Goodbye, skirts and flip-flops: Changing seasons means it’s time to put away your summer wardrobe in favor of cozier attire like tights, boots and turtlenecks. Lifestyle management pro Sue Battani offers some tips on keeping things in order when it comes to your switched-over closet.
Filtering: Out with the old, tired and seldom seen. Assess your wardrobe and filter through it, keeping those items that are not only prac-tical, but also make you happy just to wear them. If you haven’t worn that polka-dot blouse in well over a year, chances are you never will again. Hand it down to someone who will be glad to put it to use.
Hanger Shuffle: If I were to take a sneak peek into your closet right now, I would unveil a colony of wire hangers taking over your wardrobe. Some sporting paper covers and some just downright ugly, naked wire. Don’t stand for those sticky lines on your sleek black dress pants or the pointy shoulders on your cardigans. Invest in several packages of plastic hangers or, better yet, wooden or padded varieties. Recycle the wire beasts at your dry cleaners.
The Cover-Up: Sticking to the subject of dry cleaning, remember that your clothes deserve to breathe. As soon as you bring those freshly pressed clothes home, remove the plastic bags. Your closet will have a tidier appearance and you’ll have created more room on the rack at the same time.
The Great Divide: Time to organize your wardrobe. You know you have the perfect gray coat to go with your favorite silk blouse, but where the heck is it? An outfit that you have put together time and again should remain matched up in your closet. Try to group pieces together by occasion as well. For example, all casual clothing together, all business attire together, etc.
If you still need some room in your closet, consider consigning your leftovers to one of these local stores.
Duo (101 Elliewood Ave., 979-1212)
Glad Rags Consignment Boutique (1923 Commonwealth Dr., 979-1816)
Jean Theory (110 Fourth St. NE, 296-JEAN)
Natalie Dressed (2114 Angus Rd., 296-6886)
Sugar Snap Consignment (480 Shopper’s World Court, 973-0736)
Shoes to Show: Traditional shoe racks can be helpful in keeping pairs sorted, but very few people I’ve worked with have the discipline to use them consistently. If you have a love for your shoes and have the room to show them off, go ahead! Take individual photos of each pair of shoes in your arsenal for the season. Then purchase clear plastic shoe boxes and place the respective shoe snapshots on each box. The next time you look for those black patent leather stilettos, you’ll know just where to find them.—Sue Battani
Sue Battani owns Cville Concierge, a lifestyle management service that aids in the areas of personal errands, domestic services, travel arrangements, organization and more. For additional information, call 409-0119.
Wash, rinse, pretreat
Caring for your clothes goes beyond hanging them neatly in the closet. Use these laundry tips to keep everything tidy.
Get it hot. The hotter the water, the better the clean. Whites can withstand a hot wash, as hot water also causes more fading. Clean colors and hefty darks in warm water. Delicates and bleed-easy colors should be washed, separately, in cool water.
Tame the stain. If you’re not saving that last drop of coffee on your favorite blouse for later, blot it with a cloth and then sponge it with cool water. Apply a pretreat like OxiClean or Spray ‘n Wash and then toss it in a machine with warm water.
Fill ‘er up. Turn on the water and pour in the detergent prior to putting your clothes in the machine, lest the soap distributes unevenly and spots your new dress.
Wrinkles are an inevitable sign of aging. But, taking preventive skincare steps now will reduce creases and lines later. Enter Frownies: facial strips that address physical causes of wrinkles and help reshape the facial muscles, sans Botox.
Place the strips on the forehead, crow’s feet, between the eyes or corners of the mouth before going to bed. The strips, which adhere to your face with a glued backing, are said to hold the visible layer of skin flat, allowing the skin cells to reposition themselves. In the morning, spritz with Rose Water Hydrator Spray for an extra glow.
Frownies ($19.95) and Rose Water Hydrator Spray ($10.95) are available locally at Rebecca’s Natural Foods and Whole Foods Market.—Hannah Pace
Break it down
Don’t let the workday get you down, ladies. Every Wednesday beginning at 12:30pm, Abby Arnold offers a free 30-minute meditation class at her West Market Street studio, Ananda Wellness Center.
Arnold says Ananda provides instructions for beginners, but many experienced meditators are welcome to participate as well. "It is generally a guided meditation session," Arnold says. Sit, relax and get connected with the inner spirit.
For more information, visit anandawellnesscenter.com or call 245-6940.—H.P.
Lush lash lust?
Mascara dehydrates your eyelashes and leads to brittle and breakable lashes. And, if you’ve recently fallen victim to trendy lash enhancers like Latisse, you need extra help. To rehydrate and keep your eyelashes looking long and irresistible, try this all-natural conditioner recipe.—H.P.
Do It Yourself Eyelash Conditioner Recipe:
• Mix a 50/50 blend of Sweet Oil (sold at drugstores) and Apricot Kernel Oil (sold at health food stores).
• Use a lash wand to coat lashes lightly and leave overnight.
• Wash it off in the morning before applying makeup.
• Use once weekly for best results.
There’s a new kid on the block. More than one, actually. Yogis Kelly Cox and Merrill Woodriff have opened Bend, a yoga studio for children on the Downtown Mall. They cater to kids six weeks to 18 years old, aiming to promote physical health and body awareness. Visit the studio at 420 E. Main St., Suite B, or call 296-BEND for more information.
Keep your cool when things get hot
Displaying anger at the office is a destructive response to conflict and can have a powerful, detrimental impact on personal and professional relationships. An emotional outburst has a long-lasting effect on organizations and relationships because people don’t easily forget these episodes. The fear of something similar happening in the future can shut down open, honest communication.
How do we lose our tempers? We have an emotional reaction to a hot button—an event or person who sets off an automatic response. We then take action (e.g. start yelling, walk away, etc.) as a result of the emotion. However, if we know our hot buttons and are able to notice when we are emotionally charged, we can choose a more constructive response.
What can you do when your normally rational thinking brain is hijacked by anger?
• Learn what kinds of people and/or situations trigger an afflictive emotional reaction. If you are not sure, choose two or three days during the next two weeks to intentionally notice your emotional state throughout the day. Consider keeping a log or journal. What patterns do you notice?
• Practice noticing your emotional reactions in the moment. What indicators do you notice that inform you of your emotional state? Often, anger and other afflictive emotions show up in the body—headache, tight stomach, red face, rapid breathing, etc.
• Once you notice your emotional state, you can employ a cooling strategy. Common cooling strategies include deep breathing, taking a walk, calling a good friend, etc. Find a cooling strategy that works best for you. Don’t hesitate to take time to calm yourself down before engaging with a person and/or situation.
• Consider starting a mind/body practice such as yoga or meditation. Research has indicated that these practices can train our brains to be less reactive to emotion.
With intention and practice, it is possible to learn constructive responses to conflict.—Cathy Smalley Pales
Cathy Smalley Pales is a UVA grad with 18 years’ experience in leadership development. She’s president of Powerful Purpose Leadership, a coaching business that aids individuals and businesses in developing better working relationships.
Work it, girl!
Feel the need to sharpen your career skills? We recommend diving into one of these local classes. Don’t forget your No. 2 pencils.
Social Media: How To Use It
Tweet yourself to a course in how to blog, Facebook and Wiki with the best of ‘em.
Tuesday, October 19 or Wednesday, November 3 ($200) at UVA’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies
Basic Computer for Beginners
No computer skills whatsoever? This amateur class will teach you to turn on the computer (no, seriously), organize files and save documents.
September 7-October 18 ($113-137) at Charlottesville Albemarle Technical Education Center
Business and Marketing Writing
This online course will teach you effective buzzwords, up your interpersonal skills and polish your marketing ethics.
Beginning September 15 or October 20 for six weeks ($90) at Piedmont Virginia Community College