As I age (apparently I am doing this. I was unaware until recently) I find I have to change certain things about the way I dress. I knew it was going to happen, but it’s been difficult to admit that there are just some things I should not wear any more, if I want to remain a part of polite society.
For example, mini skirts without 1000 denier tights have no place in my wardrobe today. Colour blocked dresses like this one from Top Shop
do me no favours (don’t care for the look on the youngsters, either, so I’m not too mournful).
Short shorts and I, too, have parted ways. No matter how lean and strong my legs are, the skin is just a little too.... well, age-d, blumpy (bumpy and lumpy) to pull off the Dasiy Duke look. Goodbye adorable baby doll tops that I probably shouldn’t have worn in the first place. Sayonara cartoon based jewelry.
I also fear that 2011 was the last year of the bikini for Elpoo. I really enjoyed the 3 minutes of my life that I could wear a bikini. I’d worked very hard for those 3 minutes. But they are over and now it is time to turn my face to the future. A future of one piece dark coloured swim attire, skirts that hit just above the knee and Mrs Roper inspired capery.
To be honest, I’m not all that cast down by the inevitable turning of my wardrobe’s page. There is a lot that is good about acknowledging that there is a time for pvc bustiers and there is a time for cashmere twin sets. I no longer have to worry that I need to dress like Fergie (good God, no!) to be stylish, I don’t have to buy clothing that can only be worn with a series of pulleys, Spanx and weeks of dehydration. I don’t have to believe the shop girl when she tells me slyly that skinny jeans are “universally flattering”.
I am now able to say I can create my own style, my own “look” and work it as I please.
What a relief.
Now, what the hell will my “look” be?
I really need help.
I have a few options for Future Ellen. These potential me’s are based on three basic types of mature women: Homey, Comfortable Wise Woman, Fabulous Woman or Socially Deviant Cat Lady.
|Homey Comfortable Wise Woman Elpoo|
Homey Comfortable Wise Woman has long grey hair that she wears in a bun, or in a single braid down her back. Think a modern day Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman.
She makes her own jam, bread, and candles. She lives in a lovely cottage with a fireplace.
She smiles with warmth in a way that is comforting, yet slightly disconcerting because it is almost like she sees your inner most thoughts, but doesn’t judge you for them. She wears flowing clothes that neither cling to her, or look like tents.
She has an herb garden, plants flowers that attract butterflies and needlepoints in a rocking chair while you complain about your husband. She then tells you exactly what you should do, like you knew it all along, but needed her to say the words. She likes folk music and gospel choirs. She probably plays the harp.
|Fabulous Woman Elpoo|
Fabulous woman has dyed red hair, worn at chin length. Think Auntie Mame, or Susan Sullivan’s character in the TV show “Castle”.
Fabulous Woman throws dinner parties and takes oil panting in the evenings (not on the same evening). She lives in an amazing condo and collects art.
She reads The New Yorker and goes out for lunch a lot. She can tell you exactly who to call if you need a contractor, tickets to Aida or the best rental villa in Tuscany. She has matching dogs or cats (ie. two greyhounds or two Siamese cats) and a cleaning lady come in once a week. She wears bold jewelry, silk cigarette leg trousers and kitten heels.
She likes jazz and classical. She probably pays the the piano after too many cosmos.
|Socially Deviant Cat Lady Elpoo|
Socially Deviant Cat Lady has crazy grey hair that she cuts herself with her nail scissors. She lives in a tiny one bedroom house on the outskirts of Cobourg. She makes room dividers out of piles of magazines and newspaper. She eats over the sink. Alone. She mumbles. Unless she’s yelling. She wears sweatpants and men’s acrylic sweaters, but does not wear a bra or deodorant. She makes people uncomfortable. She has, of course, fourteen cats, who are all well taken care of and clean. She isn’t abusive, she’s just nuts. She likes TV. She probably plays a chord organ.
I hope actually, to be a combination of these three types of gal. Yes, I even want to be a little bit socially deviant cat lady. Once in awhile. But not in public.
I will look for inspiration to stylish older women everywhere and to websites like Advanced Style, a blog by Ari Seth Cohen that focuses on women of a certain age who are freaking fabulous! Check it out.
I will have as many cats, matching or otherwise, as I like.
I will throw dinner parties, take oil painting classes and wear my hair long if I like (sorry Mom).
I hope to give good advice. But I’ll have no clue what you’re inner most thoughts are. I’m too busy planning my next dinner party and wondering where cat #8 is hiding.
Where I live will probably depend on Brian unless he’s finally willing to admit he’s really, nothing more than my best accessory and was put on this earth to decorate my arm. We’ll always have two dogs but they might not be matching (damn!). And no matter what form my future self takes, I can comfort myself with the knowledge that there will always be things to shop for.