Ladies, ladies, ladies. Let’s gather ’round. There are a few things I want to share with you about fashion for women over 60. I might get a little preachy but remember I’ve worked with women of all ages, shapes, and personalities. I’ve been in the trenches of closets, dressing rooms and women’s belief systems. Fact #1: Fashion is for you, not against you. YOUR style mixed with fashion from your closet and a few additions from stores can free you, bring pleasure beyond belief (Baby, when you look good, you feel good, remember?), and make you feel visible for all the right reason.
I’m ready to reveal my best tips and observations and show you things that will bring you pleasure, grace, and ease in your body and your mind.
I’ve got to start with the mind; that darned mind can be the biggest road block of all. Does any of this sound familiar?
There’s nothing in the stores for me!
I hate fashion magazines and all those 12-year-old models. There’s nothing to relate to!
The fashion world is out of touch. They’re not listening to us!
We’re invisible. No one notices a woman over 60, yet we have all this buying power.
If I was younger or thinner, I’d care. But not now. Why bother?
Let me say one thing about all of that: OUCH! You are beautiful and precious and lovely and tender and compassionate and caring. You deserve to be having fun with fashion and enjoying this stage of life. Let me show you how. I’m going to attack these complaints one by one.
Complaint: My feet hurt; I can’t wear heels anymore
[Go ahead, Brenda, insert basketball metaphor here.]
Here in the Bay Area we’re all excited because the Golden State Warriors are the NBA champions (that’s professional basketball). Last year they lost to the same team they played this year, the Cleveland Cavaliers (that’s LeBron James). It was a c-r-u-s-h-i-n-g loss for players and fans. Did they pout? Probably for a bit and then they took action; they hired Kevin Durant to bolster the team. After this week’s Warriors win, the general consensus was that losing last year sucked but getting Kevin Durant was a great consolation prize. He was named the MVP (that’s Most Valuable Player) of the series.
Are you following the theme here? Loss, changing things up, winning.
We could be talking about women over sixty and their shoe situation. See, many women our age are not wearing heels anymore, a c-r-u-s-h-i-n-g loss to those who felt heels made every outfit more special and sexy.
So what do we do with that loss? We bring in something better! We bring in new players like Oxfords and flats with arch support and slip ons and sneakers. And what happens? We all look cool and interesting and fashionable and better than ever! Your shoes could be the Most Valuable Player of your outfit. Chin up girls; let’s go shopping!
Here are some shoe lines that me and my clients are enjoying: AGL, Paul Green, Aquatalia, Rosa Mosa, Dr. Scholl’s (fashionable, my friends!), Rag and Bone, Gabor, Sofft, Born, Corso Como, Cole Haan, Me Too, Clarks, Dansko, Ugg (not just the fur-lined Uggs), Josef Seibel, Geox, Eileen Fisher, Vince, Ron White. I’m going to stop there. You may have more to add. Will you let us know your faves? Comfort shoe manufacturers are doing their best to create shoes that feature both comfort and style because we’re demanding it. Shoes are on our side!
Complaint: No one sees me
Fresh eyewear is what will make people see you. This is my pal Phyllis from the store that bears her name, Phyllis Boutique down in Palo Alto. She’s so fascinating, quite the storyteller. I mean, look at her! Aren’t you just drawn in by her glasses? You know she’s going to be fascinating. With great eyewear it’s all the better to see you, my dear. This could be your most memorable accessory. Not only do you get to see but people get to see you. My clients experience this all the time. Eyewear is on your side, my friends!
Complaint: I look at magazines and I don’t fit in anywhere
Baby doll, you don’t have to fit in! You’re sixty! You get to do what you want! My new friend, Elizabeth Kirkpatrick has a style all her own. She gets stopped in the streets. Being totally transparent I’m going to tell you that Elizabeth is 57 in July. (We’re letting you in the club early.) I want to learn more about her and I will because I plan to interview her and tell you all about it. She says she could wear caftans all summer. When I hear that from this style maven, I think to myself, My gosh! I don’t even own a caftan! I’m checking that out!
She’s inspiring me. You could be inspiring others with your style too. How’s this for a plan: Don’t fit in; stand out!
Elizabeth has a blog you must check out. She’s called La Contessa and her blog is The Vintage Contessa. She had an antique store for years. Her Instagram handle is @AntiqueGoddess. She’s as grand and delightful in person as she is in this picture!
Complaint: I never find anything in the stores
A dear friend of mine said, “I never find anything in the stores. I love fashion. I’m still breathing. Why aren’t they making clothes for us?”
We were having Sunday lunch in Sonoma and we went over to Chico’s and a makeover transpired. She soon learned there were places for her to find clothes for her wonderful self. Here’s that Anatomy of a Transformation link to see what we came up with.
I think if you’re not finding something where you’ve been shopping it is possible that it’s time to shop somewhere else! After helping Marjory, I went back and checked out Chico’s jackets. I found such fun stylish pieces that worked well for my love of introvert clothes. (You can learn about introvert and extrovert clothes from my Where I Shop series and see where your clothes fit in.)
Today I shopped with a new client and took her to Banana Republic. She hadn’t been in there for years and boy was she surprised! We found the cutest things for her there that fit her style words: Artful, creative, interesting, unique, approachable. Of course, it was styling the outfits afterwards in her closet that made her style words really pop. The point is to step into stores you haven’t been stepping into. Be prepared to surprise yourself. Fashion is on your side!
Complaint: I’m bored
I get it! You’ve been wearing clothes for 60 years or more. But how about this? How about you get out of your comfort zone by design and search out things that are the opposite of what you usually do. I’m been a longtime fan of solid colored anythings. This fashion season is flooded with florals prints. I walked myself out of my comfort zone and headed for the dress section a couple of weeks back to get something to wear to the wedding of a client of mine on July 1st. I decided to try a floral print. Wait until you see what I bought! It’s so not my usual cup of tea. But I’m sixty! I can try new things!
Another example of getting out of one’s comfort zone: I resisted skinny pants when they first came out. I thought it was a crazy trend. It took months, no, years to try them on. Well, they won me over and have been a staple in my wardrobe.
When I decided to not buy one more skinny jean and look at the newest wide leg jean trend instead, I pushed myself to buy a pair. I definitely had a What was I thinking moment or two or ninety-nine. It’s taken me a while but I’m getting the hang of them and now I love them. In fact I’m wearing them right now as I’m typing away.
This can happen to you! You can fall in love with something new!
What items are the opposite of what you’re wearing now? Try them on! Fashion is waiting to delight you!
Oh dear, look at the time! We’re halfway through these tips. How about I share the rest of them with you tomorrow? Deal? Deal!
Tell me, are you seeing some new possibilities for yourself? Do share!