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Style Evolution: How to Create Ageless Personal Style in Your 40s and Beyond Hardcover – April 7, 2009

4.1 out of 5 stars 50 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“Smart, behind-the-scenes advice from one of the best in the business. Take The Pocket Stylist with you on your next shopping spree!”
—Emme, host, Fashion Emergency

“Bossy, brilliant, and never condescending, Kendall Farr is the shopaholic’s best friend...and enabler.”
—Simon Doonan, author of Wacky Chicks

“Can’t afford a stylist? Then grab this book before you go shopping....It’s like talking to a best friend with great taste.”
—Cindy Weber Cleary, fashion director, InStyle magazine --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

A top New York stylist, Kendall Farr has dressed many celebrities, including Halle Berry, Uma Thurman, Angelina Jolie, Joan Allen, Andie McDowell, Julianne Moore, Sigourney Weaver, and Diane Sawyer. She has also served as a design consultant for a number of fashion labels. Farr is the author of The Pocket Stylist (Gotham Books, 2004) and has written columns for Glamour and O, The Oprah Magazine. She lives in Brooklyn.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Gotham (April 7, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1592404219
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592404216
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.8 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #287,931 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I have been in the fashion business over 20 years. I started my career at Seventeen which launched me as a freelance fashion editor. I've styled fashion stories for American and foreign editions of Vogue, Elle, Marie Claire, Glamour, In Style, Tatler, Harper's and Queen and Grazia. That's alot of fads and trends and Must Haves and Most Wanted clothes and accessories. What motivated me to write my first book The Pocket Stylist was the whopping disconnect between what makes exciting fashion pages and what women really need in their wardrobes to look and feel their best.
A friend once said to me"I wish I could just put you in my pocket and take you shopping with me so I'd know what the hell I was doing!" And I thought -yes! So I wrote The Pocket Stylist ( handbag friendly but a bit bulky for a pocket).

The speed at which style information is transmitted and the transformation of fashion from a trade to big time entertainment makes it more confusing to shop than ever. Every trend and brand and idea must be validated by celebrities wearing or using or endorsing products ( I'll admit I am a perpetrator as I have styled many celebrities in my career for fashion stories, for advertising campaigns and as personal clients for red carpet events).

There is simply too much choice ( so little of it any good) and too much sameness of merchandise also makes shopping exhausting and frustrating for most women. Especially in mid-life when clothes matter more than ever in transmitting who you are and how you feel about yourself. Now that I am firmly rooted in mid-life it occurred to me that our culture is so morbidly fearful of looking old, being perceived as old and out of it. There are very simple ways to avoid this. And since women never get a day pass on this stuff I wrote Style Evolution because I believe in the idea of ageless dressing. I practice it every day. I look neither old or young. Just stylish and this takes age out of the visual equation.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I've been waiting for months for this update to Farr's The Pocket Stylist - got it yesterday, and it's just what I was hoping it would be. Farr explains why it's so hard to figure out what to wear based on my old habits and what I see in magazines/stores, and she suggests specific solutions, down to the store and product line. Her advice resonates with me (even my husband could recognize me among the "types": I'm the one with stacks of merino v-necks and matching suits but no spark in my wardrobe). I especially appreciate how specific Farr is about what works/doesn't for various body shapes and the examples of how to wear various looks. This book should help any would-be fashionista... I just wish I could take Farr shopping with me!
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Format: Hardcover
Ms. Farr started off well by acknowledging that we over-40 women have a tough time finding decent clothes nowadays. But frankly I think she's writing for fashion professionals who live in New York City and have tons of money to spend -- not your average slob like me. I read fashion mags and books all the time, have two cousins who are in the fashion industry, and I STILL hadn't heard of half the designers and brands that Farr recommends. They would probably be very hard, if not impossible, to find in NE Massachusetts, where I live -- and I probably couldn't afford them anyway! Farr's standards are SO high that you'd have to spend your entire life shopping, shell out a fortune on top-of-the-line designer stuff, and then take everything for professional tailoring, in order to pass muster with her. It kind of depressed me. ("Geez, do I really look that bad?") And finally, the book has NO photos and not nearly enough drawings. SHOW me what you mean! Instead it's very wordy and loaded with fashion-pro jargon (such as talking about a fashion label's "bridge" line, "masstige", or that Talbots is good for "anonymous wardrobing" -- huh?). And she loves the word "skews" -- as in, "This clothing manufacturer skews young." It also needed more careful proofreading. Although in general Farr writes well, I came across quite a few awkwardly written or completely incomprehensible sentences, where clearly there were words or punctuation missing. The lack of index, glossary or table of contents was also a big drawback. On the plus side, though, she does give you tons of info on useful websites -- though I'm nervous about buying online from an unfamiliar label.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I think Kendall Farr is the style writer we all should listen to. I know she has helped me improve my look and style which has increased my confidence leaving me close to nauseatingly perfect (as if!). Her advice is real, she writes like a real person who gains weight, sometimes gets it wrong and lives in the same world I do (as opposed to some elongated body fantasy realm where we all move a seamstress into our homes to have access to alterations all the time....are you listening Nina Garcia?).
That said I do have a comment to make about this book. I am the target audience for this book's advice but I think it is geared to the kind of dressing needed by working women. Many of us live a more casual life and many of these outfits would not do for everyday running around. I know I would be way overdressed at the market or bookstore in most of these outfits. Her only clear casual advice is collared polo shirts and bermuda shorts (what year is it?).
My other caveat (made with deep respect for Ms Farr) I live in South Florida. It is quite casual here, even for working women plus it is HOT. 8 months of the year it is hot, 6 months of the year it is really hot. Of the 10 outfits pictured in the book 6 featured jackets. It would be genuine torture to wear these tailored jackets in the Florida (or south or southwest) summer heat.
I think, even at my age, I can dress with a little more casual style and look good. Being this age does not mean the occasional well fitted long tank top with a cropped cardigan over it & cropped or capri pants are the exclusive territory of younger women, done with restraint, of course.
But still, Kendall Farr knows her stuff and I am listening.

This is a later addition to this review. How can you not like a book that uses the word *gobsmacked* to express her surprise. Indeed!
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Format: Hardcover
Thank you Kendall Farr for helping me leave little girl things behind and dress like a real woman! The "Pocket Stylist" is one of my all-time favorite books, and "Style Evolution" does not disappoint, especially now I am approaching 40.

In response to the lady who was concerned about this book being for the fashion industry alone - I couldn't disagree more. Farr gives great advice to women (like me) who can't afford couture clothing. She advocates studying the expensive stuff and then developing your own version of the look by shopping at places you can afford. She even gives you the best brands to shop at national discount chains like Target and Kohls.

Farr has actually saved me a lot of money and time. Now, I only invest money in a few well-cut and beautiful piece each season, and I refuse to hang anything in my closet that doesn't fit me perfectly. As a result, I actually wear the clothes I own.

In a way Farr advocates shopping like the French - owning less but having more to wear. It is very liberating. You should try it.
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