5 Style Tips I Learnt From My Grandparents

Oh boy, 2020 has been the year we've all done a lot of thinking. There's nothing quite like a pandemic to really make you reassess a few things. Some of us embraced a simpler way of life, curtailed our shopping habits, left our fancy dresses to languish in the back of our wardrobes, and decided that therapy came in the form of baking banana bread while watching the latest most-talked-about show on Netflix. There's also nothing like a pandemic to make you feel a little nostalgic. Fashion has a tendency to look backwards and draw from previous decades' styles, and this year has drawn me towards various older trends from the '60s to the '70s and up to the '90s. Data from places such as Vestiaire Collective and Depop proved that older trends have flourished, with customers looking for vintage styles in clothing and accessories. For example, Depop reported it now has over 25 million users on the app, and Vestiaire has seen a 144% year-on-year increase in sales on the site. 

grandma style:

Photo:

Courtesy of Elinor Block

Evidently, I'm not the only one looking at past trends. That is hard data proving that we're all looking behind us for style inspiration (and who can blame us, with 2020 being, well, 2020). My nostalgia has also led me to look at my own family's sense of style, my grandma's and grandpa's in particular. They worked in the fashion industry with a fur coat shop on the iconic South Molten Street, and while I didn't recognise how exciting that was when I was little, looking at old photos of them, it's clear that style and fashion played a big role in their lives. So with that in mind, I've put together a list of the best style tips I ever learnt from them. Keep scrolling for more… 

1. You Can Never Be Overdressed

grandma style: nell block wearing a black dress

Photo:

@nellblock

I'm guilty of wanting to wear a pair of joggers all day. But I've stopped myself, especially when I'm working. I might have appeared a little overdressed at times, but no one is looking at me, and I get the added benefit of feeling good and being more productive. 

2. Look After Your Clothes

grandma style: nell block wearing a red cardigan and black trousers with a gucci scarf

Photo:

@nellblock

My grandma loved her clothes, and she looked after them well. How do I know this? I own several pieces from her, but my favourite item is a Gucci scarf. It's in the fashion house's signature floral print, and I still wear it today. It really pays to look after your wardrobe. 

grandma style: nell block wearing an oversized dress

Photo:

@nellblock

My grandma would always buy us clothes in sizes far too big so that we'd grow into them. It's a great tactic when you're a kid who goes through clothes quickly. It might seem as though that piece of advice doesn't quite work when you're a fully grown adult, but it does. If there's one thing I know about shopping, it's finding pieces that fit your body properly. While you might not want to get the bigger dress size because you want to stick to a particular number, it really will make you feel better if you buy the clothes in the size up. 

4. Take Your Slippers Everywhere

grandma style: arizona birkenstocks with shearling

Photo:

@nellblock

My grandparents always brought their slippers everywhere with them if they were going to other people's houses. And now I do, too (when it's allowed, of course). Life-changing. 

5. Find Your Own Style and Stick to It

grandma style: nell block wearing a corduroy jacket and straight-leg jeans with black sandals

Photo:

@nellblock

Ultimately, it's a good idea to find out what looks good on you. My grandparents both knew what worked for them. 

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