Renowned for her adventurous use of colour and statement prints, Dame Trelise Cooper continues to give women the confidence to celebrate life through the beautiful, playful and whimsical clothes that she creates.
Paula Ryan's is well known on her wardrobe essentials in high-quality stretch fabrics designed to flatter the body and be comfortable in your everyday life. And while the design-ethos of both brands may differ slightly in outlook, they compliment each other enormously too. The Yin and Yang of a dream wardrobe if you like. Interestingly enough, so to do the views of both designers when discussing fashion as we get older.
You've likely wondered why it is that dress codes differ so widely between age brackets. Whilst naturally there are physical changes, it’s perhaps the emotional changes paired with society’s expectations that take the biggest toll on our wardrobes and what women choose as we progress through life.
"Of course it is," exclaims Trelise. ‘We all need a bit of encouragement as we get older as sometimes we can start to feel invisible. Wearing gorgeous, statement making clothing is a perfect way to remind people that you’re still here."
And you'd have to agree; what better way to eradicate the notion of feeling invisible in society than celebrating your life in wonderfully expressive clothing?
She adds, "Be grateful that you’ve reached the age that you have. You’re alive, aware and able to wear anything that you desire. Now is the time to express yourself. Really, if not now, when?"
Paula says, "We opt to air on the conservative side if our confidence has taken a battering through the aging process. Do not lock yourself into a matron mentality as that will age your choices".
During the conversation, both Paula and Trelise noted that with age comes knowledge and we should use it because knowledge is power after all.
"A woman in her mellowing years will have worn or at least witnessed all the fashion trends from decades past, be it psychedelic, hippie, retro, military, minimalism or maximalism", states Paula, so "why not take inspiration from your favourite looks from earlier eras?"
Dame Trelise gave the most perfect example of how experimental fashion can change your mood and mind-set in an instant.
"Wear more colour," she begins. "Some days you may feel like wearing black, but it’s on these days that you should go bold with your choices. You will look and feel better for it."
The day that Magpie Style spoke to Dame Trelise was indeed one of those days for the designer. As she woke feeling tired, she recognised that her mood required lifting. So, instead of opting for an equally tired outfit, Trelise chose a gorgeous Moroccan green dress. The results were plain to see. Trelise felt younger, fresher and more energised, and the wonderful comments from people around her further confirmed the power of colour, even in the form of print or more subtle detailing.
Paula too, recognises that we all have days where we feel less confident that others, and for these days, she offers this advice,
"On a flat day make more effort and wear one of your most flattering looks even if it takes longer to pull it together. Days like this call for fashion action and it’s important you enjoy what you’re wearing and feel comfortable in it'. And always celebrate the end of these days with - "a glass of champagne with a friend. It will lift your spirits."
Apart from a timeless and ageless sense of style, Paula and Dame Trelise have one other thing in common; an unwavering self-confidence and the willingness to take risks. We think this could be the secret ingredient.