Dress Your Age? No Way, Says Fashion Expert. This is the time to let your chic flag fly, by Simon Doonan, AARP The Magazine, June/July 2014
So I used to have a Fashion Style that I liked, but then I got sick and left the workplace, so for the last decade I've been doing jeans and t-shirts -- and not necessarily stylish ones, at that. If I can't find it at the Norton Thrift Shop for a dollar, well . . .
There are exceptions, of course. A couple of years ago, I needed a dress for a niece's wedding. I went actual shopping shopping. I shopped for two weeks straight. I used to love shopping, but after a decade of no shopping, I discovered I now detest shopping.
Needless to say, in spite of shopping all my historical favorites -- the places I could always count on to find a wardrobe I loved -- I failed to find even one thing I liked. I finally caved and just bought something, but it was so displeasing to me and had not even one feature I could like a little bit, except the color (purple and black). The fabric was hideous, the length was hideous, the style . . . Well, you get the idea.
What happened? Does no one anywhere sell anything I like to wear anymore? Or is what I like to wear just too weird for everyone else?
This article gives me hope. Here are my favorite sections:
"We'll start with the gals. Chances are that you, madam, fall into one of the following three categories: You are a Sophisticate, a Gypsy or an Eccentric.
Encompassing everyone from Katie Couric to Oprah, from Anne Hathaway to Carrie Underwood, this is by far the biggest category. Think Jackie Kennedy. Think Michelle Obama. Sophisticate style is about looking turned out and glamorous. It's feminine, it's appealing, and depending on the cut of your frock, it can be quite alluring. (I avoid the word "sexy." Call me prudish, but I think it reads "tacky" when it's set down in print.)"
Fewer in number than the Sophisticates, yet no less important, are the Gypsies. Think Ali MacGraw kicking back. Think Goldie Hawn having a Malibu moment. With their flowing locks, artfully distressed jeans, chunky knits, turquoise jewelry, embroidered caftans, flounced satin skirts, crafty espadrilles and tooled leather bags — sharp intake of breath — Gypsy gals are the epitome of boho chic. This look is easy-breezy and hippie-happy, but not to the point of being dippy."
Now, last but not least, we have the Eccentrics. Though small, this group is very diverse and includes everyone from Whoopi Goldberg to Lady Gaga. Think Auntie Mame! Think Cher! These gals are noteworthy because they have created their own unique, uncategorizable style. Some Eccentrics, like Tilda Swinton, have close ties to the fashion world. Others are just creative gals from hither and thither who enjoy the act of adornment … and the act of showing off!
And this is a wonderfully age-inclusive group. Examples of eccentricity can be enjoyed on one of my favorite websites: Advanced Style. Ari Seth Cohen, the visionary founder of this site, celebrates the fashion daring of ladies over a certain age. . . the primary role of Eccentrics is to make the world a more interesting place, to entertain us and to inspire us to step outside our comfort zones. (Tip: This year snag a wacky sculptural hat just like the vintage chapeau that Pharrell Williams wore at the Oscars. This style was originally created by Vivienne Westwood for gals back in the early '80s.)"
(I do like the hat)
" . . . let me emphasize that these categories are not watertight. Many gals play the Sophisticate card for special occasions, then retreat to their Gypsy caravan for everyday wear. Or vice versa: Sophisticate by day, Gypsy by night. Think tambourines and blazing campfires!"
I think I'm mostly Eccentric, bordering on Gypsy, but recognize that there are times when Sophisticated is more appropriate. Now I just need to start looking for places that cater to these preferences. I don't suppose I'm lucky enough that any of you know exactly where to send me?
So I'm sorry to go on so long about this subject that is so totally not about books, but I'm having a real problem, and this Article (that I READ) might shed some light on it. I wanted to capture it somewhere, and BookLikes is where I am the most, so thanks for bearing with me.