for her elegance and kindness -
She would NEVER
go out without
being totally put together!
Whether to play bridge, dine,
shop for groceries, or gamble -
it's obvious to everyone
that she cares
about her appearance.
Style inspires.

Rene Gruau
The next lady lives
in New York,
Scottsdale, and Cape Cod.

About to turn 70
she is amazingly beautiful
and startlingly stylish.
Yet underneath it all
she's really just a Polish girl
from New Jersey.
She has spent her life
helping women
look and feel their best.
No dictum's or criticism.
Just simple help and advice.
Style enlightens.

Rene Gruau
My final muse
lives in Washington D.C.

In her late 40's -
biting wit, brash candor,
and innate style
are her magical formula.
Confidence enables her
to mix high and low
with careless panache.
Making what is hard to achieve
seem incredibly easy.
Perception is reality
and her style cocktail
tells the world who she is.
Style entertains.

Sadly you will notice that I did not call out anybody
who isn't near or above the half century mark.

I know many attractive young ladies and gentlemen.  
However they somehow are missing that extra something that always accompanies true style. This makes me truly sad because...
When you look good - you feel good.

What is more inspiring than the real thing?
The thrill of seeing someone truly elegant - 
in the flesh - on the street - right here - right now?

Why not put a little effort this holiday season into how you look?
Why not inspire the younger generation to strut their stuff?
Let's each do our duty to educate and motivate others with style.
And please... look happy while you do it!