Flashdance Flashback- When is it too old to wear an off the shoulder sweatshirt?
I’m 55 and I like the new “off the shoulder” style sweatshirts that are now in the stores such as at Victoria Secret and American Outfitters. These stores, among others, have their “name” or “logo” on the actual garment (usually in front). I have recently bought a couple of them, but have wondered if they are “age appropriate” for me to wear (although my adult daughters tell me I’m definitely not “too old” to wear them – that I look great wearing them).
I am a professional woman and dress professionally for the office; however, I like these cozy sweatshirts (especially 100% cotton) to wear with my jeans on the weekends as my husband and I are very much the “outdoors” type of people – camping, lakes, beach, mountains, jeep adventures), but wonder if the brand name on the actual garment is a bit “young” for me. What’s your advice? (via Fashion Advice)
This falls into the area of just because you could doesn’t mean you should. It’s fantastic that you are in terrific shape and look great for your age, but that doesn’t give you the option to revisit a fashion fad from your youth just as you did back in the “Flashdance” days- that was 1983.
Trendy fashion comes with a time stamp and therefore an expiration date too. A style that is so associated with a decade, like an 80′s off the shoulder sweatshirt can most definitely look trendy 30-ish years later on someone who wasn’t around to wear it the first time it was in fashion.
You, my dear need to rework the style to look modern. An off the shoulder style works great for many woman who want to show some skin but may not be in as good shape as you; just don’t mimic the 80′s in the literal translation of a cold shoulder sweatshirt.
As far as wearing a sweatshirt or T-shirt with a logo across the front, the answer is NO. It’s not age associated that I’m saying never to advertise a brand (unless you are a paid to advertise it) across your chest, it’s because it’s tacky and you can most definitely do better. It’s particularly even more off-target if you are advertising a teeny mall store like American Outfitters or something like Victoria’s Secret, when you are 55. Your body may look incredible, but does your face look 18? Meow -I know, but truthful. Style is about your total image.
If you do want to wear a cozy sweatshirt or one with a fun graphic logo, think grown-up. Look like a sophisticated lady who has already gotten there, not like you are still on your way.
Norma Kamali has been updating sweatshirts since back in the day and they still look right. The reason: Although made of sweatshirt material, the styling is totally designer. You can get the same back for your comfy buck, but look pulled together and not sloppy. Since the designer has a line at Wal-Mart too, that buck will be very inexpensive.
You can also step it up in luxe fabrics that have a sweatshirt feel, like a gray cashmere “sweatshirt” for example. And, for outdoorsy activities, try a sweatshirt style that doesn’t have freebie advertising on it and one that’s cut for a discerning woman of the world. There’s no need to give up comfort, but you certainly should not lower your style standards in the process.
We pulled some sophisticated sweatshirts for you to think about…
Photos via NormaKamali.com and available at Wal-Mart
Resident fashion expert & style mentor- With just about 20 years experience in the glamour industry as a New York-based photography fashion stylist, syndicated columnist, contributing editor, lecturer, on-air television/radio fashion expert, and founder / editor in chief of FocusOnStyle.com. Sharon Haver knows the modern-thinking woman wants easygoing style that suits her individual needs, spiced with just the right amount of flip and wit to make it personal.