I don’t care much for fashion, but I DO care very much about how a woman feels in the clothes she wears.
I also know that it’s all too common for women of any age to suddenly decide that they are dressing too ‘young’ and start playing it (too) safe.
‘Playing it safe’ can lead to dressing in a way that could only be described as ‘frumpy’. Even typing the word makes me shudder!
I encourage my clients to keep their style up to date (rather than fashionable), so that they not only avoid the ‘frumpy’ trap but also stay feeling fabulous and confident in their choices.
My top tips for staying up to date:
1. Get Inspired
We have access to SO much style inspiration online. Whether you look at your favourite brands, Instagram, Pinterest or department stores, notice how the clothes are combined to make gorgeous outfits. Yes, they may not all exactly be right for you, but it’ll give you an idea of the subtle styling details that keep outfits looking current.
Take particular note of the way an outfit is accessorised, tucked or half-tucked (French tucked), sleeves pushed up, even the shape of a shoe.
2. Try new colour combinations
Mixing colours from the same palette will give your outfits an instant up-level. Gone are the days of colour needing to be worn with black or white. If this scares you, start with wearing different tones of the same colour, such as green or blue. When you get the hang of it try pink with red, blue with coral, different tones of neutral shades, the possibilities are endless. (If you know the colour palette that suits you this is easier. Use your colour fan to see which colours are used on one strip for inspiration.)
3. Stop matching everything
If your clothing style is very classic, you will want everything to match. From shades of navy to your shoes and handbag. Classics get away with this more than most but it’s very easy to look dated when you are matchy-matchy from head to toe. I would advise that you particularly avoid wearing matching earrings, necklace and bracelet. It’s all too much and likely to make you look older than you intend.
4. Stop hiding under too much fabric
My clients are often amazed and delighted when I stand them in front of a mirror and pull the swathes of fabric of their clothes behind their back to reveal their true figure. It is not true that wearing baggy clothes will hide your lumps and bumps. The next time you are shopping, try a smaller size and see. You might just look slimmer and more in proportion in clothes that fit you properly!
5. Have your hair cut into an actual style!
When hairdressers are open again – (not long to wait now!) consider a new style. I really notice the difference to my whole style when my hair is just vaguely chin length. When it’s cut shorter, in a deliberate style, my whole look is sharper and more up-to-date.
You don’t need to go short, but I’d encourage you to have a ‘deliberate’ style if you want to update your own look. Again, use Pinterest to find styles that are recommended for your hair type and face shape.
If you’d like to my help in bringing your style up-to-date and finding the tips and tricks, colours, shapes and outfit combinations that are right for you, take a look at my Remote Transformation Session. I have two appointments available to book this month. For the full details, click here. Check my availability by dropping me an email.
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I’m in my 70’s & plus size. I have a long body & short legs & am bigger in the middle area. I want to buy a dress as haven’t had one for yrs but don’t know what style to go for. My bust is not much smaller than my hips but my waist is almost as much as my bust so out of proportion.
I tend to go classic but like to be up to date am “winter”
Hi Jenny, I would advise either a straight cut dress or a fit and flare. You need to avoid wrap styles, belted styles and anything with seams or details around the middle.
An open neckline is nice to break up the torso.
And a darker colour or print is more flattering than a lighter one.
Loved this Helen
and since doing my colours shopping is easier !
can’t wait for your next blog
That’s great to hear Debbie 🙂 Thank you for commenting.
So much sound advice Helen! I was feeling more and more frumpy, playing it increasingly safe as you describe. It’s not taken much to help me feel a bit more up to date and less mumsy. Your blogs and wardrobe advice have been a godsend Helen!
Isn’t frumpy such an awful word! I’m so pleased to have helped you out of it Alex x
Thanks for this reminder Helen, it’s amazing how much better I feel since I’ve had my hair cut back into its style.
Our hair is such an important part of us! Thank goodness most of us have managed to get to the hairdressers now! And let’s hope we never have to go this long without again…
I’m amazed how much easier I’m finding it to mix and match my clothes now I understand what colour palette I am and what a cool undertone is! It’s definitely made me a bit more adventurous and willing to try new combinations.
That’s great to hear Krystal. You are looking great in your winter colours!