Sixty-one is an unusual age to become a global style icon. But that’s exactly what has happened to Sarah Jane Adams, an Australian woman whose unique ability to mix Adidas sportswear with tropical prints and pieces she has collected on her travels has made her the star of Advanced Style: Older and Wiser, a new book celebrating older women’s style around the world.
In an interview with The Telegraph Sara Jane explains;
I don’t like being called a fashion icon. I’m an anti-fashion icon. I find the pressure to keep up with fashion alien. I always have. I went from school uniform to jumble sale and thrift shop finds. I never go to shopping centres or department stores. Although I sell jewellery, I rarely wear it.
I don’t wear heels, I don’t own a full-length mirror and I’ve never worn a bra because there isn’t one small enough.
I don’t try to be ageless. I’m fine being 61. It’s like money – I’ve learnt through business that money’s just a commodity to allow you to do things. Age is just something you are, so deal with it.
I can’t cope with people who have cosmetic surgery and put rubbish in their hair. Ageing gracefully is ageing as you are, not with a face that looks as if it will melt as soon as you go out in the sunshine.
In fact, I created the ‘my wrinkles are my stripes’ hashtag after I was bustled into a shop in Sydney’s city centre (I mistakenly thought it was a jewellery shop) where a girl started dabbing creams on my face.
‘This gets rid of your wrinkles for a week,’ she said and I leapt out of my seat. ‘No, no no! I love my wrinkles,’ I replied.
EQUALLY I’m not obsessed with weight.
I own no scales, no tape measure and none of my clothes have sizes in them. All these things are what give me my sense of freedom and the courage to do crazy sh-t.
I practise yoga but I eat whatever I want. I never eat low-fat. I don’t eat red meat or sugar and I prefer organic when I can but I’m not hung up about it.
That’s not to say I ignore ageing. I sold my family home and got rid of most of the contents because I don’t want my daughters to have to clean up after me when I’m gone. There’s so much anxiety in getting rid of parents’ things. We’ve been sold this story of how there’s security in having stuff but it’s simply not true.
I’ve been offered lots of business opportunities. I’ve said no to most because I didn’t want to go there or sell that and because I fear age has become a sales technique, the new ‘heroin chic’.