Casual Inspiration

Putting together a casual look that works with my style personality is a challenge. I don’t feel comfortable in a hoodie with leggings or jeans and sneakers, but that’s what we often see as a go-to casual look. I believe we can remain true to ourselves, even when dressing for an everyday event.

Mr. Mickey took me to the Firehouse on Saturday for lunch. It’s a barbeque place located by the University, so it is has a very casual vibe. We shared a pulled chicken sandwich and steak fries. Sometimes a cold winter day requires more than a salad. After lunch, we stopped at the grocery store. Our temperatures were in the low forties, with high wind, and the sky was overcast, so I had to make these indoor photos work.

Under the category of ‘Use What You Have,’ I am wearing a Covered Perfectly top here, with a five-year-old BCBG Max Azria jacket (similar), a silk twill scarf, and straight leg jeans here. Boots here. Bag here. Similar earrings here.

The shopping links in my posts may result in a small commission for me at no additional cost to you.

Your comments indicate that you enjoy seeing how I interpret inspiration while keeping within my budget. The following links are for designer items that inspired the purchase of the things you see me wearing today.

$$$ Jacket – $$$ Scarf – $$$ Top – $$$ Bag – $$$ Jeans – $$$ Boots – $$$ Earrings

Directions for how I am wearing the scarf follow: Fold a fifty-one-inch square silk twill scarf in half. Pick up the top left corner and the bottom right corner, then place the twisted scarf around your neck and arrange it as you like.

  1. Another extremely elegant outfit Susan. I admire how you look so good whether in casual wear or smarter wear. I’m learning so much which I am trying to bring to my own wardrobe, (emphasis on trying there) and my own personal style.
    Thank you x

  2. I agree with Monica I am learning so much from your blog. I use your ideas both shopping and dressing from what I already have in my closet.

  3. I know you have said that hoodies, leggings, and sneakers are out of your comfort zone but I would really like some ideas on how to wear these as we get older. I have a very casual life style and attend a lot of grandchildren sports. I do love leggings, joggers and oversized sweat shirts and tunics but have a hard time putting this look together without looking like I am trying to hard. Thanks

    1. The contrast in textures and colors may be the answer. I’ll use myself as an example: A faded pair of jeans always look better on me when I pair them with a navy blazer or cashmere sweater. If I wear a denim jacket, I usually pair it with all black or all white. A structured bag can elevate even the most casual look. If I wear sneakers, they are always clean. Faded, wrinkled, torn, and dirty elements of an outfit always make me look fifteen years older.

  4. Looking great here! I love the polished look myself…my husband always asks me where I’m going, or tells me
    I am overdressed! I don’t pay him any attention! lol

  5. I, too, find casual dressing a challenge. The “uniform” for my contemporaries for a Saturday night dinner out is a sweater and slacks, with a coat for warmth in the winter. Other seasons, a blouse/slacks/outerwear jacket combo. I find this restricted selection boring and wear ponchos and blazers as a third piece. But my husband thinks blazers are “dressing up” and probably, others do too. I find that I only wear skirts for special occasions, otherwise it’s perceived as overdressing!

  6. The blazer is what kicks it up a notch. If you had worn a cardigan or a hoodie you would have had a more casual look. It all comes down to what makes us comfortable. You look very nice

  7. This is a great casual look and the blazer takes it up a notch. Looks very nice. I often wear this look but prefer a more casual scarf (cotton or cotton/acrylic blend) and a more rugged style boot or shoe, and especially with faded jeans. Otherwise, I feel my casual look is too close to my more dressed up look. Do you know what I mean? Susan, would you ever wear your “combat” boots or a more rugged style loafer with this outfit?

  8. I also would never wear leggings and a hoodie or “exercise clothes” out of the house other than to the gym or running. I always take the time to dress and put on something I feel good in. You can always dress up or down a nice cashmere sweater or cute little jacket/blazer. If I like the way I look, I like the way I feel. I love reading your blog Susan….it is so inspiring and I just purchased a box of the Beauty Counter products and am loving them!

  9. I love your blog. I use your styling suggestions as a basis for my wardrobe because they work well for me. I have purchased a couple of things like the cute handbag you are showing today, (only in black as I already have several in the brown) and the animal print pumps from a couple of blogs ago. They looked fun and I can’t wait to get to wear them. You give me inspiration and direction at a time when it’s difficult to know what’s appropriate for someone who isn’t in my 20’s, 30’s, 40’s or even fifties anymore. I also loved the video of your closet showing your clothing, shoes and handbags. I loved the idea of not having your purses in dust bags. You can see what color, size and shape and they are more readily accessible. Just have to figure out how to make it work in my closet that I share with my hubby. I look forward to seeing each of your new blogs of inspiration. Thank you for all the time and information you put out there for those of us who love to follow you.

  10. This is a look you see in the local diner, the doctors waiting room or at the grocery store in my small hometown. We are coastal so we dress casual and really only get dressy for church or holiday events. I love this look and probably would only change it if I was visiting friends. Then I would wear a cardigan instead of the blazer or jacket. I would change to a windbreaker and sneakers for a walk on the beach. I don’t like hoodies but do wear knit hats on windy days.

  11. Love this look. I’m often cold but I don’t like the look of sweatshirts for casual either. Can you wear this jacket while eating like you would a blazer?

  12. I live in New Orleans where the weather is rarely cold. It’s hard for me to add that last layer, (jacket, blazer or sweater). I sometimes add a vest. Any suggestions?

  13. I am interested in trying the Beautycounter products. I am 72 years old. My skin is pretty normal–I don’t really have any oily areas. What products would you recommend?
    Thank you. Jacqueline

  14. I always love seeing how you style an outfit, Susan.
    Casual, formal, fun–no matter the occasion you do always stay true to your “quintessential” style. I laughed when you admitted to wearing a 5-year-old BCBG jacket. A classic favorite, I’m sure. Just goes to show we should always “shop our own closets” first!

  15. This year winter in Houston is warm one day, warmer the next, then a blue northern will blow in. My wardrobe has to be all over the map! I do love the rule of 3 and I try to use a vest over a cotton shirt then I can be comfortable without a bulky jacket.

  16. Not sure if you’ve ever addressed this topic, but I would love to see posts about different figure types. I adore your look and have certainly started using scarves. Do you have friends with pear shapes (over 60) that would model with your suggestions for their figure type and your recommendations. I know it would make a world of difference to me.

  17. Hi my name is Karen Ziegler and I have a lot of the clothes that you have and I love getting ideas as to how to wear them from your web site. The question I have is since I have gotten older nothing seems to fit. Everything is starting to sag. Do you have any suggestions?
    I still want to look my best.

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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.