Fashion for Older Men and Women

Richard Branson Kite surfing

Brash like Richard Branson?
Photo credit: Business Insider

Does Richard Branson personify the ideal style of the man in the 60s? He is, after all, 62 years old. Love him or hate him, you can’t usually ignore him which is what fashion is all about at some level. Not everyone of course can be like him.

However, this post isn’t about Richard Branson. It is about men and women and their interest in fashion. And why the younger generation care.

The New York Times talks about this in an interesting article. They reference the book Advanced Style by Ari Seth Cohen quite often. I covered his blog Advanced Style in my previous post on street style for older women. From the New York Times article,

But it’s worth remembering that, notwithstanding their aging, the boomers are still the generation that gave us the famous boardroom credo “Nobody wants to see old people on TV/in the movies/in advertisements.” … So it’s not the new old who are driving this fascination. It’s the young. Scratch the surface of youth culture, and a kind of Eldertopia is revealed, a pro-aged paradise lovingly promoted by people who are themselves not even close to middle-aged.

For whatever reason, the younger generation and the youth culture, or at least a smaller sub-culture, is fascinated with old age and older fashion. Whether this is out of genuine interest or a way to conceal and hide the fact that we all get “old and different” is up for debate. However, this cultural revolution does bring us some very interesting fashion tidbits.

It is an interesting combination of both men and women. While the men are seen more ‘macho’ like Branson above, women are seen as more ‘classy’ as Betty White below. Of course such gender differences shouldn’t come as a surprise, and of course you have elegant men and raunchier women but the part of the subculture seems to have a preference already.

Betty White

The cultural values of the younger generation also, to a great extent, revolve around themselves. When they are interested in the older women or men fashion, they still want to see a part of themselves, a part of their culture reflected. This is why concepts and images that include a combination of older women with younger men or younger men with older women are so popular. Think of Ryan Gosling with his mom, for instance. Now wouldn’t that be a weird combination for the boomer generation to appreciate!

Ryan Gosling with his Mom

What are your thoughts on older women and men fashion?

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