Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Spring 2010: Gone Camping

With every new fashion season, the question on my mind is always the same: Which trends will look good on the over 50 woman? Luckily, there are always styles that are perfect for older women. Sometimes, in fact, it seems as if the designers had us in mind. (Of course, they didn’t. If they did, they might use an older model now and again.) Unlike our younger counterparts, who seem compelled to project a single, uniform image—the 'this minute' look for the 20-something woman—we can pick and choose from the season’s trends, mix them with our closet favorites, and create our own personal style. That’s the great thing about being older—there’s no single ‘look’ for the 50-something woman! Instead, we can focus on what’s really important: styles that flatter our 50+ bodies and feel good.

When navigating the new season’s fashions, it’s important to know when to go full speed towards a trend and when put on the brakes. A few of spring 2010 fashion trends are no-brainers when it comes to slamming on the brakes. For example, this spring’s cheerleader skirts? I don’t think so. I never carried a pom-pom and I have no regrets. Ditto for the military jackets.

Instead of the military look, some designers and labels have seized on the camp look. Camp shirts, short-sleeve shirtwaist dresses, Bermuda shorts and webbed belt are de rigueur. Neutral hues—olive, browns and beige—are the standout colors this spring. If you’re a “Fall Colors” person—someone whose complexion has golden undertones and, consequently, looks great in beige, camel, and dark brown—you’re in luck this season. Plus, I imagine the spring 2010 neutrals will take you straight through September.

Just be careful: Too much of the “camp” trend, dressing head to toe in camp shirts and shorts, might make you look like a demented Brownie.

Also…too much camper styling might make you look masculine. At our age, sagging often starts to erase the well-defined femininity of our younger faces and bodies. You can combat this by wearing feminine accessories. If you choose a camp shirt, for instance, try wearing it with a camisole or a pretty necklace. Also, pick a camp shirt that is tailored, like the one above. As our waistlines widen, many of us look for tops that are boxy to hide beneath. But boxy just makes you look bigger and macho. I'm not saying to buy something skin-tight. But choose a top that falls comfortably on your form, not engulfs it in massive amounts of material.