For the past several months I’ve been on a journey of transformation. Finally within touching distance of a decade-old goal weight, I’ve been daydreaming about an entirely new wardrobe to celebrate. Pants are falling off my hips, my body is swimming in my blouses, even the Sisters are in need of new underpinning.
My problem? Finding clothes that are both age appropriate and flattering has been nearly impossible. I’ve noticed something sinister about the clothing offered to women of my generation.
I hesitate to say, “my age,” because I have seen women both older and wider than me wearing clothes I would loath for my own adult child to wear in public ~ seriously ladies! Once you’re no longer a Junior or Miss, please, PLEASE stop wearing clothes meant for someone literally half your age. You’re embarrassing us all.
Women’s clothing designers are a mean pack of practical jokers. According to the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics, the average adult female weighs 166 pounds, not 96 as the fashion industry would have us believe. Based on the gratuitous mixing of colors and patterns, they would also have the world believe we are both color blind and total fashion morons.
When I was a kid my mother flat refused to let me out of the house if I was wearing plaids with checks, or vertical and horizontal stripes. Forget purple and yellow, or orange and pink, let alone jeans with holes in them.
I’m not vain enough to think that I can get away with wearing squeezy-tight anything or cropped mid-drifts. I don’t want jeans so restrictive that both my circulation and air flow are cut off. I appreciate the trend toward more flowing tops and dresses, but I don’t want to be mistaken for a the next oldest pregnant lady in the Guinness Book of World Records. A-lines and high waistline have gotten totally out of control, as have bows and ruffles. Ruffles? On a quinquagenarian? Really?
I also don’t want to be regulated to wearing velour jogging suits studded with jewel-toned rhinestones, and garishly hand-painted seashells or flamingos.
A frantic hunt through the mall will find only those items of clothing that should be saved for Halloween or my dotage.
I can picture a back room somewhere in the garment district of New York City. A gaggle of fashionistas are gathered around a table plotting their next assault on the ‘tweens known as “Women.”
“Let’s puts some green, orange and purple geometric shapes together with some red and pink plaid, then add an off-center bow tie on a mandarin collar. We can flair it out so there is no discernible waist line which will accentuate any tummy bulges. Oh, and capped sleeves, they love cap sleeves. That will draw unwanted attention to those flabby upper arms. No dear, not silk, polyester!”