Rethinking How We Write About Women’s Fashion

Sheri Radel Rosenberg responds to your feedback and vows a new approach to writing about and celebrating women's style

Patti Smith from Year of The Monkey

By Sheri Radel Rosenberg for The Ageist
A New Point of View

I turned 51 a week or so ago, and with it came yet another lens to focus on what style looks like for those in our crowd.

In a recent post for AGEIST, I wrote about back-to-life clothes and showed photos of women that would not turn 50, let alone 40, for a long time. I got a lot of feedback from readers that they were tired of looking at photos of young women. And how underrepresented anyone from Gen X-on is when it comes to fashion. And though it’s true, we don’t do a photoshoot when I write a piece, and that I am at the mercy of imagery brands provide on their sites and social profiles, I can do better. We can do better.

That’s why I’m shifting gears.

My goal with this platform is to share style tips and recommendations that I love and hope you will love, too. Some are aspirational, others a bit more accessible. But I can promise you that you will no longer see women that have not ever thought about menopause or how to embrace a more pro-aging stance. I may not get Zara to feature more mature models, but I can take responsibility for what I share and, from this point on, that’s what I’m going to do. That doesn’t mean I’m suddenly going to wax on about sweater sets or sensible shoes, mind you. I’m going to keep my sense of style intact but be more sensitive to what’s happening around us.

I like the idea of “style” as a broader term that includes everything from clothes to beauty to that great new hotel in New Orleans

I’ve been thinking about what that will look like and how it will feel. And I like the idea of “style” as a broader term that includes everything from clothes to beauty to that great new hotel in New Orleans. On a walk with my pup the other day, I thought of the fact that even though I have never felt more fit, inspired, and ready to shout from the rooftops, I’ve been rendered invisible by not just the fashion industry but society at large. At 51, I am no longer afraid to express my opinions, share my hopes, dreams, and fears, and live life on my terms in a way I never thought was possible. I hope many of you are reading this and feel the same way. I have said many times you couldn’t pay me to be 25 again. I have never felt happier or more in tune with this thing called life.

That said, I’m looking forward to rethinking what I share in this space. Whether it will be women or men I admire or things I love, I’m challenging myself not to perpetuate the marketing hoax that we don’t matter. I love how women like Stacy London break barriers and make menopause more mainstream and less something we whisper about in the dark. It’s honestly mind-boggling that it seems like anti-aging sentiments are the last frontier. I am thrilled to see conversations around gender, sexuality, and body type forcing change. Our time needs to come, too. And I certainly would rather not be part of the problem. So, I hope to use this column to move the needle towards a solution. I recently spotted this Tiffany ad, and it hit me hard. As the ultimate legacy brand, to dismiss an entire demographic that made you famous in the first place is ludicrous. Not to mention, the headline is beyond clichéd and, in my mind, lazy.

Here’s to celebrating style on our terms

Moving forward, I’ve accepted the challenge many of you were so gracious to inspire with your comments and thoughts. I can’t wait to share what’s next and look forward to crafting content by us and for us. And as always, feel free to reach out with any thoughts, inspirations, or comments.

Here’s to celebrating style on our terms. I can’t help but think of Patti Smith, pictured here. Her rock-and-roll spirit and rebellious soul feels perfectly aligned to the stars. Because the night (and day) truly does belong to us. XO

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Comments 1

  1. Very interesting!
    Believe we have somewhat started on our ageing style journey, with many senior style setters, (globally) turning heads!
    But they are def the exception! And media still features heavily, young models.
    Like her idea of style-being applied on a broader basis! Look forward to reading more!

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