Style + Beauty

Elevating Your Style After 50 in 3 Easy Steps

May 9, 2024

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If you are a woman over 50+ and you are feeling a little style-stuck, no worries. I can show you that elevating your style is easy, and will have you putting together a new wardrobe with things you already own! (And maybe a couple of small additions!) Learn how to dress for every occasion from a day at home to grocery shopping to a night out to a vacation resort! All with just three basic pillars of style. And this works even if you feel “style” hasn’t been your thing, or that you just don’t have the “style” knack.

Remember though, style isn’t about impressing other people. It’s about giving you confidence and making you feel beautiful, strong, and even sexy. You deserve that!

Note: I only recommend products I would use myself. If you purchase items through the links on my site, I might earn a small commission from the retailer. This is at no cost to you and does not increase your price for the item. Money earned from these commissions helps keep The Middle Girls running! Thank you for your support!


1.The Basics: Neutral Clothing

First of all, I need you to understand the importance of neutrals. Far from being boring, neutral clothing is elegant and chic. Picture Audrey Hepburn. She is an iconic style queen, but her most loved outfits were in neutral colors. French women always look chic in neutrals. And mind you, that doesn’t mean you need to dress all in black and beige. Navy, sage greens, charcoal grey, and even blush and cream are perfectly pretty neutral colors.

Use neutral clothing as the foundation of any outfit. You wouldn’t put on foundation makeup that was bright purple, right? Why? Because it would distract from the more exciting things to come!

So put all your neutral pieces on one side of your closet. And when shopping in the future, think of neutral clothes.



Neutral Clothing Style Tip:

To build a look with neutrals that feel flattering to you, consider the basic rules of art class. Dark colors make things recede to the eye, light colors make things seem closer to the eye. So unless you are going monochrome (the same color on top and bottom) choose a dark neutral on the part of your body you want to seem smaller, and a lighter color on the part of the body you want to be featured. For me, because I am a pear shape, I choose dark pants, skirts or jeans. Then I wear lighter colors for tops and blouses because that is the smallest part of my body. Try it!


These are my picks for dark bottoms:

NYDJ Marilyn Straight Leg Skimming Jean

Love these! Soft fabric, great stretch, a crisscross panel in front to flatten your belly, and they look great from behind! 😘 BTW, NYDJ stands for “Not Your Daughter’s Jeans”. Enough said. They recommend you order one size smaller than your usual jean size. (Any of you not want to be a size smaller overnight? 🤣)


Elevating Your Style After 50


Elevating Your Style After 50


Yummie Leggings

Yummie is the only brand of leggings I wear.  And yes, we can still wear leggings over 50! They have a high, wide waistband that smooths out my front and any muffin top, substantial cotton fabric, and good stretch. I love the Rachel, The Talia Capri and The Susie Flare. I wear these almost Every. Single. Day. I’m a size 10-12 and wear a large. If you want comfort pants, this is it! They come in solids (I own four black pair and one grey) and some great sporty stripes. (I own this one, and a blue one!) Oh did I mention? Oprah approved!



2. Colorful Clothes and Prints

I am not here to say that you should never use color and pattern! I love color myself. But instead of making it the only thing you see in an outfit, use bright colors and patterns more sparingly. This is all about elevating your style, without looking outdated. Timeless and sophisticated, even if you’re wearing sweats! Try the 70/30 formula. Seventy percent neutral, thirty percent color or pattern. Your accessories can fit into either of those groups.


Elevating Your Style After 50


Color and Pattern Style Tip:

When I use patterns, these days I stick to more classic small prints and geometrics. Vertical stripes are visually slimming. Leave the large and loud prints to those 20-somethings, or keep them in small areas, like a scarf or a bag. This looks more classic and less Mrs. Roper. (And yes, it took me forever to learn this too!) But if you really love your big prints, then you be you; the best Mrs. Roper around!


Here are a few ideas that I love:

Kate Spade Canvas Tote

Kate Spade is my signature bag, but they tend to be pricey. (But worth it!) This is an inexpensive canvas tote that costs less than $30! Great punch of both pattern and color.


Elevating Your Style After 50


Vera Bradley Cotton Quilted Crossbody

Also inexpensive, this is a crossbody bag made of sturdy quilted cotton fabric and has options with literally 28 different colors and prints. This would glow against a white dress!


Elevating Your Style After 50


Calvin Klein Poplin High Low Blouse

100% cotton, longer in the back for more rear coverage, but shorter in the front for a much better design balance than wearing a tunic. This is a great way to add a serious pop of color without overwhelming the whole outfit!


Elevating Your Style After 50


3. Accessories for Elevating Your Style

This is the frosting on the cake. Adding accessories is easy, and one of the least expensive ways to update your style. Think hats, sunglasses, jewelry, bags, jackets, blazers, dusters, and shoes. In fact, take any boring outfit, add 3 accessories, and the whole vibe will change. But remember, not too many accessories. Three seems like the magic number for most occasions. (But there are always exceptions!)

This outfit rocks! ….. Now picture this same ensemble without the accessories. It’s like a dry piece of cake. Not quite finished.


Photo by P. Soury


Accessories Style Tip:

If you can only use one accessory, choose shoes. “Shoes make the outfit” is an oldie, but a goodie. The number one shoe swap I can recommend for everyday is to switch out your sneakers. Instead of wearing runners that look 1985, try one of the trendier platform sneakers. (Nothing like platform heels, I promise!) Or wear those cute and very classic white canvas tennis shoes with the look of a sporty flat. You know the ones, I think we used to call them deck shoes? (Again, Hepburn! 😉) Yes, I know, you picked those running shoes because they are comfortable, right? I have arthritis in my feet. I would not steer you towards uncomfortable!


Wear these:

Dr Scholl’s White Sneaker


Elevating Your Style After 50


or these (Skechers are my fav!)

Skechers Bobs


Elevating Your Style After 50


or these cute canvas ones

Skechers Bobs B Cute


Elevating Your Style After 50



Not these:


Elevating Your Style After 50


So no matter where you are in your style journey, these three guidelines can help you with elevating your style and refreshing your wardrobe. Try it tomorrow with any clothes you have in your closet!

  1. Use neutrals for the foundation.
  2. Add color and pattern intentionally.
  3. Have fun with adding 3 accessories.


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I think you will also love my posts on How to Dress to Disguise and 5 Ways to Look More Youthful…

Also visit my Freebies page, where everything is… well, free!

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I'm Kathy, your new get-a-grip best bud.

I’m an online educator, business, motivational & mindset coach, podcast host and author helping to teach women over 50 how to empower themselves to create the life they always wanted... 

Click here to learn more about me

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