I think every woman remembers watching their mother get dressed up as a child—in a gorgeous gownand pearl earrings, a business suit and pumps, a maxidress and vintage frames—and thinking she was the most beautiful woman alive.

When my Mom was away at work, I would have a veritable blast rummaging through her closet, putting on her lipstick, stumbling around in her heels, crossing my legs and trying to imitate her grown-up brand of sophistication.

My mother taught me so much about being a lady, but when it comes to fashion, she really shaped the way I look at dressing. She always put a unique spin on everything she wore; she was at once ladylike and eclectic, which was rare in our part of town. She wasn’t afraid to stand out through her fashion choices.

And you couldn’t just copy my mom’s looks. Every outfit had a special flair that was uniquely her; whether a splash of color (she’s an artist and had a knack for mixing hues) or an avante garde pair of shoes, she made sure to express herself through style. I like to think a bit of my fearlessness in fashion came from her.

If I had to pick one piece of advice she gave me that stuck with me, it’s to make sure whatever I wear has the perfect fit. She encouraged me to define my own style–whether sporty, classic, boho, funky, etc.–but every look had to be polished and flattering to my frame.

What’s the best style advice your Mother ever gave you?

-Jessica C. Andrews

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