This post is part of The Gorgeous 50’s series inspired by a book given to me by one of my sister’s on my 50th birthday – ‘Grown-Up and Gorgeous in your 50’s’ by Pamela Robson. I will be sharing some of Pamela’s words and my own thoughts along the way. To see all posts published as part of this series, go here.
This post is an introduction to the subject of wardrobe in your 50’s. Pamela has a lot of great things to say on the subject of wardrobe and fashion choices in our 50’s, so we’ll be covering this topic over several posts. Let’s get started …
Fashion is maddeningly ungoverned at the moment. There are no set rules – except not to have any. It’s all about celebrating your own personal style with an eclectic mix of clothes and accessories. The very worst thing you can do is buy a mumsy, matching outfit. If you aren’t a natural at this sort of thing, it can be a total nightmare. There is no quick fix, but if you put some time and effort in at the beginning to get a basic ‘look’ established, it gets easier.
I agree that we really don’t need rules because different strokes for different folks! I like the concept of having an eclectic mix of clothes and accessories. It’s probably the hippie girl in me but I like the freedom to throw together a mix of things that feel like they work for me.
I think we’ve all learnt (well I have) now that too much matchy, matchy is a no go zone these days. Coordinate – yes, but don’t go too matchy, matchy because as Pamela says that is very ‘mumsy’ and heaven forbid we look ‘mumsy’!!
I think making the right fashion choices most certainly can be a nightmare if you’ve got no idea where to start. You can easily get swept away by trends, regardless of the fact that they may not suit your body shape or even your personality. Maybe you saw something that looked good on your sister or a friend so you go out and buy that, but you have a completely different body shape and it doesn’t look quite the same on you!
The trick is to learn what suits your figure, know what style/s you like and understand what flatters you. Ensuring you have some essential wardrobe basics first (more on this in a future post) is the advised approach and then you can add from there. If you struggle with working all this stuff out, then you could consider getting some advice from a fashion stylist or do as I did and still do – read fashion blogs. Just saying! The blog that has helped me is Nikki Parkinson’s ‘Styling You‘. She understands women, particularly middle-aged women and what we want from fashion. She has written a book – Unlock Your Style – which takes you through a step-by-step process to finding confidence through your style. I haven’t got this book as yet, but I must rectify that, particularly as many of the posts she wrote on the subject prior to writing her book, were very helpful so the book is sure to be a very handy resource to have on hand.
I’m no expert on fashion but I have worked out a few things about what suits me and my body shape (short, curvy, busty) – a few examples:
- V necks work well
- Block colours are flattering – helping to give the illusion of height!
- If wearing patterned fabric on one half (eg top), best to wear a block colour on the other half (eg bottom, and vice versa)
- Wrap dresses are flattering
- Some colours that suit me: black, white, red, orange (strangely), turquoise
I’ve also learnt to avoid the following:
- Busy patterns (less is more for me)
- Any tops or dresses that involve lots of fabric (overwhelming for my petite frame)
- Too much frills and flounce
- Anything yellow (washed out face anyone?)
Pamela’s Fashion Rules for the 50-plus
Casual looks younger than formal
Don’t try to be perfectly turned out
Fight the temptation to be overdressed – it’s ageing
You mustn’t look as if you tried too hard
Um Pamela, I think I’m going to have to disagree quite a bit here!
- I don’t agree that casual looks younger than formal. I think that’s too much of a sweeping generalised statement. I personally am more a casual person than formal but I think that with regards to whether casual or formal suits a person better or makes them look younger or older, it all depends on the person and how they dress, accessorize, do their make-up etc!
- No-one looks perfect really but I don’t think there is anything wrong with putting in your best effort!
- Being overdressed for an occasion is not ideal. I kind of agree here. Not sure that it is aging though?!
- What’s wrong with looking like you made an effort to look great?
Have you learnt what your personal style is? Do you understand what suits and flatters you? What do you think of Pamela’s fashion rules for the 50 plus?
Ciao for now,
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