Tuesday, July 23, 2013

All In My Head, or Why We Shouldn't Ignore our Ages in Considering Style




“Women want to wear what they do because of 
what goes on in their heads.
 Their size and shape have practically nothing to do with it.”
― Elizabeth Hawes

That is so the case for me. Elizabeth Hawes had it right. (If you're unfamiliar with this prolific American designer and writer - as I was - look HERE for a brief biography.) I've always admired a style that is best suited to a much taller, thinner woman. But I've also always been aware that along with the rest of my other unattainable ideals, all my realistic style aspirations and choices start with something I'm thinking about. Whether its a yearning to be tall and cool, or being taken with a color, or a referential bit of narrative, or a silhouette, it is really all starts in my head and in my mind's eye.

Riffing on Hawes' quote, I'd say that "What I wear shows what's on my mind." My ideas and world view have changed as I grow older, and they also have and do influence my style choices. Clearly and happily, I'm not alone in that, as all the style blog-world attests.

If Hawes was writing today she might have added age to "size and shape". We are all learning to dress to flatter our shapes rather than consider age-appropriateness first. But it's still on our minds.

Of late, I've seen a lot of stuff about age-appropriate dressing in the corners of the Blogosphere where I graze. And some of it is about resistance to the idea of rules about what is or what is not age appropriate. Over at her blog, Vix, the always fascinating and ever colorful Vintage Vixen , recently gave vent to a concise and sensible rant HERE about being inundated with rules for dressing, and particularly dressing specifically for one's age.

One of the world's best over-40 bloggers, the amazing Bella of The Citizen Rosebud has, in a thoughtful and touching post HERE , challenged older women to remember to value their bodies and sexuality by posting their own pin-up style photos of themselves. She featured a professional nude pin-up, aged 66, as an example of her point ( but I'm pretty sure she didn't expect any of us to turn up nude on our own blogs.) Bella rose to the occasion and posted a lovely (clothed!) pin-up of herself. That's a brave thing to do, and I see the value in the challenge. I strongly recommend a trip over to read the post, but please don't skip reading the comments. What you'll find is a huge diversity of really well considered opinion on what is sexy and how we all deal with the presentation of ourselves as we age.

For women especially, aging and sexuality are intertwined issues and we've been talking about it publicly for decades. There are massive libraries full of material written about the objectification of women as sexual objects, and probably similar numbers of articles and books written about freedom to express sexuality through style and self-presentation at any (legal!) age. But those ideas are still changing and it appears that there's more to be said.

Over the last half century or so, we've become comfortable with the idea that the desire for love, sex and self-understanding is not just the province of the young. Most of us no longer view sexuality and sensuality as restricted to child-bearing years. And we've also learned that "being sexy" has less to do with dressing in overtly provocative ways as it does with what's going on in the old noggin. Ideas about all this are evolving still, affecting what we think, do and wear, and we seem to still need to talk about it.

And as the aging population increases, and we continue to speak and think about sex, changing bodies and style, there are issues we haven't even addressed much yet. One of those things is the freedom that age brings for a lot of women. I personally am reveling in being way beyond an age where I give any thought to being seen as nubile, or fertile or even youthful. We no longer need those qualities to feel valuable and still vital and attractive as a woman. 

This has nothing to do, by the way, with being happily married, unattached or somewhere in between. To a large degree, this has to do with an appreciation of no longer being either consciously or subconsciously driven by the biologically hard-wired imperative to mate for reproduction purposes. I'm especially happy to be beyond menopause; that transitional time of life when biology and social pressures send the body and mind into a hormonal tizzy, firmly and dramatically signaling the end of the reproductive time of a woman's life.

This freedom is bound to change your attitude, one way or another, and it will affect what we think about and wear. Frankly, I think that's going to be one of the most interesting age-related conversations ever!

And as an aged woman who lives in a particularly restrictive shopping environment that is focused on a much younger demographic, I have my own issues with age-appropriate dressing. I really do care if I appear to be "dressing as lamb." The reason that I care is because I really don't particularly need to be seen as younger than I am, nor do I wish to be seen as stogy and out of touch with what's happening out in the world beyond my little patch. But I especially don't want to be seen as hanging on to youth with both hands in what is already a battle lost. Too late. I'm already old. But that doesn't mean that I want to be completely defined by my age, either.

What I want to do is to dress so that my age is irrelevant. That even seems a tall order to me, and probably requires some serious thought and consideration. Some supporting information seems in order. And I'm most likely to get it from my peers.

So, I'm interested in discussions of what may or may not be appropriate concerning the age-appropriate. I read that stuff, to increase my understanding of how age and style work together. I'd like to be confidently aware of what works only for the young and what is merely youthful and can be more widely used. But more than that, I want to decide for myself if an age-issue dictum is valid or just what some twenty-something editor happened to pull out from where the sun never shines.

 Case in point: I don't believe in the current style myth that if you were old enough to have worn a style the first time around, you shouldn't attempt it in revival. That's the biggest steaming crock of ageism that I ever saw presented in print. What complete nonsense! Who can do it better than someone who already knows first-hand how it was done originally? And who says that we elders don't have the taste and style to keep it relevant and adapt it contemporarily the second time around?

So, I'd hope that along with the other kinds of ageism that is applied to those of us who are no longer young or even youthful, that we shouldn't be discouraged to address these concerns among ourselves.  If there's one thing the Over 40- 50- 60-70-80 Plus Bloggers are good at, it's accepting diversity within how we display our personal style, and providing support for each other in the doing of it. The discussion of age, aging, and age-appropriateness and how they affect our personal styles is something I want to hear more of rather than less.


Just without making up a bunch of rules around it. 'Cause that's how we old lady bloggers roll.


This is a more or less obligatory outfit photo, and you've seen the bottom half before.  Both top and bottom are pieces from a junior department, though, and I think they work anyway.  ( I just love this little top!)

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

I'm sashaying over to join the In-The-Pink Patti's Lovely Ladies at  Visible Monday .  
Come over and see what we're up to!

45 comments:

  1. This: nubile, or fertile or even youthful. We no longer need those qualities to feel valuable and still vital and attractive as a woman. and this: What I want to do is to dress so that my age is irrelevant.

    YES!! The idea that we must perpetually be chasing "sexy" (as defined by our --yes, patriarchal-- culture) to remain visible or relevant annoys the heck out of me. That's why I'm always style crushing on women who can do edgy or androgynous looks. I'm also annoyed by the attitude that dressing in a way that's not perceived as trying to be "sexy" is somehow "giving up." (The obsession among some style gurus with "creating a waistline" drives me bats too. No, not "everyone" looks better with a tightly cinched middle.)

    Love that top with the swingy fringes. Must be so fun to wear!

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  2. cute top love that you found it in the juniors dept... ha I seen that as a rule "Don't shop in the junior dept when you are over 21"

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  3. First let me say that your post was very well written!
    I do think about whether my outfit is age appropriate...but there's always a part of me that doesn't care! I'm not talking about super-low necklines and mini's, mind you, as I'm always playing cover-up...but I usually wear slips on the outside, pants under my dresses, and such.
    I'm finally expressing my style with no apologies, and it's just plain fun. I just read a little blurb about how it's none of my business if others don't like me or approve of my choices - ha!

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  4. What a thoughtful, well-written post!

    I see myself as a representative for not only older women but disabled women as well. I wear what I think works for my shape. If I had great arms I'd go sleeveless; I don't. If I had great legs I'd wear short skirts; I don't. What I do have are brick-house curves and I'm not afraid to show them off with low-cut, body-con clothes. I like looking sexy - in my own way. I don't look junior, nor do I look elderly. I look like me ;-)
    I love your outfit! I've found some terrific pieces at Forever21 and Torrid is opening a Nashville store this weekend. I can't wait!



    Alicia

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  5. Hi dear Jan,

    you look adorable :)

    The top is beautiful with the unique details with the fringe. I love black and white that always fits and allways looks good. However, what makes your outfit even more beautiful is your sympathetic smile.

    Thank you for your visit on my blog and your sweet comment. I was very happy about it.

    Sorry, my english is very bad. I would like to write to you much more, but I'm afraid you would not understand me. But I practice more and more and hope that it gets better over time :)



    Have a wondereful week
    Dana, Germany
    http://danalovesfashionandmusic.blogspot.de/

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  6. Highland FashionistaJuly 23, 2013 at 6:42 PM

    What a fantastic post…so thought provoking!

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  7. You have said all the things I feel so well. What a great piece of writing Jan. I know i what to keep changing as I age and believe this can be an exciting venture.


    This black top has a feel of happiness and choosing white pants to accent it shows it's sparkle. Thanks for the supportive comment on my blog. You have truly an unique and strong voice in the blogging community.


    blue hue wonderland

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  8. Jan, All I can add is AMEN to every word you said! I just feel grateful we are able to have the freedom to CHOOSE what and why we wear. And, the freedom to express ourselves in doing so.

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  9. HappinessatmidlifeJuly 23, 2013 at 9:34 PM

    Very well written Jan! I think it's more important to wear what's feels comfortable and it will all be fine. I do still wear short skirts but now with flats so I feel more comfortable. Love your top!


    Alice
    www.happinessatmidlife.com

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  10. Your writing is art, well done and thoughtful. I've made changes in my sartorial choices as I age, but I also take more risks. Blogging has been a large part of that, as I am influenced by others in this radiant community.


    Love the black and white, and the top is fun and playful!

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  11. What a pretty top and love it with the white pants! This is definitely an outfit I am drawn to and would wear myself.

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  12. I never worn too short or too open clothes, even when I was young. However, men always saw me as "sexy" which means that sexiness is not about revealing your body. Now at 45 I didn't change much in my way of dressing. Maybe I prefer now more qualitative things and of course, I know more about what suits me and what doesn't. But I don't muse about my age when choosing what to wear. I buy what, I know, I would feel good in. I don't know how I would feel in 15 years but I hope my attitude will not change.

    Great post Jan, I really enjoyed reading it. Love your black and white outfit. The top's fringe gives a bit flirty touch to the look

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  13. First things first - that's a great little top, all flapper-ish and 1920s and full of fringey loveliness! Looks fabulous against the white trousers.
    Now, the other thing. I often need to read your posts, go away and have a think, and come back to comment, Jan. I understand we live in a very age-obsessed culture, but it just isn't a big deal for me. I am far more likely to raise an eyebrow at people who dress in ways that don't flatter their body shapes than I am at anyone "dressing as lamb" - and I loathe that phrase with a passion. Knowing what looks good on you is a skill, at any age. I agree, wearing clothing which make one's age irrelevant is perfect - clothes that flatter, work for your life, your setting, your taste. In a way, I think wearing vintage allows me to do this. No one could really judge my clothing as too old/young/trying too hard to follow trends/unfashionable, etc. because it's a way out of the mainstream. And I am not in the least bothered whether anyone considers me sexy or not, I am chuckling at the very idea that anyone else's opinion on that issue counts!
    I think Vix's point (not that she needs me to speak for her) was not just about disliking age-related rules of dressing, but also that she appreciates the style and intelligence of younger bloggers too, and that being 40 or over doesn't automatically bring wisdom or style.
    Happiness in our own skin, creativity, self-awareness, flair, confidence. These are the qualities I value, at any age.
    And verbosity. Obviously. Sorry to go on, Jan! xxxxx

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  14. Debbie StinedurfJuly 24, 2013 at 8:44 AM

    What an excellent post! When I put an outfit together, I dress for what I'm feeling that day. Also, what is most important to me is what makes me happy. If I feel good in something, then I'm happy. I don't run around sporting bootie shorts or mini skirts, but I didn't really do that when I was in my 20's either. And I whole heartedly agree with your thoughts on the ridiculous rule in regard to not wearing something that you wore the first time it was a trend. An example would be neon...I love it! And I'm a child of the 80's so I was definitely sportin' it the first go round. I pretty much ignore the rules and go by what I love and what is flattering.
    PS...love your fringed top!
    Debbie :)
    www.fashionfairydust.blogspot.com

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  15. Tamera Ferguson WolfeJuly 24, 2013 at 9:14 AM

    GREAT post Jan!!!
    In addition to all of the "age rules" I had the constraints of the "fat girl rules" going on in my head. Until I decided that SCREW IT--I'm gonna wear WHAT I WANT, WHEN I WANT. Rules Schmules---I just try to dress appropriate to the venue/event/situation (like no booty shorts and stripper heels at a funeral!! )
    Love your outfit--cute cute cute!!

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  16. Renae of Simple SequinsJuly 24, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    I tell myself that "if I am that size (8-12) and it looks good on me, then I will wear it. Not everything in that size looks good on me anymore, but if it LOOKS good then I should wear it. hay, life is short. LOL



    Thanks for your great comments again. They make me happy. and also for adding "post as guest" on this discus box! Yay!

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  17. Renae of Simple SequinsJuly 24, 2013 at 10:44 AM

    doh! I left off the end quote. I always DO THAT! urgh. Put it after ...wear it ". LOL again.

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  18. Thank you, Tamera ...I appreciate your sweet comment about my outfit, and that you liked the post. So glad you had fun with it. I can't speak for anyone else, but I've been through weight gains and weight losses and I remember the list of rules that would go through my head while I was leafing through the clothes racks ... no stripes, no big prints, no, no, NO!

    Like you say, what we wear depends on what we accomplish! I might add that what we accomplish sometimes has to do with what we wear.

    Ha!

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  19. You're welcome, Renae ... I didn't notice that it wasn't available for some days ... still getting used to the system. Thanks for stopping by!

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  20. I love this post!!! Thanks for keeping this discussion going. I think it's so true that as our population ages, there'll be an increased amount of time for women who are between being past childbearing age yet remain very active in the work force, community etc. and reaching the age when health starts to fail rapidly. Personally, I'm at the start of this between time and I think it's a combination of intuition and an intellectual choice (whether conscious or not) of how I want to project myself. It helps to explain my craving for role models some time ago when I realised I was the oldest in any given group of mothers and even random places such as a cafe or standing in line at the supermarket lol! But I still feel and think similarly to those group of women I *used* to belong to. It's taken a long time but the process is ongoing to try to re-define or re-identify myself not in any restrictive way at all but as a new phase of my life and evolution of how I want to dress - that's why I so welcome ongoing discussions about what it means to dress 'age appropriately' or not or whatever!
    You're definitely one of my role models - you look just great in that outfit!

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  21. You and I (even though you're younger than I am) are harkening back to an era when self- objectification was to be avoided at all costs if we wanted to hang on to our active feminist wallet cards. It's good, probably, that that's loosened up somewhat, and that choice to dress however we wish is to be supported.
    I've always been way too round and short to pull off androgyny, but like you, I am always drawn to it as a design concept. There is something intensely feminizing about a woman in menswear.


    More than "giving up" at a certain age, the process becomes "moving up" for me. I know the metaphor of the caterpillar-butterfly is often applied to the emerging sexuality of puberty, it can also be applied to the end of menopause ...maybe.


    Thank you for liking my top ... I've had dresses with that lace before but in the 90s. Its what I was thinking about when I noted the rule about "if you did it the first time around ..." But yes, it was fun. Then and now.

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  22. Thanks, Adrienne ... here there isn't much besides junior deparments. So clearly, I have to adapt!

    Glad you stopped by!

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  23. Thank you, Dawn, for reading! One of the points I was going for was that what you're doing is part of aging well, and that there's more to consider about style and aging than age-appropriateness.
    I'm sorry, but I'm not sure I understand the last sentence about the blurb. Enlighten me if you want or have time! I can only guess that whoever said that meant that since we can't control what others think, then it shouldn't matter. That's probably true!

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  24. So glad you stopped by, as usual, and thanks for reading. And yes, you always make your look work for you very well. That it's considered is what's interesting to me. Age is part of the reason some of us choose to wear sleeves, because for many of us, it's age that has taken a toll on the shape of the arms.
    Choices, choices! Great to have them. And yes, you do look like you! That's what I call age irrelevant!

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  25. As before... your English is SO much better than my German! I'm happy you stopped by, and I thank you so much for your very kind comments.
    Always feel welcome here, Dana Jo!

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  26. That's me, I intend to be provoking. Glad you took the time to read, and thank you always for dropping by!

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  27. What kind things to say, Ann. I'm always thrilled when you drop by. Thank you so much.
    Every woman ages differently, as we all know, and some are more fortunate than others in terms of circumstance and health. More than any time of life, I believe, the sheer luck good genes affect our life chances. I'm happy to live in a time when many women do live longer and in better health generally. (My hope is that more women will be able join those numbers in coming years.) Good to look at it as an adventure, because it isn't really slowing down, is it?

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  28. Awww, Thanks Trina for all the kind words, and for being your sweet self. Yes, absolutely, more Choice!

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  29. So glad you stopped by, Judith! You are absolutely one of my role models when I think about my choices and in growing older in general. Thank you, always, for your kind remarks.

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  30. Thanks, Lisa ... that's high praise indeed. Always happy when you drop by. Glad you liked the combination!

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  31. Hello, Olga! (Hope you are still having a great holiday!) So glad you liked the little outfit, and that you enjoyed my essay. Clearly we are in an era where dressing in what makes you comfortable and confident is a great place to be. And it's so true that sexiness is not necessarily revealing! (Conversely, revealing is not necessarily sexy!) You have it right.
    You might, in 15 years, start considering age ... who knows? What I hope is that age brings freedom, and an enhanced and enriching perspective, rather than only a sense of limitation.
    So happy you stopped by, as always!

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  32. Hey Curtise! Thanks for liking my little top ... it looks so much better in motion than otherwise!

    I'll be sure never to use the "lamb" phrase again ! Is it the phrase or the idea that you don't care for?

    Personal-style independence is just the best thing, and you're always an example of it. Vintage dressing may well serve you in that way ... you certainly always wear flattering clothes that do have an ageless quality. I also agree that the unflattering shapes that you note can be shockers, and certainly to be avoided.

    I didn't catch the connection between youngsters and their style with Vix's well-put rant, but I don't disagree with your explanation or her point at all. Of course there's a lot to admire about what the young have to teach and show. The point I was trying to make relative to Vix's exasperation was much more of a "Yes, *and* ..." than a
    "Yes, *but ..*". Rules about how to dress for a certain age are becoming less and less relevant as the female population ages in great numbers! I certainly agree that age doesn't necessarily bring any special wisdom, any more than all youthful expression is deeply valuable. And I'd say that age *can* bring insight... my hope is that none of us blog to share what we're thinking as any great wisdom, but just what we're thinking about at the moment. I'd just like to see the conversation continue. There can be some very cool expansion of consciousness after the menopausal fogs lift, completely without the aid of medications!



    Interesting that you'd use "age-obsessed" to describe our culture. My first thought would have been "youth obsessed" ... just a matter of looking at the culture and realizing that there are some vastly varying attitudes about the whole process of aging. Much depends on the age of the observer, I think!


    You never have to apologize about "going on" to me! Obviously, I have no problem. Verbosity can't be construed as a positive, but sometimes it takes as long as it takes to say all that is necessary!


    So glad you read and thought and answered ... as always.

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  33. One of the coolest things that Disqus provides is the opportunity to go in and edit after I screw up ... every reply I make today will have errors that I just don't bother with! I find I type "you" when I mean "your" .. that's MY "I always do that" boo-boo!

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  34. Big high five lady!! What a fantastic and inspiring post Jan!! This is exactly the sort of quality post I always come in anticipation of when I visit your blog. Intelligent, eloquent writing that gets you thinking. Thank you for your honesty too - it's easy to get caught up in the revolution cry of "we should be able to wear what we want at any age" but I think we have to also respect anyone's decision to put some boundaries around that.

    I hate that "dressing as lamb" expression too (ref Curtise's comment) but more in the way that it has always been used as cruel put down for women, who in truth were probably trying to revive a time when they did feel sexy and desirable, for better or for worse. It is the insinuation that there is no remedy for age - your choice seems binary - dress dull and stodgy or look like mutton dressed as lamb. That's what I hate about it - it feels ageist and not just a little misogynistic. But I share your concern - I don't want to dress like I am trying to appear younger either, but being told to dress your age or age appropriate is often something I resent hearing from the fashion powers that be. I love your concept of dressing so that age is irrelevant - if only we had more of that kind of advice administered! The "any woman" pieces rather than the ones bucketed (often randomly it seems) for the 20s, 30s, 40's et al.


    Big love for this post - and your wonderful fringed top!

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  35. Love it. I'm going to have to give some thought instead of just read and respond, but I love that I actually have to THINK! I'm actually at an age where I feel MORE free to wear what I like. There's absolutely no peer pressure to seek approval anymore. There wasn't before, but I see it in my teens. They were so carefree and then "that age" hit. They can't help it, it's normal. But I feel for them. So, I relish that my husband loves my whims & fancies, encourages me to try anything new and different and could care less if it's a total fail. I've also learned I'm my own worst critic. That is the only thing I want to improve with age - get a grip, accept who I am and move forward. It's about time. (And hey, I'm wearing my hair curly and loving glasses - my last post!) We're thinking alike :) LOVE this post!

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  36. Wow I loved this post. Will FBing and linking from my blog as well.

    So well written and so much to think about. I want to reread this when I have time to really let it sink in.

    This was my favourite sentence...

    "What I want to do is to dress so that my age is irrelevant." bravo. bravo.



    Thanks for sharing.

    bisous

    Suzanne

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  37. I finally took the time to read this through, and I think it's great! I agree that I don't want to dress so that I "look youthful" - that boat has sailed. But I don't want to look like my mother did at my age, not that she looked frumpy. That's what is so great now, is that it seems that women really can dress the way they want to. The more far-out characters will get their stares, but they're probably used to it. I really think this strong blogging community is changing fashion for mature women, and it seems the fashion industry is starting to pay attention (sometimes)!

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  38. Patti_NotDeadYetStyleJuly 25, 2013 at 9:27 AM

    Brava, Jan - what a thoughtful, insightful essay.



    I don't like being told what I "must" do in any area of my life (aging hippie here) and that applies to how I dress myself as well. But I do find myself attracted now to more "interesting" clothing than I used to be - and the fashion world is changing to accommodate just about any taste. We don't have only Talbot's to choose from. So I think it's a good time to be 58. : > Thanks for sharing this brilliant post with Visible Monday.

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  39. Thank you, Debbie. Glad you liked it and stopped by to say so! That's a really interesting point: " I don't run around sporting bootie shorts or mini skirts, but I didn't really do that when I was in my 20's either."


    There are elements of taste that stay with us most of our lives, aren't there? That has to have some meaning when we are figuring out who we are ... style-wise, any-wise.

    Good point about neons and first-times-around.


    I'd like to say I ignore the rules, but I don't. I'm apt to pick them apart before I decide on application, one way or another. That, for me, is part of what makes style fun. Everyone has some idiosyncrasies, huh? Really, it is all in my head.


    P.S. Glad you liked my top ... it's so fun to wear.

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  40. Oh, thanks for reading and liking ... especially for your great comments.

    You noted:
    "Personally, I'm at the start of this between time and I think it's a combination of intuition and an intellectual choice (whether conscious or not) of how I want to project myself"


    Yup. When I look back over my own "style" eras, much of what I did was much less conscious than what I do now. School, job, child, more school, more jobs (can't say career, sadly) ... finally I'm at a spot where I can devote interest and time to what I wear, and how I present. AND, the Internet has changed my style-life in ways I couldn't have imagined as a younger woman.


    You continue:
    "But I still feel and think similarly to those group of women I *used* to belong to."


    Isn't THAT so!? All the stages of life stay with us in ways we never imagine when we are young. We are all that cumulatively, and gives us a perspective that younger women do not yet have. What a great feeling to be able to pull out what worked decades ago, adapt, re-adopt and re-apply with some confidence and pleasure!


    And finally:
    " It's taken a long time but the process is ongoing to try to re-define or re-identify myself not in any restrictive way at all but as a new phase of my life and evolution of how I want to dress - that's why I so welcome ongoing discussions about what it means to dress 'age appropriately' or not or whatever!"

    You're definitely one of my role models - you look just great in that outfit!

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  41. I'm so glad you liked enjoyed most of it , V. I hope I made it clear that my thoughts about self-editing are intended to represent just my own process. They're not intended as suggestions, only a jumping-off place for consideration.

    I sure have learned a lot with this post as well! I absolutely do know never again to reference the life stages of "ovis aries" as they pertain to cuts of meat! I knew it wasn't a flattering thing to say about anyone, and so happy I chose to use it about my own style-nervousness! Whew.

    Seriously, I appreciate your sensitive explanation of motive, and why it's a stronger pejorative than I understand it to be ... and it is that. It's hard to for me to quite grasp the strong either-or implication, but that may be cultural. And in context, can't see it as misogynistic as much as merely critical. Good to know though, and will take it to heart.

    Yes, I often wonder who edits the "how to dress your decade" pieces, particularly the ones in our edition of Bazarr. The other huge annoyance is "What's In and What's Out" ... but that's another rant in the making.



    Thanks for reading and writing .. always happy when you drop by. And thanks, too, for your comment on my silly top. It's really a "tickle" to wear.

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  42. My friend and I were discussing how it was I knew, without reading the signs or knowing the clientele or the culture in Japan, which clothing shops were "older woman" shops and which were the "younger woman" shops.

    Dressing sexy becomes a high priority at a certain age, and we wondered if at another age, the priority became dressing nicely/prettily, without being so obsessed with the sexy part.

    I'm very interested in finding out for myself, but right now I'm happy with dressing with the primary goal being dressing like me. I think the looks I like best on ladies of all ages is when they look happy, and clearly fully themselves, rather than aiming for something they feel obligated to show and are not so comfortable with.

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  43. I love that I click over to read this thoughtful post on aging and style and find it is written in the city in which I am working every single day! So rad.

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  44. Ann, Heather, and SheilaJuly 29, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    Love your post! What a great discussion we can have with this. I especially liked the statement "...dress so that my age is irrelevant." Perfect.
    Heather from Friendship, Life and Style

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  45. Jan this is such a great and thought provoking post. This is such a hard topic I do agree with just because it was suitable for you at one time that doesn't mean wear it again. I used to wear more revealing clothing and even if I think I could wear it now I would not because I have a daughter that really looks up to me and often try's to mimic her style to mine. I want her to know she can have her sense of style but she needs to reflect her age for her not older. It's all a crazy cycle when we are young we want to dress older and then when we get older we are told we need to dress appropriately . Great job.
    Xoxo,
    Carrie
    http://expressive-style.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete

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