I’m always saying we should dress as we please. Because I believe that as we age we should wear what we want, and not what some young fashionista puts in an article as the thing to wear, or what the current fashion mags are saying is on trend for the coming colder months.

At the moment there are a lot of lists on autumn fashion trends. But my favourite fashion writer, Hadley Freeman, nails it as usual. (Favourite because her style of writing is top-notch, and reminiscent of Nora Ephron. And she repeatedly berates the fashion industry in an ironic tongue-in-cheek manner!) This time she looks at Vanity Fair’s best-dressed list and calls it hilarious and deranged. You could say the same about a recent list in the Guardian on ‘20 autumn fashion trends you need to know about’. Let me see, Gucci on the High Street? With pussybow blouses or floral dresses that look like 1970s upholstery – nope. The 70s and 80s – nope, and school-bully hair, I don’t think so. As for black tights and maxi coats, all I can say is I’m wearing them already, darling. Yes, that list is just as deranged as they get.

Yet, fashion matters. Because nobody wants to wear clothes that look odd or desperately out-of-date. The point is to note what the fashion of the day is, adapt it, and then wear our clothes with the confidence and knowledge that we look good.

And most of you do have preferences; you know you have to wear formal suits or skirts for work, or now that you’re retired, or moved to the country, you prefer to be comfortable and ready for that session of gardening.

But perhaps as you age, you’ve become unsure – and you’re saying to yourself what should I wear now I’m retired? As I’ve said before I wore nothing but jeans for three years after my retirement. So here’s a list of some dress styles: What type are you?

  • Sporty                                            trousers & wool jacket
  • Country casual                                  Ditto
  • Comfortable in jeans                  jeans with a variety of tops
  • Urban formal superwoman      skirt or trouser suit
  • Glamorous and fabulous           skirts & frocks
  • Ageing rocker                              jeans & leather jackets
  • Old, bold and edgy                     anything goes

There have to be more ways to dress. Do look, btw, at Alyson Walsh’s book, which really gets at this business of different styles, and is a brilliant guide to looking good as we age.

Personally, I think, after a lot of fun and experimentation (through buying in charity shops) I wear a mix of the last three styles.

Remember that little blue tartan skirt – here it is worn over my charity shop Gap jeans and Peacocks top.


I’ve worn it several times now. But that was a look that I saw in Edinburgh and adapted for myself. Blue-kilt-4-web

Anyway, if I have any message it is while we shouldn’t heed the nonsense in the fashion trade, we can always reflect on the image we want to portray, and then experiment and have fun while we try out our style. Because we should wear what we want!

That’s all for now

With love

Penny, the frugalfashionshopper


2 thoughts on “Autumn trends – do we heed the fashion journos or do we dress as we please?

  • 10th September 2015 at 4:31 am

    That little blue skirt is a perfect illustration of your theme – wear what you want and have fun while you’re about it.

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