Dolly Parton. Two words that bring up a lot of feelings. People either think she's just another cheesy southern actress capitalizing on a well-worn stereotype. Or people think she's amazing: self-deprecating, funn, and humble, all while being 1980s-style fabulous. I grew up watching Dolly Parton movies and loving every second of them. It would be a lie to say that Dolly hasn't taught me a lot about personal style.


1. Ain't nothin' wrong with a theme! Dolly loves a themed outfit. From cowgirl to picnic table, Dolly seems to have an outfit for every occasion. Some people think dressing in themed outfits is too cutesy. To which Dolly would probably say "phooey" and readjust her gingham hair bow. I agree. I love theme parties. And I will admit -- sometimes, I pick an outfit theme for the day, from schoolgirl to secretary to ladies who lunch. 

2. Stick with it, sister lady. Don't let the haters get you down. Have you noticed something? Dolly never gets featured in the Worst of the Worst fashion spreads or even on "Fashion Police." She's untouchable. Why? Because everyone knows she wouldn't care... and because her outfits are such a part of her persona and character. I think if you are confident and funny enough to carry a crazy outfit, you can pull it off and no one can touch you. And if someone says anything about it, it won't matter... because just like Dolly, you just don't care. 


3. Honesty is the best policy. Famous Dolly line: "It's takes a lot of money to look this cheap!" Dolly is known for her love of the Bedazzler (I imagine she owns one or 15 of them) and her, well, assets. But Dolly's famous bosom doesn't really set her apart. It's the fact that she's honest about it. She never makes any excuses for herself or her appearance. She's not trying to pull the wool over our eyes and make us think anything that's not true. In Dolly's own words, she looks cheap and you know what? She freaking loves it. That right there, ladies, is confidence. 

4. It's OK to have fun. The fashion world tends to be kind of a snobby, oh-so-serious world. Where you put on your serious face and smize and pout and generally try not to look happy. But, um, that's kind of exhausting. I prefer to have fun, to smile in my outfit photos and to generally try not to take things too seriously. Dolly embodies this idea. She's always smiling, laughing and telling a joke, usually about herself. And it's awesome.


5. At the end of the day, it's for you.
Not for anyone else -- not for that dude you think is cute, or your best friend, or your mom, or anyone else. Your sense of style is all yours, girl. Dolly doesn't dress up for anybody -- she dresses the way she does because she loves it, because it makes her happy. And more than anything else, style, especially your own, should make you happy. So stop dressing to impress other people and do what makes you feel like a million bucks. 

Lovelies, what do you think of Dolly? Do you love her as much as I do? And more importantly, who is someone unexpected who you learned a little bit about style from? 

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