Black on Black

As we age and our coloring softens, making the contrast of black against our hair and skin seem harsh. That may be true, but I am not ready to give up some of the beautiful black pieces I’ve collected. All this week, I will be sharing how I make my favorite black items work for me.

The first tip is to add a silk scarf folded on the bias, then tuck it under the jacket front’s edges. Add a handbag that picks up one of the scarf colors to pull the look together and soften the whole effect. Choose a lip color in the same tone. Mine is Currant here. My hand cream is here.

Bring the scarf’s ends near each other, but not at the same level, to avoid creating a horizontal line. I used magnets to keep this lightweight scarf in place. I only use the EP310 15mm dia x 2 mmA magnets here. They have the smoothest finish and the strongest hold. Place one magnet under the lapel and the other under one of the folds of the scarf.

Photos by Mr. Mickey at the First Methodist Church in Johnson City, TN.

We had a delightful evening meal at Gourmet and Company on Saturday evening.

We enjoy relaxing in the lounge with a glass of bubbly before dinner.

The bread is house made with a touch of Asiago cheese.

Smoked Trout Deviled Eggs are always a favorite. They include local farm eggs, house pickles, smoked trout caviar, and crispy trout skin.

My entree was slow-poached Maine lobster & seared diver scallops with black garlic gnocchi, butternut squash, charred Brussels, and vadouvan butter.

Mr. Mickey thoroughly enjoyed his grouper with fresh vegetables.

We shared a dessert of warm apple cobbler with an extra scoop of their house-made ice cream.

I bought this purse hanger/hook on Amazon here to hang my bag on the edge of the table to keep it in sight and off the floor or table. It folds up for easy storage.

Jacket $$$ – Jacket $ – Top $$$ – Top $ – Pants $$$ – Pants $ – $$$ Bag – $ BagShoes $$$ – Shoes $

The winners of a $50 gift certificate each from Sheec Socks are Sharon Favre and Billie Bidwell. Congratulations!

  1. A great tip using disc magnets for keeping a scarf from moving out of place. I had been using double stick tape. Will be much easier to remove a magnet than the little strips of tape. I have a few very soft scarves and they tend to slip, magnets to the rescue! And I am so glad you have not given up on black. Looking forward to all the tips wearing black.

    1. The magnets I have are the EP310 15mm dia x 2mmA N42 – NiCuNi plated, pack of 10 magnets. That is the church that Mr. Mickey attended as a child. We have attended services there together as well.

  2. What a brillant idea, using magnets to hold a scarf in place! One of the reasons I love the internet and your blog! Rushing to Amazon to order. Also, do you have any of the scarves left? I have 2 and receive compliments every time I wear.

  3. Susan,
    I wore one of the beautiful silk twill scarves to an event and came home with a food spot on it. The cleaners said they spot treated it but it is still there. Do you have any tips for home treatment?

  4. Quick question to verify magnet- on the website the EP310 says 15mm x 2mm, but you referenced 15mm x 3mm, which appears to be the EP107. Which one would be best to use? Such a great idea! And I’m excited to try.

  5. I’m not giving up on black either!! Too many black pieces in my closet that I love. Looking forward to your posts this week as always, Susan. You’re the bomb

  6. I would like to know the size of the scarf you are wearing. It seems such a perfect proportion in how you are styling it. Thank you for the magnet information, which is new to me and very useful!

  7. Just a gentle reminder about magnets of any type: Magnets may interfere with the operation of pacemakers and implantable cardioverter defibrillators.
    If a person has either of these devices, don’t use anything magnetic on your body without checking with your physician.
    That being said, I don’t have any devices to be of concern and have used magnets for years to hold both scarves and jewelry. Brooches with magnet backings are wonderful for holding jewelry without poking holes in delicate fabrics!

  8. Yeah for winning the sheec gift certificate (ignore my email i sent you earlier … I figured it all out). I have already ordered my socks and I CAN’T WAIT to get them and try them out.

  9. Thank you for not abandoning your black. Ive gone more salt than pepper by now in my hair, however my dark eyebrows haven’t really changed. I own many black pieces and am not ready to give them up. The addition of color makes all the difference. Fun jewelry near the face doesn’t hurt either
    You always offer logical advice and your readers greatly appreciate it.

    Have a lovely Thanksgiving

  10. I’ve re-thought my views on black over sixty. My darling husband gave me a stunning necklace that just screamed for a black cashmere bateau neck sweater. Found a great tunic one at Chico’s online. So I channeled my favorite style icon, Dina Merrill and paired it with skinny gray pants and black velvet pointed toe slipper/shoes (heron by Birdies). Ultimate comfy at home look to wear hostessing for the holidays. Who wants to be uncomfortable? So I agree black is back.

  11. I am lucky in that I have turned 50 but have only about five grey hairs on my whole head, so I can still easily wear black. These days I often prefer to wear navy instead but I still have a lot of black jackets etc so glad I can wear them for a long time yet. I love the way you wear the scarf here.

  12. Hi Susan. I have been using the purse hanger/hook for years and love it. It takes care of “what to do with purse” when in a restaurant. Many people comment about it being a great idea. Also, it is compact and fits in purse nicely. Thank you for scarf information also.

  13. Perfect timing! I plan to wear my new Chico Travelers black slacks with my Perfectly Covered black zip tee top and a new Soft Surroundings animal print scarf in black/rusts/blue and a touch of deep red to a holiday party. I’ll finish it off with my three-year-old, Keene black leather booties, silver earrings, collected silver bangles and I am good to go. Thank you for the great inspiration.

  14. Susan, black may or may not be harsh on some as they age, but it still looks stunning on you. Glad you aren’t abandoning something you enjoy. And thank you for the socks. They will be well used.

  15. I’m not sure how to use the magnets??-and also once you had sleeve cuffs? where can I buy them?
    Thanks in advance–Marie

    1. You may be able to find Sleeve Garters on Put one magnet in the folds of your scarf and the other under the lapel of your jacket. Touch the two areas together.

  16. Susan, I’m also interested in an email about any remaining scarves. Great ideas about how to keep using our favorite black pieces.

  17. Love the scarf and the great magnet tip. Could you let me know what scarves you have now? I appreciate the time and effort you spend on your blogs and videos!

  18. Susan, thank you for the magnet tip! My magnets arrived and I used them to the compliments from friends. The magnets work wonderfully and take away so many nagging little worries. Thank you again!

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I share tips and inspiration for using what you already have in contemporary ways. Defining words include effortless, classic, refined, discreet, and elegant. My style is chic, minimal, and timeless with a bit of edge.