I am not a fashion victim or slave. Since I was bashed with the blogging mallet, I have almost completely given up my fashion magazine habit – unless I receive them as a gift, in which case, I hyperventilate with excitement. I now tend to get my fashion advice from two online newspapers – The Guardian/Observer and The Times – and those brilliant stylistas at Go Fug Yourself. With forty looming like an overly mascaraed false eyelash, I occasionally give some thought to my own style. Am I showing too much flesh, like a rosemary-scented Easter lamb, or is there a hint of tough-skinned old mutton about me? I recently read the following tips from The Times, which I thought would be important to share with those of you who care. Those of you who couldn’t give a
lamb damn, then flick away fast to something less superficial.
Ten commandments, apparently, for mothers with daughters (and all women over 40):
1. Thou shalt resist Abercrombie & Fitch. It’s soft, it’s comfortable. It’s designed for teenagers.
Luckily this is not a problem for me. No A&F in my ‘hood. However there are large sections of H&M I have to avoid.
2. Thou shalt be seen only at the most casual events in hoodies.
Early morning walk? Talking the kids to kindergarten? Apres-ski? Methinks these are all suitable hoody occasions. Otherwise I leave the hood well alone. Of course, the hood on my green boiled wool winter coat doesn’t count here.
3. Thou shalt wear high-tech trainers only in the gym.
Well, what’s a high-tech trainer when it’s home. One that flashes? Or calculates your BMI? I do wear trainers – see above for when.
4. Thou shalt not show thy political awareness by wearing slogan T-shirts. Thou hast the vote. Use it.
I have voted, and I do forswear slogan T-shirts, but I wouldn’t mind a T-shirt that said “Mother. Blogger. Goddess”. That would be good.
5. Thou shalt wear jeans, but not the identical cut and brands as thy teenage daughter.
I do avoid teenage jeans, usually because I can’t get them over my knees. While my jeans do rest slightly below my navel, they also rest quite far above my coccyx, so that I keep my antler tattoo hidden from public view. Some things just have to be kept private.
6. Thou shalt not wear sparkly body powder even in jest. It settles in the wrinkles.
Sparkly body powder, no. Sparkly Dream Mousse Shimmer Porcelain Face Illuminator for special occasions, yes. I am a natural born princess.
7. Thou shalt not wear leggings. Period.
I have lived through two leggings fashion eras. This is not mine. I leave the leggings to the twiglets. Chicken drumstick legs are only for boot-cut pants. Period.
8. Thou shalt not suddenly decide to be edgy, although if one has always been an eccentric dresser, carry on as normal.
Disagree! While I am not edgy, I am cutting-edge for my town (I wear lipstick! and mascara! to kindergarten! with jewellery!) I refuse to stop entertaining the crowds.
9. Thou shalt never do mixy-matchy or themed outfits with one’s daughters.
Absolutely. Too, too tacky.
10. Thou shalt treat thyself to expensive classics. And lock them away.
I’m not good at tailored. Tailored, expensive classics make me feel like an over-upholstered sofa, all puffed-up and full of self-importance. However I have made two investment purchases this year – a beautiful pair of brown leather boots and my Party Dress. Worn together, they are very slightly edgy.
Do any of these rules speak to you? Or do I drop The Times of London as my fashion bible and head elsewhere for tips?