I read an interesting article recently which Debbie from Fashion Fairy Dust referenced in her blog post. The article said it doesn’t matter if you have a super hot body at fifty, you still shouldn’t show it off.
This particular sentence really blew me away,
“The joy of piling up a certain number of years is that you get the freedom to do whatever the hell gets you over the rainbow. It’s that we … just shouldn’t.” – AARP
Along with that came a list of things we should no longer wear after 50 which included; skinny jeans, berets, fishnets, thigh-high boots and short skirts, ripped jeans, strappy accessories and mini shorts.
Since Debbie showed how she has basically worn every one of the “forbidden” items I was inspired by her and thought I would do the same…
Breaking Fashion Rules Over
Mini shorts (with sequins no less!)
Thigh High Boots & A Beret
This brings me back to the shift dress I was wearing above.
I hadn’t worn it without tights in a few years because it is shorter than what I normally wear and I was feeling self-conscious about my legs and the little wrinkles and fat forming around my knees.
I had to give my head a shake. They are still my legs. They still work. Why am I so damn critical?
I never used to notice wrinkles on my knees until I heard other bloggers and friends complaining about theirs. It is a bad trait that so many of us have, finding the smallest detail to complain about, when in fact, we should just be grateful that we still have our health.
No more BS. I had an opportunity to wear this outfit and I took it.
I decided to wear this on the first evening of my blogger meet-up with Ally and Patti.
I know in a few years I will look back on this outfit and wonder why I was ever worried about showing off my legs.
Wear whatever you want at any age.
We’re only going through this life once, have fun, be grateful and enjoy it.
Do you catch yourself being overly self-critical? How do you silence those nagging thoughts?
Linking up with Your Whims Wednesdays, What I Wore, Throw Back Thursdays
You know I agree with you about “what we shouldn’t wear” bans, especially when they’re based on something stupid like age. I’m writing instead to applaud your beauty — your natural beauty. Your legs are amazing.
Wrinkles are mere signs of having lived, something we should be proud of having done (and survived). The problem isn’t wrinkles, it’s a culture that looks down on them. Every age has its beauty. Sure, my neck has lines now that it didn’t have in my twenties, but my brain has wisdom it didn’t have then. I’m glad you’re viewing this complex situation in a healthy way. Breaking the rules — and looking glamorous doing so — proves the “rules” are BS.
*** STANDS ON THE TABLE AND CLAPS FOR YOU AND SCREAMS YEESSSSS!!! ***
Haters gonna hate. They can just keep walking. Some people are weird, they think they have the authority and ability to dictate how other people should live, wear, look like or feel.
They can kiss our fishnet-wearing, strappy-shoe-wearing, ripped-jeans booty!!!
jodie filogomo says
Amen, amen, amen!!!
First off that article is crap!
Second, you look better than better!
And who decided that wrinkles are bad anyways? Don’t we look at a pudgy baby with those wrinkles around their arms & legs and think it’s the cutest? It shouldn’t be any difference with us!
And let me just add that those shoes are envy worthy! Love them!
Tiina L says
Maybe it’s a cultural thing, but it seems to me that these ‘don’t wear this or that after 40/50’ articles are quite common in North America and Britain, but I’ve seen very few of them in Finland (and the ones I’ve seen were clearly just translated from English language sources). That’s why I don’t know what to say about them. I see middle-aged women wearing short skirts, spaghetti straps etc every day. Sometimes it looks good and sometimes not (doesn’t always look so flattering on 20-somethings either…). Also, I’m used to seeing ‘older’ women on TV (news anchors etc) and 60-something singers (male and female) wearing skinny jeans and biker jackets and flouting their tattoos…
As I said, I don’t know how I’m supposed to feel about these articles, as I don’t think they are relevant at all. So, here’s what I suggest: why don’t we all just wear whatever we like, as long as it’s decent, and stop reading these articles. If we saturate the Internet with pictures of fabulously stylish middle-aged women of all sizes and shapes, this will soon become normal in people’s minds. And those who have a problem with this will realise sooner or later that they too get older, and will celebrate us as the fabulous role models we are. And, instead of ‘rebelling’ against ‘norms’ maybe we, the middle-aged women, can celebrate the fabulously stylish older women we see, treat them as our role models. So, let’s all just ‘pretend’ that dressing up in whatever we like is the most normal thing in the world, because that’s exactly what it is.
It’s like that movie Poltergeist except in this case they’re screaming in terror, “Stay away from the RAINBOW! STAY AWAY from the rainbow!!!” Hahaha. WTF?
That AARP article made me feel sorry for the writer more than anything, to be bullied into style change in shame after a few careless remarks by her son. And you personally know the back story to that AARP article as well… Again, WTF?! Of all the rules the one I don’t get the most is the beret rule…???!!!
Suzanne, you are still clearly playing on that rainbow! Yay! And have a heck-of-a lot of fun doing it. And you look FABULOUS!!!
Elaine Monkeypaints says
Hmm, I used to get SO affronted by stuff like this – but some folks apparently LOVE rules; are frightened by becoming devalued by ageing; care about the jewel-like bon-mots that their feckwit ‘friends’ and families dish out. And let’s not forget the Power of Judgementalness.
NONE OF MY BUSINESS.
Conversely, when said feckwits pronounce on my appearance/life choices – it is NONE OF THEIR BUSINESS.
I know, I should be a United Nations Peacekeeper. With Cher.
She doesn’t give a shit what ‘they’ think either.
🙂 Dear Suzanne,
I fully agree with you – wear what you like.
It doesn’t matter how old you are. If you feel good about yourself, it will show.
Have a very HAPPY week
and a hug from Vienna xo 🙂
I’m tired of people telling me what to do. I’m going to wear what I want. You look fabulous and I cannot believe that all those items are “forbidden”. What a load of hooey.
The son sounds a bit… not very tactful in that article and I am confused by why someone shouldn’t wear X or Y. I mean, I get being occasion appropriate but being afraid to wear something because you will embarrass your 13 year old seems odd (I mean, literally everything is mortifying to a 13 year old. It is inescapable.)
At the bottom of the original article the author writes about an adage that you can buy taste but not class and that seems to be the real factor. You (and a lot of other women, including 50+ women) wear a lot of things on her list in a classy way. Anyone of any age could wear a lot of things on and off that list in what I might consider a not classy way. Heck though, classy or not, all people should be able to wear what they like…
Elizabeth g. Arthur says
Oh wow! You look amazing, Suzanne. Break all the rules and love every moment.
That first outfit is so much yes! I’d totally wear that if I could ever find shorts that will fit my weird body. I’ve got huge thighs and no butt. No but at all. Shorts hate me. Thank you for being you and setting a good example for younguns like me.
Happiness at Mid Life says
I agree that life is too short, just wear what makes you feel good. Wrinkles on my knees?? Now I have to knee wrinkle cream too? ;D
Hope to see you for TBT Fashion link up.
Like Elaine says, some people love inflicting rules on themselves, hence this inexplicable desire for capsule wardrobes. Maybe it’s in the genes or something, this need to obey and conform – definitely something you and I were born without.
You look brilliant in everything, I love that green maxi and beret combo and nobody rocks skinny jeans and sequinned hot pants as well as you do!
What is it with having to cover ageing arms and legs? We all get older and most of us have neither the money or inclination for surgery. Wrinkles are normal. I’ve yet to meet a man who stopped wearing shorts ‘cos his knees weren’t as toned as they were when he was 20!
Radness. So many favorites. I love that first outfit. It’s perfect. The colors and patterns in that third dress are fantastic, too!
Exactly! Where whatever you want! I am sure my outfit I wore for school is not the done thing for 35 but who gives a stuff! LOVEyour looks!x
My motto…. don’t follow the rules, if it makes you happy wear it!!!
Marilee Gramith says
How sad to so blindly follow a bunch of archaic, puritanical , rules that demand that we grow bland as we grow older.
Keep inspiring us Suzanne! Be you, be free, be fun.
Ridonkulous! It seems no matter how successful bloggers are with breaking rules, there are always people trying to pop them back in place. I agree with Melanie in feeling bad for the author. The rest of us are just saying we don’t care what our sons and their girlfriends think! What I don’t understand is why not everyone is joyed by seeing people dress to make themselves happy regardless of anything else like age, body shape or what’s ‘fashionable’. I love seeing that on the streets – and you can tell by people’s auras that they are doing it. This kind of judgement will probably never go away but the older I get the less I care. I’m glad it works that way. You look amazing. Always.
No Fear of Fashion says
Of course you are right. Period. Let’s not pay any more attention to these articles. I agree with Tiina, there aren’t any articles in The Netherlands like that. Or perhaps there are and I don’t read them. You gave perfect examples and I know you will continue. I love your strappy sandals and the dress is cute.
Darling. You are not breaking the fashion rules. You are making them!! XOXOXO
I am soooo tired of writers churning out yet another “Don’t wear this after this age”. Is there nothing else of interest to write about besides feeding women’s insecurities about whether something is “age appropriate”? I am in my 50’s, I have good legs, I will wear skirts above my knees and feel good about it because as you point out, when I’m 70, I don’t want to look back and think, damn, you’re legs looked good then, why didn’t you show them off??
You look great Suzanne, you have a banging figure (as Vix would say) and a great eye for putting outfits together. Wear whatever the f**k you like!
As a Brit who did not want Theresa May to become the Prime Minister, I am nevertheless pleased that for all her faults, she is apparently an older woman who violates these kinds of rules and has fun with fashion. I love that she wore a sexy black designer dress with a full length obvious zipper up the back from hem to neck. I love that she wears stilettos. I love that she show cleavage. I love that she wore a risqué-patterned dress. I love that she wears all sorts of stuff, clearly enjoying fashion. She wasn’t my choice of PM, but at least she is doing her bit for those of us who enjoy fashion but are not age 21.
I do think that the more over-50s who wear stuff that violates these kinds of rules, the better, because only by doing that will we make wearing all this stuff at 50+ acceptable. It is BAD that we are expected to lose our personalities and all become prim conservative boring dressers. No way I will! And for that writer to say that even if we have a good body, we still shouldn’t wear skinny jeans etc — well, I find that outrageous. Although I myself work hard to retain my good body, I’d also like to put in a word for those who aren’t model thin etc — I think we should ALL wear what we damn well please, young or old, thin or fat, you name it — WEAR what you WANT and ENJOY DOING SO.
Señora Allnut says
mwhaha, life is really too short to take care of all those rules!, and it’s a fabulous post (as usual): a lovely recap!.
I don’t even understand why you shouldn’t wear a beret!. I think that most of these rules are made to make us feel invisible, and relegate us to an obscure corner!. Obviously, there’s something disturbing in a middle aged woman looking fabulous, comfident and beautiful.
And you have fabulous legs, yes!. (love your shoes, and your pretty cute dress!)
Some of your “no-no” outfits are my favorites of all your posts! And your legs are lovely! I went out with unshaved legs today! gasp! Then I got home, showered and shaved, and went out again without a touch of makeup! Bwahahaha! Maybe I should balance it out by wearing formal for our backyard camp out tomorrow night??? :o)
Sherry - Petite Over 40 says
First, you do “post-50 rebel-wear” very well! Second, your legs are fabulous! I don’t see these little wrinkles and fat you mentioned. Not that you need my opinion on it. It was incredibly empowering to see you empower yourself beyond your self-criticisms.