Thursday, January 2, 2014

Advanced Style: Book Review

Published May 22, 2012.
I've been long coveting the coffee table book Advanced Style (powerHouse books), based on the blog by the same name.

Yesterday, friends of mine kindly gave me a copy for my upcoming birthday.

The book was wrapped.  As I tore open a corner and saw the black hat and large-framed black glasses, I squealed, "It's Advanced Style!"

Ari Seth Cohen launched Advanced Style in August 2008 as a place to celebrate the style of mature women--an the occasional silver-haired gentleman.  He photographs people primarily on the streets of NYC and interviews them about their style.

Some argue that older women become invisible to society's gaze. Ari Seth Cohen's blog proves otherwise.

These women are an inspiration for older women to keep expressing themselves. They also instruct people of all ages about the power of confidence, individuality and personal artistry.

Over the years, Advanced Style features a few regular fashionistas. Nevertheless, his blog continues to document new people as well as new outfits on familiar style icons, so it's worth repeated visits.  (You'll see that it's on my blog roll at the bottom left of this page.)

Advanced Style also has a Facebook page, a Twitter account and a Youtube channel.

Even though these digital formats are convenient and dynamic, their is value to having a physical book to share with others.  It's going to be a fixture on my coffee table.  Ari Seth Cohen's book features images of several dozen people.  A handful are named and shows in several outfits.

Some of my favorite quotes from the book:

West Village author Alice Carey who runs risk of looking crazy but aims for and achieves chic: "Fie on women in sneakers and sweats!" 

Artist and cabaret performer Ilona Royce Smithkin who creates false eyelashes from snippets of her tangerine-colored hair: "If you try to imitate too much, you will look like nothing. Never compare. You are you!"

Linda, who has crafted an elegant 1930s-inspired look: "When you are younger, you dress for other people. When you are older, you dress for yourself." 

Lubi, a San Diego native photographed while visiting NYC: "I was never fearful of being extraordinarily different. I would rather be considered different and somewhat mysterious than ignored." 

Thank you, ladies, for your inspiration. What am I going to today to celebrate myself and to bring energy and beauty to all those I encounter?  Advanced Style convinces me that my best-dressed days are ahead of me.


Advanced Style: Film Review
Aging Disgracefully
Embracing My Age


  1. I am SO not brave enough to be stylish like those people. Big sigh... Happy Birthday, whenever it is. :)

    1. Thank you for the birthday wishes. Wichita just got voted the worst dressed city in the US, so I am feeling some pressure to help remedy that. But I almost exclusively buy from thrift shops. So how am I supposed to elevate the style level with the clothes worn by the worst dressed? I guess it will come down to creative pairing!

    2. My beautiful, fashionable, and stylish wife also buys almost exclusively from thrift shops and she looks fantastic. I'll bet you do, too.

      I'll bet creative pairing does have a lot to do with it. I know that Judy (my wife) does it brilliantly. Teach your fellow Wichitonians how to do that and they'll soon lose the title.

  2. I heartily recommend seeing the documentary of the same name. I found it both inspiring and liberating!

    1. Netflix has it on livestream right now. I need to get over there and watch it. Thanks for the rec.

  3. PS When you have a moment, here is a blog by a charming woman who buys thrift in a particular style -