Bad Girl, Good Business

The 100 Years Club Installment #33: My “First Day of School” Look

Reading Time: 4 minutes

When we were kids, we deliberated over what to wear and what cool school “accessories” (like lunchboxes and book bags) to sport on that first day of school.

After all, our entire identity for the entire grade could be determined within seconds of stepping off the bus or into a classroom.

Personal branding is still pretty important these days. Snap judgments are often made by adults based on what we wear, how we style our hair, our eyeglass frames, and how many piercings and tats we have.

One study even showed that first impressions are made within a tenth of a second. YIKES!

My client/friend Rebekah has taught me oodles about color and its impact on mood and perception. Even though I wasn’t enamored of science class, her color psychology smarts (based on 20 years of study) made me a true believer. Rebekah is producing an event in Tampa Bay about cars and color. Even my fall “school bus” (my Mini Cooper) was chosen with respect for color — English racing green — which will hopefully “drive” me to prosperity.

So, what’s the rest of my fall look going to be?

  1. I confess I’m a bit of a slave to seasonal fashion, so I’ll probably be sporting hot tomato red, which is apparently one of this fall’s trending colors. I think in the aftermath of Barbie pink, we’re all ready to go from girly to wanton.
  2. My mouth and fingers? Cherry cola lips and vampy nails (reds and browns) are kind of appealing. And I always smell pretty much the same. This is my fave scent. After all, it was named after the borough of my youth. And I’m casually toying with the idea of trading in my blonde hair for one of these reddish hues. 
  3. But what about all the stuff that’s IN my head? I’ll be sporting headphones and talking into a mike when I launch my podcast this fall. That, and my travel website, are my “extracurricular activities,” along with gym, reading, socializing (see #10), and field trips (see #4).
  4. My suitcase remains a standard accessory. I have lots of fall travel planned after my summer pit stop. (If you’re in NY, join me at this gala on September 21st!)
  5. Boots, boots, boots. That’s all I’ll say about that.
  6. After writing a profile of Rowan’s CEO, I was compelled to get yet another ear piercing (a lightning bolt) to start the “school” season.
  7. Speaking of body mod, a second tat concept has been swirling around in my head. My first was a tribute to my late father. This one will be in memory of my mother. Midlife tattoos are definitely a thing. Here are the stats.
  8. My gym clothes, sneakers, and Oura ring remain important as I focus on longevity.
  9. What about my “school supplies?” I’ve worn glasses since I was in second grade, and my prescription eyewear and readers are staples of my wardrobe. Although I’m super high-tech (and just bought a new phone), my spiral notebook, index cards, and gel pens are fixtures in my glittery string bag (which I use instead of a briefcase or backpack because I love to travel light).
  10. And, because many of us still like to play “dress-up,” I’m already preparing for a Western-themed party and the annual Halloween festivities at a nearby AZ hotel in October. (The cosplay market is booming BTW.)

2022 Halloween shenanigans

My personal style has evolved over the years since my youth (especially during that weird 1980s corporate woman era, when I sported a Pat Benetar spikey do or curly perm along with big shoulder pads and nude hose).

But now I’m back to the bougie hippie look that feels most like me.

I totally ignore the media that reports on “appropriate” things to wear at 50+. After all, most of those journalists are probably <50.

No one asks me, “Are you REALLY going to wear that out of the house?” anymore.

And I definitely don’t care what the kids at “school” think of me as long as I continue to secure clients and rack up subscribers and followers.

Another huge advantage of aging, I must say!




  1. What am I wearing out of the house? Oh gosh, it’s a question I ask myself daily in retirment!

    1. Critical that we develop a “post-work style.” When I started my own company 20 years ago, I completely transformed my wardrobe. Did it again when I moved to Arizona 5 years ago. But I have always kept my “bougie hippy” roots. How we look has a huge impact on energy level and mood!

  2. Nancy, thanks for the laugh. Ironically, I was just going through my closet. Have a conference in 3 weeks. Damn, would they be okay if I just wore my means and tops from Target?

    Have a good one, Beth

    1. Absolutely! (And I assume you meant jeans, not means :)) The world has become super-casual since the pandemic and I often feel overdressed even when I wear a tunic and leggings at conferences! The new keywords are comfort and coolness.

  3. I wear my usual uniform of jeans (and capris in the summer) and whatever top looks right. My wardrobe has hardly changed over the years. Embarrassing, but true.

  4. Here’ where I confess I never paid attention to style and fashion. Jeans and shirts. Clean and comfortable. I’m hopeless!


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