Hopefashion.co.uk AW15 Grey Drape Knit Top £110

I’m just back from a trip to Italy where I was talking about ‘Ageless Style’ at an industry event. One of the guests asked me to suggest some good, grown-up labels and one brand I mentioned immediately was Hope. Designed for women over-40, Hope is a new fashion label available online (Hopefashion.co.uk) and via social selling – like jewellery brand Stella & Dot, or for those of us of a certain generation: Tupperware. It’s also the name of founder Nayna McIntosh’s mum. McIntosh told me that Hope’s ‘pop-up boutiques’ are incredibly popular. Swap the hassle of a busy shopping street and sweating it out in a badly lit changing room for trying stuff on at a friend’s house with a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, and clearly, you have a very appealing concept. McIntosh left M&S, after many years, to do her own thing and is absolutely committed to creating clothes that are ‘easy to pull on, comfortable to wear and make women feel fabulous.’

Hope Founder and CEO Nayna McIntosh
Hope founder and CEO Nayna McIntosh

I’ve seen the collection of jersey basics designed for layering, signature pop-on dresses and showstopping jackets and gilets, and the quality of the jersey and the knitwear is great. Though some items are quite expensive, and the feel is a bit Eileen Fisher with the odd Per Una moment thrown in. I particularly like the red Ponte Di Roma jersey dress (above) and the cashmere poncho. Hope’s campaign featuring gorgeous models Pia Gronning and Sinead Blaney has scored a few extra brownie points, too.

Hopefashion.co.uk AW15 Cobalt Sold Cocoon Dress £95 Gold Lurex Trim Pop On Knit Top £95 Grey Fur Jacquard Gilet £150 Leath Stretch Detail Pant £195

Hopefashion.co.uk Kimono Jacket with Leather Sleeves £250, Ecru Top £90, Leather Stretch Trousers £195

36 thoughts on “Hope – the new fashion label for women over-40

  1. I love the name! We can all use a little hope each and every day. We can use hope to know there are clothes for midlife and beyond which will help us to feel strong and empowered and confident …no matter what lifestyle we are in. I really like what she is doing here. Thanks for the introduction!

  2. Initially I was excited about this but, sorry, her red dress is hideous and shapeless.
    I make my own clothes that fit and flatter.
    I am not trained, but fed up of not finding clothes for my shape and ageing, covering tops of arms and knees!
    I wish I could set up my own clothes ranges for my age range, but have neither have the time or the money being a nurse.
    Wearing a uniform all day, makes me want to wear something with shape out of hours.
    I have never worn a fur gilet as they are so common.
    You walk down the street and see everyone wearing a uniform!

  3. This all looks like shapeless clothing for the oversized market. I accept that most women are size 16 or above and may want to hide under a baggy top but as a 53 year old size 12 lady, it does not appeal to me.

  4. Hmm. I do like the colours & I love asymmetrical fashion all day long, but some of these shapes, not so much. And the name bothers me because I personally find the word “hope” to be as wishy-washy as “try”. That personal (& irrelevant) bias aside, I love the idea of a new label, especially one aimed at people over 20. A neat place I’ve found to shop for artist-designed clothing for any age, btw, is Artful Home [http://www.artfulhome.com] — I have nothing to do with these people, just love their clothing (the furniture & art is pretty spectacular, too).

  5. Giving up Hope is more like it. Sorry. I wore “easy to pull on” stuff when I broke my wrist, and my “hope” is never to need to live in blankets again. That’s what this looks like. Blankets and two dresses that look like happy-colored hospital gowns.

  6. Janet – thanks for the recommendation, I’ll check that out.

    Olderbutwiser – agree with you. I’ve picked out my favourite pieces, not all of it is for me.

    That really made me laugh, Wendy.

    1. Seriously–40 seems quite young to promote clothes on the idea of no buttons, zips, snaps, and “easy to pull on”. Or quite old. “Easy to pull on” is for people who have not yet learned to dress themselves, or who can no longer dress themselves.

      One of my stated rehab aims was to be able to wear “real clothes”. I made that.

  7. Good for you, Wendy. I do quite like the idea of clothes with a throw-on-and-go approach. Saves so much time in the morning. I’m currently living in jumpsuits, they do have buttons though…

    1. If men went to work wearing “throw on and go” because it “saves time in the morning”, they would (rightly) be viewed as slackers. Women are judged by harsher standards (whether we like it or not), and “throw on and go” for most of us means we don’t look like we take our work seriously.

      And “throw on and go” can just about never be made to look polished, refined, elegant. This collection is evidence.

  8. OK, maybe throw-on-and-go makes it sound a bit sloppy, Wendy. What I meant was clothes that are effortless and easy and always look stylish. Agree, women are judged by harsher standards than men – just look at female politicians (few as they are).

    1. Then this stuff doesn’t fit the bill. It’s certainly effortless. Stylish? I went to uni in the 80s, when toga parties were all the rage. That’s what this cr@p looks like. Expensive bedsheets and blankes.

  9. I feel the shapes are more about concealing than celebrating. Too much draping. Save your time and dollars: cut a hole in a blanket.

  10. The only thing I don’t like is the red dress because the neckline is unflattering.
    Everything else looks great and Pia is my ideal of a Norse Goddess.

  11. I thought you were against “age appropriate” dressing? I’m sure this is a great label, but the fact that it is for women over 40 makes me not want to buy it. Just give me a great label. Period.

  12. Love your blog Alyson!
    A few things immediately make me think I won’t be buying from Hope. The name is really terrible , it’s marketed as being for over 40s ,which to me anyway, is utterly patronising ,and the comment about Eileen Fisher just brings to mind that brands grossly overpriced ugly sacks.
    At the moment I’m loving ME+EM on all fronts. Though naturally I can’t wear a Breton top anymore since you know who was seen in one.

  13. Noelle, you are correct. I’ve just been sucked in by the marketing. Agree with you about finding great labels. Period.
    Aud – I do know who. Don’t let that put you off, I’m sure you look far more stylish.

  14. mmmm some interesting pieces on great coulours but is it wow? ive recently discovered sosensational.co.uk real fashion tips and advice for grown up women of all shapes, sizes and styles, the site is worth a look .

  15. I quite liked the clothes, but the name ‘Hope’ really puts me off. I agree with Mary. l’ve just discovered SoSensational website – really great style advice and beauty tips.

  16. I bought the black and white gilet and put it straight back in the box and returned it.It was huge, , shapeless and cheap looking. No wonder the poor model is wearing it off the shoulders.

    1. Oh no, I am sorry to hear that Lorna. The jersey dresses and cashmere knits I saw were quite nice quality – I’ve amended my copy accordingly. Sounds like they need to sort the sizing out…

  17. I like discovering a new label but I am a 62-year old size 4 – and I’m short. So the shapeless, over sized look does nothing for me. I do like to cover my upper arms but I like clothes that look like they are the right size for me.

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