Age of Grace |7 famous women that found success later in life

Age of Grace | Vera Wang via Besotted Blog

Michelle and I have been having a great time discovering all these inspiring stories of famous women that have become successful later in life. We thought we would create a list of women that will hopefully get you inspired too, I know that I personally am in awe now and feel very motivated to get something done!


Designer Vera Wang had an original dream of becoming an Olympic Figure Skater, when that didn’t work out she turned to fashion and worked her way up in the editorial world to become the Senior Fashion Editor at Vogue for 15 years. Wang was passed up for the editor-in-chief position (which Anna Wintour did get and still holds). That’s two major dashed dreams, enough to way lay even the most confident individual, but Wang didn’t quit, she re-invented. At 40 years old Vera Wang not only got married but started her eponymous and wildly successful bridal label. An incredible success story. You can read more about Vera Wang here, here, and here (at 62 years old in a bathing suit looking better than I ever have!).


Probably one of the most famous names in culinary history, Julia child did not publish her first cookbook until she was 50 years old! You can read more here and here. One of my favorite children’s book ‘Julia, Child‘ here.


Lucille Ball didn’t find fame and fortune until 40 years old! At the time and at that age most actresses would have retired. Ball not only launched her show, she became a huge ground breaker being the first woman to ever run her own Hollywood studio, marrying a man 6 years younger and the list goes on and on of her achievements! You can read more here and here.


Nobel Prize winning author Toni Morrison didn’t publish her first novel until she was 40 years old (a full-time working single mother of two at that!). You can read more here and here.


The author of the famed ‘Little House’ series, didn’t publish her first novel until she was 65 years old, she wrote 12 more after that! Read more here.


Martha Stewart didn’t catch her big break until she was 40 years old after which she became the doyenne of the domestic and the super power she is today.  Read more here.


World renowned artist ‘Grandma Moses’ didn’t pick up a paint brush until she was 75 years old. An art collector spotted her work in a drugstore window took it to New York and a star was born. You can read more here.

Do you know of any other great stories we can add to this list?

Author / Miss Tristan B

Miss Tristan B. is the co-creator of the world’s best + easiest product photography editing tool-Foto Rx | Shopkeeper’s Helper and one of the writer’s of this delightful blog. Her lofty goal here is to make this a creative resource repository and to inspire you to fall truly, madly, deeply in love with your life.

6 thoughts on “Age of Grace |7 famous women that found success later in life

  1. I don’t know . . . if you know . . . that you wrote this for me.

    I have followed you from LA to NC to SEA. ( I am feeling that you are digging and planting some sweet seeds of life here in the PNW!)

    I can only imagine how your creative process will continue to evolve and shine as you enter the age of grace, T!
    ~ Lynne . . . graced by an age between Julia and Laura.

    1. Ah, Lynne, thank you, always so kind! I loved writing this post, SO inspiring! I think when we are younger more so than older it’s easier to feel like you are ‘too old’, I hope this resonates for anyone that has that feeling (including myself, lol)

  2. Thank you for posting this! I just turned 50, and feel like I am late for the game, especially in the design industry. I spent my 20s – until now raising four awesome kids. I don’t regret a minute of being completely present in their lives, but because I didn’t have a “career” to go back to (i.e. nursing, teaching, etc.) I had to take a hard look at what I wanted to do with this new phase of my life. I still have one at home so the nest isn’t completely empty but I’m working my way toward new goals and passions. Happy to know I’m in great company!

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