7 Ways To Revisit Your Wardrobe

Why Don’t You…

1. Go into your closet, or your favorite shop, and put together an outfit of mixed prints that make a powerful marriage?

Above: Here, her dots and stripes have similar “weights” and dimension, so one doesn’t overpower the other; the red and black are a powerful team, and the exact white backgrounds tie the two pieces together. When playing with mixed patterns, make sure the cut and styles of the pieces (tailored v. loose, for instance), as well as the weight and texture of the fabrics, are similar.

Right: The geometrics in her shorts work perfectly with the stripes in her shirt, both brought together by the herd of zebras (also called a zeal of zebras).

2. Mix fabrics and styles, as much fun as mixing patterns, but with more relaxed rules. A playful, yet sophisticated, circle skirt, in shiny wool & silk twill, is paired with a chambray shirt and a vintage inspired sweatshirt. Casual tops (in most any fabric) look great with dressier bottoms (skirts or pants), as long as one piece doesn’t overwhelm the other, either in cut, fabric or color.

3. Give your wrists more excitement than they’re used to, by circling them with lots and lots of bracelets. Gold goes with silver; bangles go with cuffs and bulky goes with delicate. Take out all the bracelets you own and start playing around with them. You’ll know when you’ve created the perfect set. It’s impossible to make mistakes.

Why Would You…

1. Choose accessories just because they attract attention, even if you look downright silly and they do nothing to enhance your style.

Left: We know Ralph Lauren loves himself, but do you want to be a walking billboard for him? The bag takes logos to a new height… or should we say low. Possible Exception: Your partner’s name is Ralph.

Right: If Picasso had painted one of my handbags, I’d never let it go. But the woman’s face, staring out from this ridiculously expensive Prada bag ($3,950), is outlandish and not especially appealing as art.

2. The last thing colorful and expensive sling backs need is colorful ankle socks. Just because the colors match doesn’t mean the shoes and socks look good together. And the shade of the fancy skirt makes the sock-shoe duo look even more horrible. This is an example of a fashion stylist trying way too hard.

3. Clunky black shoes overwhelm her feet, not to mention the light and lovely pleated, halter-top dress. Let’s leave the look to young women who think they’re edgy and keep wearing shoes that flatter our feet, go with our outfits and draw admiring glances when we walk down the street.

4. This all works, but don’t try it at home. Young, sweet things can carry off over-the-top looks, but they’ll make you and me look like clowns.

4 Responses to “7 Ways To Revisit Your Wardrobe”

  1. Mick says:

    Not even young, sweet things can pull off the Ringling look above. She looks like she just stepped out of a Smart Car along with 20 others dressed just like her. She is a clown.

    I get it. I see women over 50 dressed similar to this quite often because I run in artistic circles. It’s not an “artistic look” you crazy old ladies: its ridiculous. There is a distinct difference between an ensemble and a get up.

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  2. Nicolene Richards says:

    This is one marriage made to last, a match made in heaven. The mixed print trend is my current favourite!
    FF

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  3. Debbie Martin says:

    Geri,

    I love FoF and feel very awkward writing something that I am hopeful, but not confident, that you will find helpful and not negative:

    I am struggling to find a way to understand why and how an article such as this one made onto a site that is supposed to be for and about, (fabulous) women over fifty. It reads to me as though the writer is under 30 or very influenced by the youth crazed media and is, therefore, clueless to the real advice or suggestions a woman fifty or older, might be looking for.

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    • Geri Brin says:

      Hi Debbie,

      First, let me say I am delighted you love FOF, and second, you needn’t feel awkward about voicing your opinion.

      The article made it onto site because I wrote it, I’m 66 and have a distaste for our youth crazed media, but I love some of the trends in fashion, such as the ones I cover here: mixing prints, mixing casual and dressier pieces and wearing lots of bracelets (I’ve worn the same 5 silver bracelets on one wrist for years and get compliments on them practically every day.)

      Certainly, not every woman over, or even under, 50 would look good wearing a bold red polka dot blouse and horizontal stripped narrow skirt or shorts. But I was only using those outfits as examples of mixing prints. If done well, a woman over 50 would look great and contemporary. The skirt and top don’t have to be body hugging, either.

      And why wouldn’t a woman over 50 look cool in a long, black flowing silk skirt and a chambray shirt? In fact, one my friends wore such as outfit to an event last year and looked wonderful in it. She’s also not an especially thin woman.

      I’ve also seen lots of women over 50 carrying ridiculous handbags and wearing shoes that look dreadful with their outfits. That’s why I specifically say we should let young women wear the crazy shoes or clothes and that we should stick with shoes that compliment our clothes and outfits that don’t make us look like clowns.

      Many FOFs, including me, want to hide our tummies and underarms, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be up to date and cool. I once knew a short, very squat woman over 50 who looked spectacular in print dresses because they were shaped to downplay her round body and were in lovely colors.

      I don’t think women over 50 should feel as if they can’t mix prints, fabrics and styles or wear lots of bracelets, necklaces or rings. As I advise in the copy, we can look spectacular if we do it right. The article wasn’t meant to suggest that we wear the specific clothes I was showing and I’m sorry if I gave that impression. I will put on clothes that reflect my advise and take pictures for you to see on the site. I am not a thin woman, but there are many pieces that cover my less than lovely tummy and upper arms but still have great flair. I don’t think we should emulate the style of 20 somethings, but we can create 50s style with freshness, fun and flair.

      I hope I’ve answered your question, Debbie.

      Fondly, Geri

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