Keeping it simple

Alyson Walsh says timeless elegance is sometimes a question of what not to wear.



Here are three things I won’t be wearing this month: floral prints, Radiant Orchid (a shade I’m calling dirty pink) and a midi skirt. 

Like most grown-up women, I’ve reached the point where I have something of a uniform. Call it timeless style, forever fashion – or maybe just wearing the same clothes. Whatever the seasonal shift, the core pieces remain: a statement jacket, jeans or black/navy pants (depending on the occasion) and flat shoes. 

To me, perennial style is all about finding clothes that suit your personality and lifestyle. Clothes that make the wearer feel happy and confident. Think Catherine Deneuve in a fabulous Yves Saint Laurent tuxedo, Mary Berry’s love affair with pink cashmere or Judi Dench outshining women half her age, both on film and on the red carpet, in a matching dress and evening coat. 

Want Mary Berry's style? Read our guide to achieving the Queen of Cakes' look

Having style confidence requires a level of honesty. Knowing what suits a certain body shape, figuring out what doesn’t – and then getting over it. 

Here are my three tips for remaining chic at any age:

1. Keep it simple

As Coco Chanel once said, ‘Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance’. And Uniqlo has teamed up with the eternally elegant 50-something Inès de la Fressange, to create a range of easy basics, such as French linen shirts and navy workwear-inspired jackets. I’m giddy with excitement already. 

2. Invest wisely

Jigsaw’s tweed jackets are on my radar at the moment. Made from Linton tweed, woven in a 100-year-old mill in Carlisle, the very same mill used by Chanel. Yes, Chanel. 

3. Stay current

Do the research! There’s a difference between having a uniform and being stuck in a rut. Knowing the latest colours, silhouettes and styles and constantly refreshing your wardrobe helps. I’m never going to wear a Radiant Orchid frock, but I might try some dirty pink nail polish.

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.