Reinvention at 60: Meet Lynne Nicolari
After completing treatment with Candid in December, Lynne Nicolari sat down with us to talk reinvention, starting a modeling career in her 60s, and finding confidence over the years.
Five years ago, I owned a jewelry store called Mood Swings. It was right below my apartment in Milford, Connecticut. I loved it! I hosted a martini night once a month that all the ladies in town knew about. After about 5 years, it got so popular I’d have to hire a bartender, put a tent outside for extra space, and in just one night, I’d be able to cover the month’s rent.
When I closed my boutique, I couldn’t find a job. A friend said I ought to call her friend in Long Island who owns a modeling agency. They were looking for older women.
So I called, and the next day I was on the set of The Good Wife. I was standing there, in front of a conference table, and then the door opens and Christine Baranski walks out. Just walks right next to me in her curlers and slippers. I looked at her and she looked at me and I was thinking, what’s going on?
Then the director said, “Ok that’ll be it!” And Christine left. That was it.
I said, “What in the world just happened?” and someone answered, “They were considering you to be Christine Baranski’s stand-in.”
After that, I just said, “I’m going to do this.” And it’s working out so far.
I’m realizing how fast the years have gone by. I bet a lot of people at this stage feel similarly. I feel old at 60. But I’ve decided who I am at this point in my life. I’m an old lady, and I’ll never stop reinventing myself because I want to live out my next 10, 20, 30 years the best I can, in the best shape I can.
It’s a little like maintaining a home. If you have a nice new home and then sixty years later the roof is caving in and things are falling apart, you fix it. So I’m embarking on that.
I talked my friend into doing Candid with me. It was great having someone to relate to throughout the process.
We had a weekend away with the girls and whenever we would take our “teeth” out when we were snacking, all our friends would say “Ew, whose teeth are those?” and we’d laugh.
We joked all the time about whose “teeth” were whose on the table. Any time we were with other friends our age, it made us feel like the cool ones for doing it. Turns out, aligners are the hippest thing for Baby Boomers!
I recently started a vision board that I keep for inspiration and motivation. Whenever I see a woman in an ad and think, I could do that, I cut the photo out and add it to the board.
At first, I just went through the motions of putting the board together. But you have to believe you’re going to do it, not just go through the motions. So every day, I do something toward that goal. Even small things to get me thinking, “Okay, you can do this.”
I started mixing in some pictures of myself to keep the dream going. In one photo, I was sitting on a stool and fell off of it. They took a photo mid-fall where I’m laughing. It really captures my energy, so it’s one of my favorites.
Confidence changes so much as you get older. I always used to care too much about what people think. Everything that would come out of my mouth I’d wonder, “Should I say that? Shouldn’t I?” Now, if I don’t like a movie, I say I didn’t like it. If I want to go on a trip on a whim, I can do that. Not hesitating in my actions. That’s confidence.
I just don’t worry. Everything always works out. It works out because it has to, that’s my attitude. And if it doesn’t, I deal with it. That’s kind of my style. ✧
This article has been edited and condensed for clarity. Lynne Nicolari photographed by Kristin Phillips at her home in Milford, CT.
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