Just Because We Can Dress Like Our Daughters, Should We?

A British fashion journalist was quoted this month saying that, while previous generations of mature women may have looked to their mothers for fashion advice, today’s older women are more likely to copy their daughters.

mom and daughter

The statement was made in an interview with the Daily Mail for the story, The Helen Mirren effect: The mature stars inspiring women to wear EXACTLY the same clothes as girls years younger.

The article had all sorts of pictures of Mirren and Meryl Streep and others wearing identical or similar things their younger counterparts were. Sometimes they looked amazing, and some times, not so much.

I don’t want to be the fashion police in any way, shape or form and I believe 100% that a woman should have the right to wear anything she wants. I know plenty of women who absolutely rock the same outfits worn by younger counterparts or who raid their daughter’s closets just as much as their daughter’s raid theirs.

Mothers-Day-2014-012

photo:momfabulous.com

And why not? Fashion should be fun!

BUT, I do wonder if  some of us midlife and older women look to our children for fashion advice, not because we always love our daughter’s look so much but more because we don’t know how to find that “just right” sweet spot between “too young” and “too old”.

Because there are so few midlife models used in clothing ads, we don’t have any relatable role models. So yeah, we do tend to look to our children (or our mothers) and try to modify the things they wear to suit us. It’s hard.

And, while we’re on the topic, why is it so hard to find clothes for midlife women? There is a plethora of twenty and thirty-something clothing stores and brands and maybe a shop or two that cater to a clientele older than us, but where are sophisticated, elegant, chic, fun clothes that are right for the in-between woman?

Maybe that’s why we’re shopping where our daughters shop – it’s because there’s nowhere else to go!

Is Age Appropriate Dressing All In Your Head?

Of all the questions my readers send me, the one I seem to get the most is a variation on the theme of age-appropriate dressing: “Can I wear short skirts/low-cut tops/bikinis/etc. at my age?”;“Does this make me look like I’m trying hard to be young?”; “Does this make me look old?”

I call it the Goldilocks question: “Is this outfit too young, too old, or just right?”

Age appropriate dressing

photo by: Cue Ozop

I recently came across  an  article featuring a series of photos that dramatically demonstrated why dressing “age appropriately” may not be all that it’s cracked up to be. The first half of each of the seven images, by the photographer Cue Qozop, captures parents and their children wearing generationally appropriate clothes; in the second half however, parents and offspring swap outfits. The parents, in essence, are decidedly not dressing age appropriately. And do you know what? They look fantastic!! (Their kids don’t look half-bad either when they are wearing their parents’ clothes, BTW.)
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What Does An Age-Appropriate Leather Jacket Look Like?

blue dress with black leather jacket

A beautiful leather jacket is an investment that you can enjoy at any age. The key to looking classy in a leather jacket is to find a jacket that is streamlined and more on the elegant side like … Continue Reading

Am I Too Old To Wear That?

dressing after 40

How many times have you eyed something cute in the store, picked it up and wondered, "am I too old to wear that"? It's confusing knowing how to dress after 40 because our bodies have changed, our … Continue Reading

Are Patterned Jeans Just for Teens?

floral pants

Hi Deborah, I love the very trendy patterned jeans and wonder if they're too young for the 50+ gals. I found a really cute pair that are wine colored with a tone-on-tone harlequin pattern. They're … Continue Reading

Florals Old Lady – Are You Kidding?

Floral  Trends

You can’t say the words “spring and summer fashion” without mentioning florals. Whether they're the focal point on a dress or splashed all over a pair of pants, florals are a romantic staple of the … Continue Reading

How to Dress Comfortable and Stylish When You’re Over 40 and Beyond

Herb-Ritz-Getty-Museum

I think you'd agree that figuring out how to dress casual is a daily head scratching dilemma.  Between trying to be comfortable and still look classy and updated, it  sometimes it just seems easier to … Continue Reading

Poor Fit = Frumpy After 40!

frumpy after 40

We caught you!! Are big baggy sweaters and loose sloppy pants making you look old and frumpy? Go the mirror now. Take a good look. Be honest. Baggy, poorly fitted clothes are a big problem after … Continue Reading

Are These Shoes Age Appropriate?

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I got two interesting questions recently asking about shoes that may look too young?. Q. #1 Hi Deb, I was at the mall yesterday and looking for a pair of wedges to wear.  I chose these but now … Continue Reading

Can I Wear A Pleated Skirt After 40?

white sundress

Hi there Deborah, I have seen a lot of pleated skirts for sale lately. I really like them, but was wondering if I can still wear them now I am in my 50's and a little heavier than I was when I wore … Continue Reading