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You're 40, working mum, want to look classic but cool and interesting... Where do you shop!?

(86 Posts)
puft Sat 26-Mar-16 11:08:22

My first thread...
Had to face up to it this morning. I am TOO OLD to shop at h&m any longer. The clothes shrink, they're too short and badly cut.
I don't particularly like shopping so I've been going there out of habit for the past 20 years.
Today I am wearing a patterned dress (too short), a massive baggy jumper (bobbly), Chelsea boots quite like but I should invest in a proper pair as I wear them everyday and these were from the supermarket I think.
Where should I shop for my age and to look more expensive and fashionable and also for clothes that last more than a few washes?
And who are your style icons? I need some inspiration please, thank you.
Sorry if I'm duplicating another thread.

Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Sat 26-Mar-16 11:21:38

Simply Be.
I buy a lot off eBay.
Lindy bop.

nilbyname Sat 26-Mar-16 11:27:45

I like-
H and m for the odd jumper, top
Asos for loads of things
Top shop or river island for jeans
Topshop for tops
Some Boden
French connection
All saints
Occasional bits from Zara when I can be bothered to have a rummage as they stuff their shop too full IMO.

I like to wear the classic off duty mum look of
Ankle boots or Nike trainers
Breton top or loose shirt or crew neck sweater
Big coat or leather jacket

For work-
Skinny pencil skirt, opaque tights, ankle boots and shirt or crew neck sweater.
Skinny trousers, wedge Clark original boots, shirt.

AltogetherAndrews Sat 26-Mar-16 11:38:20

New Look, as my budget is tight.

I used to shop in H and M a lot 10 years ago, but now there is nothing in there that appeals. I think it's the shop that has changed, not you, as I can remember several things from there that I would still wear, but there is nothing now. They strike me as a budget River Island, another shop I never set foot in anymore, as they have changed their style so much. Very young, and cheap looking, even though it isn't.

Greengardenpixie Sat 26-Mar-16 11:49:23

H&M are rubbish quality. Its not that they are 'young', I just can't be bothered with things that have poor stitching etc. They generally are very small made so a hit or miss.

I am 48 and currently have a thing for HUSH. I have bought a couple of trousers - the Monaco smart jog style ones and a black pair of relaxed trousers also from them, some of their long sleeved jumper tops to go with their trousers. I wear all sorts of jeans from boyfriend to skinny. I wear t-shirts from HUSH. I have the feather tee and star tee from there. I wear their ruched skirts with a long sleeved tee and short sleeved tee and cardigan. I have a few of their dresses. The ruched dress in midnight [ a kind of navy colour] It is a jersey material. I have the star dress and a black shirt dress from there that I will wear with black leggings or black coated skinny jeans. I also bought a their stripe dress with the scoop back neck. I used to buy quite few things from white stuff but have really gone off them recently.I really like HUSH atm. I like their layed back chic look. I have gone from a size 14 to nearly a 10 so have spent some time changing my wardrobe.
The other shops I buy from are TOAST and have a few Jigsaw pieces and really like dresses from Whistles.

Other shops you may be interested in are Boden or Joules. Seasalt have a few bits and pieces and do nice prints but some of their styles and lengths are a bit frumpy so choose carefully. Cos can have some nice things and Massimo Dutti which has some beautiful pieces but I have admired and never ordered as I am unsure of the sizing.

Liberated71 Sat 26-Mar-16 11:53:16

Who says that at 40 you're too old for H&M? Ha!

Greengardenpixie Sat 26-Mar-16 11:54:57

Like all saints but very pricey. Good sales though smile

Georgina1975 Sat 26-Mar-16 12:00:01

I am 40 and shop pretty much the same as greengardenpixie.

cathyandclaire Sat 26-Mar-16 12:01:13

The HM premium stuff looks good, lots of natural fabrics.

I like H&M plain long sleeved tops but, despite several mooches round, I've seen little else that appeals recently. I'm a few years younger than you, it's not necessarily a "40" thing. I did buy a blazer from Joules recently, following a thread on here, love it, machine washable.
I also look through the Seasalt stuff, most of it is beyond my budget unless it's clearance.

rollonthesummer Sat 26-Mar-16 12:08:56

I like H+M, though find their sizing is iffy. Most tops in there, I'd buy a medium but had to buy a size 18 in a dress recently as it just wouldn't fit my boobs in!

I like Joules, Fat Face, Gap, New Look, Warehouse, and Oasis. I also have some cheaper bits from Tu and Primark (especially bikinis!) and the odd thing from Next. I'm a sucker for white Stuff skirts as well. I'm probably more 'hippy' than classic though!!

I also find it's worth looking at the clearance & flash sale sections on

I can knit so I prefer to make my own jumpers etc these days, can usually afford to make something rather nicer for myslef or DD than I could afford in the shops. If you can knit or sew well, definitely recommend it, even if just for the odd accessory.

rightknockered Sat 26-Mar-16 12:25:29

40's and shop the same as Greengardenpixie
I also look at Urban Outfitters, Allsaints, and Asos.

Toounhappynow Sat 26-Mar-16 13:15:32

Watching this thread with interest.
Sorry. On mobile site and can't work out how to watch a thread!grin

amarmai Sat 26-Mar-16 13:19:02

H&M put out a more expensive line recently. Worth checking out.

luciole15 Sat 26-Mar-16 13:26:30

Mint Velvet is nice. Have a good look round John Lewis. Maybe try an in store stylist?

Kennington Sat 26-Mar-16 13:30:13

And other stories - amazing stuff
Uniqlo - basics
Cos - skinny trousers
M and S - ankle boots
Very occasionally the outnet and whistles and all saints

ihatethecold Sat 26-Mar-16 13:49:02

Uniqlo is very good for basics

I am very tempted to look on the Hush website after reading the above post.
whats the sizing and quality like?

MadSprocker Sat 26-Mar-16 15:24:57

I get my jeans in the sale at my local House of Fraser shop with high end jeans reduced from £210 to £75. I also like French Connection for jeans. I got a fab pair of Chelsea boots from Dune, which are a bit more classic than bikers. I hit the sales for Gant and Tommy Hilfiger separates, a jumper reduced from £80 to £25. Asos is great for a wide selection of styles. I like blouses from Oasis, going out tops from Warehouse, jersey basics from Boden, Bretons from SeaSalt. A wide selection really! I find Topshop is either too crop topped or oversize stuff, which does nothing for me.

scandichick Sat 26-Mar-16 15:33:02

The Jaeger online outlet could be worth a look, loads of classic workwear. Quality is excellent.

flingingmelon Sat 26-Mar-16 15:38:16

Other stories...err...

burnishedsilver Sat 26-Mar-16 16:41:20

I hunt through the following, trying to veer towards natural fibres and mostly ignoring anything patterned - Mint Velvet, Gap, Boden, Me and Em, Hush, Jules, French Connection.

burnishedsilver Sat 26-Mar-16 16:42:21

...ooh, and the White Company - the quality is lovely.

Floisme Sat 26-Mar-16 17:29:22

Feel free to ignore me as I'm way older than you. Firstly I think you have to keep moving - I don't know anywhere on the high street that's consistently good. But for me, right now, Whistles have got that low key, elegant, cool thing nailed. The prices are a joke and in all honesty, the quality isn't great but the way some of it hangs on me is absolutely spot on. And if you hold your nerve, their offers and sales are pretty good.

I wouldn't rule out H&M either. There's a lot of tat and the random sizing and quality are legendary but some of my favourite things over the last couple of years have been from there.

I'm sure I'd also be a big Cos fan if I lived near one but sadly I find the website and sizing unfathomable.

But I think the secret is not to be loyal to any shop and also not to rule anywhere out. I've even found a couple of great things in M&S recently....

ihatethecold Sat 26-Mar-16 17:31:15

I took a look at Hush. I thought it was expensive. Is it worth it?
Do the clothes last?

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