{Fashion} My FOF Uniform

“It’s taken me years to discover my look,” writes FOF founder Geri Brin, in her recent blog entry. “I used to change it all the time, but that’s because I was trying to find out who I was. I’m thrilled that I finally found out.”

When you’re FOF, you know the value of a “uniform”–a look that fits, flatters and gets you out the door in five minutes flat. 3 FOFs share their no-fail, feel-good “uniforms.” What’s yours?
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FOF Joni Fischer
Retail director of Christopher Fischer Cashmere


My uniform: A cashmere cardigan with two tank tops layered underneath, relaxed or skinny pants, a chunky necklace and flats.

“I layer a tighter tank top and then a looser tank top to smooth me out so I have no line. My cardigans are always Christopher Fischer Cashmere. Even in the summer I wear a lightweight cashmere, almost like a gauze. Prada and Manolo Blahnik have the best flats. I top it all off with a chunky necklace–antique brass or antique silver. The last one I bought is by Lanvin from Paris. One of my favorite necklaces is by a new designer, Gemma Redux, who uses lots of chains in her designs.”

When I started wearing it: “Probably for 10 years–since we opened the Christopher Fischer retail stores.”

Why I wear it: “Because I have to get dressed in a hurry; I’m always running from store to store.”

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FOF Cindy Joseph
Founder of Boom by Cindy Joseph cosmetics

My Uniform: Linen shirts, jeans and silver hoop earrings.

In the summer my linen shirts are cream or white. In the winter, they’re navy (never black) with brown Varda boots. I have black boots but I feel more like myself in brown. The jeans are always men’s Levis–501s. I hate jeans that are too low cut; they always cause a muffin top! I don’t believe in buying worn-out jeans. I like wearing them in myself; they become a part of you, and everyone wears out their jeans differently.

When I started wearing it: I think I was born with this on. When I was younger I always wore men’s white v-neck t-shirts with jeans. I guess I have become more sophisticated.

Why I wear it: Its comfortable and classic. And it suits my personality… I’m very practical. I can’t wear really feminine clothes. I look too frou-frou.  I would rather call attention to myself than my clothes. It’s the same thing with my makeup.

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FOF Linda Morse
Owner of String, luxury knitting store in NYC

My Uniform: Black pants, a black top and black flats.

The pants are made of a silky material and range in cut from straight-leg to tight. The tops are always oversized and long–to the elbows, at least. Every five years I’ll switch my flats since trends change. Occasionally, in the summer, I’ll substitute all black for all white. I have versions of this outfit in all different price ranges. I mix and match pants and tops from Eileen Fisher, Yeohlee, Laura Biagiotti and Eskandar.  But if you didn’t know me, you would think I always wear the same outfit.

When I started wearing it: In college.

Why I wear it: I don’t feel comfortable in anything else.

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Portrait of Cindy Joseph by Heather Weston
All other images by Katherine McPherson for
FabOverFifty.com

What’s your “uniform?” Comment below to tell us.

{Street-Spotted} Sheila Camera Kotur

We stopped dead in our tracks when we saw a woman with an Anna Wintour-like bob and oversized sunglasses approaching us on Park Avenue.

It was not the famed Vogue editor-in-chief, but Sheila Camera Kotur, an exceptionally stylish FOF in her own right. Coincidentally, her daughter Alexandra is senior style director at the magazine. Sheila’s own fashion career began over thirty years ago with a stint in Paris as a designer for Christian Dior, which evolved into a career as an in-demand illustrator for designers such as Oscar de la Renta and Bill Blass.

“Part Auntie Mame, part Coco Chanel with a dash of Lucille Ball,” is how Sheila’s other daughter, Fiona Kotur, designer of Kotur bags, describes her mother on her website.

There is no doubt that style runs in the blood of this “fashion family,” with Sheila the matriarch à la mode.

Name: Sheila Camera Kotur

Age: 60

What do you do? I am a decorator and a fashion illustrator. My daughter is senior style director at Vogue.

How do you describe your style? Simple. Keep it simple.

Who is your favorite designer? Chanel

What’s your signature piece? Well, I never wear belted. You know why? Because I don’t have a waist. But I wear short skirts because I have good legs.

Favorite store? I love Bergdorf Goodman and Barneys.

On Sheila:
Shoes: Chanel
Brooch: Chanel
Blouse: Emanuel Ungaro
Bag: Hermes
Watch: Chanel
Glasses: Tom Ford

Photos by Katherine McPherson for faboverfifty.com
Illustration by Sheila Camera Kotur via Kotur

{Style Expert} What’s your office style? 3 FOFs share the items that work.

Nancy’s Signature Work Pieces (pictured above):

• Hippie chic dress by Ali Ro, “I wear this to most of my important speaking gigs!” says Nancy.

• Tie-dye pattern laptop skin from SkinIt.com and hot pink speakers.

• Tote by Falchi. “For carrying my laptop. It was a splurge when I was booked for my most recent big speaking appearance,” says Nancy.

Amy’s Signature Pieces (pictured above):

• Black over-the-knee boots by Christian Louboutin

• Black jersey “diaper” dress by Norma Kamali

• Tee by Rick Owens

• Flow pants by Rick Owens

“By the time a woman is fifty, she pretty much knows what looks good on her,” says Amy. “A short boxy Chanel jacket just doesn’t look right on me. But a zippered high collared Rick Owens looks just perfect on me– and makes me feel just perfect as well. I like it when people see me in something or in a magazine and say ‘that’s an Amy outfit.’ That says my signature style is established and works.”


Liz’s Signature Pieces (pictured above):

• A very modern version of the black horned rim glasses

• Straight-line, slim black crepe pants by Eileen Fisher

• Diamond studs and rings

• White shirt with mandarin collar

• Black heels

“I have found that these pieces are simple and powerful, project confidence and smarts (I think it’s the glasses!) and seem to be an authentic representation of my business persona,” says Amy.

What’s your office style or signature business piece? Tell us below!

{Style Expert} We asked our FOFs: “What is your signature piece?”

From a $39 pair of jeans to a vintage jewelry line worn by 1930s movie stars, here’s what we discovered FOFs can’t live without…

Joseff Vintage Jewelry
“I love vintage costume jewelry. There is jewelry from a man named Joseff who was a designer in the late ’30s and early ’40s, he designed jewelry for Gone with the Wind and many of the Hollywood movies.” –Carol Guber

Cateye glasses
“I almost can’t wait until I need glasses in order to buy the classic rhinestone studded tortoiseshell cateyes that my mother used to wear!” –m8200n

Uniqlo Jeans
“I buy jeans in bulk at Uniqlo for $39 and at Urban Outfitters (they’re called Cheap Mondays).” –Linda Rodin

Wolford Cotton Stretch Bodysuit
“I wear a Wolford cotton stretch body suit every day to pull everything together. It’s a comfort thing and it eliminates lines.” –Linda Dresner

Black Pant and Tunic in Allie-Coosh’s Signature Fabric
“My favorite items of clothing are a black pant and a tunic in my signature fabric – a washable microfiber that comes in 44 colors. I can make it work for day or glam it up for evening.” –Paulette Martsolf

Judith Ripka Necklace
“My signature piece of jewelry is my Judith Ripka necklace I won on Oprah’s Favorite Things Show in 2003.” –ghall1972

Dior Sunglasses
“My Dior Sunglasses are my newest favorite find. Beautiful designs that feel and look spectacular. Worth every penny.” –lifeiswonderful2

Roberto Cavalli Dress
“My signature item is a Roberto Cavalli dress that I absolutely love. It’s bias cut, stretch material and the color is dreamsicle orange and cream swirl. It’s very sheer and huggy and comes to the knee. I wear it with spiky Gucci heels and every time, mens’ jaws drop and women say, ‘Where did you get that?'” –Debra Deem

What’s your signature piece?  

{Style Expert} Spring for This, Invest in That…

Our style experts, Honor Harrington, manager at Talbots in Annapolis, Md., and Joan Shepp, owner of Joan Shepp in Philadelphia, weigh in on the spring’s best Investment Pieces and Fab Buys.

Fab Buys:

1. White + Warren Swing Dress in Navy, $85

Why it’s a Fab Buy: Because you can wear it night or day. Throw on some sandals and head out or glam up this dress with a wide cinched belt, cuff bracelet and platform heels for the evening.

“It’s great for packing on your summer vacation,” says Joan. Made from 95% rayon and 5% spandex, it won’t wrinkle in your suitcase. It’ll be ready to wear-on-arrival, which means less fuss and more time on the beach.

2. Square Toe Leather Flats,  $99.00

Why it’s a Fab Buy: Because they come in more colors than a spring bouquet and gleam and glint like your favorite nail polish.

“I bought these myself!” says Honor. “I’ve never seen Kelly green patent flats before these. I said I’ve got to get them!”

Investment Pieces:

1. Majestic Triple Layer Tee, $124.

Why it’s an Investment Piece: Because it’s like buying three shirts in one fell swoop.

Shedding bulky layers when switching over a wardrobe from winter to spring can be liberating yet scary. This Triple Layer Tee from Majestic is the perfect way to ease the transition; the fabric is light, but tri-layering hides trouble spots leftover from colder months.

“It looks like you are wearing three shirts but it’s one,” says Joan Shepp, owner of Joan Shepp in Philadelphia.   “And it feels yummy.”

2. TSE Cashmere Scarves$138

Why it’s an Investment Piece: Because scarves don’t have to just be for winter! “Cashmere scarves in assorted prints are great to use as a wrap or to tie clothes together,” says Joan.

Images via Joan Shepp, Talbots, and Style.com