Please welcome Brenda from 1010 Park Place (my new partner in crime here on Ageless Style) and Meet Donna McNutt, wife, mother of three, uber-stylish cancer warrior, and champion to all women over 50. I can’t remember when I have been so excited about an Ageless Style interview. Donna’s motto is “Fighting Cancer One Outfit at a Time”. Donna’s style is so creative and refreshing. Meet the Cancer Fashionista, whose style you will want to copy. I know I do.
How would you describe your style?
I’m not locked into one style, I dress for how I feel, but I’ve always been drawn to that juxtaposition of masculine & feminine mixed together.
Has surviving cancer affected that at all?
YES! Because I dress the way I feel there were days I should have looked like a bag lady, but I decided to go with how my mindset felt instead & damn it, I’m a warrior & I’m gonna look the part!
What inspires your signature style?
Confidence. I am continually inspired by women who wear their clothing not the clothing wearing them.
Do you have any repeat offenders in your closet?
Give me a white button-down shirt & I can make an outfit out of it, casual or fancy. If I repeat anything in my wardrobe it’s my white button-down shirts.
Do you have any style rules that you live by?
After years of trial & error, if I don’t feel comfortable & confident in what I’m wearing, then I won’t wear it.
What are your favorite online go-to sources?
Shopbop carries a lot of the labels I like, their sales are always good too, it’s the first site I click if I need a fix. Me and Em meandem.com has taken the place of the old J crew catalog which I would devour & cut out for my inspiration book that I still use today. When the Me and Em catalog arrives, I read it like a Vogue magazine.
Do you have a particular designer that you are drawn to?
There are labels I like, Xirena, and Velvet By Spencer & Graham I shop at Zara & H&M & adore boutiques with off-beat labels. I get a ton of inspiration from high-end designers & recreate at my budget, but my all-time favorite designer & one that changed how I combine my whole outfit will always be Jenna Lyons, the once head designer of Jcrew when it was a great store to shop in.
Do you have an accessory that you can’t live without?
Like most married women, my wedding ring. Smiling is also a huge staple & when I’m feeling good, I can’t help but…
I’ve been living in my Buddha Girl all-weather bangles lately, stack them up my arm & love how they don’t bang together.
Do you have a favorite color, and has gone white changed that?
I love greens & purples & white hair just seems to pop now with deep colors.
Do you have signature pieces that define your style?
SHOES!!!! All & I mean all of my budget goes into great shoes, they can shake up even the most basic
What are your strengths?
61yrs of loving getting dressed! I could have a Ph.D. in something if I hadn’t spent so much time throughout my life organizing my closet & recreating ways to wear my things! But it’s what’s made me, so my strength is my wardrobe education.
Do you have a style icon?
Sharon Stone. She hasn’t had a bad era, just has aged so elegantly & who can forget that white men’s button-down shirt she wore to the Oscars with that incredible skirt, I’ve since copied it a million times. No sequin gowns for me.
Do you have any favorite hair products?
I shampoo/condition with Nounou, use Evo Fabuloso toning shampoo every other day (purple shampoo for bleached hair) & love all Kevin Murphy products for styling it. I was recently introduced to Evo’s the shag beach paste & have been using it daily for my short cut & I love it.
Has going white affected your makeup palette at all?
I kept the same make-up routine but found that after going bald and bleaching my newly cropped red hair I feel so much more confident now rocking a red lip.
What advice do you have for other women going through what you have?
KEEP THAT THING YOU LOVE
DON’T LET CANCER TAKE IT
DO IT PROUDLY, NO MATTER HOW SMALL
I truly believe I would not be here today had I not decided to fight cancer with the one thing I do well, get dressed. Our mindset is just as powerful as chemo, mine was made right by looking the way that made me feel like me. I want women to know, that they don’t have to look like me or dress fancy for treatment, but I know they have something that will keep them fighting. I’m not talking about the given, kids or partners, just that one personal thing you refuse to let cancer take. Love reading, but might be too tired, but darn it, you can read a chapter a day until you work up to reading the whole book again.
What advice do you have for women over 40/50 ?
Enjoy these years, they were my favorite, I came into my own, grew in my confidence, and loved being in my own skin & take it from a 61yr old, you’ll look back & wonder why you thought that age was old.
GET DONNA’S LOOK
I hope you enjoyed Meet the Cancer Fashionista, whose style you will want to copy. You can find all of my previous Ageless Style interviews here. Thank you so much Donna for allowing us a peek into your creative process. You can follow Donna on Instagram here. Now let’s pop over and visit Brenda and see who she is interviewing this month. I think I might have an idea who it is. I think you will enjoy it.