Living & Loving Life Beyond Fifty

Fashionable 50-Somethings: Discover Debbie Rudoy of life’style Boutique!

This Midlife Women Entrepreneur & Style Guru Rocks the Baby Boomer Woman Shopping & Fashion Scene!

If you’re a baby boomer woman, shopping for fashions that are classic, comfortable, and appropriate for your lifestyle can Honest style assessments for fashionable 50-somethingsbe a challenge indeed!  Enter Debbie Rudoy of life’style Fashions in Sag Harbor! Debbie is a style guru with a wealth of experience in fashion and design, a woman  entrepreneur at midlife who creates smart, effortless style for mature women in their 30′s, 40′s, 50′s and beyond! Discover this style oasis for fashionable 50-somethings!

Q. Your shop in Sag Harbor, life’style Boutique, is a unique, trendy concept…can you share a bit about what you mean when you say you help your customers “navigate and style your wardrobe”?

A. We act a as personal shopper/best friend. We are honest about what looks good on you and also help focus our customers on wardrobe building. I believe that we can build on what we have in our closet, by adding what is in fashion and new each season without having to buy everything new each season.

Q. Your job sounds like “Chief Inspiration Director”! Does that describe what you do?

A. I like to say style guru. I go into the market and look for fashion trends and then interpret them for our client base. That is to say that I am not into trendy fashion, but fashion and styles that look new but are wearable for women of any age. I then work on how best to integrate and style those looks with core basics that we always have at the store.

Q. When, why, and how did you decide to ‘redesign your life’ and move to Sag Harbor?

A. After almost 20 years of working in the apparel industry in NYC I needed a change. I was looking for a better quality of life. I was spending about half of my time traveling and outside of NYC so it didn’t seem so far fetched to move outside of the city. In fact, it was a welcome relief to live in one home with everything I own under one roof. It also freed me up to explore new places and things in my life. I was so busy with my first career that I had tunnel vision and couldn’t really tell if I was doing something because I wanted to or because it was a way of life.

Q. Your career history includes a lot of cool stuff…creative design director, owner of a Pilates studio…how did all of these prior life experiences prepare you for LifeStyle?

A. I’ve always been social and enjoyed meeting and working with people of all ages. My design career gave me the knowledge and confidence to be creative with apparel and dressing others, and being a pilates instructor gave me hands on info and knowledge of many body types. Women in particular kept expressing their frustration in shopping for and fitting into comfortable and age appropriate clothing. It was a natural evolution to return to my first love - fashion – and morph the two business experiences into a retail venue focused on a high level of customer service, experience and great apparel for those of us who look great but aren’t in our 20’s or 30’s. (That’s not to say I don’t sell to those in that age bracket, but the focus at lifestyle is 35-60 more or less.)

Q. What is your take on how mature women are making waves as entrepreneurs…are we poised to see a 50-something small business surge?

A. I would say so. Many are finding that they are no longer wanted or needed in the marketplace. Many industries are all about youth – they are youth oriented and/or will hire someone young with less experience for less money, knowing they will work until all hours to build their careers. Since we live in an age that most of us need to work or cannot retire early I see more and more women re-creating themselves, starting niche businesses that they can integrate into their family life while hxaving a positive, healthy daily way of life.

Discover life’style women's fashions in Sag HarborQ. Do you find it easier or more difficult to make changes or adjustments in your career path as you get older?

A. It is definitely more challenging. We all get comfortable in our day to day lives, have lifestyles we need to support that require a certain income, etc. However, all you really have to do is “do it”. If you make the decision to change your life or lifestyle then you are on the way to doing so. Of course there are sacrifices that we need to make any time we make a change.. And most people don’t  like or embrace it. Starting at a young age my family was relocating and I was changing schools. In the 7th grade I had attended 6 schools. It wasn’t easy but I got used to being the new kid in school and learned to adapt, meet new people and figure out how to fit in and flourish with all that change. As an adult I feel that was an amazing gift to have experienced as a child and young adult. It totally prepared me just about anything.

Q. Any advice or suggestions for other 50+ women considering an entrepreneurial “leap of faith” as they approach midlife?

A. My advice would be to plan for change financially and emotionally. Having a network of good friends and family for support when you need someone to talk to and a good savings account really helps. We are not always that fortunate but it really helps when you are not stressed about finances, paying the bills and such. Nothing is worse than making a business decision based on the wrong reasons or when under stress.

Stay tuned for more ideas, suggestions, and information on baby boomer woman clothing shopping, fashions, style and more at Fifty Is The New Forty!

2 Responses to “Fashionable 50-Somethings: Discover Debbie Rudoy of life’style Boutique!”

  1. Louise says:

    Love your blog, there is so much energy in our market which is why as a serial entreprenuer I decided to open this past January, TRUUdesigns.com where you can shop online and if you are in the Pasadena, CA area, you can visit our first design studio at 93. e. Union. After so many years of walking into designers’ boutiques and there being next to nothing for me and my shape, I wanted to open a studio that cared about women and was a nurturing fashion experience offering great style for all and without judgment. As Coco Chanel once said, it is “all about proportion”! I think the other really important thing is for us to do business in a conscious way to help our communities, so we open the studio for other organizations to have events and fund-raisers and it helps us too as it is a great way for them to get to know what we offer and help spread the word. We cover the expenses of hosting the events so we are making a contribution and also providing a fun experience for the members. It is a great way to thank volunteers who work tirelessly on behalf of your organization. We are owned by a non-profit foundation so that we are giving back and also making as many of our clothes locally as possible to build jobs in this area. Shop TRUUdesigns.com.

  2. Seka says:

    I’m a fifty-nine year old woman. I am only 5′ tall, and 110 lbs. Everthing I’ve read says that I sould be wearing loose fitting clothes and that skirts and dresses should be no shorter then just below the knee. I end up looking like I’m wearing as sack tied in the middle or I’m wearing my mother’s clothes. Is there any place a petite woman ,who still has a very nice shape, can go for fashion that doesn;t maker her look dumping and really, really old?

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