Sunday, October 2, 2011

Style Tips from Over 50 Tastemakers

Yesterday, I was in the beauty parlor (I just love that old-fashion term) and picked up the October issue of InStyle. I was very happy to see that an article, entitled Super Stylish, about "10 top tastemakers” included two women over 50: Vera Wang, 62, and Lauren Hutton, 68. It’s another example of the fashion world recognizing the mature woman. (I blogged about this topic yesterday in Over 50 Fashion Role Models: A Change in the Air?) The InStyle article's writer, Sarah Z. Wexler, asked each woman to talk about her style POV. Interestingly, both woman believe that a statement necklace (“to wear with a T-shirt or cocktail dress,” says Wang) is an important accessory. I couldn’t find a link to the article to share with you, unfortunately. You’ll have to find a hard copy of the issue. In the meantime, here are a few of my favorite style tips from each woman…

Two style tips from Vera Wang really resonated with me. The first: “Embrace yourself and your body shape.” I love to incorporate a few of the trends each season, but only if they flatter my body shape. By the by, I recently found two InStyle slideshows that might help you to figure out which flattering dress styles and flattering coat styles are best for your body shape.

The other thing Vera recommends is getting a pair of “shoes that rock.” The right pair of boots or shoes “can change your attitude about everything else you have on,” she said. Personally, I'm loving all the suede styles this fall. Unfortunately, a lot of the rockin' fall styles have 3 inch or higher heels. Too high for me. Consequently, I fancy these Sam Edelman Petty Suede Booties($160). The boot comes in black, putty or moss green. I'm lovin' the moss green, though...

Sam Edelman Petty Suede Booties

Or here are two reasonable priced (with free shipping) Van Eli suede styles with modest heels...
Vero By Van Eli Women's Delight Pump

Vero By Van Eli Women's Delight Pump

Van Eli Women's Jackie Boot

Van Eli Women's Jackie Boot
(was $119.95, now $59.99)

Lauren Hutton also offers two style tips I need to be reminded of. She advises women to “thin out your closet. When it’s overstuffed, you miss the good pieces.” Maybe because I’m planning to change over my closet today, switching my spring/summer clothes with my fall/winter clothes currently sequestered in my attic, but I've been thinking about how important it is to re-organize your wardrobe at least twice a year. Years of switching seasonal clothes has taught me 2 things: 1) there are always things I’ve totally forgotten about (often a skirt or top I bought on sale at the end of the last season and never wore) and 2) there’s always a garment or two in the attic that is suddenly in vogue again. And I love to recycle old favorites back into my wardrobe! Case in point: I’ve got an ancient Rena Rowen blazer, Ann Taylor top and A-line skirt all with this seaon’s trendy houndstooth pattern.

The other tip I loved from Lauren is: Mix cheaper faddish stuff in with more expensive apparel. “I wouldn’t be caught dead in an all-expensive outfit,” she confesses. As someone on a strict fashion budget, this is advice I live by. I buy the most expensive sweaters, coats and blazers I can afford. These are the pieces people notice and well-made items pay off by lasting for years. (I’ve tried cheap sweaters and they just don’t work.) I also buy high-priced (for me) classic handbags, but cheap trendy clutches. And I save money by going cheap on all-cotton T-shirts and underwear. They’re pieces that are going to have to be replace frequently, so I’m not going to spend a lot on them. And, lastly, I look for trendy blouses, dresses and shoes on sale, so I can buy well-made without paying high prices.

What’s your favorite style tip for women over 50?