Statements such as “Mutton dressed up as lamb”, or “Aging gracefully” indicate a belief system that there is an appropriate dressing code that changes when you get older.
Yesterday I was in Mosman Sydney picking up some essential shopping for my mother and getting into the car in front of me was a woman probably in her 70’s who was dressed in a gold sequin vest, multi striped tights and coloured sneakers. She looked fabulous.
There is no rulebook.
Style is ageless. It can take many years to develop your own personal style. Most of us experiment when we are young to find this style. We follow fads and want to fit in. But once we find our own confidence in who we are, our own style emerges.
This style is part of how we present ourselves to the world. It is part of what makes you uniquely you. Fashion comes and goes, and we take from the trends what we like for ourselves. There will always be some people who continue to religiously follow trends despite whether they flatter them. That can end up being a style in itself!
However, my discussion here is mainly about those women who continue to express their style throughout their lives regardless of what others may think.
I don’t think just because you reach your 60’s and beyond, that you need to alter your style.
Most of us have parts of bodies that we like and parts of our bodies that we wish to hide. We learn the best fashion styles that suit us and gravitate to those outfits that ‘accentuate the positive and eliminate the negative’. That doesn’t change as we get older. There are just a few more parts of our bodies that we may prefer not to focus on.
While I now am older and there are more lines on my neck, I won’t stop wearing clothes that have open necklines, but I may add a choker or scarf more often than I used to, whenever the style suits. I have never worn miniskirts as I wasn’t a fan of this fashion and the style never suited me – I instead would wear long skirts. However, if I had long beautiful legs, I would choose to show them off even as I grew older, by wearing a sheer skirt or side split skirt.
I feel there has been a shift in the way we approach getting older in this generation of women approaching their 70’s. This is the baby boom generation. They were the ones who rebelled in the 1960’s. They were never going to sit by and be ignored, like many of our previous older generations were. They will be still swinging in their 70’s.
Not being afraid to accept change and being confident enough to be who you are, is important for all of us, and I am grateful that I am living in a time where I can still be heard when I am over 60. Not long ago, I remember women over 50 were considered too old to be useful, too old to be beautiful, too old to be influential. It was a time when youth and youthful beauty was everything. It was as if women over 50 disappeared, had fallen off some cliff never to be seen again.
Most fashion companies relegated these women to conservative, mind numbing, bland dressing that seemed to think that older women needed to be covered up from head to toe. Thankfully many fashion brands have now recognised the revolution that has taken place. They have recognised that these women have money to spend and desire eclectic fashion items even more as they get older.
Many of us have distilled our fashion style into an artform and understand what we like and seize on those styles which we know are flattering and yet still edgy. We are confident in our dressing choices and our own style.
I believe that being ageless is about being confident about yourself – at any age.
Contact MRS V if you need help with refining your personal style.