Well it is Bastille Day so it seems appropriate to write about France and in particular about French fashion. There are several excellent blogs about French style - links to a couple of my favourites are in the right hand column. Just before my trip to Paris last year to celebrate my 65th birthday, I bought the book "Parisian Chic", which I have featured in an earlier post, on the recommendation of another blogger. Written by Inès de la Fressange - model, fashion muse and fashion designer - this book is as charming as Inès herself.
What is it about Frenchwomen that makes the rest of the world want to emulate them? Why is it that the words Parisian and Chic seem to go together so well? Maybe we can get a few clues from "Parisian Chic".
As we get older our style should evolve. What suited us at 30 or even 40 probably won't look as good once we are 50 or 60. It may be a simple matter of wearing skirts an inch longer or choosing less bright colours. Inès suggests that the following are faux pas at 50+: ethnic prints; mini-skirts and micro-shorts; neon colours; fur (she says that the "wrinkled trophy wife" look can be very ageing. I say that there's no need to wear dead animals at any age!).
However she does encourage us to follow fashion, so long as we use the latest fashions in a subtle way. If leopard-skin is in fashion please avoid wearing a leopard-skin jumpsuit if you are over 60, however a bag or ballerinas in leopard-skin will keep you looking up-to-date. If wide-legged trousers are the latest look, and if they are right for your shape, go ahead and buy a pair. Ripped jeans or studded thigh boots on the other hand are best left to the youngsters.
The other good tip for anyone over 50 is to mix your chic, more expensive buys with cheaper labels. Apparently fashionable Parisians don't wear an excess of luxury labels and shun anything too ostentatious, which is good news for us over 60 pensioners on a budget!