Monthly Archives: January 2012

The sophisticated 40 something………..or not

Disaster has struck. My laptop has died and so my original decision to write weekly on this blog has been scuppered a second time.  However somehow I will find a way so here I am.

I have only recently returned from maternity leave (October 2011) and upon returning discovered the dire state of my wardrobe.  I, like most people, like to look nice but I lack both the money and the flair to be able to “put together an outfit”.  I’m not sure if this is something that requires practice (I’m thinking it is, with lots of encouragement) or is something you are born with, in which case there really is no hope for me.  I’m one of those people who scour fashion magazines, see an outfit I like and then attempt to buy all the bits of it.  Although, to be fair, it’s been a while since I’ve even done that.

I’m so lacking in this stylist ability that I tend to emergency buy stock clothing.  Not stock as in “rounding up cows” but stock as in “yes I can wear blue” “yes it hasn’t got a v neck” “yes it’s loose around the tummy area”.  This emergency buying has occurred in department stores but often occurs in the clothing section of large supermarkets.  Occasionally I go a bit mad and buy a couple of tops in the same store, enjoying my flippancy, only to discover that actually that elastic at the waistband keeps riding up under my armpits and the top is too short or that I actually look more like a grandma in it.

Another, more successful shopping tactic I’ve employed in the past is to scour fashion magazines for a few months. Pin point the 3 things I think would be good to buy that are in season (e.g. skinny jeans, bright pink top) and then spend the month tracking it down in a suitable price bracket.  This, however, requires a lot of time and thinking and if I’m entirely honest, more time and thinking than I’m offered prepared to give it.  I know I should, but my head is chock full of children’s pick up times, meal planning, storage solutions — oh and work.  I’m sure lots of fashion conscious clever stylishy kind of people have equal things in their head, but consider what they wear as pretty high on the agenda.

Of course now I sound like I really don’t care what I look like and that’s not true. I care enough to get depressed at looking ordinary or scruffy or badly constructed.  I don’t care enough to dedicate that much time to it. But here’s the crux of the problem – I think I need to.

So I’m starting to do so. I have a very small budget of around £100 a month to spend on myself (everything, makeup, clothing, bits and bobs) and so I’m attempting to buy something every month that is thought through and suits me.  I’ve been ruthless. I’ve tried on black skirts that looked great, but far too similar to something I already have, so I didn’t buy it.  My best purchase (I think) was a lovely floaty blouse from a company called Mint Velvet. I loved all their muted colours.

So the wardrobe overhaul is in full swing. I’m ditching the emergency buys that make me look like a sack of potatoes and will slowly turn my wardrobe into something sophisticated. Something befitting a lady in her 40’s.

Is 40 the new 40?

Well, it’s always said isn’t it.  40 is the new 20. 60 is the new 40. 30 is the new….. oh for goodness sake!!!

Well in about 2 weeks time I AM 40. Clearly I don’t feel 40. Nobody feels 40 – we all feel 20 (clearly).

But I am an older mum and I’m pretty sure that if I was younger, then all the work that 2 small children bring would be less exhausting and possibly less stressful.

I am in a job I don’t particularly like and I have just completed 6 years of partime study to get a degree in Psychology.  However, if I wasn’t 40 I may have considered going on, doing an MA, doing some work experience in a related field, possibly even doing a PhD.  But I need my salary, I can’t drop down and how much time could I spend in a new career.

It’s also probably too late to start a new sport. Pick up my old tennis training (25 years later), learn volleyball?

So, as I throw stones before me (or related proverb) I should really focus on what I can achieve. So I’m going to spend the next 6 months thinking about it all. Create a new stepping stone to another chapter in my life…….who knows.

Well, that’s enough ruminating. Next post I shall tackle a more meatier subject.  I think until my birthday and birthday party are done I don’t think I can focus on anything else.

It has begun…..

….everything has begun.  The venue has been chosen (corner of a contemporary pub), the Facebook event has been written up (ensuring it has the “fun” edge to it, a photo from the 70’s and a little joke) and the babysitter is booked.

Less than 4 weeks to go until I take those first wobbly steps into my 40’s and whilst I’m enjoying doing a “milestone” birthday, I’m not so sure how I feel about the age.  It’s a clichéd thing to say but as a child a 40-year-old was O L D!! Reeeeeallly old.  Now I’m standing on the precipice I still feel 20, so I don’t feel old at all.

Well, much like the passing of time it felt inevitable that I would want to blog about going into my 40’s………so here I am. Ready to share the journey, discuss the things we aren’t “supposed” to discuss, the struggle with fashion, family and life generally. I look forward to laying myself bare……….and I hope you join me.