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How to wear off-the-shoulder when you are older

— by Alyson Walsh

Alyson Walsh; That's Not My Age;

Photo: Dvora @fashionistable

When I wrote about off-the-shoulder tops for the Guardian, I promised to put my money where my mouth is and buy one. Just needed to sort out the bra situation first. But then I saw one of my friends wearing the Whistles Lila Bardot dress the other day and she looked fantastic. Bra situation still unresolved, I nipped into Zara for this cotton pinstripe off-the-shoulder top. For these photos, I’ve engaged the straps under armpits manouever. Oh, the glamour. In the back of my mind I knew I had a ‘vintage’ strapless bra somewhere (one I’ve had since I was approx 35-years-old) and was hoping I might be able to get away with it. Underwired but unpadded, Bra 2K was much sadder than I remembered and far too flimsy. These days I need backup. So I bought a new bra that cost more than the sodding off-the-shoulder top…

Alyson Walsh; That's Not My Age;

Photo: Dvora @fashionistable

And then the elastic band pinged up. Making this a not-quite-off-the-shoulder top. I can’t bear clothes with a Faff Factor and so not-quite-off-the-shoulder is where it stayed. Yep, I’m wearing off-the-shoulder so that you don’t have to. My recommendations, if you are thinking of showing your shoulders this summer are: look for tops with shirred elastic rather than one big band. Go one-shoulder or revisit the jersey Bardot tops we used to wear in the 1980s, see Baukjen’s best selling Franklin off-the-shoulder top or lovely peacock blue Ashby top (reduced in the sale). Alternatively, buy something that is a bit more expensive and better made. Off-the-shoulder style solutions aplenty:

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When I wrote about off-the-shoulder tops for the Guardian, I promised to put my money where my mouth is and buy one. Just needed to sort out the bra situation first.