Monday, April 2, 2018

Too Old To Do What?

RHYS BOWEN: I just read something on Facebook that made my eyes pop out of my head. All right, I agree, there is plenty on Facebook that elicits that reaction, from kittens watching Pyscho to photoshopped images meant to stir up the far-right. But this was personal. It stated: researchers in Britain have concluded that the age at which women should stop wearing jeans is 53.


As someone who is a trifle older than 53 but who spends her life in jeans I was mortally offended. How dare they! Which researchers! Using what criterea? Are tight legs and bums supposed to stop our blood supply, cause us to overheat or create varicose veins?  No. The article ended lamely with the conclusion that it is hard to fit the more mature female body into jeans.

So sigh of relief. I shall go on wearing them. But this came at a time when I have been very conscious of which items of clothing are not suitable for my age. As some of you know, I am heading for the Edgars and Agathas banquets as a nominee this year. I want to look good and I'd like a new dress. I have been shopping extensively and can't find anything that's right for me. Every cocktail dress seems to be above the knee and I don't think that women of my age should show their knees, especially on the off-chance that they have to go up the steps to accept an award. The dresses seem to have either a high waist, which makes those of us with a little stomach bulge look pregnant, or they are tight and draped, accentuating said stomach pooch.

I'm now considering wearing the silk tux I've worn to other awards. At least it looks elegant, and ageless!


So I'm wondering what the rest of you think: what items of clothing do you think women of a certain age should stop wearing? Bikinis? Shorts?  (I've been known to wear both recently) Or should we be able to wear what we like and to hell with what the world thinks?

LUCY BURDETTE: Oh definitely we should wear what we like! I too live in jeans and can't imagine ever giving them up. Ditto for shorts, yoga pants, and skirts that fall above the knee. I'm not saying mini-skirts, but a little shorter than knee-length so they don't look dowdy. (Unfortunately when walking any distance, I have to wear my sneakers too, which isn't ideal but it works.) By the time we are the age we are, we've sort of figured out what looks good and feels comfortable. So why let other people tell us they know better? But personally, I am not going back to a bikini...

About your dress, I have a friend who goes to Saks and makes an appointment with one of their shoppers. The shopper brings in a bunch of stuff to the dressing room and shuttles out the rejects and brings in more. She's always successful. Maybe that would help??

HALLIE EPHRON: I find fancy dresses harder to shop for than bathing suits...and that's going some. I'll be at the Edgars but in my usual LBD. With pink pearls.

My daughters have informed me that denim jumpsuits and parachute pants are back--all the clothes that I embarrassed them by wearing when they were growing up. If I still had them, I'd wear them. 

HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN:May I just say? It has nothing to do with age. Whatever age, who cares.  It has to do with what looks appropriate, and fun, and flattering (why not?) and, if you care about it and it works, fashionable.  I love fashion, and I love to wear nice clothes.   (The Devil Wears Prada, forgive me, explains it.)  But it's not age! It's what is attractive--and by that I mean--seamlessly flattering and appropriate. If I watch TV news, I often yell at the screen. WHAT IS THAT?  There should be no cleavage in TV. Ah. What are they thinking? But they are young! And still--what they are wearing is gaspingly wrong.
SO it's what right for  you, jeans or not jeans--whatever works. For YOU.
Yes, Rhys ,personal shopper at Saks or Neimans. Free and fabulous.  Hallie and Rhys--winning is the best outfit! And we are crossing fingers like mad.
PS.  NO denim jumpsuits. NO parachute pants.  I have spoken. :-)

JENN McKINLAY: Nope. Nope. Nope. Jeans are my uniform and I will wear them until my demise, which will hopefully be when I hit the triple digits. I love when they come up with these goofy things. No mini-skirts after thirty. Seriously? I wore one this week and it looked fabulous. No hoop earrings after forty. Why not? What does age have to do with hoop earrings? My oppositional defiance disorder kicks in when i read stuff like this. Note to self: Go purchase the biggest hoops you can find. 

INGRID THOFT: No hoop earrings after forty?!  I love hoop earrings!  They’re versatile and classic, and they go with everything.  You’ll have to pry my hoops off of my cold, dead ear lobes.  I think these sorts of rules are silly.  People should wear whatever they want, but I like to keep in mind whether something is flattering and appropriate (Hank, some of our news anchors out here look like they’re going to cocktail parties after being on air!) for the time and place. 
Nordstrom also has personal shoppers, Rhys.  I’ve heard nothing but good things about their services!

RHYS: No hoop earrnings? Who makes up these rules? And I also read that women over 50 should not wear eye make-up. Balls, as we'd say in England! I love my eye make up and will keep using until I turn 90!

JULIA SPENCER-FLEMING; Agreed on do what looks right for you. I have a friend closing in on sixty who has fabulous legs, and she wears short skirts all the time. The difference between the way she wears them and the way a 24 year old wears it? Her skirts are made from excellent fabric and she layers them over tights.

I think the line that age draws should be timelessness and quality. Trendy fast fashion is for the young. When neon and lace is THE spring look, my daughters can wear frocks from H&M (that will shred after the 9th washing) and be cute. If I wear the same thing, no matter how flattering, I look like a sucker. At a certain age, you should be above the fray of this hot fabric or that must-do style, especially, as Hank says, when it's unflattering. (Those weird shoulder cut-outs, anyone?) You should go for the classics - like jeans and hoop earrings! - and buy the good stuff, not cheap-o items with fabric you can poke a finger through and stitching you can unravel with a tug.

That being said, clothing manufacturers need to get a clue. When your choice for an occasion is between a prom dress and something Queen Elizabeth would wear, it's not your issue, it's the industry's.

RHYS: Julia, if I had time and energy, I'd open a chain of stores just for ladies over 50. Elegant, timeless clothes that do not make me look like someone's grandmother. Talbots and Chicos used to be like that but they are now catering to the younger crowd. Silly, because we have the disposable income!

DEBORAH CROMBIE: Julia, that is the perfect description of the cocktail dress dilemma!! Surely there must be something in between the Queen and the Prom! I'm only glad I'm not going to the Edgars or the Agathas because I don't have to shop for a dress.

As for jeans, I don't know what I would wear if I gave them up. Rhys, did this fashion pundit offer any alternatives? Polyester pant suits, perhaps? I wear leggings and sweaters, and skirts above my knees, and I intend to keep on doing it, but I try to stay away from the trendy. (No "cold shoulder" tops, thank you very much.) No jumpsuits, although I had one in the nineties that I absolutely loved. And no hoop earrings, but just because they don't seem to suit me.

And please, can someone explain to me what is this thing with women only tucking the front of their shirts into their jeans? Is it to prove that their stomachs are flat?

RHYS: So let's hear from you now: What should we and shouldn't we wear?

83 comments:

  1. Is this in the same vein as “thou shalt not wear white before Memorial Day or after Labor Day?”
    And I don’t understand the whole “tucking in only the front of the shirt” thing, either.

    As far as I’m concerned, it’s all utter nonsense. I shall happily continue to wear my jeans. I like to wear comfortable clothing; I think you should wear whatever you think is right for you . . . .

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  2. Women over the age of fifty have more than likely learned how to tell those judgmental fashion fascists how to eff off, but I do have a bone or two to pick with the industry as a whole. I was a Levis woman for years and years, but then Levis deserted me. They stopped selling women's size jeans in stores--you could only order them online, and we all know how many pairs of jeans you have to try on before you find one or two that fit. So I stopped wearing Levis.

    Years ago I had to go to a formal event with my husband. He simply pulled his tux out of the closet, but I needed a dress, and I ran into the exact same problem you ladies have encountered. I wanted a dress that made me look like a goddess. I wasn't a mother. Nobody was getting married. Yet all I could find were Mother-of-the-Bride dresses. Dowdy Mother-of-the-Bride dresses, at that.

    But it's even worse. A friend of mine got married for the first (and only) time about five years ago. She was in her 30's and not a size two. Within the wedding industry, this made her a "non-traditional bride." I have never in my life seen a woman who was eager to spend thousands of dollars on a dress be treated so shabbily by the salespeople who stood to make a hefty commission off her. Fat shaming was just the tip of the iceberg!

    I think the fashion industry needs to pull its head out of wherever it's hidden it, and start serving the customers it actually has, not the customers it fantasizes about.

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    1. Thanks, Hallie! One of the kids I rather casually mentor at Dallas' arts magnet high school told me once he dreamed of starting a fashion design house that made clothes for older, larger women who wanted to be fashionable, "because every woman ought to feel good about what she's wearing." I told him we would throw buckets of money at him, we'd be so happy. He's in college now, and still interested in the fashion industry, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

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    2. That's the part that seems so illogical to me. Okay, I can understand top-name designers only wanting their clothing to be associated with youth and thinness. But there are hundreds of clothing manufacturers out there, with associated unnamed designers, who want to sell. And women over 50 have $$$! I can afford - and am willing to spend - so much more now than I could twenty-five years ago.

      Maybe we should start a movement. "My hips bay be big, but my wallet is, too."

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    3. Reminds me of Kathy Burns in "Fried Green Tomatoes."

      "I'm older and I've got more insurance"

      One of her best lines ever.

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  3. No jeans! What! No way. Jeans and cargo pants are my uniforms. My biggest gripe is what's up with this stretch thing--no no--basic cotton only, please. I order from LL Bean, they seem to have reliable fit and longevity in one reasonably priced package. The cargo pants come from the army navy store and yes, have button flies!

    Dresses are another matter. I dressed from Talbots for years, now they've changed their style so I'm at a loss and dieting frantically to get back in my "old" clothes in time for Bouchercon! Fingers crossed ladies.

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    1. I've found the same thing with Talbots

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  4. Yeah, like any smart man is going to try to tell women what they should or shouldn't wear...

    Nope, not falling for that trap.

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    1. Julia,

      I'm not the smartest guy in the world, but I'm not in the category of dumbest either.

      That is a road that leads to nothing good for guys. LOL

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  5. I'm with you all. And I'm the mother of the groom come September and dreading trying to find a dress. Maybe I'll try one of those personal shoppers. Do you tip her afterwards?

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    1. I did the mother of the groom a couple of years ago. Horrible. All the dresses looked like Morticia Addams!

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    2. But Rhys, an Addams Family themed wedding would be AWESOME! HA!

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    3. I bought a dressy pants outfit online and switched the monochromatic jacket (jacket, top, and pants were all the same color)for a hand-painted, multi-colored one I have from Key West!
      I think it suited (!) me well for my son's wedding.
      Libby Dodd

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  6. The need for a personal shopper? BECAUSE THE INDUSTRY HAS ALWAYS FOCUSED ON A FANTASY! Where the heck are the clothes for normal women who want to look good??? For a dressy occasion, I end up with the usual: black pants or black skirt (dark hose) with some kind of semi-fashionable top or jacket or sweater. Funeral? Check. Wedding? Check. Work event? Check. Heaven forbid I should ever find something fun and flirty or exciting! And if anybody ever tries to take my jeans or my hoops, well, blood will be shed!

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    1. Get 'em, Flora! And what's up with everything formal being sleeveless? Do you want to see my arms? I know I don't.

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  7. No dress problem here—i don’t own a single dress or skirt. Finding nice looking slacks that fit well is getting to be a problem, though. Same with jeans. The so-called fashion industry doesn’t have a clue. I’m still wearing jeans at 70 because they’re comfortable and durable. For dress-up? Everyone has already seen my “conference clothes” many times, but they still fit and don’t go out of style, so it looks as if they’re going to be worn again this year. If I’m going to be judged by what I wear, then just call me that “eccentric writer from the backwoods of Maine”

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    1. Kathy Lynn, just call it your "signature look" and explain it's all about branding these days...

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  8. Years ago I decided to tell the Fashion Industry "You are not the boss of me! stamping my adolescent foot. Fortunately I live in FL, where flip flops are okay at weddings. Honestly I live in my skin for the most part. tmi? // I liked the silk tuxedo, and wonder if you have considered making that a 'signature look'. Or... a gown in gun metal gray, or deep mauve Shantung silk? cowl neckline, better stop now or I would include the gossamer wrap that is just a shade lighter than the silk. looking forward to a pic of your final decision

    Last thought, denim tuxedo?

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    1. What??!!?? And I thought the camo tuxedo was bad.

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    2. She means my black silk tuxedo! And I'd go with gray silk if I could find a well cut dress!

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    3. Seamstress, definitely! Just don't expect to pay less than you would in a shop. I've been a dressmaker for over 50 years, and it's the ONLY way I can get a flatt ering dress- and not in polyester, either.

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  9. You're preaching to the choir here. Who comes up with these idiotic rules? I love my jeans although I quit wearing them when hot weather comes. Half tucked shirts? I haven't noticed that one. I notice a lot of women news reporters wear sleeveless dresses. Somehow that doesn't seem business-like to me. What do you think, Hank?

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    1. Oh, the sleeveless dresses. You know, I continue to be baffled about that. I think it's supposed to be alluring. Is that even in the top fifty words you would choose for it? I'd start with unflattering, distracting, disrespectful, off-brand, unattractive, distressing, cheap...

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    2. At dinner yesterday, we had a long conversation about the local women anchors and their too tight very unflattering cocktail dresses they wear on the evening news. Except for one, Maureen McGuire, who happens to be a cousin. She wears suits just like the male anchors do, or tailored dresses, and she always looks professional.

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  10. I am one who notices what the reporters where on TV and I often find that what they are wearing detracts my attention from what they are saying. That can't be the intention, can it?
    I haven't shopped for dressy clothes in years, wouldn't know where to begin. Years ago I would have sewn something but it is extremely hard to find nice fabrics now and patterns? Unbelievable!

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    1. Judi, I have NO idea what the point is. well, I do--they think, apparently, that men will be eager to watch. I shake my head at that. Men (and women) might watch, but wouldn't they be laughing? Certainly not listening to the news.

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    2. All those Stepford Wives news gals. Blonde hair over shoulder, vacant state, too many white teeth and cleavage. If I'd shown cleavage at the BBC I'd have been out!

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  11. They will rip my jeans from my cold dead hands. Good luck Rhys and Hallie!!!!

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  12. My Mom is 90 and still wears jeans. She likes to be comfortable.

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  13. A friend of a friend is a news anchor in the D.C. area. Her bosses told all of the women to ditch their suits and wear sleeveless sheath dresses with a sweater or shrug over them after a National News Anchor started wearing that attire. It was mandated, mandated! Then they wanted her to grow her hair out to wear it over one shoulder like they do. She refused. She would and did wear the clothes but she refused to change her hair. She is 50.
    As to jeans, I wear denim that fits me (not really a jeans cut) and they can just lump it. No hoop earrings? Ridiculous! As for short skirts, accentuate your good points always.

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  14. Why is this so hard? Wear what makes you feel good and looks good on you. Whatever the fabric - denim, silk, whatever.

    If I gave up my jeans I'd be half-naked most of the time.

    Mary/Liz

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  15. Yeah, funny, though, I hardly ever wear jeans. I just don't think they look good on me--but I keep trying.
    Atlanta, don't get me started on the jewel-toned sheath dresses that are too tight and too short and unflattering. And with weird cutouts and dropped shoulders. Sorry to be so judgy, but they are hideous. (What national news anchor did that?)
    Judi, agreed!I One hundred per cent! I yell at the tv all the time.

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    1. Insisting that female news anchors wear sleeveless dresses is incredibly sexist. It's body shaming. A man's well cut suit can hide a multitude of sins (and sags) whereas a woman in a sleeveless dress will be forced to worry about her toned (or not) arms. And it looks so unprofessional!

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    2. There's also the cost factor--All those nightly appearances--can't wear the same dress! Yet, does anyone at all notice if one of the male anchors has worn that particular suit, tie, shirt before? And I agree, the female attire for the most part looks totally unprofessional.

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    3. In my opinion, which no one asked for, the only woman who looks great in a sleeveless anything is under 16 or Michelle Obama.

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    4. A bit late, but agreeing with you Ann on Ms Obama. And the heck she caught for looking both strong and beautiful! Rock on Ms First Lady and I hope the rest of us settle into clothes we like and feel good in. But, all strong women here!

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  16. Everyone knows jeans are for traveling. How many times have you sat in grimy airport chairs which put dust and grime on your backside for the world to see? Nope, no pastel polyesters for me!

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    1. You're so right Maplemass. I made the mistake of flying once in pale khakis. Never again.

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  17. What nonsense. My 88-year old mother still rocks her skinny jeans, ballet flats and long tops. As I always say, attitude is everything. If you act old, you'll be old. I plan to follow my mom's footsteps and just stay young at heart forever.

    I have no idea why sleeveless garments are considered a thing on national news shows. It looks pretty stupid to me, and negates everything my generation strove for in regards to equality.

    However, I do have some insight to offer for why stores seem to offer more sleeveless dresses than sleeved ones. Cost. Sleeves are harder to make--especially those fitted closely to the body, harder to fit properly, and way harder to sew. Plus, they add at least another half-yard or more fabric to the total. It's a bottom line thing.

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    1. I heard the same thing about wedding dresses, Karen. Some lady toiling at a sweatshop in Malaysia can run up one of those satin sleeveless jobs (a friend of mine calls them sausage casings) in half the time it takes to properly set in sleeves. Then the bridal shop charges $1000 for it.

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    2. So did my mom, Karen. And looked fab!

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    3. There's also the problem of having sleeves--dresses, coats, blouses--I tried on a zillion coats last year and ended up buying a larger size to get sleeves that half-way fit. And yet, shoulders, girth, etc., I still fit the same size coat I've worn for 30 years!

      And if I'm around when I'm in my 90s, you can bet I'm not wearing housecoats and those god-awful black tie shoes!

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    4. Julia, you mean strapless, right?

      I absolutely detest strapless wedding gowns. It's hard for women of any size to look remotely worthy of a white gown (tongue in cheek here) in one, and they flatter almost no one. Plus, they just are not appropriate in church.

      Flora, I sew, and sew very well (I taught it for years, and sewed professionally), and taught patternmaking for awhile, too. It takes actual skill to make a sleeve pattern that works, and with the cheap way clothing is made these days too many shortcuts means very poor fit.

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  18. So do men feel pressure when it comes to the rules about suits? Are their rules beyond basic colors and fabric weights? My hubby only wears suits to weddings and funerals, so I don't know much about the guidelines with which men have to work.

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    1. Given that I despise having to dress up for anything, I do all I can to not be invited to those types of occasions where "formal" wear is expected.

      If I can't get out of it, I simply put on a dress shirt and a tie. That's it. I'm not spending money on clothes that I have no interest in wearing in the first place.

      And I beg people to not invite me to weddings, I'm a curse. Every wedding I've been to but one has ended in divorce.

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    2. I won’t wear ties anymore, even when I’m in a suit. Ties have to be the silliest piece of clothing ever. Why do we have this piece of fabric hanging from our neck?

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    3. James, generally I'm with you on the tie thing. I usually put on a clip on tie if I absolutely have to wear one because I'm thoroughly lazy, disinterested and obstinate about any kind of clothing beyond pants, t-shirts and sneakers.

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    4. I was thinking of you,Jim, and how you rock jeans with an open collar shirt and a blazer. Even at award ceremonies. Don’t change.

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    5. Good point, Jim! Only useful as a garrote!

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    6. Thanks, Jay, Ann, and Ingrid! I’ll say this, though. If I had the guts, I’d wear an ascot. Is that hypocritical? No, because it doesn’t dangle!

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  19. Ladies, my suggestion is to have a dress custom made for yourself. There are some timeless, comfortable styles that a good seamstress can skillfully adapt to suit your figure -- Diane Von Furstenberg's classic wrap dress for one, in the fabric and color of your choice, in a length that most suits you, with maybe a little extra fabric in the skirt for some swing? Sleeves for the arms, V-neck for the classic face-flattering look, body conscious but not overly revealing ... If you have the $$ resources for a new outfit, then have it made exactly as you wish and skip the shopping frustration. And spend some $$ on the best, most comfortable shoes you can find. Cole-Hahn makes lovely pumps that have the soul of a sneaker.

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    1. Mis-spelled Haan. Sorry. They are the most comfortable dress shoes ever.

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    2. Except that those skills--dressmaking, tailoring, alterations, patternmaking--are dying out, and schools are not teaching them any more. So good luck with finding someone to custom make anything.

      And if you are lucky enough to find such a person, be prepared to spend at least three times as much to have a garment custom made as for one that was mass-produced overseas.

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  20. We have a newish store here, Soft Surroundings. https://www.softsurroundings.com/

    I went in to have a look around and was impressed. So many natural fabrics, lots of soft drapey stuff, linens -- which is a summer favorite for me -- and sizes from teeny tiny Hank to moderately large tent. Next year I'll be going to Nicaragua a grandmother of the bride, and this is when I will shop for something appropriate. I prefer pants, mostly because I have quite a knee deformity from all the surgeries, but I'll wear a long dress too. I am tall enough.

    It's jeans and corduroys in the winter, knee length shorts in the summer, and crops most of the rest of the time. And shoes I can walk in.

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  21. wedding clothes: make an appointment at Nordstrom. I gave them my budget, approximate size, and color preferences. For a major Hindu wedding, I wore a glittery lace shift with an unlined matching jacket trimmed with a big rhinestone button. Perfect, washable, and still my go-to wedding dress. For my son's wedding, his bride said to pick any color. I tried on every blue dress in the store and emerged with the perfect bright blue, lace cap-sleeved, knee length dress. End of May in New Orleans with a second line, so it had to be comfortable in the heat and easy to wear walking through the Quarter for a mile.

    I hit TJMaxx a few weeks ago and found DRESSES: a dressy shift for an upcoming summer wedding and the opera, a summer-weight LBD with short sleeves, a cotton shift for casual summer events, and a packable crushable dress for travel. Doing the happy dance!

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    1. Margaret, I need to enlist you as my personal shopper! And maybe I need to tackle TJ Maxx. It always seems a bit overwhelming to me.

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    2. Nordie's was great and had many dresses under $200, which was my cap.

      TJM is overwhelming but I've narrowed it down to one store with a large inventory of misses business clothes. I hit it between snowstorms three weeks before spring break. In addition, they always have a dress sale before mother's day. Talk to a knowledgeable clerk who knows what days the new merchandise arrives.

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    3. I feel the same way about TJ Maxx -- I never seem to have enough time or patience to work my way through the racks. But Margaret is inspiring me!

      I bought a gown for the Edgars and Agathas a couple of years ago and was so excited to wear it that I didn't even hit the woman who told me she'd worn a similar dress a few months earlier as mother of the groom.

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    4. You showed remarkable restraint, Leslie.

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    5. I agree on Nordies and a personal shopper. Also Nordies Rack if you’re so fortunate to have one.

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  22. Jeans are comfortable, every day clothes. Everyone should be able to wear them at any time!

    And nice try with the trap. I'm not going to get into what women should or shouldn't wear beyond that. :)

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    1. Make that at any age. Obviously, there are times when jeans aren't appropriate, like at awards banquets.

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  23. At least the low-rise jeans trend seems to be fading. Incredibly unflattering and uncomfortable!

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  24. These people and their rules make me want to rebel. At our high school our dress code focused on simply being dressed -- the Seven B's of coverage. Some of the students once were concerned about a rumor that flannel was going to be banned from school. I told them it was untrue, total nonsense, but they stayed worries until I told them that if it happened, I would wear flannel in support of their rights -- and I would have.
    I wear what I like, within the limits of the latex allergy that makes most elastics, including spandex, unwise.

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  25. Another hot topic for me here. As I'm so conscious of my weight right now, it's hard for me to buy anything without assessing how fat it will make me look. My current dilemma is finding something to wear to the horse races. How's that for a challenge? I've been invited by an old friend whom I grew up next door to and who now lives in Arizona to accompany his husband and he to the horse races in Lexington (KY) the end of next week. He has seats in the posh section, so not just anything will do. Dressing up to go to Keeneland in Lexington is something akin to the Derby in Louisville, but not quite so elaborate, or at least I hope not. But, a dress is probably the correct choice, and I currently hate wearing dresses. And, in looking online, I swear I've never seen so many ugly dresses. I definitely require a mid length dress, too.

    I have another old friend I'll be seeing on my trip, as I'm spending part of it in my hometown of Maysville, KY, and she is my age, 64, and she still looks fabulous is short dresses, so I think she should absolutely wear them. I'll be having dinner with five or six of my hometown friends, and we are all shapes and sizes, so that's good.

    For me, it just comes down to wearing what makes you comfortable and happy with the way you look. No jeans is a ridiculous rule for older women. I wonder if the same researchers think men over a certain age shouldn't wear jeans. Probably not.

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    1. I hear you, on all of the above.

      Keeneland is such a special place, and event. I have not been there in decades! Relax, and enjoy yourself, no matter what you wear. Because what everyone will notice is your beautiful smile.

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    2. Karen, you are so sweet! I haven't been to Keeneland in decades either, when I was in school at University of Kentucky.

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    3. You had me at "Keeneland." :) I don't wearing love dresses, either, plus April at Keeneland can be chilly AND rainy. Or 80 degrees and sunny. My suggestion? A nice spring pants set with a harmonizing broad brimmed hat. Dressy but comfortable flats because you'll want to go down to the paddock and maybe take in breakfast at the track kitchen (a bus will take you through the backside to the kitchen). Keeneland will be lovely with the red bud and dogwood blooming. Le sigh! :) Rhonda Lane

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  26. My 92 year old mother's everyday outfit is jeans and a denim jacket and she is adorable. For me, it's weight rather than age. I have made the point about "women like me" having the money for quality clothes. I mostly shop on line at Lands End and Talbotts, and occasionally visit a Talbotts store. When I am in the neighborhood, I might pop into a Lord and Taylor. And I have recently discovered Kohls.
    Jeans, for me, are what I wore for chores as a kid (and my chores included caring for my cow) so I have never worn them as an adult.

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  27. The writers who work up these cute articles are doubtless 23 year-old magazine or zine interns. Pat them on the head for effort and keep moving. They don't even have to wear makeup and do not believe they will ever have a little extra flesh under their sweet chins. Jeans have survived every trend since 1849 or whenever it was Mr. Levi first produced them, and they show no signs of withering because someone says half their market should stop wearing them. As to dresses, Rhys, it is hard but not impossible. But I lke the classic tux - why not wear it? It will never be less than fashionable - it's a classic, just like the jeans!

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  29. I hate arbitrary fashion rules, particularly since the main goal seems to be to shame women in one form or another. There was an op-ed recently about women who wear yoga pants, and the author was making some broad claim about sweatpants being more comfortable and that yoga pants were "bad for women."

    What I find comfortable and what you find comfortable could be completely different things. I personally hate jeans, but that's because I find them restrictive. In fact, I hate pants in general. I don't like anything that feels like it's holding me back, so pants without stretch, turtle necks, long sleeves, etc are huge No-Nos for me.

    Maybe I just haven't found the right brand of jeans, but as a broke millennial, shelling out for "quality" isn't really something I can afford to do.

    P.S. Hoops earrings forever and forever <3

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    1. I'm with you on the hoops, Mia! They work with everything!

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  30. Great post! Christie Brinkley is in her 60s and still looks great in jeans. Gloria Vanderbilt and Jane Fonda are in their 80s and can still wear jeans. Eartha Kitt wore a beautiful black lace dress in her 60s.

    About hoop earrings, I cannot wear earrings anymore. It has nothing to do with my age. Since my cochlear implant surgeries, it would only get tangled with my speech processors if I wore earrings. I know some people with hearing aids wear earrings. It is different from speech processors with magnets.

    I agree with the comment that it does not matter what age you are. If you continue to look wonderful, then keep on wearing what makes you look good!

    People who can wear LBD are lucky. I inherited a beautiful LBD from my grandmother who had olive skin. Since I have the Celtic fair skin, it is not a good color on me so I wear a scarf with a different color so I look better :-) . That dress fits me like a glove! Those of you who went to the banquet at Bouchercon in Toronto saw me wear that dress and I got so many compliments!

    Diana

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  31. I was with you all (jeans, hoops, dresses "between the Queen and the Prom"), but why the negativity for sleeveless?! Even if I'm *not* built like Michele Obama (in my dreams!), sleeveless in hot weather is the way to go.

    Of course, I'm not a news anchor...does that matter?

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  32. The writer part of me is thinking "She only tucked in the front of her shirt. Is she hiding a concealed weapon in the back?" LOL

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  33. I've given up short shorts, but I still wear jeans. And leggings. I'm an Agatha nominee this year and will be wearing a dressy pants outfit to the banquet.

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  34. I love jeans from Coldwater Creek, but that's because they used to have a store closeby where I could try on all the sizes in all their brands styles to figure out what size I needed in each (and which styles I needed to stay away from). Now that they've closed the stores and gone catalog-wide, I just don't buy as much as I used to. It probably keeps my budget healthier, especially since they sold so much more than just jeans that I loved, but I really miss spending time in the store with a helpful clerk who happily rotated sizes and styles as I needed her to, while I waited in the dressing room.

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