Style Icon and fashion director Iris Apfel in the documentary about her says clothes are about “jumping out of the box”. She also says “I don’t have any rules (for dressing) as I would only be breaking them”.
Many women find that they spend years wearing the same style. They get stuck in what may be described as a Style-Rut. This may be due to lifestyle constraints, such as bringing up children, or working in the same business where they have come to rely on a few, predictable, reliable staples.
Life may change course, but still they remain in the same style. It feels safer. Many women need a change of style when they have finished or are coming out of the busy years of child-rearing, or when they make a career change.
Coming to the end of a relationship could also demand a complete change of look to raise self-esteem and herald the opening of a new era. It can be an emotional-boost and a really positive step forward into the future.
These crossroads of life often deserve a new outlook emotionally and mentally, and if that can be reflected in a new style it can feel like a liberation from the past.
Life changes can be a strengthening of ones sense of self. But a new personality can also emerge from taking on a new style.
One of the services I offer is a “Fresh Start Styling” which was inspired by hearing stories of women who had suffered distressing divorces or separations where they had been left for younger women. For women who have had little or no reasonable financial settlement I tailor a service which focuses on the clothes they already have and re-styling them. This is emotionally liberating.
The elegant, creative women in the film “Advanced Style” are a fabulous example of breaking the rules of fashion and style and liberating themselves from the restrictions placed by society on age and what is regarded as “appropriate”.
Their creations involve plenty of colour, textures and dramatic accessories. They show a disregard of what anyone else thinks; they have the confidence and daring which accompanies an older generation who feel they have nothing to lose.
I love a quote included in “Women In Clothes” (Sheila Heti, Heidi Julavits and Leanne Shapton) from an elderly woman who had been complimented on her fabulous, original outfit by her younger neighbour on a flight: “Every morning that I wake up and realise I’m not dead is a chance for me to say ‘f***k it’. So I dress like this”.