As a blogger, I’m part of a beautiful community of creatives. We may share our ideas through a virtual network, but often times we have the opportunity to connect in person, sit down and chat, and really get the creative juices flowing! Grab your coffee and meet my friends, appearing as guest bloggers in this near-to-my-heart section.

Stay on👉🏽Trend with the ♠️Classics

Our November, Blog Influencer, and our Style Performer, Ruthy Annie, BRINGS IT all week. She styles our clothing full of comfort and style with pure classic finesse, all while staying on trend! She truly is a welcomed and unique addition to the tremendous blog influencers we have been so fortunate to forge partnerships.

I am so excited to showcase her beautiful, whimsical, and ever-so-clever fashion styles. Ruthy Annie is our, “Queen of Styling Innovation”! Take a look below and pick your favorites. Feel free to choose them all, I know I have! 



Happy stylin’,




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Fall Style and Fashion Wisdom from the One and Only

The Only and Only, Phyllis Lerner


Recently, I caught up with the magnificent, Phyllis Lerner of followPhyllis. I had the opportunity to ask Phyllis a series of questions to inspire us for fall and winter. Phyllis gives us a glimpse into her world of seasoned fashion sense along with practical tips that will challenge our comfort zone. I was also thrilled to read how much Phyllis has incorporated National apparel into her everyday wardrobe. Read all about it here:

  1. Solid or print: what is your go-to (or does it depend on the day?)

I have always worn neutral, solid colors. I love the way colors play against each other. They can either blend together or create a bold, minimalist look. I am full busted and always felt like patterns made me look larger than I am. Once in a while I will purchase a blouse with a print, but I rarely end up wearing it. If I want to add a print or pattern to my outfit, it’s usually in an accessory. Unless, of course, that print is leopard-then I’m all in!!!


  1. Tis the season for layering! What are your staples for fall and how do you incorporate them?

When the weather starts getting brisk, I love to wear a fitted tee and skinny leggings under my regular clothing. I find that these extra layers keep me super warm with adding just a touch of bulk. I also love turtleneck dickies in the winter as they are not quite a layer but can serve the same function. Most days, I put my gym clothes on first thing in the morning and keep them on all day. Then I swap out a top or an accessory when I need to change up the look. One of your beautiful tunics would look fabulous over my workout leggings. Or, I might throw on one of your cardis over my exercise clothes and meet a girlfriend for lunch.


  1. What is your favorite piece from the UltraSofts® collection at National and how do you style it?

I am obsessed with the UltraSofts® collection from National. I just completed a blog post and I chose the fabulous UltraSofts® Criss Cross Tunic to feature. The length is perfect, and the beautiful neckline detail means no necklace necessary. And did I mention how soft it is??? I loved styling it with my pair of neutral patent pumps with crisscross detail to mirror the neckline. Gorgeous!

Phyllis loves her new Criss Cross Tunic by UltraSofts®

  1. What trend are you most excited to incorporate into your winter wardrobe?

OMG-there are so many fabulous trends this year that it’s difficult to pick just one! With the popularity of animal prints, leather and faux fur, fabric and texture are super important right now. I love them all, but the animal print trend is the one that I am embracing with open arms this year! I have a lot of pieces that I’ve collected over the years: coats and dresses and accessories but I always want more. Many women over fifty are afraid to try such a bold trend so I suggest adding an accessory to update your look. I love the Charmy Loafers from Hush Puppies® that I styled for a recent photo shoot. Leopard print and comfort – what better way to incorporate this fab trend!

Phyllis styling her daytime look for fall


I say, it’s time to shop! Thank you Phyllis for being a constant inspiration to women of all ages, and especially to our team here at National!



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The Softer Side of National

As with all things changing this season, there has been a shift in my lounging wardrobe. Last night, I, without thinking about it, reached for warm jammies.

“Why is this relevant?”, you may ask. Let’s just say, those in my tribe can affirm that I am in a permanent, “private summer”; this means, I ALWAYS reach for the lightest, most cool short-set to retire in for the night.

I am happy to say, I felt a chill yesterday! In an effort to be “normal”, I have concluded, it’s time to go shopping. Somehow, it’s as if I can hear you agreeing with me as you read along. Did someone say, shopping? Heck yeah, let’s do it ladies!

No need to go far, Shop National has a new fall collection of soft loungewear for fall fashion season that allows me to relax comfortably on the sofa and be totally appropriate to receive good girlfriends should they happen to stop by unannounced. Have to love them for that!

Feast your eyes on a few of my picks for great, fall loungewear and the softest fall pajamas you’ll ever want to own.

French Terry Cowl Neck Pajamas


Plush Cowl Neck Lounger
Softwear by Swann®


Dimple Plush Wrap Robe
Carole Hochman®


Holiday Bears Flannel Pajamas


With warm wishes,




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National Customer Service Week

This week, our National office has been all the buzz. There have been exciting activities, high doses of team spirit and positive energy. As we take a moment to recognize the phenomenal job that our ENTIRE customer service team demonstrates daily, we ponder the lovely sentiments of our owner and incredible leader, Lynda Smith Swann:

“Since 1952, when my father started National, he considered the customer service department so important, because customer service was the foundation of our mission statement, ‘treat every customer as if she were our only customer’.

 These co- workers are the voice and personality of our company, because they are the only people our customers actually talk to on a daily basis – every day, night and day – [all] year round!

 Our customer service team goes through extensive training, every call is recorded, they are evaluated and held to very high standards. They work nights, weekends and do all of this with incredible attitudes and dedication to making every customer satisfied.  As my father always said, ‘they are National – this team sets us apart.’

 I think our customer service department is a big reason we have been in business almost 70 years!”


Our custom service team is managed professionally to motivate and bring the team together, achieving a cohesive and well stream-lined work ethic, as well as providing each team member with education on customer support with special care and attention. Every day this week was a true party with themes of some serious creative outfits! We invite you to enjoy the festivities below:

Monday 10/7-It’s Patriotic Day

Our CS Manager, Kim W. rocks it (red jacket)!

Tuesday 10/8-Tacky Tuesday

Wednesday 10/9-It’s a Luau


Thursday 10/10-Team Spirit Day


Friday 10/11-Fun through the Decades

We are truly grateful to our customer service team. Having a front row seat to all of the festivities was truly a treat. I am told this was a good way to get the team geared up for the, “calm before the holiday storm” that is sure to keep us all on our toes as we continue to provide the highest standard of customer service.

Even our CPO is a Team Player!

Go Timmy Go!


Keep shining on,













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Yesterday, Today, and Always-Our National Family

“The National Family”

We are thrilled to announce that has been formally recognized by Newsweek as #1 ranked on their list of “Best Online Shops 2020” for Women’s Fashion (single brand). We have the honor of sitting alongside some incredible brands in the industry, including Chadwicks, Victoria’s Secret, and White House Black Market.

More than anything, I wish my grandparents could see this milestone – a tribute to their hard work, deep belief and commitment to our National family.

Founded in 1952, NATIONAL started from humble beginnings as a mail order business by Eddie Smith, my grandfather, in the town of Lexington, North Carolina. An exemplary American entrepreneur, “Georgie,” as he was known to most, cared for and evolved the company based on a customer-centric philosophy, and in 1999 at the age of 80, he was inducted into the Direct Marketing Association Hall of Fame.  

“The Early Days”
I remember these days so clearly….I strapped on roller skates and made my way through the warehouse as a little girl. The rows and rows of inventory made for perfect hide and seek territory. Many individuals in this photo are with National today and, therefore, my giant extended family for which I am so thankful.


Today, NATIONAL continues to thrive under the personal care of my gifted and compassionate mother, Lynda Smith. We  remain committed to offering a wide range of apparel and accessories, designed for the mature woman to provide them with all-day comfort and style.

We have long held to our mission –  “Living the Comfortable Life.”  The second-generation, family-owned business has thrived in the trade for over 65 years thanks to the commitment my Grandfather made to the customer – first and foremost.

“Family Leading Family”
Growing up in family business, I don’t remember the business suits and posed photos. I remember my Grandfather’s 6 a.m. visits to our house after his morning jog. I would come downstairs and find him in the sunroom with my mom discussing work, family and everything in between. Sometimes the conversations centered around really important, often difficult business decisions. Always, the conversations ended with a hug and a smile. Family first, no matter what.

“All in the Family”
In the years since business school, it has been an incredible journey with the National family in my role as business strategist. Collectively, my mom and I have evaluated key opportunities for the business and learned to work together with respect and excitement for all that is ahead. Not often an easy task in family business, but for us…thankfully…it’s (almost always 😉 ) pure joy.

So, how did we get recognized by an international publication for this commitment?Newsweek developed the rankings based on an independent survey of 20,000+ U.S. customers who were asked whether they’d recommend brands to friends or family. Respondents also assessed the brands on their communications, technical competence, service range, customer focus, and accessibility. More than 130,000 evaluations were collected.

That means – YOU

Our National customer, you shared feedback and supported National’s leap into the spotlight. More than that, you have walked alongside our team….our family…for generations. Thank you for being a part of the National family!

“Give Personal Care”
Mom taking time to read and answer letters from our loyal customers, our extended family!



With gratitude and love,




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Embrace the Blues with Fall Flair

National has all of the blues to lift your spirits this fall season. As I stare out of my big, picture window, I can’t help but be in awe of the transitional color of leaves and the slight chill in the air. The esthetic is breathtaking and I want to embrace the new memories. What gorgeous hues to consume and the freedom to linger in the element.

Another feature of fall is the ability to wear warmer tones, and embrace some the blue color that comes along. I have fallen in love with these outfits; a showcase of mix-and-match for sure. This allows for budget-friendly finds and whimsical wear!


Which one will you sport first? Let me know below!

Happy fall y’all,




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We are Spicing🌶Things🔥Up for🍁Fall

As this new season brings a little chill, National is heating things up with the fit and oh so fabulous—the one and ONLY, Phyllis Lerner of @followphyllis

Phyllis in her daytime look for fall

Phyllis loves her new Criss Cross Tunic by UltraSofts®

Looking fab in her Crochet Detail Blouse

Phyllis roars for her Leopard Loafers

We love partnering with amazing blog influencers who drive us to be better and @followphyllis is our team inspiration. Phyllis has us all in awe of her truth and tenacity! Live more authentically like @followphyllis and read her blog today featuring our new fall collection. Live more authentically like @followphyllis and read her blog today featuring our new fall collection.

Stay sassy,





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Celebrating Our History-Remembering Our Beloved Founder

It’s a Celebration-Founder’s Day. Mr. Smith had a true love and passion for bringing comfort and happiness to his customers’ lives. 

Humble Beginnings-Trust 1927

At 8-years-old, our founder Eddie Smith along with his three siblings find themselves parentless. Because their extended family can’t provide for them, they are sent to the Lexington Junior Order Orphanage. Here, along with 260 other children, they are raised as a family. These humble beginnings create a sense of responsibility and community in Eddie that will last him his lifetime. At the orphanage, he’s placed in charge of Sam the mule. When asked about Sam, Eddie would say,”It’s the best job I ever had.” From hauling in the milk, to taking out the trash, everyone depended on Eddie. Read more about the rich His-Story of Mr. Smith!

Today, we continue to celebrate🎉his legacy⚜️with classic favorites, which you’ll love for years to come!


Our Beloved, Mr. Eddie Smith


Happy 101st Birthday, we will love you always,

Your National Family


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Weekend Travel Essentials for Fall

A new season means new adventures and new memories are on the horizon. As fall approaches, there are many things I am excited to explore. That being said, when I think about travel, I must have the perfect travel clothing.

These days I keep it sweet and simple! My goto brand is UltraSofts® for easy travel gear. I have selected a few things I’ll be packing and I thought you you might enjoy how easy this fall collection folds with ease and requires no ironing. Yep, that’s right ladies, I’m talking easy, breezy fall travel clothing from National, for your next adventure!

Criss Cross Tunic

Diamond Print Pants

Criss Cross Tunic

Happy trails,




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Time to Add a Little Duster

With the cool weather coming our way, I have the perfect addition to your fall wardrobe. A Duster or Kimono works great this time of year. I have several of these in my fall closet. They act as the perfect compliment for your personal fall style.

Last winter, I even paired dusters with a light turtleneck. So they prove to be wildly versatile and super sassy! National offers many style choices and I for one, intend to snag them all. I will show you some of my favs below. Dusters and Kimonos are among the perfect transitional clothing for fall.

Chevron Duster Tunic

Floral Kimono
LVS Collections

Animal Print Kimono
Jessica McClintock


Happy dusting,





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