Sunday, September 29, 2013

Styling Jeans Over 50

jeans shirt over 50

Editor's Note: Oops! I just realized I never announced the winner of Flattering50's last Giveaway. Kathleen O. was the winner of a pair of Coldwater Creek jeans of her choice. She choose the knit jeans. Congratulations Kathleen!

What to do about fickle fall? Two weeks ago, there was a 30+ degree drop in temperature—mid-80s F down to high-40s F. I was away at the time, doing my annual father-daughter vacation on Cape Cod. It’s bad enough trying to navigate freaky fall weather at home with my entire wardrobe at my disposal, but with only a suitcase on the Cape, I had to be creative. Those skirts and sandals I'd packed, assuming the average temps would be in the 70s F—were not going to cut it. Fortunately, I had also packed jeans. Here’s some of the ways I styled my jeans on vacation and now that I'm back at home.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Still Learning: Time to Hit the "Pause" on "Fast Fashion"?

More and more, I'm hearing over 50 women say, "I'm shopping my closet," putting together a new outfit with what they've got rather than running out to buy something new. No doubt, their reasons for this vary greatly. There might be a financial reason--lost income since 2007, or the need to curtail fashion spending to pay off their kids' college bills. Or perhaps, like my over 50 girlfriend, some women don't want to buy anything new until they drop a few of those postmenopausal pounds. Recently, I discovered a video, entitled The Business of Fast Fashion, that gives another great reason for buying less and "shopping one's closet" more: It's good for the environment. In just under 2 minutes, the video by MBA shows how buying lots of disposable clothing, known as "Fast Fashion," impacts our planet and more. Here, take a peek...

Created by

What do you think?

It might seem strange for an over 50 style watcher like myself to advocate for hitting the "pause" on fashion spending, particularly "fast fashion." In my mind, however, being stylish and buying less aren’t mutually exclusive. In fact, some of the most stylish over 50 women I know have very modest wardrobes.

Vivienne Westwood says, "By less, choose well, and mix it all." For me, styling over 50 has become as simple as that. Last winter, I made a conscious decision to start “shopping my closet” and share the result in my “New Day/New Outfit” project. While I have faltered now and then, falling back on outfits styled in the same way, the project has made me aware of the endless combinations of separates and accessories I can create without buying lots of new stuff. It's also made me a smarter shopper; I'm buying less, choosing more well-made pieces, and mixing like mad. After watching The Business of Fast Fashion, I feel even more determined to scale back because of the benefits to our planet, our children and grandchildren's future home.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Early Fall Colors: Black, Grey and White

Last Friday, I attended the opening reception of a new exhibition of photographs by Gosta Peterson, one of my favorite fashion photographers. It was a crisp, clear New York evening and most woman on the city's streets were dressed for cooler weather. In general, frocks and sandals in this summer's hot pink and sassy citrus colors gave way to knit dresses and separates in black, white or grey. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

US Tennis Open: Spectator Style

spectator style at the US Open

Turning the calendar page to September is always a little bittersweet. For some reason--perhaps, because the beach and water are so relaxing--I'm always a little sad to see the season nearing its end. There's one thing, however, that keeps my spirits up: The US Open. As a lifelong amateur tennis player (hacker?), I’m lucky to have the international event in my backyard (25 minutes by train). Each year, I go with a small group of family and friends to watch some of the world’s greatest athletes and, of course, to people watch.

I think it's safe to say that looking glamorous for a day of tennis-watching in the heat and humidity is not the primary objective for most US Open spectators. Instead, comfortable clothing--hats, short-sleeves, and shorts or capris--is de rigeuer. Even those who sipped "the bubbly," cooling off under canopies, were dressed pretty low-key...

US Open Tennis

Monday, September 2, 2013

Flattering50 Giveaway: E-book on Feminine Transitions

Editor's Note: This Giveaway has ended. Thanks to all those who entered!

It's that time of year again when fashion magazines produce September issues with hundreds of pages displaying Photoshopped young women in the latest fashions. As someone who loves clothing design and style, I look forward to flipping through an issue or two at the beach in August, looking for new fall fashion ideas. Two weeks ago, I sat with my toes in the water, looking at the thickest issue of them all. (You know which one I mean.)  While I saw a number of fashions I think might be perfect on over 50 women, I honestly don't remember a single face of any of the models. Their chiseled cheekbones and flawless complexions just disappeared into the glossy pages, leaving no impression on me.

Soon after, I received an advanced copy of Feminine Transitions: A Photographic Celebration of Natural Beauty by author and photographer Alyscia Cunningham (A&C Books). The book is a collection of full-pages photographs of female subjects, from age 7 weeks to 103, photographed without makeup or accessories of any kind. These are honest, memorable portraits of women in their natural state. They depict the character and beauty of women at every stage of aging. Each portrait is accompanied by a lovely, inspiring reflection by the subject. Yesterday, I posted a review of Feminine Transitions. Now, the folks at A&C Books would like to give an e-Book copy of Feminine Transitions to a Flattering50 reader.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Book Review: Feminine Transitions

Editor's Note: The folks at A&C Books would like to give a Flattering50 reader an e-book copy of Feminine Transitions. For details, visit Flattering50's e-Book Giveaway

Ask women to pose for a photograph without makeup and chances are some will refuse. That’s what author and photographer Alyscia Cunningham found when she asked women to pose bare-faced for her new book, Feminine Transitions: A Photographic Celebration of Natural Beauty (A&C Books). “My intent was not to cause any discomfort,” writes Alyscia, who’s done work for the National Geographic, Discovery Channel and Smithsonian Institute, in the book’s introduction. “I simple wanted to create a celebration of womanhood in their natural state.” Interestingly, she found that women in their late 40s, 50s and 60s were most likely to refuse to be photographed without makeup, wigs or other accessories.