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Can we declare a ban on the term "Mutton Dressed as Lamb"?
How do you work that out? Nobody has a sell by date but as you age you can look ridiculous if you choose the wrong clothes in a bid to look younger and it fails. Sometimes you can find clothes that make you look younger that don't make you look ridiculous. It is a long standing saying that explains that point exactly. I would sooner somebody tell me I look like mutton dressed as lamb than go out looking like that.
ApocalypseNowt - exactly. Where is the male equivalent?
ZaraW I agree that of course there are a multitude of clothes and trends that I wore 20 years ago that I wouldn't dream of wearing now (and for that, DH is truly thankful ) but there is still no need to refer to a woman as "mutton".
Let me clarify that this is relatively light hearted in so far as I'm not actually suggesting that we campaign to ban the term. What I'm trying (and failing) to get across is that we should be more mindful of the words we use in these types of situations.
Raising two boys, I am very aware of how many negative words are used in relation to girls (not by them, I hasten to add but they talk to me frankly about what goes on in school etc). I just think it might be a good place to start if we, as adults, thought more about our choices of phrase.
I was always led to believe it didn't mean past your sell by date at all and if you wore clothes that made you look good you wouldn't look like mutton dressed as lamb. Not that at a certain age you were considered mutton. There are some things I could wear at 20 I could still wear, for example basic clothes of jeans and tops. If I wore the puff ball skirts and pepsi and Shirley dresses besides being out of fashion I'd look like mutton dressed as lamb. I am not mutton, I dress for my age or a bit younger and don't try to be a lamb. I don't see the problem tbh.
Thank you for raising this Ujjayi Oh dear to some of these comments.
Of course different things suit you as you get older - that's because your body changes. But the notion that any one item of clothing is 'ridiculous' on everyone over 45 is pretty stupid - and offensive.
Take a look around and you might just notice that older women do not all look the same and that we therefore suit different things. Just like younger women in fact.
Who decided what is ridiculous though? I see some outrageous older women here in Brighton and I am inspired to be just like them. I am 50 next year and wear what I want not what outmoded rules tell us.
I think some people are confusing the real meaning of the phrase to be honest. I have grown up with the saying and it has always been used in a derogatory way. To mean somebody really doesn't look good in the particular clothes they are wearing. I dress how I like and some of the clothes are really fashionable and outrageous, but sometimes something really doesn't look right because I am older, if I then bought and wore it I think I'd deserve the title mutton dressed as lamb. I think if it is part of your vocabulary you are more used to not being offended by it, for example both me and my friend would tell each other. We have a laugh in changing rooms and often use the term to describe each other in certain looks. Its better than buying it, thinking you look good and everyone sniggering behind your back.
I had a thread called "hot, juicy mutton" recently - I like to dress sexy. I have legs and I like to show them. However, I know that my legs look better with tights on them. I also know to skim over/camouflage my middle.
If the term applies to women past 40 who want to look "hot" then I say "poo!" to that! If it means trying to dress like a 20-year-old out on the pull with no self-awareness in terms of flaunting what they no longer have, then I think it could be appropriate.
One rule I have is: "If you wore it the first time it was trendy, you can't wear it again." So, I don't wear 80's stuff, etc. I do think that will look silly on me. The truth is, most of it looked silly when I wore it in 1992 or whenever, but I got away with it then.
I don't try to be "trendy." Being my age means that I can't pull of something like boyfriend jeans just because I'm no longer so nympnlike and delectable that I can still look good in a sack. I have to wear things that suit my figure. That may mean I will wear leggings or skinny jeans or whatever even if they're no longer "in."
A woman looks a bit silly if she's wearing things for trends with no regard to her actual figure. This goes for all ages, but is especially harsh on older women because we can't get away with it solely on the strength of our youth.
Yeh, I do agree with that, the people that snigger are probably very poe faced. I think I would still rather be told though. However, I'm not suggesting that certain clothes shouldn't be worn just because somebody is of a more mature age. Nor that we should all have blue rinses at 50
That does remind me though, the fashion for going out in your curlers and the grey/blue rinse that I see the stunning girls walking around town in, would be a prime example of what I mean. They look great, I'd look like an old hag.
I agree with theposterformallyknownas in the first reply.
What makes MN so lively, and so popular is that it doesn't censor threads to the nth degree. Personally, I think swearing is much more offensive than this, but I accept it's an open forum and some people use language I wouldn't. I think the same applies - it mightn't be a phrase you like, but it's not a phrase that needs to be banned.