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What is frumpy?

(50 Posts)
hiddenhome Sat 20-Jul-13 13:38:10

I often follow links on threads that lead to various types of clothing and then people will come on and say "oh, that's frumpy, I wouldn't wear that".

Some of the clothes on the links look okay and then I'm wondering what it is about them that means they're frumpy.

I understand that polyester granny blouses are universally frumpy, but can't really judge much else.

People say that Boden and Seasalt are frumpy, but to me, they look quite nice and the models are all young and they still look nice.

What do none frumpy people generally wear?

Can anyone elaborate?

internationallove985 Sat 20-Jul-13 21:55:58

I think it laymans (hope I've spelled that correct) it means when a person has no pride in their dress sense or appearance. x

moonshine Sat 20-Jul-13 22:29:42

Short hair on older women is not necessarily frumpy! (eg see Helen Mirren, Judy Dench, Edie Falco, Halle Berry, Jamie Lee Curtis, Sharon Stone etc etc and all the other uncelebrated non-celebrities).

And there are plenty of young frumps with long and short hair - it's not one thing in particular. I agree that what looks frumpy on one person can look edgy-ish on another.

gindrinker Sun 21-Jul-13 07:54:42

To me frumpy is dressing older than your years.
So 25 year old wearing bootleg jeans, ankle boots with a sensible heel a 'safe' top (no hint of cleavage or shoulders)

Nothing wrong with it, but just very safe and dull.

NorkilyChallenged Sun 21-Jul-13 07:59:17

"Frumpy" is exclusively applies to women isn't it? men don't get called frumpy.

I think that's why I don't like the word personally

Roshbegosh Sun 21-Jul-13 08:01:16

I think it means dull, older than you are, like you haven't tried.
The wolf fleece link is vile, it is taking the piss out of poor people, no one with money dresses like that even frumpy people with money. Shame on you leverette

gindrinker Sun 21-Jul-13 08:20:59

NC - clothing for 16 yr old boys and 50 men is essentially the same though.
They don't have as much variety to choose from and their body shapes are much more similar so a tee-shirt on man 1 will look the same on man 2.

Roshbegosh Sun 21-Jul-13 09:00:30

What about the neck? The belly? They may think they look the same but no.

YoniTime Sun 21-Jul-13 09:08:42

There is a lot of differences between men too. There are young men, old men, skinny ones, fat ones, men with pot bellies, muscular men, etc.
When I look outside in the heat not many seem to given thought to what suits their bodies. Of course, their choice is also limited.

rosesandpirates Sun 21-Jul-13 09:09:29

Anything from joules or boden (preparing to be shot down).

GettingVerySleepy Sun 21-Jul-13 09:16:38

Theres a societal expectation that we women are expected to care about fashion, clothes, shopping etc and if we choose to use our brains and limited time on other things instead we get insulted, i.e called a frump - unless we err on the side of being too revealing and get called a slapper. Following fashion is time consuming, expensive and wasteful but avoid doing so at your peril if you want to fit in and be taken seriously at work, in your community, etc. Fashion does help the economy, I suppose, but at the expense of women and workers in the third world primarily.

justgivemeareason Sun 21-Jul-13 09:25:00

I think frumpy is down to the cut/shape/length of clothes. I look really frumpy if I wear loose clothes or a mid-calf skirt or a high neck or clumpy shoes. But if I wear something fitted suited to my shape, I look slimmer and more up-to-date.

Knowing what suits you and sourcing the right clothes also stops you being frumpy. I am not a huge fan of Boden but wore a really flattering dress I bought in the sale to two nights out recently and I had more compliments than I have had in ages.

bleedingheart Sun 21-Jul-13 09:50:31

It's the mis- matching I think.
Fleece jackets with walking or exercise gear are entirely suitable and practical. Fleece jackets with a summer dress or a blazer with a track suit jars.

It's hard to look frumpy if you choose clothes that fit and coordinate. It's not hard but also if it's not important to someone then they shouldn't be judged for it. I've never known someone who dresses like this who didn't deep down want to look better. Not saying they don't exist though!

LadyMilfordHaven Sun 21-Jul-13 15:43:08

i dont get the irre at the wolf thing

I love pleated skirts - but making them non-frumpy is about getting the top and shoes right. With Converse and a denim jacket in summer, or heels and a biker jacket in Autumn they can look great. If I wore them with a fleece and Footglove shoes, on the other hand, that would be frumpy.

The wrath at the wolf fleece link is ridiculous. She was just saying that a wolf fleece is frumpy, in her opinion, not mocking poor people or people with mobility problems fgs.

missbopeep Sun 21-Jul-13 17:04:14

Gettingverysleepy It's is quite possible you know to use your brain for 'higher things' and look fashionable. Academia, career success or whatever you were on about and looking good are not mutually exclusive.

GettingVerySleepy Sun 21-Jul-13 17:16:02

Of course it is missbo and I never said otherwise. I am quite successful myself and I also look I think reasonably fashionable. In fact i would argue that in a lot of careers at least, its more dificult for women who dont have good dress sense and dont want to spend time on such things to get ahead. All I'm saying is that sometimes I resent the time, money and effort I spend trying to look presentable, yet I know there would be repercussions on my own career if I didn't do it.

missbopeep Sun 21-Jul-13 17:17:43

I agree smile

GettingVerySleepy Sun 21-Jul-13 17:18:47

grin thanks missbo

missbopeep Sun 21-Jul-13 17:21:52

It's funny actually- someone in my family was commenting yesterday that certain bright women at a well known company who won't stand for anyone who doesn't shape up- do not seem to know how to dress- actually erring on the side of being too 'tarty' - and they have been passed over for promotion.

Viviennemary Sun 21-Jul-13 17:22:46

Frumpy is a fawn baggy cardigan. And also M & S classic collection. Even I wouldn't be seen in them. Usually.

GettingVerySleepy Sun 21-Jul-13 17:29:47

Have you seen this, missbo? Kinda says it all, really.

monkeynuts123 Sun 21-Jul-13 17:58:32

Pearly pink nail varnish on log toenails clinging over the edge of black platformish foamy flip-flops worn with calf length white linen trousers with elasticated waist on show...specific and bleugh.

monkeynuts123 Sun 21-Jul-13 17:58:50

long toenails not log!

alemci Sun 21-Jul-13 18:10:57

what about Maxi dresses in response to the picture of skirt lengths.

sometimes i love a longer skirt especially if my legs need defuzzing etc.

Well, grunge is going to be 'in' come Autumn, so you'll be 'bang on trend' in a maxi! smile

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