How to wear a jacket – a style interview with Nora

by Sylvia

How to wear a jacket after 40 |

Nora loves to wear jackets. So much so that she decided to design her own line.  Almost every outfit of hers features a jacket and she has become a real expert on wearing them. I wanted to find out more about her love of jackets and how we can all wear them to great effect!

Can you tell a little bit more about yourself?

I am a fashion designer, stylist and now a style blogger who has worked in the fashion industry in Los Angeles for many years. I am also a mother to an eighteen year old son who is in his first year of university at USC. I am married to a wonderful English man who is not my son’s dad, this is my second marriage and we do not have any kids together.

As a point of reference which age group do you belong to or perhaps you are willing to share your age?

I’m in the 40+ category.

wearing a black vest |

Can you tell us a bit more about your site Jacket Society and why you created it?

I started Jacket Society as a personal styling blog in September of 2013. The blog is about my own personal style emphasizing my love of jackets and how to wear them in different ways. Soon after that I decided to add a shopping web site to my blog to design and sell women’s jackets and blazers under the same name.

Why is the jacket such an important garment for you?


I have always had a passion for jackets. To me a lot of my personal style starts with choosing a jacket which will then set the mood for my outfit. With Jacket Society I do limited edition small cuts of novelty jackets that are only available on my web site. This makes them one of a kind and special, giving the customer an opportunity to buy something directly from me and not through a store. I also show my customers how to wear them on my blog stories.

wearing a jacket with jeans |

What are the top selling points of a jacket? What does it do to a woman’s silhouette?

Jackets like any other piece of clothing need to be flattering for your body shape. It is really important for a woman to be aware of their shape and look for jackets or blazers that work best for them. Also what type of bottom you wear with the jacket is just as important; the proportions have to work in order to make the whole outfit look good.

What are your top tips for wearing a jacket? For example do you scrunch the sleeves or not?

My top tip for wearing any jacket would be to know what to wear it with to get the best visual effect. For example you want to wear oversized and loose jackets with slim fitting bottoms and fitted and shorter jackets can work better with looser bottoms. Proportion is everything in making an outfit look good. Scrunching your sleeves or pushing your collar up is great fun styling tip but the core look has to be right.

Wearing a flowy jacket with skirt |

Can you give us some advice on how to wear jackets with dresses?

It all depends on the silhouette of the dress and the length of the jacket. Shorter jackets work better over maxi dresses and longer jackets or blazers look better over a shorter fitted dress. Its pretty much the same as when you are wearing them with sportswear. I always say opposites attract, shorter jackets over longer dresses and longer jackets over shorter dresses.

How would you describe your own style?

My personal style is mixing the classical with the modern and edgy. I like to find a middle ground where you can wear timeless classic looks but mix them with some edgy pieces to look more current and trendy.

Wearing a printed jacket |

What would you consider the most important components of your style?

I would say the most important components of having great style are:

  • Confidence;
  • Ppaying attention to fit and proportion of clothes for your body type;
  • Being current and up to date with the trends but not letting it dictate your whole look.

Where do you live and how does that influence your style?

I live in Glendale California which is 10 miles northeast of downtown Los Angeles. It’s a suburban family oriented city. The fashion influence would pretty much be the same as Los Angeles. Unfortunately we don’t have big season changes here in Los Angeles. So you end up wearing a lot of the same looks throughout the year. The overall vibe is more casual and laid back than New York but still fashionable.

Wearing a vest with wide pants |

Do you feel you have a signature style?

I like mixing the classical looks with something new and trendy to give the whole look an edge.

What inspires your outfit choices the most?

Since I am a fashion designer by profession, I look at a lot of magazines and on line fashion sites. I go to stores to research merchandise and I watch how women are dressing around us. All these things inspire me daily in my work and what I wear.

Wearing a short wide cropped jacket |

Do you take things like color profiling or body type into account when you dress.

I think both of those factors are very important for any woman to know about themselves and to dress accordingly. Color and the right proportions in an outfit can make a big difference in your look. I definitely pay attention to both when I am getting dressed.

Has your style changed at all after turning 40?

I don’t think my sense of style has changed. As you get older your body changes and you have to change your look accordingly but I don’t think you are changing your style necessarily. You have to think more about shapes that flatter your figure, rather than just covering a trend. There are certain pieces like miniskirts or short shorts that I won’t wear any more. I think this is different for each woman and you need to find what you feel comfortable with yourself so you can feel confident in what your are wearing.

How to wear jackets |

Do you believe in dressing “age appropriately” and what does it mean to you?

Yes I do but “age appropriate” can mean different things for different women and that is ok. Like I mentioned, there are certain things like miniskirts or short shorts that I won’t wear. I think its whatever you feel comfortable with. If its your style and you feel good in it then why not?

Would you say that at this stage of your life you are now more or less interested in fashion, style and the way you look?

I don’t think it has changed. I have always been interested in fashion and style; you have to be if you are a fashion designer by profession. As I have gotten older, I feel more comfortable with my look and I know what I like and don’t like right away but that comes with experience.

Wearing a printed jacket |

Why is the way you look important to you?

I think most women if not all women care about what they look like. I think the way you dress says a lot about your personality and like it or not a lot of people judge you by first impressions. If you are comfortable with how you look, that shows through and makes you look more confident and happy.

Which of the outfits on your blog are personal favorites and why?

I only do a personal outfit or styling look once a week on the blog and each one is really thought out and planned so it’s hard to choose. But I get really excited when I am featuring one of my own “Jacket Society” jackets that I have designed. It feels really nice to get feedback on those looks because you created one of the pieces. I love hearing feedback from my clients about those jackets; it helps my design process for the future.

Wearing a colorful jacket |

Do you follow trends? And if yes, which trends excite you at the moment?

Yes I definitely follow trends; again you have to if you are working in the fashion industry. The ones I am liking for fall 2014 are: Robe and wrap coats (I actually have a blog story on this trend this week on my blog), faux fur or shearling jackets or trims, tailored masculine suits, colorful coats especially in red or orange which is a trend color, and I love the return of the midi skirt, it’s such a classy length.

Do you have any fashion and style tips for women over 40?

I think its really important to know you body shape and what kind of proportions and pieces flatter your shape. If you have to work with a stylist, even for a couple of sessions to learn this, it will be worth it.

What are your plans for your blog/business and how do you see it develop over the coming years?

For the blog I am trying to find the additional topics to add to the blog content that would be interesting and informative for my readers. The first year I mostly did one story about personal styling a week, and in the last month I have added a second story about different fashion trends concerning jackets. Right now I am ok with the two stories a week. Because of the amount of time I need to dedicate to designing and manufacturing of “Jacket Society” jackets, it is difficult to do more. I am planning to grow the web site and the sales end of the “Jacket Society” jacket line by doing more shows and even possibly selling to some boutiques. I love doing both, but it is certainly a juggling act because both areas need a lot of attention in order to succeed.

Anything further you would like to add?

I am just really grateful to be doing what I love. I have always loved fashion, styling and designing. And now the blog has become an important part of my life as well. I love the interaction with other women, customers and fellow bloggers like yourself. Thank you so much for contacting me for this interview.

For even more fabulous outfits with jackets and to buy them online, be sure to visit Nora’s blog Jacket Society.

Do you like to wear jackets? What is your favorite way of wearing them?


1 Sabina @Oceanblue Style

That is seriously an amzing way to wear a blazer. Love the chopped sleeves with gives it a elegant but edgy feel. xo Sabina @Oceanblue Style

2 Sabina @Oceanblue Style

Oh PS: And of course I love following the Jacket Society on twitter!

3 denton

-I love the scrunched up sleeve look if you have the arms for it (like Nora).
-The houndstooth outfit is amazing!.
-Hermes looks good with anything lol.
-If i never see another pair of ripped jeans on a fashion blog you will not hear a complaint from me.

4 Suzanne

She has wonderful style.


5 Patti

Love her jackets and her sense of style!

6 Accidental Icon

Now that is not just about wearing jackets! The way Nora curates edgy and hip with classic pieces is fabulous. The accessories put each outfit over that “edge”. She does it in a California way, I do it in a NY way. Great post.
Accidental Icon

7 Marian Rothschild

All of her blazer-style jackets are wonderful. My favorite is the coral-colored one; super cute. The bermuda shorts and the baggy-saggy jackets won’t be as wonderful on everyone. Great to know we have lots of choices, depending on our own personal style and body type.

8 Nora Minassian/Jacket Society

Thank you so much for this opportunity Sylvia to let your readers find out about me and Jacket Society. I love and welcome all the feedback 🙂

9 Glenda

Incredible fashion style. Thanks for the introduction!

10 Aileen

What a great article Sylvia, and I love Nora’s jackets too. She is a very stylish lady and her style is easy yet sophisticated. It is a great look for many of us, especially when trying to widen the shoulders to balance out the hips.

11 Greetje Kamminga

I recently started to follow her as I think she dresses very well. But somehow there is a distance for me.

12 Maria

I really enjoyed this article! Nora looks amazing! It’s hard to put together a nice 40+ style with the clothes I find here in Shanghai. I hope I’ll have better luck when moving to CA. Can’t wait!

13 Deb

What an interesting and stylish lady! Really enjoyed this post and heading over to check out her blog…..thanks for this introduction Sylvia.

14 Fat-ti-ma Blush

I love that carmel colored blazer she is wearing, it is very beautiful! I am not one to push up my sleeves on a jacket that thick unless the temp is very hot out and I am forced to do it. I just think it does not do justice to the look of a “nice jacket”, but it does looks nice on Nora. I found that having a couple of nice jackets in my closet is a “Must Have”. Jackets are certainly my “go to items” especially when my schedule gets crazy busy and those fabulous last minute events pop up, like the fabulous charity event at Haberman’s Fabrics in MI, I attended 2 nights ago, in which I got to meet Char Clover, from Project Runway Season 13! She is so cool, and she provided a lot of insight for us up and coming Fashionitas! A beautiful jacket is always on my fashion wish list! What can you not live without or what would you add to a fashion wish list ?

15 marnell

My favorite is the blush jacket and the distressed boyfriend jean, that is soo me!

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