Friday, 9 March 2012

"Over fifty"

Yep, that's me. Over fifty, and then some. And when you get to be my age, you get sent, among other things, offers of life insurance, health insurance, advance funeral arrangments/payment, and horrible, horrible clothes.

I received a catalogue of the latter this morning.

There are bras like twin buckets and knickers like small baths; there are awful crimplene trousers and knee-length skirts; clumpy shoes (because we older folk might fall over if we walk in anything glamorous), things in awful bridesmaid colours (lemon, aqua, get the idea) and - joy of joys - lots of elasticated waists.

Now, I have a waist. Not, it must be admitted, the "tiny waist" of the romantic heroine (after four babies, I don't expect one), but I go in in the middle, and out again at the hips, and I call it a waist. I like to have belts and zips and buttons. I wear hipster jeans. I DO NOT NEED AN ELASTICATED WAIST. Neither, I suspect, do lots of my contemporaries.

To add insult to injury, the women modelling these revolting clothes all look suspiciously young (presumably because they couldn't get any older women to do the job. We've got more sense).

So please, please, please will clothing manufacturers start treating us like ordinary, normal women, with taste and a little vanity (still) and, above all, a SHAPE?


  1. Oh Frances, you have made me laugh - knickers like small baths, bras like twin buckets... But I do agree with you about those clothing catalogues!

  2. You've made me laugh too, Frances. I love your very apt descriptions.
    My pet-hates are the catalogues for elderly ladies' shoes. As a child, one of my strange phobias was for old ladies' shoes. I couldn't bear them. I despised them, especially the kind that look like an adult version of children's school-shoes. (In fact, I wear boots for as much of the year as I can. I really don't love any shoes at all.)The catalogues send shivers down my spine and disappear straight into the recycling bin.

  3. They are horrible aren't they?

  4. I envy you your waist, Frances. I haven't had one for years, not since the doctors put me on a cortico-steroid and I gained ten tons.
    Just the other day, I told my doctor I'll never take that stuff again because of the side-effects, and he said "You might have to."
    Ha. I have more health problems as a result of that medication than I could ever have imagined.
    So, the elastic waists are for people like me, and the catalogues can go right into everyone else's recycling bin.
    But I love your descriptions!

  5. There is probably a market out there for such clothes, otherwise they wouldn't be produced and offered in catalogues... and I personally know a few ladies (some of them under 50, some over) who truly do need bras the size of twin buckets and knickers like small baths, simply to contain their... erm... ample forms.
    As for the shoes; your post made me think of what my mum keeps saying. She used to wear very chic shoes (in as far as she could afford them, and always in relation to practicability, what with her job and everything), but she says nowadays she just can't walk well anymore in many of the shoes she likes, they give her blisters and discomfort, and so she goes for the chic ones really only when she knows she just has to step out of a car, walk a few yards to the opera house and back or some similar situation.
    When I turned 30, all of a sudden there were catalogues and brochures in the mail for anti-wrinkle creams and stuff like that - and that was 30, not 50!!! I do have wrinkles, of course; I am almost 44, after all, but I don't mind them really and am quite happy with my overall shape. Good to hear that you are, too!

  6. Cheer up, Frances. Treat yourself to a SAGA holiday or something. I can't believe you're over fifty. I hope I look as good as you when I get to your age.

  7. Thanks, Teresa. I'm glad to know you're with me!

    Joanna, I so agree about shoes. I couldn't give a damn about them, either, but like you, I adore boots. Oh - and sandals. Anything in between, and you can forget it.

    Thanks, Suzy!

    That's sums it up, Diane. Laughable.

    Kay, I'm not sayng elastic waists aren't useful. I'm just saying that not everyone of a certain age needs or wants them! And I do sympathise over the steroids. Wonder drugs, but with side effects. I do hope your health improves.

    Librarian, I would never suggest that there isn't a place for these clothes and shoes. I just object to us all being lumped (ha) together like this. My own sister is handicapped, and lives in lace-ups because they're comfortable. But they wouldn't please/suit everyone.

    Oh, do say the nicest things...

  8. I too have a waist, but I wish I could get size 12 clothes to fit me as I've put on weight but not enough to wear size 14.

  9. I'm keeping quite on this one! I have noticed that all your comments are from ladies. Oh wotthehellarchiewotthehell why should I keep quiet? Of course I agree with you. This assumption that when we get to a certain age (and I've got a lot of experience of being a certain age) is something that affects both sexes. I, too, get catalogues for voluminous bras (which I've never worn) and shoes in which I'd look ridiculous and I'm not even female!

  10. Throw those catalogues out, Frances they're not for you! They're aimed at women who went straight from school to middle aged. There are a quite a lot of them about.

  11. Jarmara, I wouldn't worry about clothes' sizings. They seem to change all the time. Just buy what fits!

    Oh go on, GB. Buy yourself a bra. You know you want one!

    Patsy, I've alread chucked - I mean, recycled - it!

  12. These catalogs shouldn't be labeled as for ladies over 50 but ladies over 80. After all, 60 is the new 40, right? (I hope?)Soon to be 60.

  13. Hi, Catherine. You're right ( though I prefer not to be labeled at all!).

  14. "Oh, do say the nicest things..."

    Yeah, I know. Must be a gift.