Fashion Forwards After Fifty
22nd May 2017
This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.
Fashion has long paraded stream after stream of young, nubile and gangly teens along the runway, sporting some of the most extraordinary clothing, but the fashion industry has long understood that it strays into the realm of fantasy and wish fulfilment for many. While high couture may inspire our daily looks in a tenuous manners, many do not feel inspired by the models who are walking the items down the runway. Now however fashion has cast its net wider.
Lauren Hutton first appeared on the modelling scene in the 60’s and in 1973 she signed one of the biggest contracts in the modelling world with the make-up giant, Revlon. After such a stunning career, Hutton is more than entitled to rest on her laurels, instead she has become the face of Calvin Klein’s new lingerie line at 73. Last year, high street retailer H&M cast Gillian McLeod to front their swimwear campaign at the age of 60.
While this may be a gradual evolution on the catwalk, it has long been the case online, with many women taking to blogging to express their own unique sense of style. Age and ability should be small factors when it comes to fashion, and these bloggers inspire many to present their best, regardless of mobility or the necessity of mobility aids, such as home stairlifts.
Jodie’s Touch of Style
This blog is definitely a family affair as Jodie does not just look into a perfect style for her own age (she is in the fifty range) but also her step mother who represents the ladies in their 60’s and her mother who is one for the women in their 70’s.
This three pronged approach allows women to see different outfits and styles on women who not only have different needs from their fashion choices that are dictated by their age, but also by colouring and body shapes.
Jodie spoke of her own fashion journey as well as what inspired and disappoints her in the fashion industry: “I'm part of a group of women that just recently started called the Fierce 50---we have a Facebook page called the Fierce 50 Revolution to inspire other women our age. It's always so fabulous when we see retailers using older models in their advertising since it's the older women with the money to spend on many of these items!!
“When we see clothing on younger models, it's not always as appealing. As much as we can try to imagine that same clothing on us, I think it always helps to see the clothing on women we can easily relate to!”
When asked about the importance of fashion and self-presentation to self-esteem and identity, Jodie mentioned the serious implication on what appears to be a frivolous subject:
“I know many people will say its only clothing and it can't make that much of a difference. But over and over, you'll hear women say that the right colour & item makes them feel better about themselves. And I think it's just as important to stay contemporary, even in our clothing styles. As I always say, "the younger generation doesn’t always want to learn things from “old ladies,” right? But if your clothing blended in more with the younger crowd, then they might be more open to our valuable experience.
“My friend Rhona says it even better, ‘If we become locked in the past we risk losing our relevancy.’ And we have so much life experience to share with other women of any age!”
Susan after Sixty
Fifty not Frumpy is something Susan started after she found herself in the all too regular occurrence of having an entire wardrobe to buy and little enthusiasm to do so. Luckily she was a professional with years of experience in the fashion and style industry, so set out unfazed by the challenge that faced her. Susan crafts looks that are trendy and flattering, but also fun and engaging, there is a lot of thought to her outfits about what message she wants to convey and how she wishes to be perceived.
After Susan turned Sixty, she treated herself to a new website and explored the journey thus far:
“I started blogging as Fifty not Frumpy about six years ago after I lost more than forty pounds and had to buy a whole new wardrobe at fifty-five. It wasn't nearly as much fun or easy as it was when I was twenty-five. After I turned sixty last year, I started the new blog Susan After 60. My style of living, eating, and dressing is very simple, clean, and classic. I share my life with my readers but I have never thought of myself as changing the face of fashion. I also share clean eating tips and lots of ideas for getting out and enjoying nature and small towns in the area.”
Chic at Any Age
Josephine seems to live an unbearably glamourous life, splitting her time between St Tropez and London, however this does mean she regularly deals with issues that are common for many women, like staying cool in the summer sun or layering bright colours for a tropical feel.
Whether Chic At Any Age deals with a trend, shape or colour, the look is easily replicated, the photos are lovely and Josephine comes across as the best friend you have been missing.
When asked about the importance of appearance and how this alters perceptions, Josephine says:
“Personally I think that it is very important to take pride in your appearance at any age. It helps boost confidence and reflects the way you value yourself.
“It definitely alters the way people perceive you. Having worked for many years as an image consultant in the corporate market I have tangible evidence that one’s visual image is important. When people react positively towards you that creates a virtual circle”
Not Dressed as Lamb
This is one that has snuck in as an over 40’s blogger, so though Not Dressed As Lamb doesn’t officially fit the bill, Catherine Summers is making waves and asking the big questions. Though Not Dressed As Lamb is at heart a fashion blog that blends tips for spring fashion and perfect tailoring, it also questions if fashion is a trick of confidence, where the older models are, and how we should be embracing different opportunities.
In regards to the UK Blog Awards, Not Dressed As Lamb was voted as one of the top 8 fashion and beauty blogs along with another 40+ blogger. Catherine’s reaction to this was contemplative:
“We NEED older women to be visible in fashion. The amazing Lyn of Accidental Icon has recently been modelling for Mango - a brand known for having a very young target market. This is fantastic news and certainly shouldn't be the last time a major high street brand picks up on how chic and ageless older women are these days.
“Middle aged women of today are not the same as the middle aged women of yesteryear. They are, look and feel much, much "younger" - and are less constrained by society's expectations on them.”