Who you callin' Granny?
Thanks to the "Twiggy effect" (a reference to the 60-year-old model, who is now launching her own Twiggy London line), women in their 60s and 70s are buying more clothes and taking an avid interest in how they dress, according to the paper.
After analyzing data from the UK's Office for National Statistics from 1961 to 2006, Professor Julia Twigg reportedly found that though women had spent roughly the same percentage of their money on clothes and shoes as their '60s counterparts (about 5 or 6 percent), they were also buying more clothes for their money, thanks to the advancements that make clothes more affordable and accessible today.
"Women over 75 are now shopping for clothes more frequently than they did when they were young in the 1960s," Professor Twigg told the paper.
"In the 1960s buying a coat, for a woman, was a serious matter. It was an expensive item that they would purchase only every three or four years... Coats can now be bright and you wear them for only one season.
"Fashion is a lot cheaper and people get tired of things more quickly. Everyone is buying more clothes, but in general, we are not spending more money on them."
The influx of stylish senior-citizen starlets also reportedly plays a role. After all, if sixty-something Helen Mirren can rock a bikini, why can't her fellow baby boomers?
"In past years, people have 'dressed their age,'" fashion designer Laura Dawson tells StyleList, "wearing things people designed for an 'older woman' and not designed as something one would want to wear. Some clothes for 'older women' only succeed in making a healthy, beautiful woman look dowdy when actually she's just as beautiful as she ever was."
Dawson, who says her own mother raids her collection, adds, "Some of the more fun silk dresses can shave 20 years off a woman's appearance in a few minutes flat, which shocks even me to watch it happen, and I designed the dress!"
"One of the women I feel is having a major influence is ["Absolutely Fabulous" star] Joanna Lumley. A number of women have come to us, requesting that we create a style for them that encapsulates her sense of inner beauty and passion.
"Style is a state of mind, it has no concept of age or time -- it is simply of state of being."
Word. And so long as Mom (or Grandma, for that matter) doesn't start raiding our wardrobes, we're totally cool with this new trend of glamazon grandmothers.
Meanwhile, check out Sigourney Weaver's sexy-at-60 style.