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Style over 50: How to wear Autumn 2019 trends: Puffed Sleeves

Style picks by Ceri Wheeldon

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Hard to think about autumn fashion trends when in the middle of a UK heatwave ! However on the Autumn/winter 2019 catwalk, key trends emerged.

Dark florals were everywhere, puff sleeves, neon accents,  shoes and boots were either pointy toed or square toed, leather is back with a vengeance, oversized coats and bags, ruffles,  checks and cinched in waists.

Over the next few style posts I will be picking out one of the trends – firstly shopping in my own wardrobe to try to achieve the look – and suggesting where to find key pieces at affordable prices for those who don’t have an abundance of puff sleeves or dark floral frocks lurking in the back of the wardrobe ?

I’m starting with ‘puff sleeves’. When I first saw this was a trend I have to be honest and say that I thought it highly unlikely that I would find any puff  sleeves in my own wardrobe. I typically go for plain no frills tailoring. But I did indeed find some puff sleeves – much to my surprise!

I have no idea when or where I purchased these – they are all ancient – and one top had to be  rescued from a bag of clothes sorted for charity following a big sort out. I  think by the time we reach our 50s and beyond, we have a sense of our own style and what suits us, We don’t slavishly follow fashion , and if we were honest with ourselves we all probably have enough clothes that we don’t need to buy anything new – whatever the season!

Shop your own wardrobe first

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My first ‘shop in your wardrobe’ outfit comprises a very old black puff sleeved blouse – I don’t think you could find many sleeves any puffier! I have teamed with and equally ancient purple skirt. It seems purple is one of this autumn’s  key colours, and cinched in the waist with a favourite belt that I bough years ago from Gerard Darel. Worn with pointy boots retrieved from the back of the wardrobe.

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My second ‘shop in your wardrobe’ look is a similar white puff sleeved shirt teamed with a dark floral skirt.  Dark florals are another key look this autumn.  Typically I don’t wear florals so it was a pleasant surprise to find this skirt tucked away.

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My third look is a much softer take on the puffed sleeve – it is a stretch lace top -again very old. The skirt I have put this with is probably not on trend at all, but the colours are autumnal ?


Make your wardrobe work for you


I was surprised at how I could make one of this season’s key trends work with what I already owned. Sustainable fashion is key – I have been on a bit of a shopping diet over the last couple of years – trying to get more wear out of what I have – setting myself an extremely tight budget – my priorities have changed as I’ve got older. I’m not quite the shopaholic I once was!  Not to mention having gone through an extremely expensive divorce! It does go to prove that with a little imagination you can create more looks with clothes you already have.


For those that don’t have any puff sleeved tops to hand, I have found a couple 🙂


This white top by Mint Velvet at John Lewis …..costing £69 Click to view



This black is a lilt more dramatic from And Other Stories and costs £65


In my next Autumn trends post I will be exploring my wardrobe for Dark Florals!









Ceri Wheeldon

Ceri is Founder and Editor of Fabafterfifty.co.uk She is a frequent speaker at events and in the media on topics related to women over 50 , including style and living agelessly. With 20+ years experience as a headhunter Ceri also now helps support those looking to extend their working lives.

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