Coco Chanel once said, “You can be gorgeous at 30, charming at 40, and irresistible for the rest of your life.”
My Great Aunty Viv turned 102 recently. She’s in fantastic health and just got a new mobile phone to use and I think she's pretty irresistable at her age!
It was lovely to celebrate this milestone with her and chat about what she’s up to.
This got me thinking about age and ageing especially the difference between the way we feel versus the way others view us. To me, this seems particularly important for us as older women in how we choose to express our own individual style.
At 102, Viv is part of a rapidly growing demographic in our country. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australia, like most developed countries, has an ageing population. This shift in our population has implications for a range of services but the aspect of there being more older women in society that I find interesting is the way in which we all view age.
I’m now 51 and in some ways being older is quite liberating as I find I’m not so concerned with what people think. I know that older women have valuable contributions to make to society because of their life experience, knowledge and wisdom.
The so-called “Baby Boomers”, for example, are a distinct group in Australia’s population who have made an art form out of doing things their way! This includes fashion and style. It is not only this generation but a range of older women who are challenging perceptions of ageing and self-expression.
Clothing and jewellery remain an important part of the style of women and many older women are embracing their age and using statement jewellery and pops of colour in their accessories for impact and self-expression.
“…….once the kids are older and get more independent, you go back to putting a little more effort in and are more interested in your dress and then I think you get to where I almost am now, where you do feel like you're a bit invisible and so, you want to look a bit more radical and wear jewellery that stands out and makes a statement.”
Many of my customers also tell me they love jewellery where they know the maker and the piece resonates with them and their life, certainly not so-called ‘fast fashion’.
“It’s a way of feeling beautiful, to wear something handcrafted, where you know the makers because it tells a story.”
Nola wearing "Search" Pendant. She loves being able to adjust the length of this statement piece to wear short or long. It's a real conversation starter when she wears it to various events she attends!
As one of my customers says, “As a professional woman, my dress has always been fairly corporate and classic. However, I also wanted to let my personality shine through and not be ‘boring’ so I used to express this with my shoes! As I have gotten older and moved into a new work environment where I have to be a little more sensible with my ‘heel height’, I have now made earrings my thing! They are what helps me make a statement and ‘stay funky’. Wearing Robin's earrings that are interesting, meaningful and reflect my personality gives me confidence and certainly creates conversation!”
I've found some great advocates out there promoting style and ageing in a postive way....you might want to check them out.