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I am a mother, a new grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My first book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge will be published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon


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Monday, May 16, 2011

Too old for what?

If you are one or two of the women who haven't seen this silly story, here it is. A list of things that women shouldn't wear after a certain age.

The one that gets me is no bathing suits after 61. 

Now I'm not 61 but I hope to be one day and what do you mean no bathing suits?! 

What is a girl, even an older girl, to be doing at the beach on a hot day? 

Staying back at the cottage cutting off the crusts on the sandwiches she's making for all the fun people who come back hungry after a grand old time in the surf? Writing names on little slips of paper to put under heirlooms so everyone knows who gets what (my own grandmother did this for about 30 years, moving around the names depending on how she was feeling about any of us -that teapot is yours? I don't think so not anymore it isn't). I mean at 61 you are not out of service.

If you want to get into the water get, into the water. I sure will.

But this has me thinking about the things that are absolutely not age appropriate, and I am wondering now about tattoos.

My beach walking has exposed me to a full range of tattoed bodies and I am not sure that all of them are going to wear well.

Not that I have anything against tattoos. 

One of my sons has the Nova Scotia coat of arms on one shoulder to show when he is surfing and the other one, the DC guy, has "Fortune favours the bold" in Latin on his arm. Appropriately. And my daughter and I talk time to time about getting matching tattoos but we can't agree on what of. Many tattoos are beautiful and touching and deeply meaningful. I certainly can't tell you I have a tattooless future.

And I have students with great tattoos. One girl who dances has "I live to dance" in French at the nape of her neck and another has that wonderful line from Dr. Seuss "Oh the places I'll go" around the top of her foot.

Of course another girl has "Mike" on her wrist, her forever love at the age 20, but I have met Mike, the boy from the old town, and I am not so sure ...

My best tattoo story is from a friend of mine who went to her friend's wedding. The bride was a Bob Marley fan (as am I actually) and happened to have a giant tattoo of Bob Marley all over her back. Unfortunately the wedding dress was backless and my friend said it creeped her right out to have old Bob staring right back at the congregation through the whole ceremony.

So before anyone decides who should and shouldn't wear a bathing suit they might want to think a bit about the life longedness (is that a word?) of tattoos.

I saw a beautiful girl on the beach with her whole back entirely covered with Disney characters. And I saw a sweet young girl with an American Eagle (nothing wrong with being patriotic) from right up under the bottom of her neck and the wings shoulder to shoulder - fully in the middle of any scoop neckline - for life.

You know when I was in my early 20s I wore a lot of stuff that I sure glad I don't have to wear today. Styles change and more importantly so do people.

To me to commit to a really aggressive tattoo at a young age in a prominent place would be sort of like having that mistake guy you went out with in high school standing in your kitchen for the rest of your life.

Think that one through.


LindaNan said...

I guess these folks haven't seen a photo of Helen Mirin wearing a bikini.

Psycho Sue- Sew Misunderstood said...

See, these are both passionate subjects for me. I don't think anyone should be TOLD what they should not wear. Fat, old, skinny, or whatever. And I also apply the same to tattoos...it's your body and what you put on it is a part of you, it ages with you, it lives and breathes with you, so it's nobody else's cotton picking business what or where it is. And if they can't handle looking at it, there's the DOOR! hahahaha I have 15 tats and I am getting another one this Friday. I have a meaning for my artwork, and some has been designed by me. I wear them with pride. I consider them alive with me, They can never be lost or stolen unlike anything else you buy. So I stand proud with not one regret, for being alive, and who I am. great post!

Jodie said...

Great post, Barbara! You made me smile very, very early on a Monday morning.

Bunny said...

On tats: If people want to wear them that is fine with me. I just am not sure people really think these things out before they commit till death do them part. When you are twenty something the concept of lifelong commitment isn't always clear.

When it comes to tats I always think of the Saturday Night Live skit that shows a perfectly beautiful behind with an eagle on it, wings spread outward toward heaven. You then see this Barbie girl age on her rear and watch the eagle droop, droop, and more droop, add the wrinkles and by the time the end arrives it is one disgusting looking ass. It is a very funny skit.

On the beach: Excuuuuse me!?! Every one has the right to go to the beach and soak up the sun. Beaches weren't put here for perfect people alone. Sorry if my butt is spoiling your view! (directed toward the person that wrote that article).

Karen in VA said...

Great post, stupid article... I turn 50 in a few weeks. I'm finally ok with my plus size body and I plan on wearing swim suits 'til I'm not capable of getting in the water anymore. And I still wear the occasional mini-skirt, not a micro-mini, but I still show some legs. And since I'm 5'11", I've got plenty of leg to show. I'm with Sue, if you don't like it, don't look. If I'm comfortable with how I look, that's what matters... Hey, that's why we all sew, right?

shams said...

Your grannie - LOLOLOL. Now I think I see where you get your quirky sense of humor. Twenty years of moving name tags around, that cracks me up. :D :D

I take that article with a grain of salt. 2000 dieting women in the UK do not represent the style "be all, end all", to me. And even if they did... ;)

Carole said...

My husband often comments that in 10 years all of the old people will stand out because they'll have tattoos. The youngsters won't want them anymore. He also says it's like having had bell bottom pants or that nigh school perm super glued to your body for the rest of your life. A style that goes out of fashion but you can't take off. Ever.

Psycho Sue- Sew Misunderstood said...

tattoos have been around since ancient times; there is no comparison to bell bottoms or perms. There are Egyptian tombs shows people with tattoos.

KC said...

OK, that does it. Tattoos go on my list of things I'm allowed to do.