January 01, 2011

Age Appropriate Style

I can imagine many of you cringing when you read the title. I can imagine some of your thoughts: “Age-appropriate style?? Oh, no! Will she condemn us old folks to loafers and black clothing?”
The answer is no! This post is meant to help you navigate through all the different clothing styles with your age as a guideline. * Hopefully * all of you have read the “Signature Style” post. If not, I encourage you to do so. I will be referencing many things in that post. The foundation of age appropriate style is the “Classic Style”. Every single age group should have at least 10% of classic style. This is because the classic style is timeless and elegant; it will work for you throughout your life. God desires that all his daughters dress with dignity and strength. “Proverbs 31:25 She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.” The clothes you wear affect your dignity. A lot. Different age groups need to wear different clothes because as you grow older, some clothes will not help you conduct yourself with dignity. Would a 70 year old feel classy and poised in a Hello Kitty T-shirt? I don't think so! If any style does not encourage you to conduct yourself in a worthy manner, then leave that style alone. Style should complement your class and dignity, not cheapen it. Remember that! In the sections below, I will give guidelines for dressing appropriately for each age group. I encourage you to read each section, because they shed light on different aspects of age-appropriate style. J

When you are a teen, it is the time to explore different styles. This is the time when you can experiment. Use this time to explore all the styles and figure out which one suits you. If you already figured it out, I would still encourage you to experiment at least a little. Make the mistakes now, rather than later, when they matter more. J Of course, don't go near the immodest and unfeminine styles, but other than that, it is a time to try out trends and styles. You can have as little as 10% classic style in these years. You don't want to look like an old granny, so make sure to tone down the classic style with younger styles such as, "Trendy Style" and "Romantic Style". :) Growing physically, emotionally, and spiritually, a girl in this stage of life changes a lot. Cultivate that gentle and quiet spirit which is of great worth and God's sight. You are laying the foundation for your life, so make sure that foundation is Jesus Christ!
In the twenties, it is still a time to explore different styles. But, you should start sticking with your gorgeous personal style. Have the confidence to rock it! Trends are still good, but make sure they add to your class and poise, and don't detract. (for example: no viking helmets, please! ;) During the twenties, I suggest you dress 20-30% classic. The classic style is so easy to work with because it lays a great foundation for all the other styles. It is your glue, your cement, your thread. :) Discover what you love, and stay away from those things that you are not so happy with. :D
The thirties are a time when you should *radiate* in your personal style. Hopefully by now you have figured out what your personal style is! Depending on the category, your personal style should be 40%-50% of your style, and to add age-appropriateness, you should be 30% classic. Or more. While you are in your thirties, I suggest you start having an accent style, or a style that is not as major as your personal style, but the style you like second best. This style will add the flair you need in your clothing. For example, if someone's personal style is Romantic, they could start having an accent style of Dramatic. Don't ask me how that would work, but if you are creative and confident enough, it will probably look good! During the thirties, start to think about what is behind the clothes: you. Remember that you want to dress with class and style as you get older. When you are younger you can dress with style and some class, but class is accumulated as you grow. Start to acctively accumulate it. Keep an eye out for elegant, stylish women. What do they do that you admire? What could they do better? How can I emulate her class and poise? (of course, don’t say these to her!) Watch and learn.
I think that it is important that the older a woman gets, the more classic and timeless her style should be. The 40s are on the middle part of the spectrum. During this time, I would suggest you start ignoring the trends and develop timeless elegance. This is the time to get to know yourself and spend some more ME-time. (If possible!) Learn about ettiquette, find a style role model, learn to conduct yourself with poise and grace, and gain class. Now, it is less about the clothes, and more about your conduct and air. During this time, I suggest you are 10% or less the trendy style, 40% or more the classic style, and 40% your own style. The percentage you have left can be for your accent style. Remember to still occasionally check up on trends. Don’t get stuck in a time rut!
Classic elegance. Personal flair. These are the two phrases that should describe the 50s. During the 50s, 50% classic style or more will allow you to focus intimately on your own style. Your own style should be about 40%, and your accent style should be about 10%. By the time you are in your fifties, it is likely that you have an air of elegance, a confidence in yourself, and poise in your conduct and words.
60 plus:
You are now a classy, graceful lady. Poise and dignity are the main elements of your style. During the 60s and beyond, your style will be about 60% classic, 35% personal style, and 5% accent style. You will be able to focus on your personal style, and people will notice the little bits and pieces that you use to make your outfit stand out. Become a role model for younger ladies and encourage that Titus 2 spirit. :) Encourage them in their modesty and femininity. You have a lifetime of watching all the trends; you are now the woman that everyone will be emulating and watching. They seek the class and dignity you have. Please, share the lessons you learned!  
God bless!
~Southern Belle


Our Life and Journey! said...

I'll be turning 40 this year! I like the suggestion on 40's style! Thanks !

Southern Belle said...

Thank you!!!

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