Several of you have said, in regard to my last article, that I have my own style, that “classic” clothing isn’t really it, and that my style fits my personality — that my outsides match my insides. Someone told me I can do classy or classic successfully when I need to, but that my true, inner style is “funky and creative.” So, all that sounds great — I’m funky and creative and my clothes are fun, and if my clothes are fun and my insides match my outsides, then I must be fun and creative inside, which is what I hope I am and which is how I feel (good thing I’m writing and not talking because that last sentence would have totally winded me).
Random thought, and feel free to skip this: I’m not sure anyone saw my greatest beauty tip ever in my last article. It was at the very end of a very long post, so maybe you never got that far, but I don’t want you to miss it if you like to buy makeup. Check out the article and scroll to the end. Actually it’s not really a beauty tip but more of a shopping tip. And only applicable if you’re married. Or, I suppose, if you use your parents’ credit cards…
Back to style: I guess I’ve always been funky. I went to college at NYU, in the heart of Greenwich Village. I couldn’t afford classy clothes from Barney’s, but I loved thrift stores. I remember a flouncy yellow skirt with castles and mountains printed around the hem that made me feel whimsical. I also bought a nurse’s cape from the forties, navy blue wool on the outside, bright red inside. It closed with two straps and buttons across the chest and had a nurse’s name embroidered in red on the collar.
I swooped down 8th Street wearing it, feeling like a local (but maybe looking utterly ridiculous or perhaps like a scary Nurse Ratchett). My point is that I had a sort of wacky style even then.
But after college I moved to Colorado and I don’t know if it was my clothes or my attitude or my overall happiness being out in the West, but my brother and sister-in-law started calling me Western Girl, and the name stuck.
Now, my sis-in-law tells me that my style is perfect Western Girl style, and she could be right. My clothes are a little more free (like roaming buffalo on the Colorado plains), a little more flowy (like the beautiful, swirly tracks my snowboard makes in fresh powder) and a little more “out there” (like the, um, like the big horn sheep on the rocky mountainsides?). Yes, I am Western Girl.
Too bad I don’t still have the cape! I could add magic bracelets like Wonder Woman and go out to save … who? Middleaged women who need a bit of a pick-me-up, I guess. I could bring them Free People outfits and take them for pomegranate martinis and we could play with my new eye makeup together and not come home until the kids are asleep.
So I’m not a fashionista. I won’t be wearing leather on my bottom half anytime soon (I read in a fashion post recently that a staple in every woman’s wardrobe should be a pair of leather stovepipe pants. I mean really?). I won’t be wearing red tracksuit pants under my little black dress. I won’t walk to work in four-inch heels (wait, I could actually do that someday if I really wanted! I own a single pair of four-inch heels, and my office is at the other end of my upstairs hallway, so it is conceivable that I could walk from my bedroom to my office in those shoes, although it is equally conceivable that I would lose my balance along the way and tumble down the stairs).
I’m thinking now that if I, as a middleaged woman (MAW), can still be stylish with my fun and flowery and flowy clothes, then I want to know how other MAWs express their own style without being fashion models. Please, PLEASE send me pictures of yourselves in your favorite outfits or accessories or makeup. I want to share how we’re all dealing with getting older. I don’t want this to be all about me. Come on, peeps! (I drive my kids batshit when I say that.) Let’s start a conversation!