I first heard the expression mutton dressed as lamb when I was a child. It was used often to described women who were - lets just say - getting ahead of themselves. These were women who had already reached middle age and had decided they were not going to retire from being a vital woman, they were holding onto their lipstick, high heels and short skirts for a while longer. If you disagreed, well then tough! I’m talking about the 50’s and 60’s here, the era when women were expected to cook and clean house for her man and look after the children.

In the meantime she was expected to look well presented and always have her lipstick applied. But when the kids left home and menopause loomed she was to give that up. I mean, seriously, who wants to hear what a middle-aged, thickening around the middle, grey haired woman had to say?

We Judge Each Other Too Much

Women often judge other women for standing out, it might reflect on us and make us look ineffectual. Because as we get older there’s always been that fear. It’s a well known fact we dress to impress each other, which I think is sad. We should just enjoy fashion, then who knows where our style will end up. If we were into punk in the eighties we can still dress punk now, look at Chrissie Hynde, she’s in her mid-sixties, her hair is lighter but she still wears tight leather jeans and torn T-shirts.

She’s still the same woman she was all those years ago. We grow older but we’re still the same woman we were in our twenties, we just took a bit different, but we can dress the same if we want to. Who made the rules that said we shouldn’t?

I still hear the mutton comment occasionally, often from the Media, these comments are usually directed at stars like Madonna.

She’s in her later 50s and still dresses like her character Susan in Desperately Seeking Susan, only now in designer clothes. I imagine Madonna will continue to dress like that until she’s 90. Check out the Advanced Style blog, it features photos of mainly women, some quite elderly, looking fabulous and colourful on the streets of New York.

Now that’s how women should age, with colour and flamboyance, feeling great about themselves. We’re not mutton dressed as lamb anymore, we never were.



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