Ageless Fashion Tricks

November 13, 2015  
Filed under Blogs


By Sharon Mosley

The times they are a-changin’ — especially if you’re over 50 and still want to look fabulous. Style is ageless and old is the new young, says Alyson Walsh in her intriguing guidebook, “Style Forever: The Grown-Up Guide To Looking Fabulous.”

The fashion journalist, who also writes a blog called “That’s Not My Age,” has a few tricks up her stylish sleeves for older women who refuse to be invisible.

Focus on a statement jacket. “To someone who embraces casual glamour, the kick-ass jacket is vital thrown over jeans and a T-shirt for business meetings, or to help avoid the ghastly lecturer-dressed-as-a-student vibe. Not forgetting that when everything starts to slip southwards, a spot of decent tailoring can help to restore a little structure and conceal the dreaded middle-age spread.”

Fit is key. “Generally speaking, when it comes to proportion and balance, a looser top looks better over slim pants or a pencil skirt and a looser bottom half (wide-leg trousers or A-line skirt) looks neater with a more streamlined top.”

Get a little creative. Walsh suggests experimenting with vintage style with bohemian flair. “I’d recommend keeping the silhouette simple by choosing clean lines over ruffles, frills and frou frou,” she adds. “A flat canvas creates a more elegant look.”

Be bold with color. Steer clear of “yellowy” beiges; instead opt for warmer shades, such as camel, and team them with strong colors, such as red, black or leopard print in the winter and turquoise and white in the summer.

Think like an artist. Walsh is also inspired by Mondrian color-blocked paintings. “Monochrome plus a primary color creates a powerful visual effect. Orange, turquoise and emerald green also look stunning with black and white.” Wearing one color head to toe is another one of her favorite fashion tricks to ageless style.

And a big color no-no? “Wishy-washy pastel hues have no place in a grown-up woman’s wardrobe. Faded denim is the nearest to a sugar-coated shade allowed. Don’t wear pastels; they may not kill you but they will make you look 20 years older.”

Natural fabrics are your friends. “Stick to natural fibers like cashmere, wool, silk, and linen. Avoid nasty man-made fabrics.”

Accessories can make an outfit. Scarves are one of the best ways to add a flattering touch to anything you wear. “Though I’m not quite at the Nora Ephron stage just yet,” she admits (she’s 51), “I do thoroughly understand the benefits of a beautiful scarf. Just don’t drape over one shoulder.”

Sprinkle on the bling. “Whether it’s simple or statement, costume or precious, jewelry is the perfect complement to a pared-down outfit and an easy way to express creativity. I know this from my fashion editor days when styling fashion shoots; a string of gobstopper beads and a stack of bangles or rings would bring an outfit to life.”

It’s all about the sneakers. “As a sporty kid, I spent my life kicking around in trainers,” says Walsh, “and I’m still a fan of this laid-back look. To me, a pair of trainers teamed with a tailored jacket and slim or slouchy pants are an essential part of dressed-down daywear.” As for any other kind of shoes you choose to wear, well, make sure “you can damn well walk in them.”

And don’t forget the sunglasses. Walsh suggests investing in one of three different styles: the classics (such as Ray-Ban Wayfarers or aviators), kooky show-stopping frames or retro designs that never go out of style (think oversized, Jackie O sunglasses). And never wear wraparounds, adds Walsh. “Ever.” Oh, and if you do buy a pair of expensive designer specs, try not to sit on them. —CNS



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