Rebel Old Lady!

Some of you will have seen this and I hate double-posting on things but I just had to because for a long time now, I've wanted to simply say that Observer Magazine or Guardian on Saturday always seem to style 50 yrs+ women in the best way possible.  So much so that I can't wait to age 50 years and head in that refined yet not overly conservation direction.  It seems apt therefore that they have shon a light on Fanny Karst, designer behind the label Old Ladies' Rebellion not once but twice (caught the G2 piece today).  It's the sort of story that makes one chortle at first and then makes total sense when you see the clothes.  24-year old Fanny is a French-born CSM grad who also happens to be Jean-Charles de Castelbajac's niece and is now based in the basement of JCDC's Savile Row store.  Not exactly the expected foundations to go into clothes specifically made for the 50+.  Read up on the details of the show that had 60-80 yrs models modelling her primarily digital printed silk pieces, all wearing practical flats in the Observer piece.  The crux of this for me is not that I'm here to recommend every 50yrs+ to go out there and buy Karst's pieces (out of curiosity, who IS over 50 here??? Anyone?!?) which at £500-600 a dress, isn't for everyone. 

The point is that I am all for Observer/Guardian and Karst's attitude towards how the 'elderly' dress.  When all is said and done there isn't REALLY anything stopping you from wearing whatever style you want to wear, regardless of age.  However, I feel like Karst has observed the conventional reservations that women of a certain age have (the forgiving shapes and the subdued palette) and taken them into account but has injected something unexpected too (rompe l'oeil hands, slogans and embellished epaulettes).  It's the happiest of compromises and might pave the way for more designers like Karst to come forth.  An evolution of so-called 'grandma' style perhaps…

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From the 2008 collection:

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43 Replies to “Rebel Old Lady!”

  1. Helloooo, I’m 50, and although I can appreciate these designs, it will be a while before I start wearing “forgiving” cuts. However, these photos remind me a great deal of how my mother-in-law dresses, she has always had such a wonderful style. You can find her by googling “Gretchen Ney Laugier Retrospective”, and viewing her art show.

  2. This is so AWESOME! It kindof reminds me of my dear old granny, but if she were a tad more rebellious. 🙂 Love it, and your blog!
    jacketspace.blogspot.com

  3. Oh j’adore l’idée ! What a great idea !!
    i wish my grand mother could act like that haha
    seriously this a really good initiative i hope it will go on more and more …
    Un tr√®s bon week end Susie 😉
    Boubou

  4. Yes, over 50 here! So glad to see this post today. It’s inspiring to read about someone who actually wants to design for these lovely women and then put them on the runway too.

  5. Ach, I love it. These women look relaxed, happy, confident, and chic. Everything I want to be when I pass the 50-year mark.

  6. Hey!
    I have been reading your blog now for a few months and it is incredibly inspiring (I’m sure you hear that all the time). I heard you are incredibly nice and friendly in person, (from the time you were in Dublin). That is so refreshing, keep up the good work too! Natalie.xx

  7. Oh I think that’s fantastic. Between this and Advanced Style it makes me feel a lot better about dressing as an older lady one day, haha!

  8. I love that this blog attracts people from all over the world, and all different ages. You’re a star Susie Bubble.

  9. Over 50 here (with pink hair) – I shared this and the point was made – why are they all still rail thin ladies? What exactly are the clothes forgiving?

  10. These clothes are awesome, it’s good to see someone designing for an older age bracket. It’s cool to read comments from people of all ages on your posts, shows how broad the appeal of style bubble is!

  11. I was fascinated by this post, really , i was amaze,i love the style also the prints of the clothes, very attractive, nice one, keep it up!
    -sidney-

  12. HORRIBLE! UGH! I am 55, nearly 56. I would rather wander around the city in my PJs than wear those clothes. Either that or Victorian mourning outfits (as I have already planned.)
    Why can’t old women just ask themselves, “What would Patti Smith wear?”

  13. I was hoping Sister Wolf would comment. As usual, she is right on 🙂
    But I think it is good that someone is willing to acknowledge that age has nothing to do with having style.
    I was at a shop the other day, and a woman, who was almost 70 said, “I should probably cut my hair at this age” Well, it was not that long in the first place, but she looked great. I jumped in, and said, don’t you dare, not based on that comment. I also told her that she looked awesome, and to never use age to place limitations on herself.
    Beauty is timeless and ageless.

  14. I like the fact that newspapers are addressing the grey pound. But not loving the dresses – they look pretty clingy? It also cracks me up when people routinely say about certain people, ‘she looks amazing…’ and then spoil it with, ‘…for her age’. Anyway, I’ll stop there as I can see this descending into one of those debates to which there is never a firm conclusion!
    PS, also loved Sister Wolf’s comment…

  15. Clothes are to be enjoyed no? so defining your choices by catagories or boundaries (ie; your age) have to be based on your own sense of enjoyment.
    Social assumptions have to be questioned and ‘jollied’ along (or someone said in the Observer this Sunday in an article about ageism – ‘given a good slap in the face’).
    And Yey !! this is great! I am 51, would probably not wear these clothes because my build is small and I think wouldn’t suit my personality – but this is always the case whatever age, yes?.
    So more of the same!! (or maybe done differently for me) : )
    I feel we do need less defining boundaries placed around us socially – as long as is socially responsible.
    I think the enjoyment and celebration of clothes for what they are and not who they represent is long overdue.

  16. A mixed bag of opinions here…. and glad to see people stepping up about their ages…. most surprising indeed…
    Sister Wolf – a fine question to ask indeed but I don’t think this is the WORST way to dress if you were 70+. Knew you would pipe up!
    Yes, the clothes aren’t for everyone but I like the sentiment all the same… because if the prospects are supposedly shops like Viyella and a ‘certain’ section of M&S then I’m heading for Karst pronto…hopefully she’ll still be around when I’m 70…

  17. Patti Smith wears Prada, Ann Demeulemeester and Comme des Garcons. She is built like a 12 year old boy. While I would like to wear her designers (and Rick Owens) I have, at 60, more bust and hip. I like some of the OLR designs, many seem to wear you.

  18. Miss Bubble, you are correct, it is not the worst. You can walk through any casino in Las Vegas to see the worst. It usually involves shorts, varicose veins, accessorized with a huge jug of beer.

  19. don’t know how i missed this, but i absolutely love it! i love when designers use these gorgeous old ladies to do their shoot. it’s been done before and i always love it. they have so much class and personality as compared to some of the drone models.

  20. well i’m 62 and i’d wear those clothes if i could afford them! meanwhile i wear jeans and t shirts – which is probably what patti smith does wear!

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