About Me

 

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Hello all, My name is Jess and I am from North Carolina, the Lake Norman area. I live here with my 2 shih tzus Gibby and Truffles and my husband. I have a creative side and received my Master’s in Jazz Guitar, which I do play from time to time. I also graduated with a degree in Elementary/Music Education, and have taught both in the classroom. I am a over 40 fashion blogger who dresses in what I like, preferably a classic and romantic style, and believe FIT is the key to having a great looking outfit. I love the style of other eras as well, the 20s flapper girls and dapper guys, the 50’s and 50s circle skirts and cat eye glasses certainly appeal to me. I write about trends, How to dress 40+, interview women over 40, and host a Fashion Party all about style, beauty and showing “fashion can be fun” as we explore and learn about the lovely ladies that participate. I believe that fashion should show off one’s personality, as I don’t believe in many of the silly “rules” imposed on dressing over 40.

Elegantly Dressed and Stylish is an acronym for EDS, a chronic illness, in which I have. EDS is a connective tissue disease where my collagen is faulty,is missing a protein which causes hypermobility where my joints move farther than the normal range of motion, causing dislocation of joints, and severe muscle pain.  My muscles, in turn, experience deep knots which have to be released using a procedure called, “dry needling.” on a bi-weekly basis. Since this, there may be some days I won’t be able to blog, but I will certainly do my best~

I try to take advantage of the good days. With this blog, I did not want to focus on the disease, but also show that if you do have this or others, that you can try to dress up to make yourself feel good. I deal with chronic pain, however, I am in pain when I see some of the outfits people put together!! 🙂

I can not remember a single outfit in high school, probably due to the sheer horror of what I wore. I can’t wear heels due to my disease, so if you are a shoe lover, you will find that I have a nice shoes collection without having to wear stilletos. I am finding that more women want comfortable shoes without sacrificing fashion! Can I get an A-Men!

I love skirts and dresses, jackets, cute flats, and I am a natural red-head with some help from the salon now. So again, women who are over 40 and love fashion, you can check on styles I create and follow me on my social media as well. I have a propensity for lace and florals, but love to try new styles as well.

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My little Teddy bears, shih tzus Truffles, 6 and Gibson 4, are the best, and help me with days I don’t feel well. I can’t help but wake up and smile when I look at their two cute faces.

Follow me on Intagram: HERE Follow me on Facebook HERE Follow me on Twitter HERE

Thanks for viewing! blogsig

43 Comments

  • Reply
    The FABulous Journey - Co-hosting Turning Heads Tuesday - The FABulous Journey
    September 15, 2015 at 8:27 am

    […] week, The FABulous Journey is co-hosting with Jessica from Elegantly Dressed and Stylish for Turning Heads Tuesday. I first became familiar with Jess through her weekly linkup, but I have […]

  • Reply
    Maria Ljungström
    July 30, 2015 at 7:00 am

    Hi I just found your blog and I now read this about your pain 🙁 I run Swedens most popular home decor blog BUT I am chronic ill to I have Chronic fatique and it makes me so tired some days i hardly can seat in front of the computor. I also have chronic pain in my body but its better now than 5 years ago. I will soon go to stockholm to get acupuncture from a great Chinese doctor it always helps. BUT I will never loose my will to inspire other people to beauty and I will never loose hope of be free frpm pain and live a healthy happy life 🙂

    I just feelt i had to share this with you cause you inspired me today 🙂 and feel free to write on my Swedish blog.

    LOVE Maria Inredning – it’s Swedish for decor

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      July 30, 2015 at 10:09 am

      Hi ! So sorry to hear about your pain problems. I know Chronic Fatigue and fatigue well, as I am often exhausted in the afternoon and have to sleep. Great you are doing a blog and have found a positive hobby as well. Thank you so much, I will check out your blog today, and would love to follow on social media, you? xx

  • Reply
    M(e)IA
    June 30, 2015 at 1:24 am

    You are an inspiration!!!!!!!! I love you your blog!!!!!!!!!

  • Reply
    Kim Adams Morgan
    April 14, 2015 at 9:57 am

    Jess, Chronic illnesses are never fun (Sjogren’s and Mixed Connective here with Thyroid issues). I get to meet my new RA doc in CA today. I may be coming back to Duke, ha ha. It is all about a state of mind and attitude and not letting our circumstances dictate our life and our actions. Sometimes this can take a lot of will power, right? So glad to have met you. I just added you to my link up list and Twitter. Love your style and that beautiful red hair. Blessings to you.

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      April 14, 2015 at 7:53 pm

      Kim glad to have met you too. Wish you the best with your new doc in CA. Yes, attitude has much to do with increased pain, stress, anxiety etc. It certainy can take energy at times. I know about Sjogrens and MCTD, so sorry you have to deal with this as well. I have hypermobility due to EDS, so my muscles take the brunt of my joint instability Glad you are here and I look forward to getting to know you. thank you!

  • Reply
    Shannon H.
    March 29, 2015 at 5:33 pm

    Thanks for the Twitter follow. I need some comfy shoes that aren’t athletic ! The 4th corn showed up and I don’t take enough care of myself. I have a 3 yr old and suffer chronic pain from fibro, OA, 3 spine surgeries, 2 with fusions. I’m sick of mommy clothes. I stretch when they do. Trying to break out of depression cycle is a struggle, but recently dropped off some weight. Has helped me see light on the horizon!
    I matter too, or I can’t be all to anyone else!

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      March 30, 2015 at 10:10 am

      Sure! You can check out my blog, or pinterest I have shoes pinned that are comfortable yet stylish. Oh, so sorry to hear about your 3 year old too, that has to be very hard.
      Take care, jess

  • Reply
    nofearoffashion
    January 11, 2015 at 9:11 am

    Ah, just read this. Now I know why you don’t wear high heels. The upside is: you are so much more comfortable.
    Greetje

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      January 11, 2015 at 10:23 am

      Hello again, yes I used to wear high heels before my illness but I cant because of muscular issues. Beleive me, I love the styles. I have come along way to be able to wear a small kitten heel, and I am 5 9 so it is fine. As you speak of your style and heritage, I wanted to go to your blog, but as I clicked on it, it says “this wordpress site is not available”, are you working on a blog, or am I missing it, would love to see your style as well. Take care, ( greetje) :-)) jess

  • Reply
    heatherwyancko
    November 3, 2014 at 10:47 am

    WOW! JAZZ GUITAR! I’d love to hear you play. Post some videos of your music!!! PLEASE!
    Heather Wyancko
    http://thriftstories.me

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      November 3, 2014 at 11:24 am

      Thanks so much Healther! I would have to create a recent one, because of my illness, I havent played in a bit. But would love to post . Did u read about this on my About me page ? xo jess

  • Reply
    Miriam
    October 13, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    Hi Jess, what a great blog you have! You are very inspiring and a role model. It’s such an important life lesson for all of us trying to focus on the positive, not the negative – even though it must be hard some days when you have a chronic illness. Keep it up!
    And thank you so much for leaving that nice comment on my blog, I appreciate it!
    xo Miriam

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      October 13, 2014 at 5:29 pm

      Thank you Miriam, it means alot to hear you say that as well. I will be stopping by again, glad you like my blog! jess xx

  • Reply
    Rebecca McNeur
    July 21, 2014 at 8:58 am

    Hi Jess! Wow, I am so happy to find you and your blog. I’m a vintage fashion lover and I also have EDS (Arthrochalasia type). So great to find another lover of the 20’s, 30’s and 40’s era who can relate to struggles with pain, being confined to flats etc… someone who understands the process your mind goes through when you look at a pair of shoes, item of clothing and go through scenarios of what ramifications could play out if you wore it. Love your style! An inspiration to me and others I’m sure! I’ll be following your blog and facebook page definitely with interest!

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      July 21, 2014 at 10:02 am

      Thanks so much Rebecca , I am sorry you are dealing with EDS as well. I have had a rough summer so far with it, but glad you found my blog as I hope it can help with clothing choices, shoes etc. I would love it if you follow me through bloglovin ( button on right) and facebook. I can follow you back as well on FB if you like. Is your type Type Iv? I have type III, Hypermobility.
      Talk with you soon! jess xo

      • Reply
        Rebecca McNeur
        July 21, 2014 at 7:21 pm

        Done and following! I’m type 7a… there are only about 40-50 of us in the world (we think). Love your style! Chat soon on Facebook no doubt! 🙂

        • Reply
          Jess Jannenga
          July 21, 2014 at 7:53 pm

          Sure I would love to talk more on FB. I am sorry you deal with this. Glad you like my style 🙂 jess xo

  • Reply
    Kathy Rogers
    July 14, 2014 at 1:14 pm

    I have been looking for someone else who wears flats too, I need some inspiration in that department :-). I am familiar with EDS and I know how challenging chronic pain can be. I myself have early onset osteoarthritis and Fibromyalgia. I love your style and how genuine you are. I look forward to following along.

    Take Care,
    Kathy

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      July 14, 2014 at 1:20 pm

      Thanks so much Kathy, for your interest and understanding. I find few people who know about EDS, since it is rare and incurable. I know, by looking at your website that you struggle with chronic pain as well. I enjoy your style, and would love if we could follow each other via Bloglovin.
      Have a great day! jess xx

  • Reply
    versatilestylebytracey
    June 2, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    Looking forward to following you as another over 40 blogger . They make such beautiful flats these days, it won’t hinder your style at all !

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      June 2, 2014 at 1:14 pm

      Thank you for following me. Yes, they do make nicer comfortable shoes these days, I suppose there is a demand! Have a great day!
      jess xx

  • Reply
    susan
    May 14, 2014 at 7:17 pm

    You are lovely! Had a peek around and just wanted to thank you for stopping by today! xo

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      May 14, 2014 at 7:39 pm

      Oh, thanks so much Susan. Feel free to follow me on Bloglovin or stop by anytime. Jess

  • Reply
    Spashionista
    April 21, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    Thank you for your feedback on my blog, Jess! I understand chronic pain all too well and how hard it can be to make others understand what it’s like – especially on bad days. Like you I just try to focus on the fashion and the wonderful things around me.The South is really coming into it’s own in terms of fashion and I’m so pleased that you are a part of that 😉

    Alicia
    spashionista.com

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      April 21, 2014 at 5:07 pm

      Hi there. Thank you for visiting. I appreciate your positive comments, and can empathize with you as well. I do think it is great you too have something like the blog to focus on, that is great. I will stop by again. Have a good week, Alicia!

      jess

  • Reply
    Judy Doyle
    March 7, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    Well aren’t you cute! I was scrolling Pleated Poppy “What I Wore”……the eye glasses caught my attention. Thank goodness another person over 40 that still loves to dress up and look hip. I’m a 50’ish (51) and can’t believe it. I also love vintage, Heck, I love everything. Sorry about the high heels. I love any and all shoes. I’m wearing flats more often now though. I’m not a blogger but I enjoy others blogs. It’s nice seeing what else and who else is in the world out there. I’ll ck your blog more often.

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      March 9, 2014 at 1:31 pm

      Hi Judy! Nice to “meet” you. I try my best. The glasses are readers, from readers.com, although I plan on getting a prescription pair in the same kind of frame. I dress up most of the time, only when I am not feeling well, am I in cotton black pants or a tracksuit. I too, miss wearing beautiful heels, but it isn’t that bad as I am 5 foot 9. Stop by anytime!

  • Reply
    Stephanae V. McCoy
    February 21, 2014 at 8:49 pm

    Hi Jess, I should have come to your “About” page first (I was sidetracked by your necklace on today’s post). I too wear mainly flats with a few kitten heels thrown in as I can’t be trusted not to trip over my cane and break my neck. But the flats of today are so fabulous. I’ve been collecting a number of d’Orsay’s and I get compliments on them all the time. Being that I used to wear heels all the time it did take some time to get used to wearing flats and of course appearing much shorter is now a cross that I must bear.

    Sorry to hear about your painful condition, I can’t even comprehend what it must be like to live with chronic pain. I admire and respect people who somehow manage to move through the discomfort to live the best life possible. You’re an inspiration!

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      February 21, 2014 at 9:03 pm

      Thank you again. I truly felt the same when reading about your story. Inspiring. My parents both taught blind children and loved their jobs. You need to commend yourself for the blog and all you are doing as well. I did try these gorgeous blush kitten heels with a bow on them and really wanted them for spring, but my legs, just said ” No, not right now”. I was disappointed, but there was a time where I didn’t think I could wear some of the cute flats I can wear now, so progress. I love d’Orsays too, and bet they look great.I am 5 foot 9, so it is ok that I don’t wear heels, but it took awhile, as I wore them for years. Thank you for the kind words and support! take care!

  • Reply
    Alison
    February 16, 2014 at 5:00 pm

    Wow!! What a great site! I admire your strength! I too have a chronic illness, but just returned to work, and I am so happy. I have never known how to dress, but love your style…maybe I will learn something! Congratulations!!

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      February 16, 2014 at 6:21 pm

      Hi Alison,
      Thank you so much. Please visit when you can. I am sorry that you too deal with a chronic illness, it is tough. It is great you are able to work, I am sure it gives you a feeling of accomplishment, and can help distract away from the illness. I know when I am working on this blog, I am focusing on it, and it does take my mind away from pain and other problems with illness. I appreciate the compliment, I would say my style is classic with some trend and antique look to it.

  • Reply
    ShoeBitch
    February 16, 2014 at 2:59 pm

    Since you can’t wear heels yourself, you are most welcome to live vicariously through me! I love shoes > pretty ones. The heels don’t have to be high for me to love them, but the majority of mine are. I love your style and the 20s was such an elegant time period. I watch Downton Abbey and LOVE their clothes. I am particularly fond of the hats and gloves!
    Good luck with your blog! It is nice to find another 40+ blogger in the midst of all the younguns blogging!
    Don’t let the Devil (EDS) steal your joy!

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      February 16, 2014 at 6:28 pm

      Hi there! Yvonne and Tiffany 🙂
      I went to check out your site as well. OMG, I would love a “shoe room”. Yes, I used to wear heels all the time, even at 5 foot 9. However, yes this illness does not permit me to wear a heel as my joints can dislocate, and we don’t want that to happen. Only recently have I been even wearing cuter flats or shoes that have support and stability but are super cute. Manufacturers are taking notice of women that want cute shoes, but don’t want to sacrifice style, or have to wear orthotic looking shoes. I will have to just live through your shoe interest as well.
      Thank you regarding the compliment of my style, I do love classic pieces, but also like to mix them with vintage jewerly and some trendy pieces. I am with you about Downton Abbey, that Maggie Smith has quite a hat collection.
      Thanks again, and you are welcome to become a follower of my blog, as well, or just come and visit once in awhile.
      Jess 🙂

  • Reply
    Matt
    February 6, 2014 at 6:45 am

    Looks great!! I can’t wait to see the updates! Congrats….this looked like ALOT of work!

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      February 6, 2014 at 11:05 am

      Thank you Matt. It was a bit of work, but the major part of it is done. Now just taking pictures etc. Appreciate it

  • Reply
    Charlotte Issyvoo
    February 5, 2014 at 7:58 pm

    Welcome to style blogging. Like you, I have a disability that causes chronic pain. Like you, I’ve created a blog that is not just about my disability. Also like you, I can’t wear high heels. Let’s keep an eye on each other’s blogs!

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      February 5, 2014 at 8:04 pm

      Yes, will do. I know we certainly have good and bad days, good to see that you enjoy fashion as well and we must have other interests . Best wishes!

  • Reply
    seilmes
    February 5, 2014 at 7:04 pm

    Beautiful pictures! I am so excited for you!! Go Jess:)

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      February 5, 2014 at 8:05 pm

      Thank you Sue. I am glad you enjoyed what I have posted here. I am hoping to share my love of fashion, and then maybe we can shop together sometime 🙂

  • Reply
    tim
    February 5, 2014 at 12:23 pm

    LOVE IT!!! My favorite line “however, I am in pain when I see some of the outfits people put together!!”

    • Reply
      Jess Jannenga
      February 5, 2014 at 8:06 pm

      It is the truth though isn’t it. You know when you want to say, ” The 80’s called and they want their Parachute pants back!”

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