The Grey Debate

salt and pepperTen reasons to go grey

Five tips to go grey gracefully

Embracing shades of grey

Why it is considered brave to go grey

These are all words screaming at me from trusty and sometimes not so trusty friend Google when I dared to type in the search words “going grey”.

So the debate started.

Shall I take the plunge and stop colouring my hair or shall I keep on colouring it for another few years.

When I announced my intentions, reactions varied from my husband’s shocked face and won’t you look very old question, to others encouraging me and some being straight forward saying are you mad and never!

In my own mind I had many doubts.

On the negative side.

Growing grey is:

  • Acknowledging the  passing years and the end of a certain image of myself as  a brunette.
  • Acknowledging and embracing the late middle years.
  • Facing the fact that age is creeping up on me.
  • Facing the fact that a career might be coming to an end.
  • Facing the fact of grey hair up till now sucessfully camouflaged.

On the positive side

Growing grey is:

  •  No more sitting at the hairdresser with itching scalp and burning eyes, while waiting for the process to be complete.
  •  No more squinting at a months old magazine because I can’t wear my glasses,too scared they will also be coloured or damaged by the chemicals used in the process.
  •  Saving the money spent on expensive hair colours and salon visits.
  • Giving the cashier at the check out reason to call me  mannie, tannie or ouma.
  • An opportunity to change the colours I wear to suit the new hair.
  • Joining the sophisticated ranks of the silver foxes.

Back and forth I went in my mind untill a visit to the salon for a cut and maybe another colour. The young hairstylist  examined my hair and declared she will not colour it again  as according to her the grey growing out will be a beautiful salt and pepper and why bother if you can have natural silver highlights.

grey 1Now here I am three months into the transition process and it is beginning to show. I still have my doubts, but would rather do it now than later when the change will be even more drastic. After all I can always go the colour route again.

What do you think?

Scarf Tying How To

It seems my mother was lady of many facets which I am sadly only now uncovering.

Amongst her personal things I found this little booklet on how to tie scarves. No wonder I am addicted to scarves.It seems she was too, as not only did I find the booklet, I also found many beautiful scarves tucked away, which  my sister and I shared with our daughters. I have no idea how old the little booklet is, but it probably dates from the 1960’s or 70’s.

I share some of the pages in the booklet for you to try.I certainly am going to try them out.

Scarf tying 1

Scarf tying 2

scarf tying 3

Sacrf tying 4

scarf tying 5

scarf tying8

scarf tying 7

scarf tying 9

Lipstick, a Girl’s Best Friend!

“Hold on a moment while I find a pen to write down the  number.”

How many times have I heard my mother in law say this to me.

Then much later.

” I can’t find my pen now but I am ready to write I found my lipstick! ” 

This made me think about the meaning of  this little tube  filled  with a combination of wax, pigments and oil to women from toddlers to grannies

A toddler sees  a lipstick and thinks “Ah  a nice wet crayon in a tube!”

Hence, beautiful art work on walls which becomes a source of tears and frustration to all concerned. I am sure every mother has at least one lipstick on walls or windows story to tell.

lipstick 2

At five years old she is  playing house with her dolls and friends and  applies lipstick to her lips, although it mostly misses the mark and her face becomes a grotesque mask of red patches. Even the dolls and maybe the cat is painted with lipstick too.

Lipstick

At ten years old, the not so small girl starts dreaming of  owning her first lipstick and going on a date.

At thirteen years old she buys her first lipstick with pocket money and as her mom refuses to let her apply it, ” you are too young” she hears,  applies it  secretly in the public bathroom at the movies, together with giggling friends.

At sixteen years old, her lipstick makes her feel o so glamorous and ready to conquer the world of dating.

In her twenties her lipstick is her mark of confidence to step into the adult and professional world .

Then comes marriage and motherhood and her lipstick is used to hide fatigue due to sleepless nights and to remedy dry lips while rushing around in in her mad mad world. Maybe once in a while she finds the energy to write a love note to her husband on the bathroom mirror.

In her middle ages she tries to hide ever increasing wrinkles around her mouth with a soft pink lipstick. No red for her anymore!

In old age the lipstick becomes either a remedy for dry lips or  handy pen !

DSC08235

What would we do without  our trusty lipstick?

Scarves : Fashion Statement or Necessity

  Audrey Hepburn once said:

‘When I wear a silk scarf I feel so definitely like a woman, a beautiful woman.’

                         

  Silk scarf icons 

How I love the feeling of a smooth silky scarf running through my fingers, or the soft, warm and cozy feeling of a woolen scarf around my neck on a cold and dark winter morning. Add to that the feeling of a pashmina thrown over shivery shoulders on a windy day and the flutter of a thin colourful cotton scarf in the breeze added to a simple summer outfit!

Clearly to me scarves are both necessity and fashion statement !

Throughout the ages scarves have been worn both as fashion statement and necessity ranging from the Egyptian queen Nefertiti who wore a finely woven scarf topped by a conical headdress, to the ancient Romans who wore a linen kerchief or “sudarium” (Latin for “sweat cloth”) knotted around the waist or around the neck.

There are many more examples but the one I find most amusing is this. I used to think those daring young men in their flying  machines during the First World War, wore their long silk scarves with goggles and leather jackets to add to their dashing and daring image. Turns out to be not the case! The silk scarf was a necessity, used to wipe the grease from the windshield and goggles to ensure better visibility. There goes my romantic idea of these  dashing young men, sacrificed to necessity !

The dashing and daring pilot figure
The romantisized version!

Having to pack away my collection of winter scarves is one of the few reasons why I regret saying goodbye to winter and hallo to summer.

So before I pack them away here are a few of my favourites .

Chiffon square dating from the 1980’s
One for warmth
Bright colours for winter
Summery flowers

Leggings: Stylish or Lollipop?

As winter draws to an end I want to comment on a style which I have seen many a time during the cold months.

                                           Leggings!                             

Leggings are very comfortable and provide much needed warmth in the colder months, but it can be very unflattering if worn incorrectly even on a younger woman.    Do we older women dare to wear them or not? To me the answer is a resounding yes on certain conditions.

Long knitted top with scarf and leggings

First and foremost is the length  of the tunic or top that we wear with leggings.

A top , tunic or sweater must not be shorter than mid thy preferably even longer.

Leggings look wonderful over a short dress and can even hide flaws of an older figure if worn correctly.                                

Leggings for an older woman look better if not fitting too tightly. It provides a much more vertical line and is slimming.                                                                   

Add structure such as a blazer or jacket with your tunic or dress as  this also hides flaws.                                                                                                                                      

Wear shoes or boots of the same colour as the leggings it adds length and is slimming.

A word of caution:  My daughters always say with my thin legs and apple figure at the top, I look like a lollipop.If the leggings  and top or  tunic are too short or too tight fitting, the lollipop becomes very prominent;  all round top and thin sticklike bottom!! So please fellow over 55’s,  let us not be lollipops, but rather stunning and stylish  wearers of this style.

Read more here: 40plusstyle.com/how-to-wear-leggings-over-40

Confessions of a shoe-aholic

“Give a girl the right shoes and she can conquer the world”, Marilyn Monroe.

These words echo the feelings in many a woman’s heart!

Shoes a girl’s best friend

Shoes have become the symbol of success to such an extent that it even takes centre stage in fairytales and major movies. Who of us didn’t dream of being Cinderella, magically becoming a princess and all because of a glass slipper! As for movies, remember “ The Devil wears Prada”,  depicting a powerful women prancing around in her Prada shoes.

I, like many other women love shoes and can’t resist a new pair. Why? I asked myself this question and set out to try and unravel the mystery.

The most compelling reason I came across is this one.  – As the years come and go, women’s clothing size may fluctuate. One year you may be a size 4 and then after a few years of stuffing krispy kreme donuts down your face, you may suddenly be a size 14. But guess what? Your shoe size will stay the same. Chances are if a woman is a size 8 shoe, she will stay a size 8. How great is that?!                Why women love shoes.

I can relate to this, especially as the years  have taken its toll and there is no way that I can fit into the same dress size as many years ago. But oh the shoes!  Still the same size 4, that makes me feel good!

So what kinds of shoes do I like the most? The answer is any kind ; from practical flat pumps or sandals to the blingy, high heel kind that mostly stays in the cupboard and is totally unpractical. The only exception being sports shoes and crocs. Those I find decidedly unattractive and  will not wear them!

The blingy kind

How many pairs of shoes do I own? That is my secret and is not to be revealed!

How many pairs do you own?

Stylish over fifty five.

Burgundy blazer with ruffled top and scarf

In a previous blogpost, I mentioned the shift to being stylish when over fifty five. How do we do it you might wonder. I came across many style blogs which give good advice and inspiration on this subject. However as each one of us is unique in both our personality and appearance . Your style must be uniquely you! See yourself as a blank and unique canvas which you must colour in an appropriate way. Then there are many style blogs for women over  50 that give wonderful advice on being stylish.

You can find them here: http://www.over50feeling40.com, http://www.notdeadyetstyle.blogspot.com, www,notdressedaslamb.blogspot.co.uk

By reading advice I came across the following questions to ask   when trying on new clothes.

QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF WHEN TRYING ON NEW CLOTHES 

Do I feel confident when wearing the outfit?

Do I feel classy, chic, dignified?

Is there a creative touch to what I am wearing that is unique to me?

Do I feel ” young at heart ” in an appropriate manner?

Does it fit my body well, not too tight? or too big?

Let us forget about the size no, but rather look at how the clothes fit your body. 

I have found that I always feel great wearing clothes that has structure, such as a jacket with slacks, or skirt and even jeans. The most favourite items in my cupboard are blazers of any colour that suits me.  Over the years I bought many jackets and blazers which I can change with different blouses, brooches, and scarves. It can be dressed up or down depending on the combination with other pieces and accessories.  These are the latest additions to my cupboard found at end of season sales. I bought two of the same blazers in different colours and will keep them for next season.

Brown knit dress with brick coloured blazer