BY KATE FORGACH
Forever 21 is a retail phenomenon among the younger set, but despite the trend of businesses catering to baby boomers, there’s no Forever 61. It can be difficult for this age group to find presentable, affordable office fashions.
So how can baby boomers fit in without looking like fools? And where can they find fashions that suit their aging bodies and more-mature tastes?
Totally Toned Physiques
Even if you’re a gym rat, Daisy Dukes and jeggings will make you look like a wannabee. It’s possible to wear body-skimming clothes without looking like you’re headed for the nightclub. Shop for tailored outfits that set off your best features without flaunting them. Well-cut fashions, including jeans, capris and tops, will look pulled together without screaming “OLD!”
Larger ladies have a harder time walking the fine line between too tight and overly ample. Plus-size clothing can be the frumpy, but select stores that cater size 14 plus have long understood the need to look fashion forward while complementing any over-abundance.
In an effort to skimp on cloth and save money, many manufacturers are cutting tops so low you can see the Alps in one quick glance. Even Victoria’s Secret has abandoned quality support in favour of skimpy Pink PJs. Invest in chemises. Such “underwear” allows you to fill in the gap while still wearing today’s looks.
Nothing gives our age away like that swaying under-bicep flesh. Fortunately, lightweight cardigans with raglan sleeves are available everywhere. They’re perfect for overly air conditioned offices, yet have a youthful look.
The Skinny on Jeans
Boomer men look plain silly in stovepipe jeans. On the other hand, you also don’t want to pull an Obama and wear mommy jeans hiked up to your waist. Levi’s classics are always acceptable.
The Upper Half
Boomer guys are lucky as they can get away with T-shirts and still fit into a relaxed office. Retro graphic Ts are particularly popular, but don’t pull out that ragged Pink Floyd shirt that’s worn thin. Save that for the next rock concert. For slightly more formal offices, a guy can’t go wrong with polo shirts.
Save the suits for job interviews and special occasions. If you’re heading to a more formal client meeting or conference, a casual sports jacket over chinos usually suffices. A blazer with jeans also has a nice finished flair.
Two no-nos: Bedazzled Crocs and sandals with socks (unless you work in a food coop). Otherwise, you’re good to go.
Kate Forgach has written about senior issues for 11 years for a wide variety of newspapers and magazines.
- Posted by Jenny Jelen