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If you are a middle-aged woman, this is a fashion no-no:

 Don’t wear tight skinny jeans;  

 Don’t wear graphic t-shirts;  

 Don’t wear big plastic jewelry;  

 Don’t dress like your mother;  

 Don’t dress like your daughter.  

How many women do you know who are still dressing like they did 20 years ago?  Their clothes are either too tight or too childish.  To the other extreme, you have women who wear mumu looking outfits to hide the rolls of fat that have accumulated over time.

Unfortunately baby boomer women have a tough task in finding age-appropriate clothing that doesn’t make them look like their parents—or their kids. According to a survey conducted by Mintel, a market intelligence firm, more than half of the baby boomer respondents said there is a major lack of retailers carrying appealing merchandise, and one-third said stores catering to their demographic have unstylish clothing.  

When was the last time you went shopping and found the cutest outfit—only to discover it wasn't in your size?  Or how about finding a nice suit in your size—but for some reason the skirt (or pants) doesn't fit the way it ought to.  

So how are you dressing to impress at midlife?  Or do you care?



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Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Denise Alleyne-Hill wrote Oct 27, 2008
    • Hey teek..can you mail me some clothes then?..I think this blog is about me...lol



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Denise Alleyne-Hill wrote Oct 27, 2008
    • nah...I can honestly say I don’t have those...lol...sorry...but I still like you..(smile)



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Bobbi Bacha wrote Oct 27, 2008
    • My mother is in her 60’s and she dresses in anything trendy she likes and she looks great.  I  like trendy things too we just look for apropriate sizes and styles in the trend or colors we like.

      She wears her boots, cute skirts, tanks, what ever she likes and she always looks fabulous.

      Now you have to be body concious, and color concious because not all styles look good on all body types and colors too.

      Unless your model thin, but I noticed even models have a style.

      Go with your coloring your features, look, body type, and style.  

      Im a classic style and look horrid in tans, creams, pinks, light pastel colors, or untailored clothing.. I need classic designs of Jewel tone colors or winter.  If I put on tan.. I looked like a washed up bag women, I dont care how its made.  Put tan on a natural blonde and she looks elegant.

      Add fun to your wardrobe but try it on and make sure its you and you feel and look right in it.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Gwendolyn007 wrote Oct 27, 2008
    • I dress in whatever looks best on me.  I love trends & will only wear them if they look good on me, so no skinny jeans for me, lol.  I can wear some junior clothes.  I am very casual & hardly ever have to dress up like I did when I was working.  Back in the day, I had a purse, shoes & jewerly to match every outfit!!  Those days are gone.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Gwendolyn007 wrote Oct 27, 2008
    • I agree, Jackie, just learn your body type & go for it!!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Denise Alleyne-Hill wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • My body type is my problem...I’m small framed therefore ‘women’s clothes look ridiculous on me...I can’t wear anything but junior clothes and if I push it..I can probably get away with kids clothes...Don’t think I haven’t tried...lol...My 12 year old wears bigger sizes in everything than me...SMH!!!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Rena Bennefield wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • **Myself..I don't dress to impress..Nor do I apologize for it..I will be 50 Nov.7..And as long as I have the body of a 30-35 yr old I will dress to suite myself. I have never been a slave to fashion..I dress in what makes me feel sexy, healthy, and comfortable...Life is suppose to be fun..If we let society dictate to us how we should or should not" dress or wear our hair then we have sold ourselves out.Do you not realize that in doing so you give up your individuality..I will never give up or sell out to any self styled group of people,(Churches, PTA, Sewing Circles,etcetera)who find it easier to hide behind social obligation and big baggy clothes...No Thanks..I will just be Me =)



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Kmarie wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • I am conscious of dressing for my age, but not only dressing for my age , but more so for my body.  My Mother warned me years ago before she passed that at middle age gravity begins to set in and one learns to dress a little differently to suit their body and their styles. But I also realized that it is not about dressing just for an age physically, but mentally I am not drawn to try and wear every new style, I am incorporate what I like and leave the rest behind..... Now the other half nine years ago i was a size 2, I really need to get out of the double digit sizes.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mary Clark wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • I still like to think I dress “cute“...stylish....at my age.  I get called a “diva” at work all the time....which I think is going a little overboard.  

      I find 95% of my clothes at Steinmart.  The clothes I get there always fit me just right....I can find just about it anything I want......and I feel good when I wear those clothes.  And they have fantastic sales.  I basically quit going anywhere else because it was a waste of my time.  

      When I lose some of this weight it will be even more fun to shop.  I like jewelry too...and cute handbags.  I am going to try very hard to not ever dress like an “old lady“....whatever that is anymore...LOL.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Cheryl Phillips wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • Love this post. Don’t know how many times I look at other women my age and think “Don’t you LIKE being your age?”  I love 45 far better than I liked age 20. I wouldn’t trade it or the body I’ve “achieved” for anything.  

      I don’t like trends and I don’t like being “over-jewelried” (that’s not a word, I know!). There’s nothing worse than seeing a woman with tight leggings, a big shirt with “I’m with Stupid” on it and tons of gold jewelry...ring on each finger, 12 gold necklaces, earrings bigger than her head. You don’t look “rich“, woman, you look cheesy. OK, that wasn’t nice...but it’s the truth.

      Simplicity in makeup and clothing at this age is a must. I love clothing that flatters the curves we’ve earned. I love some of the Spiegel line also (FX is great!). I also shop primarily at White House Black Market because I like 90% of their stuff and it FITS. I don’t want baggy clothing and I don’t want tight clothing. I do like to look like a woman, though!

      I like chunkier jewelry but that doesn’t mean I wear all of it at once. I LOVE Banana Republic rings!! I like “bigger rings” and theirs are great (try eBAy...$50 rings are $15). I also love the jewelry at WHouseBMarket and some vintage shops.  

      I’m a classic black shirt and jeans girl or really tailored bootcut black pants and a great top. Not too much nonsense here...although right now it’s 830 and I’m going to physical therapy this morning for my knee....so it’s sweats and a baseball cap. EEEK...hope I don’t look like a teenager ;) Not likely.

      Thanks for this post...it’s so important that women appreciate their age, their body and more. We rock.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Rena Bennefield wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • **Mary I agree with you..I get told all the time that I look so "cute" or sexy, pretty.. I wake up in the morning and see what the weather is going to be for the day and then I dress to reflect the temperature. If it's a cold day and I am feeling snuggly I will wear a pair of leggings knee high boots and a big snuggly sweater with a big belt, a tight fitting shirt under it..If I go outside I will top it off with a hat and one of my many coats...I have skirts and dresses from mid thigh high to ankle low..But never in that office" space length..Yuck... I have a lot of boots all different lengths and heels galore..Bags to match from clutches to back packs..I buy off e-bay and Newport News, and Pyramid I also buy a lot of Goth clothes and Renascence period clothes..As for jewelry I wear everything from Pentagrams to Diamonds set in white gold..I don't wear 20 necklaces at a time either..I do wear rings on all my fingers if my mood is such..I have beautiful and classic pieces and I love to wear them... Like I said Life Is suppose to be Fun...not all anal and uptight..I am not saying that the more sophisticated look is not nice it is..I just choose not to wear them..I tried to wear the clothing that is "age appropriate" and all my friends and my family..Even my children..Laughed and said You are joking right...I had on a nice pair of slacks and a button down blouse with a hip length jacket.. I am 5'4" I wear a size 3-4, I am in great shape "Gravity" has been very kind to me... But I work hard to achieve that...I hardly have any wrinkles. I don't look 50 or feel 50...So why should I have to be pigeon holed into acting, and being something I am not? I am by no means putting down any style of clothes..If you like it wear it..I say to each their own...Hell I never cared about what others think about me especially people who have never met me or don't know me personally...I am a free spirit and I do as I please..I am hoping that this is not going to start some kind of revolution..or big argument..I mean no disrespect to anyone and their taste..We are individuals right?



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Beverly Mahone wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • Teeky3 said...“i have not seen a 2 since i was 2.” LOL!!!  

      My problem is I’m hanging on to a lot of designer suits I wore when I was working in Corporate America.  I’m convinced I’m going to get back into them.  They cost way too much money for me not to get as much wear out of them as I can.  Unfortunately, my body isn’t getting the message from the exercise.  

      I actually wrote a book about the whole body image experience from my size 2 days to my plus size days.  It’s called “Whatever! A Baby Boomer’s Journey Into Middle Age”  Chapter One is titled, “Help! My Body is Under Attack”



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Bobbi Bacha wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • jackie65, I agree with you, I know that there is an extreme on dressing your age, for instance You dont want to see a older woman in leggings and a big shirt that says Im stupid, like Cheryl said, but there can be a way to wear leggings with a cute dress, in your color and style.

      I think you can over dress your age, my sister does it and it ages her.  Straight hem lines at the hip, She always looks years older because her outfit does.

      I think we can wear the broom skirts, or the cute Granny Boot shoes out this season.   Maybe not the 4 inch heals but find a pair thats comfy..  

      Im not saying go to juniors and pick off the rack.. look at styles and trends and you can create and elegant look that looks good on you with a bit of trend.

      I have been cleaning out my closet and I noticed.... my classic styles have lasted the test of time.  The trendy was out.

      Like now everyone is getting the long tie died tops.. I have a few in colors I like but next season.. they are going to look so out of style.

      Designer suits in the workplace I think is Passe unless your in court as a lady attorney...or a DA.

      I dont wear them anymore.  I get more respect, being a feme fatale.. ha.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Feathermaye wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • I’ve always been a relatively conservative dresser, even when I was young and had the stuff to flaunt. Or didn’t have, as the case may be, lol.

      Sometimes I dress to mask a flaw (like I love shirts that are just long enough to cover my tummy but not too long to hide my tush); other times it’s all about comfort, since I’m on my feet 12 - 13 hours a day (ever try blogging standing up?), 6 days a week.

      I’m a fan of simple Capri pants that show off my legs and short sleeves to cover those bat wings, lol. Simple is key for me... if I have to think too much about it, then I’m probably doing it wrong!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Cheryl Phillips wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • Feathermaye...bat wings....you are cracking me up!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They are so in season this halloween!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Feathermaye wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • Trick or treat? 8) (That’s me in my mask!)



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mztracy wrote Oct 28, 2008
    • I’m a jeans and t-shirt kind of gal. Love bootcut jeans. Love jewelry, all kinds and i will wear it too. lol Most days you will find me in a pair of jeans, a black shirt of some kind, with or without a cool graphic, and one of my pairs of UGGS.



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