Interview by Ceri Wheeldon
Today we feature Gigi Schilling as our latest ‘Fab Woman’. Gigi is a champion of living agelessly over 50 – and has recently published her first book, Ageless Bride
I live in Miami, 59 years ageless, married and have one son, he is 20. No grandchildren.
Main activities before turning 50.
Traveling the world with my husband and son.
Main activities after turning 50.
On 2010 — I created a group on FB named ~ Over 50 & Irresistible. It is about “ageless philosophy” and we are about 5.500 members.
April 2016 — I decided to do way with the “number” and thus SoAgeless was born (even though I still have the Over 50 & Irresistible). I also created all the social media to go with it (FB page & instagram & twitter & pinterest… but I am mainly active on Facebook).
May 2017 — I published my first book named ~ Ageless Bride
What prompted me to start my business
Or should I say my website? Because I truly wanted to be a source of inspiration for the “over 50 women” to stop with self-ageism and not allow the ageist society to render them invisible. I never felt invisible because I do not give this power to people. And since I published my book, I now aspire to be a source of inspiration for the women that marry at over 50. A bride is a bride is a bride…
How old I was when I started
The Over 50 & Irresistible I was 52… SoAgeless website & social media I was 57… my very first book at the age of 59, and it is a pioneering book. And yes, I am a proud late bloomer.
Challenges that I encountered
I did not find a Publisher for my Ageless Bride book, even though I tried many. I had to self-publish on Amazon CreateSpace.
The best aspect of my journey
That I am grateful for aging, it is a privilege, it means that I am alive. And as I stated before, I do not give power to people nor the ageist society to render me invisible.
Two very wise quotes from Coco Chanel related to aging, and are part of the mantra in my journey:
My biggest fear
Difficult to say… because for me life is a mixture of many feelings, and one of them is fear. It depends on the moment and time in life. For me, life is wonder in spite of its sorrows. So I always see the side of wonder as a way to recharge my spirit, and when the sorrow (fear, loss, etc) come, then I am stronger spiritually to accept what is.
Who inspires me
So many people inspire me. Especially if they are kind and compassionate. If they allow me to see their ‘human side” then yes they inspire me. I even say that lately I no longer care to travel, because I prefer to “meet” people, meaning that a person has much more to offer and share, then the “physical” part of the world. In the end, places and cultures are filled with “people”… so it is people that interest me… no longer places for the sake of places.
The difference it made in my life
Since 2010 when I created my FB group Over 50 & Irresistible, and afterwards the page SoAgeless, both talking about ageless philosophy, I truly hope that I have made a difference for the over 50 women, meaning that I was able to inspire them to not feel invisible and love their age. It feels great to share and inspire!
How the opportunity came about
The opportunity to create my Over 50 & Irresistible group on FB came about when I realized how frustrated people where for turning 50 (it was 2010). I never had an age crisis, so I thought that I could hopefully inspire them to love their age and not feel invisible.
My next steps… and opportunities
My book at this point is only 125 pages, and I truly want it to be 200 to 250 pages. Therefore I continue to contact designers in order to turn it into a coffee-table book.
I am also contacting designers to have a bridal shop on my website.
My family and friends
They are all very supportive of me, and my 20 years old son is my biggest fan.
I had the dream of writing my Ageless Bride book when I turned 50, but I was finally able to publish it at almost 59. Even though I feel that it turned out to be just fine.
Three tips for women over 50 that wants to start now
Stop with self-ageism… nor feel invisible!
Love your age!
Go after your dream!
All time favorite movie and book
Movie — Doctor Zhivago (people said I looked like Julie Christie)
Book – Man’s Search for Meaning (Viktor Frankel)… his quote:
Describe my style
Style for me is a way to express oneself while having fun. I don’t have a signature style because I dress different all the time. I have a lot of imagination, therefore I dress according to my mood. The looks I do not like are: the conservative, punk, minimalistic and androgynous. And of course I do not like anything that makes me look cheap and vulgar, but apart from that I have no rules and I wear my hair long. I love glamour above else, and prefer style to fashion. And of course I observe dress codes when necessary, but beyond that I dress for fun!
A great quote that I live by in terms of style:
Three words that sum up my life after 50
Be alive… while alive. (ok 4 words haha)
I am Gigi Schilling, the Founder of SoAgeless. I am the Author of the book ~ Ageless Bride.
My book, Ageless Bride, is lovingly dedicated to brides over 50. Twelve famous designers, including Isaac Mizrahi, Zac Posen, Betsey Johnson, Vicky Tiel, Ellen Christine and Guo Pei amongst others, offer sage guidance and share fantasy dresses and looks that they envision for the over 50 and ageless bride. On chapter two I nurture my readers with inspiration for their special day. The “Ageless Bride” book goes beyond the designers and the dresses, it is above all about hope and love. My mantra: Love is ageless and so is the over 50 bride!
I have a blog named Ageless Provocateurs on my website www.soageless.com. Ageless Provocateurs are women who love their age and share their stories to inspire over 50 women to stop with self-ageism. My blog is also where I share stories of love and marriage at 50 and beyond.