I’m sure it has happened to all of us that people confuse us with someone else. It usually ends up in saying hello to a complete stranger with a confused look on our face, and that’s all. But for a 63-year-old Lyn Slater, this mix-up ended up in changing her life.
She went to meet a friend for lunch near the Lincoln Center during New York Fashion Week. Suddenly, the foreign photojournalists surrounded her and attracted a large crowd. They mistakenly thought she was a fashion icon, and from then on – she actually became one.
According to DYT, the photographers surrounded Lyn and began taking pictures, while the journalists were asking questions. This caused tourists to gather, and they started taking photos and videos on their phones. It seems everyone thought they came across a fashion icon. Lyn says she was confused, but then her friend arrived, and they laughed at the situation together. This was when the friend said: “Wow, you’ve unexpectedly become a style icon.” And indeed, this is when things began to change for the newly discovered fashion icon.
Lyn Fordham is an educated and successful woman, a professor at Fordham University. But other than that, she is also a gorgeous, stylish lady. It’s interesting that only a month before she got confused for a fashion icon, she started a blog called “Accidental Icon.” Lyn says she started it because she was “having trouble finding a fashion blog or magazine that offered an urban, modern, intellectual aesthetic but also spoke to women who live what [she] calls ‘interesting but ordinary lives’ in cities.” Thanks to the mistake of the journalists and photographers, the name of her blog got an entirely new dimension.
Lyn’s blog gained plenty of new readers, and her Instagram page currently counts 203k followers. She was featured in many magazines such as Elle, L’Officiel, Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue – to name just a few. According to SLR Lounge, she is currently signed with Elite London, and she has worked with famous fashion brands such as Mango and Uniqlo.
What Lyn Slater stands for is beating the age-based discrimination in both fashion and everyday life. She stands against the notion of “dressing for one’s age” and says that as long as “you feel comfortable in your own clothes, it’s completely irrelevant how old you are.” And I couldn’t agree more.
Personally, I feel deeply inspired and empowered by Lyn’s story. I am approaching the “scary” age of thirty, with all the expectations from the society and the people around me. I dress pretty much the same as I did at the age of nineteen, and I also feel equally young and dumb. So I believe the story of becoming an accidental icon is not just about fashion, but it has many layers.
I think Lyn Slater’s example shows that we shouldn’t fall under the expectations and limitations of the society when it comes to our lifestyle and choice of clothes. Age discrimination is present at every age (and I feel it’s especially the case for women). We are asked to dress and behave “appropriate for our age” ever since we became able to choose what we want to wear and how we want to behave.
I may sound naïve, but I think you should act and dress as old as you feel, to put it simply. Thanks to the fact that Lyn was just being herself, dressed “age-inappropriately,” she attracted the attention of photographers and got under the spotlight. Also, if you have dreamed of becoming a model or a fashion icon, Lyn’s story shows that it’s never too late and that the age is, indeed, just a number.