Cotton Polo Shirt

I enjoy wearing comfortable, functional clothing, but I want to look acceptable and feel like myself even if I don’t have any plans for the day. In addition, I expect my everyday items to be easy to care for and long-lasting. Finally, those pieces should mix and match, so I avoid bright colors, memorable details, prints, patterns, and logos.

Who – Retiree, senior citizen, active woman 65+.
What – Neatly dressed for comfort.
Where – A look for working at home, going for a walk, the Post Office, and the grocery store.
When – I wore this on a sunny Tuesday when it was seventy-four degrees.
Why – I was comfortable and felt confident even though I dressed very casually for the day.

The polo-style tee is here.

The best collared tee I’ve found is here. (I bought a size medium.) I feel more confident in a top with a collar and three-quarter sleeves rather than short sleeves. I don’t enjoy showing my elbows. A round neck and short sleeves draw attention to the bust. Wide necklines show more of the neck area than I find comfortable. The length of this tee is perfect since I don’t want to tuck in tops worn without a third piece. The fabric isn’t see-through, and the quality of the material and construction is excellent.

I waited until I laundered this top to give my opinion in this post. No matter how great the item is when you first wear it, it isn’t a winner if it doesn’t hold up to a trip through the washer. All of my clothing gets washed in cold water. I removed the top from the dryer while still damp and hung it on a felt hanger to air dry. I steam ironed it to remove any wrinkles. There was no shrinkage, and it kept its shape. I’m so happy with it; I bought another white one and two navy ones.

Similar jeans are here. Similar sneakers are here, and the tote is here. The sunglasses are here. The watch is here. Similar hoop earrings are here. No-show socks are here.

Thank you for the lovely comments on my last post. Since you mentioned food several times, I also snapped a photo of my salad. I topped fresh red romaine lettuce with a soft-boiled pasture-raised egg, sliced cherry tomatoes, black olives, celery, cucumbers, diagonally sliced heirloom carrot, avocado, quinoa, and lentils. I cook a cup of lentils and one cup of quinoa (separately) on Monday to top my salads for the next few days. I also sprinkled a pinch of kosher salt, nori, fresh ground black pepper, and hemp seeds. My dressing is always extra virgin olive oil and aged balsamic vinegar. The bowl is nine inches wide. On weekdays I eat two healthy meals and drink lots of water. On the weekend I enjoy small amounts of whatever I want.

The practice of decreasing the quantity and increasing the quality has benefited all areas of my life. I look for clothing that lasts and the freshest organic vegetables. I spend time with positive people, stop to pet dogs, and sit in the sunshine for a few minutes each day after my walk. Gratitude for simple things makes for a happy life.

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  1. Susan, thank you for continuing in this thread; I find it very helpful. I like Lands End shirts but often have to exchange because I chose the wrong size. What size did you buy in the polo shirts? Thank you.

  2. How do you cook your lentils? Do you have just use the red lentils? Also which kind of quinoa do you cook? Thank you!

  3. Thank you so much for the posts on what you eat. And for showing us a picture! Since seeing this I’ve tried making a bowl or plate of healthy food, instead of standing and eating at the counter or refrigerator, which is a terrible habit! Following your advice has really helped me to eat better! Keep up the great work!

    1. I used to call that a sink sandwich because I didn’t think it was worth dirtying a plate. Now I sit down and reward myself with the time to fully enjoy my food.

  4. Susan,
    Thank you so much for all you do. I enjoy your posts so much and have benefitted tremendously from them. On your list of possible future posts would you consider doing a tutorial on eye makeup? Specifically one that includes tips for thinning brows.
    Please know how much you and your work are appreciated.

  5. Those carrot slices are a beautiful accent for your delicious looking salad! Thank you for the wash and wear review of the Lands End polo. It looks like a perfect basic!

  6. Hi Susan. I am enjoying this series on What and Why very much. I, too, have been pleased with the tees and polos from Lands End (as well as those from LL Bean you mentioned another time). Could you possibly show examples of accessory items with summer dresses? Especially, I would like to see what sort of belts to wear with a dress— especially since many of these tiered-type dresses have only an elastic waist.
    Thank you for all the helpful information.

    1. I would never wear a belt with a dress. The flowing styles of dresses are the ones I’ve found most comfortable in hot, humid weather. In summer, my accessories are usually limited to more oversized earrings and dramatic bracelets.

  7. Thank you for sharing about the collared tee—I just ordered 2. The older I get, I have found that a shirt with a collar is more flattering to me. I so enjoy reading about your life and seeing the beautiful, classic fashions you showcase.

  8. Thank you again for another of these types of posts. I’m wondering how you would compare the comfort of these Keds platform sneakers to the Converse platform sneakers in a previous post? I’m looking to replace my white sneakers and your input would be appreciated.

  9. I really appreciate all that you do but I especially like ones like today !! While I think I do OK dressing up when I go out , ever since I retired I continue to struggle with what to wear every day. Thanks for this idea !

  10. Thank you for always reminding us of what to focus on in life and especially how to keep our minds and bodies healthy. They say you are what you eat and that healthy food plate of yours sure shines through. You look fabulous!

  11. Susan do you not find the Dooney tote too heavy once you have your items in it. I’m looking for a tote for a trip we’ll be taking later this year

  12. I really like this casual look. Since retiring I am trying to find neat and well fitting casual outfits. Thank you Susan!

  13. Once again, your classic look is great. Simple but neat and charming. I especially enjoy looking at the pictures you share as it definitely helps me “see” what you are talking about in references to your comments and makes the point you are saying more clear and to the point. Those that really impress me, I make a copy to put in my album to remind me why I liked an outfit and how you put that look together. Absolutely amazing what I forget when I don’t have the picture to follow so thank you more than ever for your thoughtfulness for including them too.
    I also like the pictures of your food plates. I use them for me but having a husband who wants meat & potatoes as well as living in a state where beef and pork is basically mandatory with this farming community, I try to improvise more of what you recommend along with the animal meats.
    I hope you continue doing this blog as I am sure it helps more senior ladies than you can ever imagine’
    Clara from Iowa

  14. Thank you for sharing, I really do appreciate every post and have learned a lot from them. Dressing is a challeng, I am petite with a round middle. Not the easiest shape to dress 🙂 Your posts have been helpful.

  15. Susan,

    What a joy reading your advice on fashion, healthy living and accentuating natural beauty! Your articles are so very helpful in guiding ladies toward feeling and looking our best. Your suggestions have definitely been an inspiration for me.

    I like the rolling clothes rack which you featured in two videos. It appeared very sturdy. Would you mind sharing where it was purchased?

    For keeping the home of the brave safe and secure, you have my eternal gratitude!
    Thank You,

  16. I love your philosophy of life! Your ideas about clothing, food, activity, nature, relationships are all things I aspire to! Thank you!

  17. Hello Susan,

    This information has nothing to do with this post, but I feel you should be aware of it.

    I just watched a video on Facebook for a bra ad that is using your likeness shown with the name Brenda Grace, 68. I replayed the video several times and am certain that it’s you.

    If this is in fact you and you are not receiving compensation, you should be. Anyone who knows you and follows your blog is well aware of the impact your likeness implying approval of a product has on product sales. The website for the product is

    If you are aware of this and do have an arrangement with the company, it would definitely influence my decision to try this product.

    1. Thank you for letting me know. That company is using my image and video without my consent. I do not recommend them or their products, and I have reported them to Facebook numerous times.

  18. Susan, today’s look is my retirement uniform. I love white tops, and feel so fresh when wearing them. I usually order Lands end medium for when I want a snug fit, or to wear with a third layer, and large petite for when I want a looser fit. This was a timely post, since I had a polo shirt on my shopping list. Thank you!

  19. Another great post, Susan. My lifestyle is mostly casual these days (70 ) – I spend my days walking my dog, or in the garden, writing, babysitting or housework, so ‘next level lunch and dinner dressing’ is not really suitable but smart casual is vital for me for feeling good. I find your style fits my brief and helps me feel confident about the way I manoeuvre through my wardrobe. AND it doesn’t cost a bomb.
    One question – you manage to keep your white sneakers so clean. Invariably at the end of the day, I will have dirty marks on the canvas somewhere. I use a white block for the edge of the soles, but after repeated washing, the canvas eventually gets a little yellowed and I wonder how to keep it stark white. I remember when I was at school, we had to use a canvas-white to clean our shoes before every tennis match. That seems overkill now in this day and age…
    Any suggestions?

    1. I keep a gray pair of sneakers and a pair of black garden clogs to wear when I’m doing my chores or working in the yard. If I’m running errands or going for a walk, my shoes don’t get too dirty since I mostly stay on the sidewalk. I also have several pairs of white leather or canvas sneakers and rotate them. I’m sure if I wore the same pair several times a week, they would show the wear more.

  20. Not everyone can take a good rear view photo, but you look great from the rear. Your hair is totally on point and you look toned and youthful. No doubt this is because you practice sensible/healthy eating, proper hydration, exercise and dwelling in a positive environment. Well done!!!

  21. Thanks for the post: the outfit and your salad (which looks delicious!) Special thanks for telling us the size of your bowl since that’s often hard to discern in photos and helps with portion size ideas. Best wishes for a good weekend!

  22. I enjoy your blog so much. I always learn something and today those polo shirts spoke to me. Now if I can just get my salads to look like your salads. Thanks for writing this blog.

  23. Thank you Susan for this post ! I am always looking for long and short sleeve white tees but find they’re either see through or they shrink in the washer. Your salad looks delicious I’m going to try it.

  24. Susan I am so sorry you are not excited about this leather blazer. You look so stunning in it, The jacket suits you perfectly. I wish I could buy one! I understand it might be outside of your comfort zone, but it should be a keeper. You really rock this look.

  25. As the owner of a much loved small dog, might be a dog coming for you soon Susan? I am sure it would fit your lifestyle perfectly. I love reading your blog and find I have taken on a lot of your lessons over the years, so thank you for all you do.

  26. I noted that the polo is Lands End. I have never been disappointed by a Lands End purchase. They offer exceptional quality at very reasonable prices and their customer service is second to none. Thank you for elevating this company!

  27. “Gratitude for simple things makes for a happy life”. This is so true. Thank you for your lovely post and pictures. I enjoy reading them and learning so much.

  28. Thank you for your advice, I love reading your blog and I try to apply it to my life. I’m short and plus size so I will never pull off your look exactly but I adjust it to me. I also believe having gratitude leads to happiness, It’s all about mindset. You look amazing even in the simplest outfit. Wishing you continued happiness and good health.

  29. I know the outfit today is casual. You look good in everything that you wear and I realize you don’t want to wear clothing that makes an entrance before you do. ( not to be too memorable) But who wants to be go to the other extreme and be forgettable ? I like the style & cut of the top but white on fair skin & pale hair just fades away. Think the top would have looked much more flattering in another shade. ( like the navy you said you also bought ) I think white looks great when you have a tan or on those with darker skin tones. As we age I feel we don’t want to stand out but we don’t want to be invisible either. Now the sneakers are another story. They look current & ageless & look like shoes a style savvy gal ( which you certainly are ) would wear ! I enjoy your posts on your healthy diet & lifestyle. I also think your short haircut looks so cute in the back.

  30. Absolutely love your posts, they are informative without being “preachy”, honest and forthright. I’m so glad I found your site.

  31. Susan,
    Your meals are so healthy and colorful. I eat salads often and you give me ideas on how to change them to include more interesting ingredients. Good quality vinegar and oils have always been my dressing of choice.
    The Keds are one of my favorite brands and the platform soles are so comfortable. Best of all…they are on sale.

    I look forward to your posts and appreciate them so much.

    Thank you.

  32. Hi Susan! I think you look terrific and polished as usual in this great casual look. The salmon tote adds just the right amount of color. Also, love your healthy salad recipes – simple and fresh. Please keep your informative posts coming. You are such an inspiration to all your followers! Have a great week.

  33. Thank you so much, this is the information I was hoping for! I prefer 3/4 length sleeves also, a bonus is that bracelets aren’t hidden under long sleeves. I enjoy seeing your meals. This one reminds me of a recipe that I came across recently for oven-baked quinoa. I expect that it will provide an interesting texture for salads and my morning yogurt/fruit bowl.

  34. This is a lovely post. I ordered the polo shirt. I’ve taken your previous advice and purchased Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s books. The process to become healthy is enjoyable and I feel better each day and it has only been one week. Thank you for sharing your inspiration with all of us.

  35. I’m so enjoying your posts, I’m 73 and have let the weight creep up a little every year. Trying to learn from your example to eat less and enjoy life more.

  36. Susan, I love your style! Your taste in clothes, shoes , & accessories is the style that most appeals to me. I so enjoy your posts & look forward to them. You inspire me, and you’ve definitely made me want to step up my casual wardrobe! Thank you for sharing with us. By the way, you & Mr. Mickey make a most handsome couple!

  37. I agree with Amanda that it is lovely to see Lands’ End get a starring role on your blog today. I only follow 4 blogs, but I can’t remember ever seeing them mentioned before. I particularly like their petite sizes for tops because I am so short waisted, most other tees are far too long. I don’t want to turn up a couple of inches, or pay to have a t-shirt altered. So, thank you Susan for another great post.

  38. I love Land’s End. Even with their changes, the clothing is well-made, dark colors last, the swimsuits accommodate many sizes, shapes and physical demands. I’ve had my Land’s End parkas and lighter weight jackets, and many other things for years. For the price they can t be beat. A Wisconsin treasure.

  39. Love your posts. You just have a way of writing about things that are simple, yet appealing. Just wish I was still getting your posts to my inbox. I got them for awhile, then all of a sudden they stopped coming! I go looking for them now, when I remember! Lol!
    I too love seeing your food, like so many others have mentioned. Good reminders to make the effort to eat healthily! Thank you!

  40. Really appreciate these 5Ws posts. White tops are so classic, but I don’t look good in white, or anything too pale; it washes me out. But colored tops never seem as classic. Sigh — what to do!?

  41. Hi Susan, I really enjoy your posts. How do you get enough protein for the day? I am on the WW program and I need about 94 grams of protein daily to lose weight.

    Thank you!

    1. Vegetables with the most protein include broccoli, spinach, asparagus, artichokes, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and Brussels sprouts, typically containing 4–5 grams of protein per cooked cup. In addition, I also eat a wide variety of grains, beans, nuts, seeds, and occasional wild-caught fish. I don’t count calories or follow any specific program. My lab results are always great, except for low vitamin D.

  42. I just bought this tee in four colors and love it! The quality is great, with the five little buttons. I particularly love hearing why this style is a good one, with the 3/4 length sleeves and collared neck instead of round neck and short sleeves. Please keep educating us! I look forward to each post.

  43. I ordered this white polo and love it. Your posts have been inspiring to me, especially as I look forward to retirement and how I can simplify my wardrobe (I also bought the Talbots black jeans and love them).

  44. Susan I miss seeing you on YouTube and forget that you’re here.
    Love this post! Love the focus on simplicity, present momentness and joyfulness.
    These are the things that I value too.

  45. Wow susan enjoy reading about what you eat I to eat mostly heathy but at night is my down fall any ideas for me. To get past this situation thank you K

    1. I don’t eat anything after 3 pm. It is a habit that can be broken as any other. I consumed many empty calories while watching TV or visiting with friends without even realizing it. When I stopped snacking, I lost about eight pounds without doing anything else.

  46. Hi Susan love to read about your heathly eating I do well with that all day but night time is my down fall any ideas to get past this? Thank you Kelly

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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.