Can you dress fun when you're older?

Discussion in 'Personal Style' started by rockitgirl, Jun 25, 2009.

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  1. rockitgirl

    rockitgirl Member

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    * I'm sorry if there is already a thread or if this is the wrong section, I am having a hard time with finding the right places to post on here -- Please forgive me! :) *


    I'm interested in hearing from people, especially those over the age of 25 (no offence to the younger crowd meant!)...when we see crazy/new/loud stuff on the runway or in vintage collections people talk about how cool it is, how progressive the designer is, etc etc. But I look outside and people, even those with their own style, do not dress it.

    When I was much younger I used to dress louder. I'd have more fun...but at 26 I moved to a city in North America that was really bland. When I wore what I liked to wear (my profile pick: a 1-piece bright red sailor inspired hotpants jumper!) I felt like I stuck out in a really bad way. People pre-judged me and either didn't talk to me or assumed that I must be a "party" girl or whatever. It didn't last long. I quickly stopped because I was alone in the city and it made me feel even more of an outcast and alone.

    I tried to still dress up when I went out...I mean, people dress up when they go out, right? I toned the colours down a bit though as this city didn't wear much colour. In my opinion I looked great (brown leather drapey capris that were fitted at the top and a backless moss green hooded shirt with a black tube top underneath -- incase you're not seeing it I'm influenced by the j-rock look :) ). But when I went out NOONE would talk to me. I would be at the bar all by myself and absolutely noone would talk to me. I was foreign, different, maybe they didn't know what to make of me. Either way it was not what I was used to.

    So it only took about 6 months before I started wearing jeans and a tshirt and doing my hair and makeup the same way each day -- before I developed a uniform. It was me but it was also the casual everyday me that fit in better. After 2 years of that...well now I'm back somewhere that it would be more appropriate but it's like I've lost the will. Or maybe I am fearful because of past experiences.

    In the past I WOULD wear that weird stuff. And now it's like I feel too old for it. I dunno... I don't want to feel like an old woman, I'm only 29! But I feel like I can only wear good, wearable clothes. They can have personality but gone are the days where I wear crazy stuff. But at the same time I don't feel like wearing the same fashion that other people do...so I'm still wearing that jeans and tshirt uniform and I'm finding that it is really hurting my creativity in all aspects of my art and design.

    Does anyone over the age of 25, other than the fashion crazies like Isabella Blow or famous people, wear anything that is crazy? Does that still exist? Am I too old? Are the youngsters who go to raves and the Harujuki crowd the only ones left with guts?

    When does one become too old to stand out in a crowd? Do you still do it?
     
    #1 rockitgirl, Jun 25, 2009
    Last edited by moderator tina619: Jun 25, 2009
  2. Melisande

    Melisande Active Member

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    There is no such thing as too old for anything you truly want to do. Period! :flower:

    I'm glad you feel ready to make changes! I learned that if you don't enjoy what you wear, neither will you enjoy the friends you make...and as you say, that probably applies to creativity and work too. Now, in my thirties, I dress as eccentrically as I please and have never been happier. It sounds like you're in a "style rut"...a period of being uninspired. Maybe you can make collages of images that inspire you style-wise. There are some great threads in this forum that provide tips on inspiration.
     
  3. fashionista-ta

    fashionista-ta Well-Known Member

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    I think there's no age limit on fun ;)

    When I was young, I had a very classic, i.e., old, style :ninja: Now that I'm older I'm having more fun with my clothes. I did used to have several novelty sweaters, and I decided those were a bit much. But I wear pretty much whatever I want wherever I want. If the conformists stay away, I consider that a bonus :p But I think just wear what you want with a smile on your face :flower: Believe me, in a few years you won't be able to believe how young 29 is :lol:
     
  4. emma peel

    emma peel New Member

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  5. fashionista-ta

    fashionista-ta Well-Known Member

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    nytimes

    Just say no to the combination of braids and Botox (from the above article):

    [​IMG]
     
  6. ChloeFrancoise

    ChloeFrancoise New Member

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    I guess it depends on the items we're talking about, but generally speaking why should there be a time limit on fun?
     
  7. Les_Sucettes

    Les_Sucettes Well-Known Member

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    As a 30 year old woman myself, i think as long you avoid the "mutton dressed as lamb" look, anything is allowed. I don't think fun , futuristic, original or plain weird clothes, have an age limit.

    But i agree, piggytails, denim mini skirts with over the knee socks, sockettes, tutus, leotards, and stuff alike are better left to the young.
     
    #7 Les_Sucettes, Jun 25, 2009
    Last edited by moderator optimusprime: Jun 25, 2009
  8. luckyme

    luckyme Active Member

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    i read the nyt article and thought it was aptly put. as i am getting close to my 50's i still dress with an edge that is me, but am keenly aware of what not to wear as well. i lean towards knee length or below skirts and dresses, all with sleeves (or layered with a t). i am fit but that doesnt matter, its still about not looking silly, i think this is why i have such a problem with skin tight leggings, for older women skinny pants or jeans are a better option and there always are options these days. for instance, i love the trend of thigh high boots but its going to be nearly impossible for an older women to pull it off appropriately, at least if heels are involved (I may still give it a try but its going to be iffy, although carine roitfeld looked awesome in the margiela's), flat otk boots are a better option for us. the older i get the more i feel i have developed an eye for proportion and fit and make use of that knowledge that comes with age and wrinkles of time.
     
    #8 luckyme, Jun 25, 2009
    Last edited by moderator : Jun 25, 2009
  9. fashionista-ta

    fashionista-ta Well-Known Member

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    To me, bright colors are fun, and they work at any age.

    I remember seeing pigtails on an older woman once (pixie type), and they looked fun rather than idiotic, but you need to know where that line is if you're going to attempt something risky ...

    Andrew Gn encourages his clients of all ages to show midriff, and I must say I did not care for that look on Lee Radziwill. (Good Lord ... :innocent:) Surely common sense would indicate that if you are eligible for AARP, not to mention Social Security, midriff is out ...

    The age for me where I felt a need to make some changes was as I approached 40 ... if something is childish or girly, IMO that was the time to let it go. But that by no means eliminates fun ...
     
  10. tabithacat

    tabithacat New Member

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    From your original post it sounds like maybe you felt really self conscious in your clothes and were worried that people avoided you because of how you looked. If I were you I would ask myself why I felt self-conscious; is it really caused by how I look or more by something internal? If it's truly caused by the clothes, then maybe that's not the best look for you. The most important thing is to feel comfortable in what you're wearing.

    I'm 28 and I definitely have lowered the hemlines a bit, but I don't look at it as a sacrifice. I'm a lot more settled in my personality now and I think that shows in the clothes I wear. If I have a piece that's kind of nutty looking but I love it, I wear it out and enjoy it because I know it's reflective of who I am right now.
     
  11. tangerine

    tangerine Soviet Camaro

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    Mutton Dressed as Lamb is my middle name... but I don't wear skin-tight bright red jeans any more. :lol:

    I have become more conscious of dressing my age lately, but it has mostly found expression in wearing monochromes and avoiding most patterns, prints and graphics.

    And as luckyme says, I find I have a better eye for proportion and fit.
     
  12. jennifer~

    jennifer~ Active Member

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    I dress however I would like; growing into the label of a 'fashion crazy' might be my future. I do admire Isabella Blow, Anna Piaggi, Lynn Yaeger and Daphne Guinness--she may look more conventionally beautiful than the others but Daphne is definitely an eccentric.

    They give me hope for the future; I'm not going to lie and tell you I've never contemplated the day when I shouldn't have piercings or whatever. Then I silence my doubts; most people who will consider this already fit outside the box and must already ignore many others' opinions. You (the original poster) have already said you lived in a 'bland' town and that increased your feelings of awkwardness; I've known what that's like and I just ignored people quite easily. Of course, I've actually been told by numerous people that I give the public impression of seeming very oblivious to everything: my surroundings, people's reactions, imminent danger... so I guess it's part of my personality type. -_-
     
  13. b9409

    b9409 New Member

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    My simple answer to the question:

    No.

    There is something called age appropriate, but whimsical clothing should be for everyone from age 7 to 70!
     
  14. rockitgirl

    rockitgirl Member

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    I'm howling at some of the comments...midriffs, botox & braids lol

    tabithacat, It was definitely because of the clothes that people reacted that way. This is a place where a goup of 10 girls out of the night are all wearing the same "in" thing except maybe different fabrics. I remember watching this group all wearing denim minis and those slouchy blouses that puffed out at the waist. They were ALL wearing them, every single one and their jewelry looked the same as well. I wasn't subconcious in my clothes at first. I was me, but people were avoiding me. When I wore just jeans and a tshirt they talked to me. So the more I wore just jeans and a tshirt, THAT is when I started to become self concious and now I am having a hard time wearing other stuff because I've brainwashed myself not to...trying to overcome that!

    Most of you said "yah fun is awesome but it should be age appropriate". But to me age appropriate is going to rule out most of the crazy stuff...unless we're talking crazy hats or something. Most loud fashions are designed for young people, or at least young bodies. I'm not talking about wearing a colourful knee length skirt...I wouldn't consider that crazy, I'm talking about wearing minis and tube tops and jackets with weird cuts and stuff. I used to dress like I was out of an apocolyptic or futuristic comic book lol It was FUN!
     
  15. rockitgirl

    rockitgirl Member

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    I wanted to be a bit clearer about something...I know that people can dress CRAZY like the vogue editor and Isabella Blow, etc. But I am talking about is dressing "daring" and yet having people still think you are dressed good. When I was younger and I dressed in these fun outfits I would get compliments. They were still stylish and flattering but they were too loud for others. And yes, I admit it, I loved the admiration people would give to me who said "I could never wear that"

    Isn't it ironic that now I think that too? lol

    Anyway, I just read that NYTimes article, that was great! Fantastic that it was posted right when I was thinking it :) Thanks for the link!!
     
  16. Melisande

    Melisande Active Member

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    That's wonderfully honest; and I think that is the real question: not whether you can/cannot, but will people still think I'm stylish for dressing in a daring way at a certain age?

    First, I think you are still way young enough that any daring outfit would be considered age-appropriate by most standards. (Even here in conservative, ageist, mysoginistic old Japan.) If you don't dress how you want now, ten years from now, you'll hit yourself for not realizing that. Second, it really depends on the place and who you hang out with, whether you get shocked stares or compliments. Try finding your own crowd who share your interests. Third, admiration (as with anything) is earned by those who go out and demand nothing less. If you feel and know you look amazing, others will think so too;).

    That said, I personally refuse to have anything to do with concepts such as age-appropriate, gender-appropriate, and such small minded limitations...with all due respect:flower:. If people think Madonna "looked like a nut", good for her; I doubt she cares. It gets people thinking. Think of Oscar Wilde, poor soul, so beautiful but ahead of his time.

    I might, like ta-ta says, have let go of childish/girlish things at a certain time, but only because I feel they no longer reflect who I am inside. I'm glad I indulged in childishness when I did in my late twenties because I've had my fill and was able to move on, instead of growing older with unfulfilled desires.
     
  17. rockitgirl

    rockitgirl Member

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    Very well said! And yes, that is the real thing "will people still think I'm stylish for dressing in a daring way at a certain age?"

    Since I moved here I've started to want to be creative with my dress again. The atmosphere is not as stiffling as where I was before. People are much more accepting. I see more colour, it's not all black and grey. But I look at my clothes that I have not touched for 3 years and I feel too old for them. But it's true what you say, that is a self-imposed limitation.

    This thread and that article that just happened to have been written are really helping actually. Today I was at the fabric market and so many more ideas (for me, not for clothes for others) were in my head. :)

    I'm going to a festival this weekend, one of those 40,000 people ones and my boyfriend has suggested we rent a locker so I can bring as many outfits as I want and change throughout the day and be as creative and crazy as I want. I think this will help me break free...especially since most of his friends will not be there, just us and his brother, so I will not have any of those nagging feelings about what other's expect.

    After all the fantastic replies here, and that article, I have decided to just dress crazy and not care, even if I think I look ridiculous. I have to stop being afraid because attitude is like 90% of how good you look :D
     
  18. fashionista-ta

    fashionista-ta Well-Known Member

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    ^ I wonder if you might be able to let go a bit of others' expectations ... you might find it totally freeing :flower:
     
  19. mellowdrama

    mellowdrama 101st monkey airborne

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    I dressed "fun" as a teenager and in my early 20's, complete with extreme makeup and colorful, shaved hairstyles. Now, at 36, to either cling to the trends of my youth or adopt the proclivities of the current younger generation would make me feel terribly self-conscious--more so than when I was an insecure youth.

    In fact, I think the reason I adopted such extreme styles in my 20's was self-consciousness and insecurity, as in "Why is everyone staring at me? Ah, must be the dyed-pink head stubble and granny boots." It was easier to understand the attention that way, and reject the giver of it if they weren't approving of my ostentatious "individuality". Which is not to say my motivations toward extreme fashion are the same as anyone else's. Confidence/insecurity are two sides of the same coin, you see.

    I'm guessing I was much prettier in my youth than I gave myself credit for, and I didn't like the positive attention, so I mucked it up a bit. No harm in that.

    Women my age and older whom I see in wilder fashion--I appreciate them if they apparently aren't holding on to some cracked mirror image of themselves, if they seem comfortable in their costumes, if it is unique and non-subcultural uniform-like. But even if they are doing all that -- "mutton disguised as lamb" and such -- so be it. We'll look down our noses and label each other. It's fun!
     
  20. thesiren

    thesiren New Member

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    the great thing about dressing off-the-wall is it sort of freezes your age when done right.

    i think as you get older you can still push boundaries, as long as it's done in a refined way. when i wear something outlandish (giant vintage skirt or insane vintage dress), i do a low, tight ponytail or chignon, clean makeup, a modern shoe. it's all in the styling. this brings it up to a woman in her late 20's who loves fashion versus a woman who is still experimenting with clothes because she's clueless on her personal style (not that there's anything wrong with the latter...i'm still there on some days).
     

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