5 (plus) silhouettes: Alaskagirl's Challenge

Or, what I wore to get eye surgery. Excuse the sunnies -- I needed them to help me recover. And I am happy to report that my operations were a huge success! My right eye will take a while to heal and so isn't quite "set" at this point, but already my vision is better than it has been at any time since I was eight years old. It is a miracle. 

I also decided to try out Una's 5 silhouette challenge. Guess what? It worked! At least it worked to help me feel I had enough variety. I am not sure that any of these are stellar outfits, but I felt happy wearing them all and really did enjoy switching things up every day. Thank you, Alaskagirl!! 

Day 1: Slouchy trousers & vest. Thanks to CocoLion for the gift of the plaid slouchy pants by Hinge. 

Day 2: Bootcuts and fluid sweater. Actually the bootcuts are more like flares on me. So glad I wore them while the weather was dry! 

Day 3: Skinnies, booties, turtleneck layered over shirt. This was for my first surgery. 

Day 4: Skinnies, oversized sweater layered over shirt, boots. 

Day 5: This was a loungewear day -- no going out to appointments. Track pants FTW. 

Day 6: Surgery 2. Slim BFs and cardigan over top. I had to be "easy to access" with the monitors. 

Day 7: Long cardigan with dress and boots for my check up. And tonight I changed into another dress (because dress 1 is covered in cat hair) for a celebratory at home supper with Mr. Suz). 

I have thoughts on this experiment -- mainly that I intend to keep doing it! I really, really did enjoy this alternation of shapes. I can't wait to hear from others of you who have tried this how you felt and what you wore! 

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • Gail replied 8 years ago

    Glad the surgery went well. I personally think that "you look fab" in them all ! I especially like pic #4. I really like your style. How come when I try these things I look off ? If I could ever get my act together I would post pics but I am pretty lame as any pics I take are really poor and I never end up posting .Keep trying right ? Hope you continue to enjoy your new eye's :)

  • Peri replied 8 years ago

    It is no surprise I like them all...sort of a given really. But the one I love is #8. You are proving a dress can be just as cozy and comfy looking as pants. I hope it was, it sure looks wonderful!

  • replied 8 years ago

    I'm a little dense :)  What are the 5 individual silhouettes - just so I know what I'm looking at......

    That Banana Repub dress has turned out to be the best thing ever!  Who would have thought?  I love it with a big cardi and boots , and think that will be something so easy to pull on in winter when one needs to make themselves feel slightly more pulled together than with the usual jeans.  

  • Aida replied 8 years ago

    What a great week! Silhouette is my primary variation tool as well; I'm plenty happy repeating individual pieces as long as they're getting used in different silhouettes. After discovering that a couple years ago there's no looking back for me. I've been happily whittling away at the size of my wardrobe since. Anyway, back to you! It is really fun seeing you in all the different silhouettes Suz! Especially as when winter really gets under way things can be more limited. I have to say it's particularly fun to see you in the bootcuts in #2/3. The two with the dresses are also stellar.

    (PS Glad the surgeries went well, sending you healing wishes.)

  • carter replied 8 years ago

    Love them all! I like the change-up quite a bit. What a great way to pull out of a rut any time. So pleased the surgery went well!

  • texstyle replied 8 years ago

    Oh it is fun to see you in bootcuts Suz, and you look great in them!  I'm glad to hear that your eye surgery went well.

    I especially love  #1, 2, 8, and 9. The colors in #1 are very festive in a modern way. And that BR dress makes me want to wear a dress!

  • chouette22 replied 8 years ago

    Great variety and you look splendid in each and everyone!

  • Suz replied 8 years ago

    Thank you all so much! My best accessory EVER is better vision. I am so excited about this change. 

    Lisa, there was no set idea for the different silhouettes, but here is what I had in mind:

    1.  Slouchy trousers or jeans with fluid or boxy pullover or sweater or top (#1, #6, #7 -- though I do think "track pants" almost qualify as their own look, you know?) 

     2. Skinnies with fluid or tailored pullover (#4)

    3. Bootcuts or flares with whatever top. (#2/3)

    4. Skinnies with oversize or tunic top (#5 -- this sweater is the least oversized of my oversized sweaters, but IRL you can tell it is definitely oversized vs. fluid). 

    5. Dress with long cardigan. These dresses actually are different silhouettes -- the BR one has a fluid top with a body con skirt, and the Kamalikulture one is body con all the way. 

  • replied 8 years ago

    I see :)  Just wondered what your particular "categories" were. I have no idea what I would do here, but I bet I would learn a lot doing so.  

  • Vicki replied 8 years ago

    Love these silhouettes in every photo and may I say that you make one stylish "patient" and the office staff must have been delighted to see you coming.  btw, was this Lasik surgery; I'm not sure what was happening with your eyes and I hope everything is okay and you are seeing like a hawk these days.

    Where are those fantastic Aquatalia boots as I couldn't detect them in any particular photo?  Now, I'm off to look at Alakasgirl's silhouette challenge, because Marley intrigued me with this in my own post.

    Hope you feel better soon, because you look fantastic!  :)

  • catgirl replied 8 years ago

    Suz, you beat me to my own challenge!  And set the standard.  You look amazing.  I intend to post my thoughts because it actually opened my eyes to a number of things to think about as I continue this experiment.  But I felt better too, even if some of it felt like wardrobe push-ups.  Not fun in the moment but worth the effort. :)

  • unfrumped replied 8 years ago

    Whoa, eye surgery-- I hope that is all continuing to go well!
    Thes are great options! I'm smitten by the long cardigan over dresses.
    Maybe I can try the challenge of sorts. I have been trying to focus on a few silhouettes since really that's what all the proportion angst is about.
    I'm thinking a hybrid of silhouettes and something like Mo's one dark neutral,light neutral , bright color/ pattern would give variety + order/ limits.

  • Jjsloane replied 8 years ago

    Isn't modern medicine a miracle? 
    You look great in all of these, but I especially like you in 4, 7 and 8. You look tres chic in sunnies (even if they are just for medical purposes) Nice challenge!

  • Karie replied 8 years ago

    Fantastic experiment! You look wonderful in all of these. My favorites are 2, 3, and 6. No surprise there since my new favorite looks include fluid tops, and track pants. 

    You certainly have been through a lot in these last weeks - first not feeling well, and now eye surgery. Take good care of yourself, girlfriend!

  • Suz replied 8 years ago

    Thanks, all. YLF kept me going this past month, I swear! And I was able to follow along pretty much every day -- modern medicine is truly a gift. 

    My surgery was not LASIK but a more heavy-duty procedure called Clear Lens Extraction. (Doesn't that sound lovely?) It's actually like cataract surgery, except I did not have cataracts -- I just had very, very poor vision and a very complicated prescription that made good correction via specs and contacts impossible. 

    I can't wait to see your outfits and hear your thoughts, Una! It is a great challenge. 

    unfrumped, you're right that focusing on a few silhouettes makes it easier to get proportions right. And may make it easier to keep a lean closet. Also, for strict figure flattery it might be better; I'm not sure. 

    Vicki, you are sweet, as always. The Aquatalias are in photo 5 with skinnies tucked in. They're a bit hard to make out there. 

    Lisa, we didn't specify any particular silhouettes but sort of made up our own. I just played with what's in the closet and will try to mix it up a bit more next week -- if I can -- although truly, that would be stretching it since this is about the sum total of my possible winter silhouettes, and the flares are already at thing of the past since we have snow on the ground now. ;(

  • Elizabeth P replied 8 years ago

    What a great week Suz!  Love it all.  And I'm so glad to hear your surgery went well.  And that you are finally over your cold or whatever that was (at least I assume you are!)

    Your proportions with the layering in #4 are bang on.  WTG!  Those pants in #1 are to die for.  And... love the BR dress so much I just ordered it :).  I had thought it would be too short for me, but this time I went the extra mile and actually measured some existing dresses... and it should work! the ruching brings it up a bit.  We'll see. 
    The dress in #8, I absolutely LOVE.  My colours :)

  • jackiec replied 8 years ago

    Wow Suz - outstanding! I am so glad you are on the mend from your surguries. I'd love to have LASIK done one day, my prescription isn't complicated but I can't see without glasses or contacts (which I wear WAY too much....). I am astounded by how well you think outside the box with regard to colour combinations - case in point #1. Wow. I love all your outfits with collared shirts under sweaters too. Perfection. The pattern underneath adds so much depth to the outfit. I really need some practice with that - or at least some good layering shirts. I'm glad to see you are on the mend all around. Can't believe you are rocking it out in frocks as well! Amazing.

  • Joyce B replied 8 years ago

    I'm glad the surgery went well, Suz.
    You look fab as usual in all your outfits.

  • Aubergine replied 8 years ago

    Glad the eye surgery went well!

    Love all the outfits, and you really nailed the variety! Seeing so many of your outfits in a row also highlights what an awesome collection of button-down shirts you have and how, even when they just peek out a tiny bit, as in #4 and #5, they add a certain crispness and interest to your look that's really distinctive. Although, I have to admit, my absolute favorite of the outfits is (of course) the casual dress and cardigan in #8. Especially like how the gray tights lighten it up just a little without standing out too much.

  • Neel replied 8 years ago

    I am in awe Suz! You are truly a die hard fashionista :). Whoever dresses like this for eye surgery and basically being not 100%? I was chuckling at the easily accessible outfit :D

    And what stole my heart was the at home celebratory dinner outfit :). We just eat in our PJs on our celebratory days o_O. You are awesome! Just awesome! Great challenge Una!

  • Suz replied 8 years ago

    Neel, this dress actually feels like PJs, which is why it is my secret at home date night weapon!! :) 

    And Elizabeth, you are so right -- it is in your colours and would look better on you than on me! Maybe they still have some -- Kamalikulture. I really love it. It's body con, but the long sweater hides that. Good thing, too, because a month of illness and no exercise (along with no loss of appetite) means I have put on a few pounds. Ooops!! :) 

    The BR dress will probably work on you with tights, I'd say. Probably not without, although you have the legs for it and could wear it that way for sure. (Thank you -- yes, I am finally over the pneumonia/ pleurisy, although there is some lingering pain from the pleurisy. But at least I got cleared for surgery.) 

    Aubergine, I have to admit, I thought of you when I put together the casual dress outfit! Your dresses are an inspiration. :) 

    Jackie, the colour combo may look inspired in the photos, but it really isn't. There's a stripe of that lavender-blue in the pants -- just not visible in the photo. 

    Thank you, Joyce

    And I encourage everybody to try Una's challenge at least for a week. It's pretty interesting to try it. 

  • amiable replied 8 years ago

    Terrific!  You look wonderful in every one of these - I especially like the dress with the long cardigan looks.

  • Missey replied 8 years ago

    Day 6 and 7 are my stand out favorites!  All looks are perfect and you took this challenge by storm!

  • Beth Ann replied 8 years ago

    This is a terrific challenge, and I see you using familiar items in new ways.  I notice an interesting color palette emerging:  berry, light blue, grey, navy.  I know you've worked with many of these colors beofre, but they are arranged in novel and wonderful ways here.  You look terrific!

  • Firecracker (Sharan) replied 8 years ago

    That's a great week of outfits, Suz. I, too, am in awe at how great you look even in the midst of two eye surgeries. Your celebratory dinner outfit takes the prize--you look stunning in that dress! You have me wanting to try this challenge, though I find it quite daunting for some reason. Like maybe I won't have 5 silhouettes? Or I won't have more than one outfit in some of the silhouettes anyway, for variety down the road? I don't know. It's kind of hard to get my head around.
    Anyway, I'm wondering: do you have a favorite silhouette among these? or favorites? or any that you really don't want to repeat? (I'm guessing no, on the last question, since you said you felt happy wearing all of them. But in my own case, I know there are silhouettes I struggle with.)

  • Suz replied 8 years ago

    Beth Ann, I definitely stick to a specific palette all year round. Mostly blues (from pale blue to ink, and including denim blues), with grey (in all shades from dove to charcoal), white or winter white, berries (from cranberry to fuchsia), and some taupe. A few hits of black used as a colour vs. a neutral. 

    Sharan, that's a great question. For cold weather, the easiest silhouettes for me to wear are 4/5 and 8/9. So -- slim/ skinny denim with pullovers, either fitted, fluid, or oversized, and easy jersey dresses with some kind of topper. For my outside the home life I would switch out the cozy pullovers for more structured jackets. 

    I also like wearing slouchy skinnies and BF jeans,  but in slightly different combos than pictured here -- I prefer with a semi tucked fluid pullover.

    These would be my "fallback" silhouettes. Wearing track pants and flares takes more effort and determination. Even wearing BF jeans in winter takes some determination (and happy accidents of weather). 

    I rarely wear my wool trousers, I realize -- much as I love them. It's to do with lifestyle combined with weather. I'd wear them lots more if I had an office job. 

    I won't have much variety with the dress looks. Except by layering sweaters over top of the one dress. I do have a knit sweater dress as well that is sleeveless, so I wear it like a jumper in cold weather. I'll have to see how that feels as time goes on. 

  • kellygirl replied 8 years ago

    I'm making this a fave. I love all of your silhouettes and think they are all smashing. I especially love 1, 4 and 8. You are so creative and your wardrobe is so cohesive. Glad the surgery went well! 

  • ElleH replied 8 years ago

    Congrats on your successful eye surgery! I love all your different silhouettes & outfits. I know I'm boring because my favorites have less variety. They are 1, 4, 6 & 7. 

  • kkards replied 8 years ago

    Great looks all around,but I must say #6 is my fav. My lounger at home outfits never look that good
    And that surgery sounds fantastic, glad it went well. Will you be totally glasses free, or will you need readers ( as you age, not implying your old now!)

  • catgirl replied 8 years ago

    Suz, coming back to ask the same questions I just asked Linda... do you feel like it was hard to do this or a piece of cake? Any no brainers or rough days or faves? Unexpected lightbulb moments?

    And I will be posting my outfits tonight when back from cabin. As usual I'm behind the rest of you even on my
    own challenge!

  • Suz replied 8 years ago

    Una, great questions! 

    It wasn't hard for me to do this -- for one week. I predict it will get harder in the sense that I will be repeating outfits in some silhouettes really quickly. But since I like to repeat outfits, I also predict that won't bother me. In other words, long term, maybe I'll discover that I can keep a leaner wardrobe as an "outfit" shopper rather than as a "separates" shopper. If I choose to do that. (Which I'm not sure I will). 

    For me, the no-brainers are the FFB outfits of skinnies plus pullovers. The lightbulb moment came a bit earlier with the purchase of a casual dress. Adding a dress really increased my possible work-at-home options. Even one dress. Because I can "accesorize" it (or disguise it, if you prefer) with different pullovers, cardigans, scarves, and tights. Ha! 

    kkards -- I am not sure yet whether I will need glasses any more. The hope is that I'll be spec-free, but I rather expect that I'll need drugstore reading glasses for certain reading tasks or low light situations. My distance vision should be good. It's possible my eyes won't adapt to the intermediate zone all that well, either -- only time will tell. I'll need about a month before I know for sure. But since I needed correction at all levels before, and quite high correction, any freedom from specs will be a huge boon to me, even if it is partial.  

  • Jaime replied 8 years ago

    Congratulations on the eye surgery Suz. I had a much simpler procedure, and still need drugstore reading glasses, but I consider it one of my better decisions.
    Onto the outfits! The most interesting change, which it seems you will be easily integrating, is the winter dress. And I think that adds a lot of variety to your day to day dressing. The flares just don't seem that practical for winter, although they do look good. I do love the simple dark pullover over skinnies look!

  • Joy replied 8 years ago

    Amazing that you can dress so fabulously with eye surgery and recovering from pleurisy. I'm looking forward to your silhouettes next week. The first outfit and your dresses are my favorites.
    I did the challenge this past week and found it harder than I thought it would be.

  • columbine(erin) replied 8 years ago

    Congrats on the eye surgery going well. 
    You have really fab pieces and it's fun to see them coming out to play in different ways. The bootcut outfit in 2 was my favorite! 

    Apologies for scarcity and not reading comments. I don't have good internet anymore. 

  • catgirl replied 8 years ago

    So glad the winter dress is working out for you.  I guess I need to eat crow there!  :)  Are you planning to add more dresses?

  • lyn67 replied 8 years ago

    OMG, these challenges are a delish to my eyes(pun intended:-)). I am so happy your eye sugery went that well, and wish you short recovery and if possible better sight then ever! :-) Your week is full of gorgeous outfits and some great tweaks regarding sillouettes, I have learnt a lot just looking at them. Will see if I can do this challenge for my own week of 7days of work and play, too!

    Came back to ask will your gorgeous specs  be of no use from now on?

  • Sheila replied 8 years ago

    They are all very nice but my favorites are 3 and 8. I think a broken line really suits you and I like where the line is broken with the belt and the waist  placement in 3 and 8 has multiple breaks with the boots and stockings.
    I see both these are semi- gaminesque silhouetes... kind of reminds me of Michelle Williams style - or yours !

  • Elly replied 8 years ago

    Photos 3, 4, 7, and 8 are my favorite looks. I know that it is a year or two old, but I just love that sweater in photo 3 on you and was dissappointed to see it didn't get more wear with flairs this fall because it is such a perfect fall piece. I think you've struck the cord with the right shirt for under that turtle here. Seven suprised me, but I like the slightly lighter and more "open" shirt under the cardi. Of course, you look very fab in the new at home dress silhouette.

    Congrats on the eye surgery and so glad to hear that it is going well. The SO is a candidate for a similar but less complicated procedure and I'm trying to encourage him because he is another one that could greatly benefit eye-health an convenience wise from no specs because of his job.

    I think it is clear that you have a lot of options . . . my question for your self-reflection is what is keeping you from wearing pieces that you aren't wearing?

  • Sharon replied 8 years ago

    I love #1 so much! It is sleek and interesting and has the perfect level of androgyny. I am really curious as to whether this is due to the silhouette or the individual pieces.
    The bootcut silhouette also looks fabulous on you and the turtleneck over a shirt is fab.
    I think the idea of having a number of complete outfits in a range of silhouettes that can be repeated often sounds like a great idea and one that I think would work well for me. Thank you for the inspiration!
    Glad to hear the surgery went well. Hope you are recovering quickly and seeing the world in a whole new light! :)

  • Lisa replied 8 years ago

    Glad to hear the surgery went well.  And great job mixing up your looks.  Will you do so more often now or do you think you will fall back on a favorite formula instead?  Deciding to mix things up more often vs sticking to one formula will be very helpful when you shop in the future.

  • Suz replied 8 years ago

    Lisa, thank you. 

    Going forward, I do think I am going to try to deliberately mix up my silhouettes more often. It seems I don't need to mix colours quite as often as I thought, but silhouette changes make me happy. So I may be able to limit my colours even further (they are already quite limited). 

  • Windchime replied 8 years ago

    First, wonderful news about the surgery and its outcome; it sounds like the best possible result!

    Second, how you manage to look so fab with pleurisy and eye surgery is amazing! My favorite of your stylings is the Banana Republic dress with long cardigan. I love the scarf, stockings, and boots that you chose to wear with it. You are just beautiful in the outfit. Sounds like your kitty loved that outfit, too. :)

    I also admire your plaid trousers in #1 and those extremely cute Aquatalia boots. And your Siamese cat shirt makes me smile every time I see it!

    You are inspiring me to see if I can wear skirts and dresses more often during cold weather.

  • replied 8 years ago

    What's this? Eye surgery? I'm so excited for you that I can barely look at your (always fab) outfits! How wonderful that you won't need the strong prescription anymore. You look so good in all of these silhouettes, congratulations on completing the challenge!

    You have looked better sick as a dog for these past weeks than I have on a good day. I see fashion was more than just a shot in the arm for you while you were recovering. You truly took the proverbial lemons and made some delicious lemonade from them. Be well!

  • Alassë replied 8 years ago

    Excellent thoughts from your silhouette challenge, Suz! (Not that we expected anything different.) ;) My favourite is 2, and 8 is a neat twist on dress + topper due to the long cardigan. 

    I mix up silhouettes so frequently that sometimes I have to give myself permission to wear the same bottom 2 days in a row. :) Variety definitely makes a difference, doesn't it.

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