Aging, Fashion, Menopause

Wake Up, Shoe Manufacturers!

Mitzi Shoes

A post by Interior Designer and Aging in Place Specialist Mitzi Beach:

Oh my aching feet.

But….no Ruth Buzzi shoes for us either!

No 4-inch platform heel shoes either!

For me, those days are gone, gone forever.

Mitzi Shoes Two

Does Oprah do more than just sit and look gorgeous in all of her VERY high heels?

Even if those platform ones are supposedly comfortable? I would love to know the actual standing time she has while wearing those stunningly beautiful high heels!

Why? ‘Cuz I am so down-right jealous!

As a shoe-a-holic, where can I find a shoe maker for beautiful and stylish shoes that are comfortable and safe at the same time? [Falling can change our lives forever and ever].

Oh yes, the aging of feet is a very big issue.  Not only for vanity but also our comfort and being able to physically stand for whatever activity without pain!

What about you ladies?

Are you fighting this not-so-easy part of aging gracefully? What is graceful about wearing shoes that pinch or cause agony while wearing?!

Just looking at the photos above, I see women twisting ankles or far much worse  in permanent damage or serious falls.

Seriously, there are millions of us over 50, so why does this shoe crisis exist?

Yes, as a shoe-a-holic, this is a crisis to me!

Giving away so many of my beautiful shoes because they hurt so badly is more than just giving shoes away. It signifies another tangible fact of my aging which I cannot believe has to just be without options. I can handle a lot about aging but my shoe options….really?

Okay, this sounds really really vain, but I betcha if my like-minded kindred spirits out there voice what they’re thinking, we would hear a scream as loud as Hilly in The Help as she reads about that infamous pie.

We want to wear pretty shoes again!

Where are the shoe manufacturers who want to fill this huge void in the shoe industry?

A few years back, I was excited to discover Hathaway Shoes in Kansas City while working a huge design job for my most favorite clients. I bought several [well, maybe more than several] pairs.


THEN, another big day for me was when I discovered Jill Hathaway’s newly opened Shoes Boutique in Leawood, Kansas. Jill gets it! She stocked in her very chic boutique with beautiful but comfortable and safe shoes for all occasions…even dressy formal shoes. She is definitely leading the way and I applaud her marketing genius.

Even more, she understands the 50+ market and at this point in retail, this is way too rare. Why, for Pete’s sake?

Helle Comfort

This demographic of woman over 50 is huge and so strong. Come on shoe manufacturers!

You can certainly do better and be more creative than comfy & pretty flats.  We Baby Boomers, all 18 million of us, want more options.  I know it’s happening but oh so slowly…hurry up already!


Living and loving life together,


Mitzi FB Profile Personal (1)

Mitzi Beach has been a practicing Professional Interior Designer, ASID, an Aging in Place Specialist for 30 years.

At  sixty-something, Mitzi is busier than ever with her residential Interior Design business, large family, cooking, traveling and exercising.  She shares her journey on her website, and is a role model on how to explore the new territories in cyberspace for those who didn’t grow up in the computerized era. Her mantra? Who says we are too old for learning this stuff???

Mitzi’s Website:

On Social Media:

Aging, Fashion

Guest Post: To Be or Not To Be–Grey Hair, That Is


A guest post by my friend Gail Crane:

When I was in high school, my friends always commented on the grey hairs I already had.  Not many, but just enough for people to notice.

In my early 30’s, my Mom commented that I needed to dye my hair as I had too much grey for someone my age.

So I began the every 5 week task of dying my hair.

At first I had it done by my hairdresser when I would get my hair cut, but finally I decided it was too expensive and my stylist told me how to do it myself.

So for 30 years I’ve covered up the increasingly grey, or rather, white hair on my head.  At first I colored all my hair at 5 weeks.

Then as I got whiter and whiter, I had to also put color on at 2 ½ weeks–but only on my part, around my face and at my neck.  Otherwise I started looking like a skunk!

I have played with different colors.  My original hair color was dark brown.  I’ve been dark brown, light brown, reddish brown, and that brassy blondish brown that happens from putting color on your whole head each time instead of just the roots.  Now I mix two together to get the color I want.

It really doesn’t take that long to color my hair, but every time, I dread the process:

Covering up the counter top,  spreading towels on the floor, and putting on old clothes with a towel pinned around my neck to keep any color drips off of my clothes, skin and especially the floor.

No matter how hard I try though, I still seem to drip some of the mixture (which starts out white so you can’t see it) onto something.  Then voila!  You have a black spot on your floor which is unable to be removed.

We’re waiting until I finally decide to go grey to get new flooring in our bathroom.  No reason to do it yet.

I often toy with going grey. I see many women with beautiful white hair and wonder how I would look.

My sister, who used the same color as I did for years, said she was going to stop coloring her hair when she retired.  And she did, going through looking like a skunk to get to her pure white hair.  She likes it except for the pink scalp that shows now.

Sometimes when I start seeing those white roots appear, I think it would be nice to not have to bother with the messy coloring process.

Sometimes I wish I had never started coloring my hair in the first place.

But for some reason, I just am not ready to be grey.  Will it make me look old?  Make me feel older?

I don’t think I’m ready to go there yet.

Maybe, just maybe, when I retire in four years.

But maybe not!

Gail at Reunion

Gail Crane is a long time friend of  mine. She lives in Hillsborough, NC with her husband Joe and her two cats.  She says she’s a little more vain than she wishes she were, but even though she admits to being officially old, she’s just not ready to look it!  Her two grown children don’t want her to go there yet either.

Decided to go grey?  I’d love a post about your decision. Shoot me an email!  Thanks!

Aging, Celebrations, Children, Fashion, Menopause

White Lace and Promises: The Hunt Is Over!

Five cities.

Ten stores

And about sixty dresses.

But there was one Laura just kept thinking about.

She first tried it on in Atlanta, where she lived for the summer.  A store in Denver carries the dress, so she tried it on again while vacationing there.

Once settled back in Durham for the fall, she arranged for a loaner to be sent to a store about two hours away, one of only two stores in North Carolina to carry this particular designer.

Third time’s a charm, and if she liked it, this would be THE DRESS.

She stood in front of me, a cloud of white.


I gave it my mother of the bride major thumbs up.

“Are you sure?” she asked.


“I guess this is it,” she said, spreading her hands over the skirt. “This is the dress.”


My daughter is a shopper’s shopper.

She gazed around the room.

This store stocked dresses she hadn’t seen in any other wedding store.

“I’d like to try on just a few more,” she said to the saleswoman.

The woman returned with a fluff of dresses.

But then the 26 -year-old shopper’s shopper shook her head.  “I changed my mind.”

“So you don’t want to try these?” the woman asked.

“I don’t want to get confused. I love this dress.”

Laura turned to me.  “Do  you think I should try them on?”

If she tried on more dresses, the hunt wouldn’t be over, yet.

Sitting in the chair and watching your daughter model wedding dresses is about as fun as it gets.

You don’t have to stuff yourself into any crazy corsets. Instead you get to live the experience through a younger version, sort of, of yourself, with better skin and body and teeth and hair and who knows what else.

I took in a small breath.

My last child to be married.

My last chance to give a motherly opinion on matters of tulle and lace.

My last opportunity to comment on how the bosoms look with the neckline or the flow of the skirt or the length of the train.

The dress is gorgeous.

“No,” I said. “Get this one.”

And so the hunt, is, sigh, over.

Dress details to come after the June, 2013 wedding. The groom-to-be doesn’t spend much time on menopause blogs, but there’s no sense taking any chances.

Children, Fashion, Menopause, Shopping

Guest Post: Shopping with Mom

A guest post by my daughter Laura:

When I was a little girl, my mom always took my sister and me shopping on teacher workdays. She’d tell us we had to get up early, so that we could be there shortly after the mall opened.  It was those trips that sparked my love for shopping (and my love for samples of Chinese chicken in the food court).

These days, it’s not as fun to go shopping.  Money is always tight, and I have to actually work on teacher workdays.  But when I do get a chance to go to the mall with my mom, we’ve starting focusing our efforts on her wardrobe: operation maximize fashion, minimize frump (at her request.)

At first, she was resistant, “I’ll never look good in that; my friends will say that’s too young for me; I can’t do heels.”

But with a little pushing and a few forced trips to the dressing room, she’s been quite surprised at how good she looks in some of our finds: a teal pleated dress with a coral-colored patent belt, a flowy peasant blouse with dragonflies, and, yesterday, these metallic mini wedges:

Pretty cute, right?

I keep telling my mom  not to worry so much what other people think,especially about wearing something that to her, feels too young.  If you feel good wearing something, then you probably look good too!

And the best part is, if mom finds even just one thing to spice up her wardrobe, she’ll take me to lunch at Panera.

Laura Younger is a psychologist for the Durham County Schools. Her fiance, Matt Allen, is in the MBA program at Duke’s Fuqua School of Business. A June wedding is planned, meaning Laura will soon be at my side as we shop for my MOB dress!  She blogs at Taking Back My

Mother Disclaimer:  I will add that Laura usually receives  at least a small addition to her wardrobe as well as lunch. I will also add that daughter Kath is a good shopping buddy too; she’s not around as much since she lives in Virginia.