Once upon a time I was a girly little girl, loving to play dress up! Fashion was super fun!
In a flash, I was a lovely 20 something year old, taking fashion classes, working at Macy’s behind the cosmetic counter, and riding every edgy trend that I could.
This is me at 22 years old, in Florence, rocking harem pants.
And this is me trying out a more goth style, with red hair and even a bindi!
How did I end up here at 47 years old?! Time does fly! My sense of self has grown and changed through the years. My fashion sense has as well, and like all growth sometimes it has been a bit painful and awkward. There was a stage when I was dressing as a frumpy school marm by day and a hot-young-thing-wanna-be by night. Somewhere in my late 30’s I realized that shopping in juniors really wasn’t working for me anymore. I know … I was a bit slow with that realization. I went through an awkward stage, not really knowing how to grow my fashion sense to match my changing sense of self. Next I started my new plan to dress age appropriately. I marched myself through Coldwater Creek, J. Jill, Chico’s, and Talbots … and if I found myself staring longingly at Hot Topic or Forever 21, I would repeat this mantra in my head “I will dress my age. I WILL dress my age!”
Somewhere in this stage, I started looking for guidelines. I found many rules, but were they really necessary? No mini skirts past 35? Well, actually I stopped wearing them before that, but I knew many women who were still looking good in them in their 40’s. I heard Stacy London (who I actually adore, but don’t always agree with) disapprove of Heather Locklear wearing a tank top past 40. Really? If Heather Locklear can’t wear a tank, maybe the rest of us should just give up now and buy muumuus, right? And hey, Jillian Michaels workout DVDs have given me pretty good arm definition. I still think I look good in a tank, gosh darn it!
I really will miss this show What Not To Wear. I learned so much by watching it, but I didn’t always agree with every choice and rule.
So that’s when I just started concentrating on having fun with fashion again. Why take it all so seriously? Why not just enjoy it? To me fashion is about a way of expressing myself, a way of being creative, and a way of feeling good about being me. Age appropriate? Yes, it’s still important to me, but I can decide for myself what that means and I don’t need to stick to any rules. After all, if we were still following all the rules our handbags would always match our shoes and we’d never wear white after Labor Day, right?
Now, I can let myself go into a trendy junior store and into a more mature women’s store without fear that I’ll forget who I am along the way and where I am in my life. For me, it’s been wonderful to shop for the life I actually have, the body I actually have, and focus on wearing what makes me feel good and happy.
My latest fashion incarnation has been as “fashionshouldbefun” on Instagram. Looking for some girly fun and style inspiration, I changed my personal account to focus on my love of fun with fashion. I’ve been thrilled to find so many fabulous fashionistas out there, all different ages, full of creative ideas, and so supportive and sweet! I’ve been so inspired by you all!
Since I’ve always been a fan of fashion blogs, this post is my baby step in that direction. My dear friend, Kim, who writes the Northern California Style blog, has been a huge inspiration to me. We’ve been friends since working at Macy’s together way back in the day, and I could write a whole blog on our fashion-infused friendship! But here I just want to thank her to encouraging me to speak my fashion truth, blog style.