Fashion Over 50: Spring Trend Warning! Is it Frumpy or Fabulous?

Pamela Lutrell reviews Nine West at Kohls

Today is the perfect day for those of us who love fashion over 50 to discuss the warnings associated with this year’s spring trends and prints in order to be fabulous and not frumpy.   Yesterday on Would You Wear It, I featured muted tie dye garments by Simply Vera Wang at Kohl’s and Jennifer featured bold bright prints from Ann Taylor. Neither of the displayed outfits would work for me, because of the designs and the prints.  I have always loved prints…the bolder, the better.  However, as I age, I find that when I try on many prints, I look in the mirror and see an older woman…not one feeling 40!  Some trends this year will land us right in frumpy-town if we are not careful.

Pamela Lutrell in fashion over 50

This is how I looked yesterday to go to the Rummage Around sale at Goodwill San Antonio.  A very neutral, laid back, comfortable style.  But, a style I feel confident in.  Lately, my most confident outfits are neutrals with fun prints in accessories.  I will wear prints this spring and summer…once again…I do love them.  But it has to be a certain type of print and designed in a flattering garment that fits.  It also has to feature colors that I can wear. 

Pamela Lutrell reviews Simply Vera styles

About three years ago, if I needed an inexpensive, stylish garment I would go to Simply Vera at Kohl’s to find something.  But, when I dropped by there on Friday, I was shocked.  First of all, there were a lot of clothes still on the floor that were not spring collection items.  I think I know why.  The colors were drab or too over the top (like the tops above)…. designs were not flattering…fabrics and construction were very cheap…and trend items like the tie dye and the ombre were just not attractive. Note: You should be very careful of ombre prints.  Often the colors do not hit in a flattering way as they go from shade to shade.

Pamela Lutrell reviews ombre cardigan at Kohls

  I do not believe this strange, sweatshirt garment (below) would flatter anyone.  So, I am sad to see this happen to this line of clothing because I did previously really like it.  I will give the next collection a look to see if anything changes.  But, these current styles, prints, and colors would AGE us!  So, beware. 

Pamela Lutrell reviews Simply Vera collection


On the positive side, this mannequin pictured first on the blog today is from Nine West (sitting right next to Simply Vera), I would wear.  I like the look and the animal print jacket is not too loud or over-styled.   I like the dark wash jeans and the blouse tied in the front.  

Pamela Lutrell reviews Nine West at Kohls

When I shop and look at prints, I am very discerning because I want to dress confidently in sync with the age I feel and not age myself more with what I wear. I ask, “What does this say about me?”  I am then considering:

  1. The fit of the garment
  2. The size of the print…is it going to wear me or the other way around.
  3. Does the garment look quality and well made? The quality of the fabric has so much to do with whether I like the print or not.
  4. Does the print meet my style adjectives…if not, it stays in the store?
  5. Is the garment in my color story?

Pamela Lutrell features street style of over 50 fashion

I saw this woman at Goodwill while I was shopping and I asked her if I could take her picture because I believed she looked stylish and confident.  She also was wearing neutrals.  I do have a few prints on my radar for spring and put them in the slideshow below, but you will notice there are not many florals or polka dots.  For some reason, I do feel older when I wear those two prints…unless the design is super chic and classic.  Now, these next two new prints I have in my closet from Chico’s worked for me.  The fit, quality, style adjectives, and color all work together and I feel like my youthful, confident self.  They are new purchases recently featured on the blog.

Pamela Lutrell in new Chicos Jacket

Pamela Lutrell in Chico's print pants

One of our wonderful “Lindas” commented yesterday that she was not impressed so far with spring trends and I would have to agree.  I am waiting to have my socks knocked off…but bringing back tie dye, for me, doesn’t do it. So, tell us ladies…. are there prints which result in you feeling older when you wear them?  Do you understand what I am saying about prints currently on the market?  Do you understand why I am throwing up a red flag about some of these? Please join in.




The kind comments yesterday about my difficult week last week were so sweet.  Thanks to all of you…but I assure you…I am fine.  One difficult week will not get me down!  I have some decisions to make and for those of you who pray…please pray for me to listen and to have the courage to follow.  Also, I did start my day on Saturday with a facial, manicure, and pedicure and that always clears the mind…right?  Life is just too short to let the challenges and frustrations shut us down…we must keep going and not give in to difficulties.  Thank you, sweet readers and friends.


“The older I get, the more impressed I am with women. I have yet to meet a woman who is not strong.  They don’t exist.”  – Diane Von Furstenberg


By Pamela Lutrell


  1. I’m sending up prayers for you. I hope whatever you are going through is resolved easily.
    I do wear more prints than I probably should. They are all Chico’s items – a couple of dresses, and tops. They always make me feel happier.
    I haven’t seen anything for spring that inspires me.

    1. Thanks for the prayers and encouragement, Maggie! I wear them as well…I just must be cautious with them so they don’t wear me. It helps to much to understand what you want to say with your clothing about you and then ask that when you have the garments on. The prints I am wearing here from Chico’s say what I want them to say about me…so they work. I hear you about spring so far…still waiting to be WOWed. Have a great Sunday!

  2. Hi, Pam, I agree with you about prints and polka dots. They are not for me. Don’t even get me started on tie dye…just say no! However, I find an outfit of all neutrals can sometimes be dull. It is hard to strike the right balance.

    Thank you for “keeping it real” and posting with such candor about your struggles. I can relate! This year has been a tough one for me so far. I am inspired by your resilience .I will keep going because I MATTER.

    1. Yes! You do matter….and though I am going through some “challenges” I believe they are the springboard for better things to come. Some day I will tell this story. So hang in there Kristina…believe that what lies ahead is better and you can be resilient too! In the meantime, try popping your neutrals with fun, prints in accessories!

      1. I’m reminded so often of the Bible verse I heard my Mother use many times when anyone had big worries or problems…Romans 8:28. “ For we know that all things work together for those who love the Lord…”. Faith and prayers working together.

        Personally, now at my age of 73, I avoid most all prints, and like you depend on my accessories for additional color and accents. I prefer printed scarves and colorful jewelry over prints that might be too unflattering. Thank you for all the work you put into your blog. I look forward to our connection daily.

        1. So do I, Celia. It is a joy to do this…I love to encourage other women and you always encourage me…especially when sharing Scripture like this!

      2. I am so over the pleated midi skirts with graphic t shirts or sweatshirts. This doesn’t even flatter slender young things in my opinion! Yes, the older I get, the choosier I get about prints. The only polka dots I would consider are those elongated ones that resemble rain drops.

  3. I think you’re right on with how you approach prints. The bold jacket outfit is gorgeous on you but it’s also the fit and proportions. In most cases I find prints matronly and almost always stick with solids. I also have very curly hair which is its own “print” so most prints looks too busy on my small frame. I buy them and end up not wearing them.

  4. Pam – I am praying for your decisions – to be God-honoring and for you to feel the peace that comes when you are following God’s path. I’m with you on Spring – I can usually find something when I go into a Kohl’s or Belk, but I have walked into and out of both stores lately! I thought it was just me!

  5. The new spring florals aren’t working for me at all. I tried some yesterday. I, also, tried a tunic with vertical stripes which was such a contrast to the unflattering florals, LOL. It is time consuming to find flattering tops lately. On another note, you are an inspiration! Thank you for all you do!!

  6. What I have seen in stores is concerning. However, I remind myself that these are trends and many will disappear (thankfully ) after a season. This is one reason my closet has mainly modern classics. I just don’t do trends. I have seen some beautiful dresses, but tops with their muddy prints aren’t inspiring me. The mirror, an honest friend, and a calm outlook are good to have when shopping. I have a pretty discerning eye after years of trial and error. I still make the occasional error, but few and far between now. I’m noticing a lot of tops that tie, and this is okay to a point, but with all trends I have no desire to look like everyone else, so will be passing on a lot of this. My concern about animal prints is that once this trend dies down they will no longer be considered the classic they once were, but will merely look like yesterday’s news and plain out of style. This is one that’s really being overdone, like distressed jeans. Just my opinion. I am definitely one who prays and will be praying for you as you make your important decisions.

  7. I am not a fan of polka dots or large floral prints. Large florals always make me think of upholstery fabrics of days gone by, & I’m not interested in looking like a sofa. I prefer a more abstract print or stripes. I really like the Nine West outfit pictured. It is something that would catch my eye. I haven’t been shopping for spring yet, but I hope there are better items coming. Talbot’s is usually a favorite brand for me.

    1. I am looking forward to seeing the spring collections from Talbots, Chicos, JJill, and Ann Taylor. I also love to go see what Dillards and Macys have for us. Thanks for joining in Becky!

    1. Thank you Joanne! Discernment to hear which path to take and to follow is important for me right now. You are the best!

  8. I usually run from prints unless they are in a scarf. I think your black trench coat looks way better than the print one. I’m hoping the animal print phase ends soon.

    1. Well, I think it will be around for awhile, MP, but maybe not in such a saturated way as it has been this year. I love it and even I am getting weary of it!

  9. This was such an interesting post, Pam!

    Large prints are overwhelming and not flattering on me. I have a long torso and shorter legs and have to be very careful about proportions and patterns. I do like polka dots and stripes as long as they aren’t too cutesy. Additionally, I am not a fan of lots of ruffles, especially on blouses. They seem matronly and old-fashioned, in my opinion.

    I hope your prayers bring you peace of mind and the answers you are seeking. I’ll be thinking of you and praying for you as well!

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