BY Sonia Haria | 17 September 2012
Play it down
If your clothes are too eye-catching you can't really wear anything else with the outfit. As much as I'd like to wear an extremely funky shift dress with black tights, it wouldn't look so great now - they are the types of clothes I wore when I was younger. You should dress your age and look classic so you'll feel more comfortable. You can then be frivolous with accessories.
A splash of colour
Simple shapes in black, white and beige always look classically chic. I do love bright colours, but one dash of colour per outfit is enough. I've got bright-blue trousers and purple shirts and shocking-pink mackintoshes. I don't put masses of hectic things together, though, because if I did at my age I could look strange. My grandmother used to say to me, 'Always wear something bright around your neck,' so invest in a scarlet or turquoise scarf. It frames your face better than anything else.
READ: How to be well dressed, by Kate Moss
Can you feel it?
I'm a great believer in making your wardrobe work together. A dress from one place should be worn with a cardigan or jacket from somewhere else. I don't shop often, but one thing I always bear in mind is the texture of clothing. I go along the rails in shops feeling things and if it's too scratchy or itchy I don't buy it. Jersey is light and easy to wear.
I have two pieces of jewellery that I wear all the time. One is my wedding ring and the other is a little signet ring with my family crest on it. These classic pieces are chic because they almost become part of you. I recently met an incredibly grand man in a Savile Row suit who was wearing a huge jewelled ring. He said it belonged to his great-grandmother and she gave it to him. It was obviously mad with what he was wearing but I thought, 'Good for you'.
Cover-ups are key
It's always good to have some proper jackets. I've got some very old, neutral jackets which finish just below the hips and have pockets and buckles. They are so versatile and you can wear them with jeans or skirts. I've also got a gorgeous patchwork, beige coat by Betty Jackson, which actually once belonged to Patsy [from Absolutely Fabulous]. The colour and shape is so forgiving I can wear it with anything.
READ: Joanna Lumley - Why do young women dress like lap dancers?
Add a bit of bling
Jewellery plays a huge part in how a woman looks. Cherish the pieces you love because they could suddenly come into fashion. I'm an avid collector, although it's mostly junk jewellery - not the proper stuff that has to go into a safe at night. You can wear the simplest black top with trousers, but put on a fabulous big bangle or a gorgeous long pendant and it suddenly looks a million dollars. Not to mention it's a lovely gift for chaps to give to girls.
Joanna Lumley is supporting the Soldiers' Charity's British Rose charm, created by Pandora. £40;