You are probably tired of me telling you how I lack the creativity gene, but I am afraid I am going to mention it again. I was looking through my Instagram feed this morning, noticing the creative activities that people were completing – dancing, singing and playing instruments. Me? Posting an image of my soya latte! I’ve never really been creative and/or artistic and I often I have real problem about colours. Not seeing them, although my eyesight is less than perfect, but more coordinating them. This not only presents problems when choosing wallpaper and paints, it also present a real problem when I am trying to coordinate my clothing. However, when it comes to clothing, this is usually the least of my problems!
I woke up on Monday and after the usual morning routine, pulled on a purple T-shirt ready to head to work. It was then that I suddenly had a dilemma – was I allowed to wear a T-shirt for work and, perhaps more importantly, what would people think! As it happened I swapped it out for a more ‘formal’ look, but it got me thinking about the issues I have about clothing and how I dress.
Blue is the colour! -I mentioned in the introduction of the blog about how I find it difficult to see colour combinations. When I was teaching in a primary school – I often had to ask my teaching assistant whether colours went together before putting them up on the wall, since my choice often left much to be desired! If you were to look in my wardrobe you will see a multitude of blue. Jeans, shirts, tops, blue everywhere! Why? because I know that blue seems to go with things and what goes with blue. Blue jeans and white T-shirt, blue shirt and jeans, and even blue stripey formal shirt and black trousers. These are all probably ‘safe’ options but for me, I know that they will work together and that, when wearing them, no-one is going to be looking and thinking -OMG! I do, sometimes, branch out and buy a different colour. I am becoming quite confident with purple now, with blue and/or black of course, but apart from this the palette remains somewhat limited. I often look enviously at other people who manage to match colours perfectly, including patterns and stripes and even dots. Maybe this is just confidence, or maybe they just possess that ability like an interior designer or painter to match things and make everything look perfect. When I do it, the word jumble sale comes to mind!
Mutton dressed as Lamb! – I was teaching mathematics recently exploring mathematical skills with the students as they created scale models of the Big Friendly Giant (BFG). As they created items of clothing for their models to wear, I noticed that many of the BFG’s shoes appeared to be modeled on ‘Converses’ (apologies if I have spelt that incorrectly or I have used the wrong word). These seem to be what I call ‘posh pumps’ but I am sure that they is more to them! Some of the designs look great and I often wonder whether I should actually buy a pair to wear – not for work – but over the weekend when I am chilling round the shops. In a similar way I often see people wearing certain pieces of clothing that I think – I like that! or that jacket looks great! However, before I even consider buying something similar, I am struck with that old saying – “Mutton dressed as Lamb”. For those who might not know the saying, the essence of it relates to people trying to be something that they are not. I don’t think I would ever buy a pair of converses (again apologies) since I consider myself ‘too old’ for them and would hate to be walking down the street and people to be thinking – omg look at that old man wearing converses! I recognise that some clothes shops are for the ‘younger clientele’ but am I now only able to shop in the over fifties section of Marks and Spencers? Looking again at the content of my closet, I am thinking that I might already be there!
Personal Shopper – A few years ago I remember chatting to a men’s fashion expert online – well it was while playing Star Wars on TwitchTV, so he might not have actually been a fashion expert, but it appeared that he worked as a personal shopper in menswear! This is something that I think I would benefit from. I mentioned in my blog about winning the lottery about employing staff and a personal shopper would definitely be on the list! I need someone to actually tell me what to wear – to present different styles and outfits, telling me what goes with what and dress me suitably for my body shape and probably my age. There appears to be many experts out there, although they appear to be focused more in the women’s market or, they are avoiding people like me. I’m not the best at clothes shopping – growing up it always used to be a catalogue. Even now I tend to walk in, walk around and leave. As I walk through town, there are some lovely shops which are displaying a range of menswear and I often wonder whether I would look ok in some of the outfits. I never go in of course – that would be sheer madness! but I do wonder.
Some people can pull fashion off – they just seem to know what to wear and how to wear it. I’m the sort of person who gets his clothes out, tries to create a new outfit and ends up copying the mannequin in the shop or just returning to the usual combination of clothing. At Christmas the time will come which I have been dreading for a while. I will actually be fifty and I feel my opportunity for trendy dressing will be well and truly gone. Currently I have nine months left to branch out – so if you do see me in town, wearing a pair of red converse – then please, let me have my moment…
Do you find it easy to put outfits together? Do you have any helpful tips? Is your name Gok and you are reading this and can help me feel trendy at 49! Are you some of the designers who dress Jim Chapman and would like to see our outfits on an older man? Well as always I welcome all your comments and points of views so please feel free to add them in the comments below or send them to be via twitter or facebook.
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