Finance & Fashion...Not Your Typical Combination

August 6, 2017

Finance & Fashion...not necessarily your typical combination but it is exactly what we did last Thursday night in our clothing store.

A couple of months ago, the very talented Mari Bunney (Financial Advisor and K. Renee customer)  contacted me to see if we might interested in partnering with her on an event where she could speak about transforming the financial experience for women while we talked about the transformative experience of great style.  

Although I am several years away from retirement, I am always pondering financial questions  such as “What do I need to know that I don’t know?”   “I feel like I’m doing okay, but am I?”    And since I have those types of questions meandering through my mind, I figured other women might too.


So, our first Real Women, Inspired: Finance & Fashion event was born.   

A little bit about Mari.    She is a wealth advisor for RBC Wealth Management and is all about creating an environment where women can learn about their finances without intimidation  – in a way that leaves them feeling inspired, excited, and most importantly, confident in their future.


Wow.    That is about the same description that I would give DJ Fees (and all of our other stylists)  who focuses on helping women learn about styling without intimidation - in a way that leaves them feeling inspired, excited, and most importantly, confident in their future.    

So there it is... a great partnership, finance, and fashion.


So we broke the night down into four segments.    Two fifteen-minute finance segments and two fifteen-minute fashion segments.   Of course, wine and appetizers were involved before, during and after.

Mari kicked off her first segment with how having a sense of where you should be financially along with attainable savings goals can ease financial anxiety and uncertainty.

  • Milestone/Goal 1:  Aim to have one years’ worth your current salary saved by the time you are 30.
  • Milestone/Goal 2:  Three years of your current salary by the time you are 40.
  • Milestone/Goal 3:  Five years by the time you are 50.
  • Milestone/Goal 4:  Ten years by the time you retire in your 60’s.

Mari also let us know that these figures are not set in stone and will vary based on each individual or couples lifestyle choices.   But it was great to have benchmarks to consider.

One of the big questions that Mari addressed was about the future of Social Security.  And whether it would even be around in the years to come.

Mari does believe that SS will be around and it is simply a myth that the system will be insolvent and broken by 2034.  She said, "Even if nothing is done in the 16 years between now and then (which is highly unlikely,) SS will still be receiving enough payroll tax from current workers to cover 77% of the benefits it currently projects to payout."

Whew.  Onto some fall fashion and style tips.    


 While it might seem contrary to talk saving for retirement and then switch to the importance of having great style, I say it's not.  Both are about investing in the here and now and in your future. The future is unpredictable for many reasons, but today is not.    

So for our event, DJ arranged for a few of our clients to stop by and model some great fall pieces for Mari's guests. 


The good old classic trench coat is once again making its appearance for the fall of 2017.   But spruced up with a punch of color.   In this case, DJ is showing a beautiful red coat that looks great with the black and white striped knit and an A-line soft leather skirt.   Easy to wear as part of a business ensemble or with a white tee and jeans.   

Now let's talk about the A-line skirt.  Flattering for almost any woman.   Why?    They hide imperfections, so no need for shapewear.   They accentuate the waist and create the illusion of a nice hourglass figure.   This particular leather skirt is "oh so" feminine but powerful at the same time!

DJ also showed our guests some fabulous suit options that can give you a professional yet edgy look.   This particular classic pinstripe suit has a modern update with a cool lace-up detail on the sides.  Wear the jacket with the chic flare slacks for the office or with a favorite jean on the weekend.  (Notice her pants are way too long for our petite model which is why we have free alterations.)

Oversize sweaters are back strong this year (and we love this faux fur-trimmed zip up.)   The trick?    Keep it slim on the bottom to balance out the look and to look cool rather than sloppy.    A great pair of leather leggings will be your go-to piece on the bottom this fall and winter.       And hey, don't forget the on-trend Cheetah print boot or pump to add a little pizzaz to your life and wardrobe.



So back to Mari…

Risk.   At what age should you consider taking less risk?     Although this is such an individualized answer, Mari tells us about a formula (although antiquated) that says you should subtract your age from100 and the number you get is the overall percentage of stocks (risk) versus more predictable investment options.    This is where a trusted financial advisor comes in handy.   Mari says to keep asking questions and pushing back until you feel confident in the answer and the strategy that is right for you.

Mari was great as she opened up the floor with questions from all of our guests.    Her goal is always to help women become more financially confident.    Our security for the future lies in understanding the balance of risk and reward and coming up with a plan to address retirement goals.

Both Mari and I agree on the last point to our evening of Finance and Fashion.    Yes, it’s important to be diligent for saving for someday, but it is just as important to do the things that allow you to live life beautifully today.   My husband and I had great plans for someday. And his someday was taken from us.   One of the things that I am most grateful for was not only his diligence for saving for our future together but his diligence for living well in the moment each and every day.    

He was the one that taught me the most about living life beautifully.  We traveled, we enjoyed having and wearing beautiful clothes, creating a beautiful home and beautiful children.   Thank God he made sure we lived our life in the moment rather than just sitting around waiting for someday to arrive.  

Personally, I can’t wait to do more of these women’s lifestyle events.   A great time was had by all!


 If you have any inspiring ideas for our next topic, I would love to hear them.    In the meantime, I wanted to share with you a sneak preview of a Theory style event that we are having on August 17th  through the 19th. Theory is one of our favorite lines...and while we have lots of beautiful selections in the store today, we wanted you to be able to see more options!    So for three days only, Theory is going to send us extended inventory (they rarely do this for any store anywhere...but for Kelli they did.)  


Check out some of the separates that will be a part of this special event....


I love fall clothes and you won’t want to miss out on great options that are arriving daily...pumps, boots, jackets...and more.   I look forward to seeing each of you in the days ahead!