Fabulous Frugal Fashions for Women over 50 (and the rest of you, too!)

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A group of people posing for the camera

The deepest desire of my heart for my writing is to be an encouragement to women of all ages, but I have an extra special bit of compassion for those of us over 50!

I have always, always shopped secondhand for my wardrobe, mostly through yard sales. More recently I have added a bit of thrift store shopping in order to pick up some items I couldn’t find.

Last April when I went on my trip to TGI Fridays headquarters I was in a panic the week before trying to come up with wardrobe pieces that I felt looked good. My insecure high school self was having a field day!

It was one of my first “real” business trips since turning this blog into a business. I have worked hard for the opportunities blogging has given me but I’m still very much a wife and mom first.

Therefore, wanting to prove I haven’t been hiding in my home over the last 20 years just “raisin’ them kiddos of mine” showed me I still have some work to do in this new season of life!

In the past my oldest daughter would dress me on Sundays when she was in high school. I say that tongue in cheek but Rachel has always had a sense of her personal style. Me? Not so much!

She would take the wardrobe pieces I had purchased and put things together in a way that was fashionable and up to date. Of course, she had a bit more free time than I did but I was grateful she wanted me to look my best.

Or either she just didn’t want to be embarrassed by my yoga pant, sweat shirt wearing self!

Then she had to go and get married. What was she thinking? Leaving me alone with no fashion sense whatsoever.

Mother to Daughter on her Wedding Day - Marty's Musings

Since Rachel and I enjoy spending time together and brainstorming about the blog we decided to take a  trip to the local thrift store to see  if we could match an outfit of a popular celebrity with clothes purchased at Goodwill.

Here’s Rachel to tell you all about our adventure!

I was really excited when my mom mentioned expanding her blogging horizons and venturing into fashion! I’ve loved all things beauty and fashion related since I was little. As I was looking online at celebrity fashion websites I found this picture of Reece Witherspoon and fell in love! I wanted to immediately trade in my yoga pants and t-shirt for this casual and chic look.

A woman wearing sunglasses posing for the camera

As women – especially women who have had babies (I am new to the mom club, read about my thoughts on post baby body) our stomachs can be a huge source of concern for us. It doesn’t help that the media idolizes women with abnormally long, narrow, and toned mid sections.

For the rest of the 98% of the female population a lot of us fall into the “mumu” trap. You know what I’m talking about. That big baggy shirt you intentionally bought 3 sizes too big just to make sure it covered every “imperfection” you see in the mirror…the one that you’ve convinced yourself is “in” because, well, isn’t flowy “in” right now?

I have been challenging myself to put that mumu in the back of the closet for a while – and I issued the same challenge to my adorable mother!

Cissy Padgett wearing a dress

One of the things I love about this look is how the defined waist makes her have an hourglass shape. By tucking the jean shirt into the white skirt that had a flat panel at the top it drew your attention to the smallest part of her frame instead of illuminating any problem areas (yes, Stacy and Clinton from What Not To Wear really were right!).

A woman posing for a picture

And while we are on the topic of the skirt, notice the length in both pictures – an inch or so above the knee. This keeps her from looking matronly and outdated and is timeless without too much leg showing!

A person posing for the camera

I also love the sweater with this outfit for a pop of pattern and color that ties the whole thing together!

Fashion and Dress

But what I love the most? Its a classy look that is affordable at any budget. Proof that if you make time to do a little digging you can find treasures while bargain hunting!

A woman standing in front of a building

Don’t you love Rachel’s passion? Here’s a breakdown of the pricing for this outfit. I will tell you that the purse was a BIG splurge for me. I do NOT usually pay $15 for one but it is in style and is in great shape (plus it worked for the picture, bonus points.)

(Rounded Up) Prices: Purse $15

Skirt $4

Belt $1.50

Shoes $4

Sweater $4

Shirt $4

So how did I do?

A group of people posing for the camera

If you want to see my attempts at dressing better I’d love for you to follow me on Instagram.

We would love to have you follow along on our journey to better style on a budget. Here are some of our ideas and goals.

  1. Learn how to disguise those problem areas we all have. And we ALL have them because we’re human and our bodies change through pregnancy, eating choices, aging and even that dreaded “M” word. “Menopause.” There. I said it.
  2. Learn how to dress fashionably on a budget.
  3. Figure out your style preferences.
  4. Where to find frugal fashions.
  5. Most of all, embrace the body God has given you.

We’d love to know what you think and any ideas you have for us!

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  1. First time seeing your blog. Love the ideas. I also shop thrift stores; Goodwill (where my goal is to buy expensive for cheap and not the other way around) and have expanded to Costco. I tried Marshalls but they don’t have any petite clothes. I have 4 daughters and lately they want to borrow my stuff :). I’m past 70 and loving life.

    1. Hi, Nickie. Thanks for visiting my blog! I don’t blog much about fashion anymore but most everything I wrote is definitely geared towards creatively saving money! I also love to encourage women to make the most of what they have! So glad you’re enjoying life! It’s a gift isn’t it?

  2. Oh Marty how you look stunning! You and Rachel did a wonderful job styling after one of my favorite fashion icons and actrresses. I love Reece and how you nailed her look.
    Thank you for linking up to “Bloggers Who have Inspired Me.” this week.
    Rachel xo
    Bloggers Who Have Inspired Me link up is now LIVE here
    Garay Treasures

    1. Hi, Alice. I pin a lot of stuff but don’t always take the time to figure out what goes together. I’m pretty simple! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  3. Cute look! Love the chambray with the white skirt. I posted a very similar look months back and I’m over fifty too!

  4. I love your style and attitude, Marty!! What an amazing, classy outfit you put together! And how fun you are “collaborating” with your daughter! So sweet!! Thanks for linking up for Create28–hope to see you again next Monday! XO ~ Casey @ A LIttle Bit of Cheer

    1. Thanks, Casey. My daughter and I have a great relationship and since she’s married we don’t get to go yardsaling as much and we both miss it!

  5. I can’t believe the price of your purse. It looks incredibly expensive. Well done for creating such an interesting looking outfit on a budget. Love how you’ve layered a floral cardi on top of a chambray shirt. You look great.

  6. That is a very nice outfit! Looks very good on you! I don’t dress up much. Being retired I dress more for comfort now.

  7. Since the age of ten, charity shops have been the major source of my wardrobe and an addiction. If out anywhere, I can’t help being allured into one; It’s amazing what you can find and the outfit can be created.

    1. I love yard sales best but thrift stores are a close second. You just have to have a few minutes to dash in or know what you’re looking for. I love stores that are organized, too. Makes it so much better.

  8. Great new idea for the blog! I’ve been working on my wardrobe for the over 50 crowd. Although I do t feel over 50. I just need lots and lots of work on the body! Look forward to more beautiful posts! You looked wonderful

    1. Hi, Lynn. I don’t feel over 50, either! But I do need some work on the body, too, and I get lazy and dress more comfortable than flattering. I’m challenging myself to do better!