The night's are drawing in and there's a nip in the air.
After writing last week about identifying gaps in your wardrobe, the drop in temperature has identified mine!
What I'm missing and have always found difficult to picture is what I would call 'casual elegance for the retired woman'.
A bit of a clunky title but I'm sure you know what I mean.
Fashion news and trends are almost always geared towards a younger market.
I know companies obviously need to market their clothes to the demographics that have the most disposable income, but this often leaves the older woman out in the cold when it comes to suggestions for putting together a look that's both chic and appropriate.
I'm certainly not suggesting that a more mature woman shouldn't wear fashionable clothes, on the contrary, and although it's probably a bit shallow to admit it, I'm not yet ready to put 'sensible' completely ahead of looks.
So when it's time to curl up on the sofa with a glass of wine and a fur rug to hand, I want to feel laid-back, casual, comfy - and yes elegant!
Thinking of comfort brings beautifully soft knitwear to mind but, if you’re anything like me, your temperature goes up and down like a yoyo so I don’t need anything that clings too tightly.
Cue the lantern sleeved jumper. With loose sleeves and drop shoulder line, it hangs from the elegant boat neck rather than gripping you tightly allowing plenty of movement around your arms and waist.
The chic and fashionable vibe certainly puts the dull grandma sweater to shame and, since it’s not a tight fit, there’s space to pop a long-sleeved layer beneath if you need to or just add a pretty scarf.
Or I love a cuddly velour tracksuit. I love to buy this big enough to pop a top underneath. If your temperature goes up and down like mine, you can unzip!
As wide legged linen pants are my go-to item for the Summer months, it makes sense to look for a warmer alternative.
With a multitude of background influences from Arabia, Greece and Africa harem pants. are a mixture of chinos, pants, joggers and a few ruffles thrown in for good measure!
Lots of different shapes and fabrics mean that there’s a design ready to compliment every figure.
For a classic fit choose a high crotch. From the comfy stretch waistband the pants fall softly to the drawn in ankle, minimizing the hips just like a wide leg pant. Ready for some fun? Choose a mid or low crotch and go as wide and as wild as your dare!
There's a bowl full of specs in my house but when I pick up a book in the evening I don’t have one pair that I really like. It’s impossible to choose glasses in a store with time limitations so I was thrilled to hear of a company which allows you to try before you buy!
Read the Warby Parker review and discover how you can select up to 5 frames to test out for 5 days in your own home – and they’re shipped for free both ways!
An Online Quiz helps you to choose the frames that are most flattering for your face then you can try in the context of your own lifestyle with your own wardrobe.
When your 5 days is up all you have to do is place your package in the mail with the prepaid return label. If you want to order upload your prescription online and they’ll make your brand new glasses specially for you.
The glasses frames are lightweight and youthful, stylish yet subtle – I love the pink camouflage look that the quiz chose for me - and the price starts at a very competitive $95 including prescription lenses.
There's no doubt that certain colors and styles can make you look younger. Just as lighter toned hair is often suggested then an upswept frame in a lighter shinier frame is recommended for a mature face.
Choose carefully to suit your personality and lifestyle.
In actual fact, none of these items is in any way confined to casual elegance for the 'retired woman' - we all want to relax in style regardless of age.
The key is being aware of the various colors and styles which will help YOU to feel good so you don’t have to follow the crowd.
So we’ll lift a glass and just call it casual elegance for all!