Years ago, when I was still young enough to think I had life figured out, early 20s I think, I was in a conversation with a group of women who were mostly a generation older than me. One of them made a comment that some woman they had been talking about was “too old to wear jeans”. I confidently declared that there was no such thing as being too old to wear jeans and that I would keep on wearing jeans for my whole life even if I lived to be over a hundred. No one responded to that. They were wise women in some ways.
Well, now I’m 50 (Really? 50? That can’t be right!) and I still stand by the first part of that. You’re never too old to wear jeans as long as you still want to wear jeans. I still wear jeans occasionally in the cool months. I like the way I look in them. (Well, as much as I ever like the way I look.) But dammit, they’re just not comfortable anymore. They’re reasonably comfortable when I first put them on but an hour or two later I start to feel slightly desperate to get out of them. I have a couple of pair of “stretch” jeans. There’s barely any difference.
Yes, it’s sad but true, I have reached the dreaded Knit Slacks Age. Several years ago I bought a pattern for fairly loose, but not too baggy, slacks. I made several pairs out of medium weight non-stretch fabrics like twill and gabardine. They’re much more comfortable than the jeans but still, after a while I’m feeling the need for knit. Or a dress. I love dresses. They are very comfortable and I wear them often during the summer but I feel sort of limited somehow when I wear a dress – like I always have to be careful to move in a graceful, ladylike manner which is not a bad thing but you know what I mean. When you’re taking out the trash or sitting in the dirt weeding the garden or something like that you just don’t feel right doing it in a dress. Also, there’s no graceful way to get in and out of a full size pick-up wearing a dress.
So I always come back to knit slacks. Fortunately there are now some nice cotton spandex pants instead of those horrible polyester double knit things women used to wear. Right now I really need some more knit slacks. I have three pairs of jeans and more than enough of the loose but not baggy non-stretch pants I mentioned so I should just be satisfied with those until they wear out but I keep going for the few pairs of rapidly deteriorating knit slacks that I have left. (Here’s some very nice fabric. I sent for a free sample swatch. It’s more of a t-shirt weight but suitable for lightweight summer slacks also.)
By the way, forgive me for being blunt but I must say this. Ladies, if you wear snug knit slacks or leggings please be sure to wear a top that is long enough to cover your hips. No one wants to see your jiggly parts. (Well, at least half of us don’t want to see your jiggly parts.)
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I bought a pair of these in red. I like leather boat shoes, even though I rarely go anywhere near a boat, because it doesn’t hurt to get them wet so I can wear them on rainy days or in wet grass. I had a pair of brown slip-on boat shoes from L.L. Bean – no laces except for decorative ones – for well over 10 years. They had holes in the soles and in the toes. I kept putting off replacing them because I wanted to find some just like them but they only have the lace-up kind now.
Having red shoes seems delightfully self-indulgent – almost bad in a feels-good-to-be-bad sense. It probably only seems that way to me because I tend to buy shoes in the brown to beige color range. I briefly thought about being “sensible” and getting one of the neutrals but never seriously considered them, which is surprising for me. You might say these are my mid-life crisis shoes except that (1) I’m not having a crisis and (2) although these are very nice casual shoes they’d be a pretty pathetic choice for mid-life crisis shoes. It would be like a guy buying a Volvo station wagon for his mid-life crisis car. Real mid-life crisis shoes would be something like these or these. If I tried to wear either of those I’d probably have a crisis of the falling down and cracking my skull kind.