19 In Series/ Women Now

Over 60 and Answering Questions on Aging

image consultant

Loving my 30+ years of image consulting


So ladies, I was asked to create a two-minute casting call video this week and to answer a few questions on tape regarding style and aging. Turns out these are questions that I’d love to hear YOUR answers to. So after you’ve read the questions and my answers to them, jump onto the comment section and tell me what you’d have answered, okay? This whole subject of aging is one we’re all very interested in, I suspect!


1. What are you loving about being your age and this moment in life?


BK’s answer:
I love life and I feel a freedom at this age that grows every day. My senses are heightened. My capacity for love is greater. I think that’s the beauty of aging!


Your answer?


2. Have you made career changes over the years? What have you done? What made you change?


BK’s answer: I was lucky to have found my perfect job, Style and Wardrobe Consulting, early on. I’ve been doing this work for over thirty years. Consulting allows me to use my creativity, express beauty and help women feel great about themselves. As one client said, “What you do for me is better than therapy!”


What surprised me along the way was discovering my love of writing and how my work with clients was the perfect thing to write about. It didn’t hurt to get Oprah Winfrey’s invitation to be on her show talking about my first book when it came out, 40 Over 40: 40 Things Every Woman Over 40 Needs to Know About Getting Dressed. Nearly two decades and four more books later, I’m still writing and consulting. I won’t be retiring any time soon!


Your answer?


Fashion over 60

Feeling elegantly spunky in my 60s style. Aging is a treat!


3. Tell us some of your thoughts on aging,
-What’s been bad
-What’s been good
-What surprised you the most?


BK’s answer: I am anti- anti-aging campaigns. It bothers me to see big magazine headlines or lifestyle segments on TV that talk about tips to defy the aging process. That’s silly. Let’s focus on style and how we want to express ourselves at this age, this very perfect age. Suffering comes when you try to recapture something that is gone. That energy could be used to enjoy life on life’s terms. (And eat well, exercise and get plenty of sleep!)


Your answer?


4. Describe your personal style

BK’s answer: My personal style is evolving over time as we all evolve. I have roots in classic elegance (80%) with flair (20%). As I age, I’m open to expressing more joy and playfulness in my style. I’ll do that with color, unique accessories and unexpected combinations.


Accessories and style on BrendaKinsel.com

Expressing style with accessories


Your answer?


5. Now… describe your personality? Are you type A? Easy going? Has it changed over the years? How?


BK’s answer: I’m a very curious person and someone with a lot of energy. Growing up in the Midwest, I also have a strong work ethic. So I’m probably a type A person but my aspirations are to be a Type C, D, or E person. I want to slow down and chill more. I don’t have to be “doing” all the time; I can practice “being” instead. Certainly, that’s a lesson that has come with age.


An afternoon in Battle Lake, MN

Chilling in with family in Minnesota this month


Celebrating friendships on BrendaKinsel.com

Celebrating friendships in Fargo


Your answer?


6. What was the most courageous thing you have ever done?


BK’s answer: It was courageous of me to follow my dream after getting a divorce and to trust that I could support my young family with my dream job. Recently when I lost my mother and my brother within months of each other, I had the courage to be vulnerable, to face grief head-on and to share that process with others who found comfort in my words. It takes courage to face these big girl issues, doesn’t it?


The kids are alright!

The kids are alright!


Your answer?


7. Finish these sentences….
My Style is ______
I won’t compromise_______


BK’s answer: My style formula is feminine dramatic; modern and playful.
I won’t compromise style for comfort. We can have both.


Dressing in comfort and style at sixty


Your answer?


Can’t wait to hear what you have to say! Please share!


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  • Reply
    jodie filogomo
    April 20, 2017 at 6:05 am

    The hardest thing I found was trying to get all my answers in under 2 minutes!!
    Sometimes I feel like I have so much to say—ha ha!!
    But I said the same thing about my style in that it’s evolving—and I would hope that is the same for everyone! Even though many of our values are the same, we can’t help but be changed by our life experiences and who we hang with!!
    I love seeing your thoughts Brenda!!

    • Reply
      April 20, 2017 at 8:01 am

      And I always love seeing your thoughts too, Jodie! Yes, evolution happens if it’s only slight in some cases. Thanks for your thoughts!

  • Reply
    monique arends
    April 20, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    I agree with a lot of your answers, but here are some additional thoughts:
    1) You gain wisdom when you get older and don’t; sweat the small stuff.
    2) My career brought me into marketing and advertising. Although I liked it, I wish had had followed a career such as yourself in fashion. I think I would have enjoyed it more.
    3) I agree with your answer. Although I’m healthy I wish I did have more energy and less aches and pains that come with age.
    4) Classic elegance yet edgy at times, but keeping it age appropriate with a young flair.
    5) Definitely type A, outgoing with a dry sense of humor and very European
    6) Moving to the USA New York city) over 40 years ago with only 2 suitcases and he intent of only staying 1 year.
    7) European
    8) Same as you – don’t compromise style for comfort and when leaving the house always dress appropriately, no sweats allowed except for in the gym or at home.

    • Reply
      April 20, 2017 at 1:14 pm

      Monique, thank you! Love reading these answers! Another thing I love about aging is that you get a long enough time to have perspective and gratitude which I think is hard to come by when you’re half our age. And yes, I agree with you and I hear it from my friends that they miss the energy they used to have. I used to drive into San Francisco from Marin and go to jazz clubs and listen to music by myself (I wasn’t trying to find a guy, I just loved jazz music once my son educated me about it!) and get home by 2:30 and get up and go to work in the morning. I could not do that anymore. If a concert starts at 8 pm I’m grumbling! I want to be in my bed by 9:30!!

      Thanks for sharing all your answers!

  • Reply
    April 20, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    Wow! What questions are these?
    1. I love that I don’t have to try and be perfect at this age. I’m fine just as I am.
    2. I am an RN. A career path chooses by my mother and one that I have followed due to a sense of duty and a desire to please. I kept going back to school and earned a masters degree in nursing education I always wanted to teach so I finally pleased myself to some degree. I am currently working in addiction medicine and actually loving it! I feel invigorated working in this arena and very engaged.
    3. Bad: fatigue and forgetting my glasses and keys. Good: not having to act like I really have it all together-and being able to laugh at myself. What has surprised me- so much that I thought was important really
    4. Style-classi
    5. Triple A personality that has now moved to A-
    6. I haven’t done it yet but I have plans…I’ll keep you posted
    7. My style is evolving and I won’t compromise on effort…always try to put myself together so that I don’t scare small children, strangers or dogs.

    • Reply
      April 20, 2017 at 8:10 pm

      So very fun to learn more about you. I love your answer to number 1. I feel more and more like that every day. #5, I’m having a chuckle! Thanks for taking the time! Also, #7, I have that guideline as well: no scaring small children, strangers, or dogs. LOVE it!

  • Reply
    Jan Conlin
    April 20, 2017 at 7:10 pm

    1. Loving about my age: contentment with life, realistic expectations, acceptance of myself.
    2. I was a teacher for my entire career, and felt it was a privilege to be part of the lives of many children and their families.
    3. Aging: good-clear priorities, adult children, simple pleasures, self- acceptance. Bad- forgetfulness, changing body, losing loved ones.
    Surprised me the most- how content I am.
    4. Traditional, classic and sporty. I feel this changing a bit recently-losing the sporty part I think. I like to look nice and comfort is fundamental. I like feeling that I’m showing my best self, and I’m putting more energy into that now. For myself!
    5. I am WAY more relaxed and less critical than I was when younger.
    6. I moved to Georgia right after college to teach. I didn’t know anyone in the town. Very brave.
    7. My style is not static. I won’t compromise on comfort and individuality.

    • Reply
      April 20, 2017 at 8:12 pm

      Thanks, Jan. Contentment. How awesome and something you just can’t explain to a younger person, right? Love your proclamation in #7. #3, I’m relating! Love, love, love this, thank you so much!

  • Reply
    Cindy La Ferle
    April 21, 2017 at 5:01 am

    1. I’ve stopped worrying about what other people think — and started caring more about what I think. Age brings freedom and time to rediscover myself.
    2. Career change: I worked in an office job (reference book publishing) for the first 6 yrs after college. I left that job to start freelance writing from home, then landed a job as a travel magazine editor, and started freelancing for newspapers and magazines. I was able to work from home while my son was small. I never looked back, never wanted an office job again.
    3. What’s bad about aging? Like Brenda, I’m also tired of the “anti” aging campaigns that make us feel as though aging is a disease to be cured. What’s good about aging? Hard-won experience!
    4. Personal style: Eileen Fisher meets Boho. (As I age, my inner hippie begs to come out. I try to temper that.)
    5. Personality: Outgoing, energetic and creative … yet I also have a quiet side. An extrovert with introvert tendencies.
    6. Most courageous thing I’ve ever done: Putting my family first, even turning down some career opportunities along the way. Absolutely no regrets. I still ended up with a career I love and a family I love more. That, and caring for my mother when she had dementia in the last 7 years of her life.
    7. I won’t compromise my values or “keep quiet” for the sake of getting along with people. Life is short. These days, I only spend time with people whose values, politics and goals I can appreciate and admire.

    • Reply
      April 25, 2017 at 8:51 pm

      Cindy, this was a great read. I can relate to several things you shared. Image Consulting was my “freelance writing” in that I geared my schedule around my kids’ schedules so I could be in sync with them. As they got older and of course as they started to fly away from the nest, I was able to take on more work with clients. It’s been a wonderful life with family at the center. I’m proud of you! I’m proud of all of us!

      • Reply
        Cindy La Ferle
        April 27, 2017 at 5:41 am

        Brenda — YOU inspire me! I am so glad I discovered your blog and newsletter after enjoying all of your books over the years! Thank you.

  • Reply
    April 21, 2017 at 3:33 pm

    Brenda, I love the Minnesota picture with your orange jacket. You look so cool.

    • Reply
      April 25, 2017 at 8:47 pm

      Thanks, Linda! That jacket has the words Reiten Equipment on the back of it in big black letters. It was my father’s business. He sold farm machinery. He loves when I wear this/his jacket. And so do I!!!

  • Reply
    Suzanne Dekyvere
    April 21, 2017 at 11:17 pm

    1. The freedom to be me and to let go of the worry/fear of what other people think.
    2. I spent 20 years in the corporate world – working for Banks, Chartered Accountants etc ……. I ended up quite sick and I know now that is probably due to me having to “be” someone and “dress” in a way that wasn’t authentically me……
    3. The bad – I’m not a negative person and I tend to focus on the positive so I don’t really have a bad. I honestly am loving this stage of my life – I feel so well connected with the other women in my tribe. The surprise is how much I am enjoying expressing my personality through my clothes and the freedom I feel in doing this.
    4. My personal style is continually evolving …… I would say I have an eclectic dramatic style personality with a touch of elegance.
    5. My personality style is very extroverted and empathetic and busy – I love having things to do, places to go, people to see…… my idea of hell would be a deserted island!
    6. Most courageous thing would be leaving a physical and mentally abusive marriage knowing that he would come after me and having the courage to not go back and to take him to court.
    7. My style is authentic and changes to suit my mood and the occasion. I won’t compromise of my values or stay quiet if I think someone is being wronged ……. if people don’t like it that’s their bag.

    • Reply
      April 25, 2017 at 8:46 pm

      Wow, Suzanne, I know you but I feel after reading this that I know you so much more! Thank you for sharing these details. Next time we have an MMB reunion, you and I have some sharing to do! I had to chuckle when you talked about hell being a deserted island. Oh my chickadee, that will never happen. Love you so!

  • Reply
    Susanna Singer
    April 22, 2017 at 3:12 pm

    1. I’m loving my life right now, and I’m also really aware, having just turned 60, that change is ahead for me. I don’t know yet what that will be, but it’s clearly on the horizon. I’m curious and open, most days.
    2. I changed careers in my mid-40’s, from being a priest leading a congregation and then working for a diocese, to being a seminary professor. It entailed going back to school to get a PhD. So I know the feeling when change is on the horizon – and boy, has my wardrobe had to evolve over the years (thanks for all the virtual help with that, Brenda)!
    2. Aging: One hard thing has been losing “color” in face and hair; the “fading” phenomenon. Not quite sure how to deal with that. I’m having to change my skin care regime radically to deal with drying and greater sensitivity. And I’ve become much more discerning about what I wear, and now go for quality rather than quantity. Luckily there is more and more out there that works for older/curvy women who still want to look sharp.
    3. Personal style: classic with a creative twist. And definitely evolving.
    4. Personality style: thoughtful, creative, relational, and increasingly introverted.
    5. Most courageous thing: going back to school for that PhD, across the country, without my spouse for three years, as an “older student.”
    6. My style is clean, simple, with creative flourishes. I will never compromise comfort for style, especially in shoes (learned that one the hard way!).

    • Reply
      April 25, 2017 at 8:44 pm

      Gosh, I just loved reading this, Susanna! What an interesting life you have led. And I believe you when you say something’s on the horizon. You sound like someone who listens to those inner stirrings and acts on them. Can’t wait to hear what comes next. Thank you so much for taking the time to share this with us. I agree a lot with your comment on aging and the part about finding greater options for our bodies. You aren’t the first person to speak about becoming more introverted. I wonder how many others are finding that to be true? Thanks so very much!

  • Reply
    April 22, 2017 at 4:16 pm

    Just happened across your blog and LOVED it and then recognized a book I long had in my bookcase 40 after 40 (which I loaned out long ago)! How nice to “meet up with you again”. You are still spot on with your advice. Enjoying your readers’ comments as well. My thought on style is that if it’s NOT evolving, you are stuck. And probably looking older than your years. While many don’t like the term “age appropriate” I do. As a college prof, I don’t want to look like my students but I do want to look like I’ve entered this century:)) As roles change from corporate life to school runs to non-profit volunteering…clothing and style need to change as well. Thanks for the guidance!!

    • Reply
      April 25, 2017 at 8:40 pm

      You said all that exquisitely, Marcia! I’m totally with you. And yay! So glad you found me even after the book is long gone! I hope to hear more from you!

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