Twice in two days I’ve seen two women, in almost an identical outfit, but each, I could clearly identify her age (young or middle-aged). As I am now, a middle-aged mother of two (that brings to mind a whole host of ideas – almost none of which I would describe as myself), I pondered this. Both women, observed downtown in our midwestern college-and-capital city, were wearing cream belted winter coats. Both were wearing dark trousers (black in one case, charcoal in another), both were wearing high heels (one, boots, the other, pumps). The middle aged woman looked great. She had long-ish dark hair, about my length, she had a nice laptop bag she toted. The young woman wore a trendy newsboy style winter hat, carried a basic classic tote, with longer, blonde hair. What about these two women made me instantly know their ages? I couldn’t see clearly enough to tell, for sure, I was in my car, both were crossing at opposite corners to me.
It occurred to me it was very subtle details. The young woman wore a hat. I think women of my generation never wore hats. The young woman had longer hair, styled in a more face-forward style (middle aged women tend to wear bangs or have it more off of their faces, with fuller hair). And the bag. The young woman also carried a trendy oversized purse, and a bright, but classic tote for her other items. It really is the detail – the accessory – that changes the look.
So on that note, I’ll look to edit my accessories. I did just buy the new oversized bag, and last night I dreamed I’d lost it at a 5k race (that’s another dream altogether) and I wasn’t upset by the contents as much as losing the bag itself! I love hats, scarves and funky jewelry. That’s where I’ll focus my efforts.
The challenge is, while I love things like high heels, with running, they don’t really love me. I have to treat them like dessert: it’s okay, but you can’t have it every day. So as I move to flat shoes, the challenge is that they have to be modern, or worn modernly. Flat riding boots with jeans tucked in. Flat strappy sandals. Ballerinas. This year, the topsider or the moccasin.
While I am a middle-aged mother of 2, I’m hoping that you can’t pick me out of a lineup of middle-aged mothers of two 😉