Friday, 24 April 2015

Style Critic

As I typed the title of this post it nearly autocorrected itself to Style Crisis and ironically that's exactly what I'm having just now.

The good thing about this time of the year is that the weather is suddenly a lot sunnier, a lot warmer and this in turn makes the daily trial that is the school run a whole lot more bearable.  Isn't it just so much easier stepping out of your front door without having to wrestle everyone into coats, hats and gloves first? 

The bad bit?  Well, it isn't bad as such, just more annoying.  Every morning I get out of bed, scrutinise the BBC Weather app on my phone and then I think to myself - What do I wear?

This has definitely got worse the older I've become.

Gone now are the safety net of winter boots and opaque tights with my trusty selection of skirts and my "rain terminator" - a coat that zips from my chin to my knees and is warm and waterproof and just generally the best thing that I own.  A good coat is all you really need in the Winter, especially when it hides whatever style disasters you might be having underneath from everyone else on the school run. 

The "rain terminator", hiding fashion disasters since 2014

When its 16 degrees outside this is overkill, but what will suit me instead?

I think back to when I was in my twenties and cannot remember ever having a wardrobe dilemma.  Somehow outfits just seemed to pull themselves together and I never really felt self conscious.

Now, I find myself in a new no man's land of dressing.  The jeans and tshirts that I have worn since becoming a full time housewife annoy me.  They are practical, yes, but they make me feel uncomfortable.  It appears that all jeans are made for women who are thin of leg (so, not me then), and even if I find a pair which are OK on the leg then I spend most of my day hoiking them up around my waist (even with a belt), because my bottom is too ample and my waist too small at the back.

Throughout winter I have shunned jeans in favour of skirts and tights because they don't fall down, I can kneel on the floor without getting "knees" in them and I don't get the whole wet hem puddle soaky uppy thing that you get with jeans when it rains.  This coupled with the rain terminator has made me a very happy woman on the many wet school runs we've had all winter.  In fact when I wear them I feel almost unstoppable and ready for anything (even the Aldi checkout experience).

With warm weather forecasts and an aversion to showing off my legs, I'm faced with the prospect of wearing jeans again and feeling grumpy instead of comfy.  I could wear something else though, couldn't I?  Or not?

And in addition to this newly increasing self doubt I also have another problem.

If you are a woman in her forties, with very limited fashion sense and an even more limited wardrobe then what you totally need is some fashion advice*, right?  What I didn't expect is that it would come from my twelve year old daughter.

Foolishly I decided one morning to wear what can only be described as a pair of black mum leggings, which had been languishing in a drawer for a good twelve months, together with a tunic top.  Maybe it was time - everybody else wears them, how bad could they look on me?

They were certainly comfortable and the denim shirt tunic, that I'd decided to wear with them, looked and felt good (another purchase that I haven't really worn much).  Maybe this was the answer.  Yes, this ticked boxes.  Comfy, doesn't fall down, my legs felt a bit cold but not to worry it's getting warmer now.  Good.

And then I walked downstairs into the kitchen where my daughter was having her breakfast.  Looking me up and down with a degree of mild disdain, she said "nice top Mum".  And then, "are those tights or leggings?  They look a bit... shiny on you".

Not the style triumph I had envisaged.  My husband confirmed as much when he arrived home later that day.  I am not built for leggings then.

The temperature outside continued to climb in the following days and I decided that as I missed my skirts I may as well wear them.  It was still coolish.  I could wear tights.

No. I could not.  It was just too warm.  So I didn't.  I would just have to bare my legs after all.  I would have done in my twenties, it would be OK.

No sooner than I had decided this then Gok Wan's protégé appeared in front of me with that look on her face again.

"What's wrong now?"  I demanded.  "Oh nothing..." She said with an eye roll while looking at my blue/white legs.

In a world where everything is either "epic" or "swag" to her (nope, I have no idea what this means) this was not good.

And so, here I am typing this in jeans and a Breton top.  Again.  With this post in one half of my browser and a selection of jeggings, the apparently comfy jean/legging hybrid, in the other.  

Maybe, just maybe, they will be the answer...

As long as the preteen approves, of course.

* If by advice you mean cold harsh criticism, because sadly that's just what it is.


  1. Ha ha this made me laugh out loud. I am constantly told that I am not SWAGGY! What on earth is SWAG and where do I get it from? I have zero fashion ideas and I felt naked yesterday when I didn't wear my "big coat" for the bus to work. I was so exposed and felt like all the elements were getting in ha ha. Seriously, I never had this problem when I was younger either!! xxx

    1. Hehe, thank god it's not just me! I have no idea where you get SWAG from but I need some as well as some fake tan to cover up my luminous legs *sigh*. What on earth has happened to me?

  2. I panic as summer gets closer, I can't pull off summer cool, never comfortable & I always look roasting haha. I'm going to go buy me some of that 'swag' : )

    1. Yes me too! As soon as I locate the swag I'll let you know! ;)


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