Something a bit different on this weeks’ Gallerie B blogpost. I recently had a clothing epiphany. For some time now I have been in a ‘fashion rut’. Looking in my wardrobe, I felt as though nothing co-ordinated and the same brands were jumping out at me. Cue Lisa Iurada, Personal Fashion Stylist from Cocoon Styling. Our recent two-hour fashion styling session was one of the best things I’ve done. Considering the amount of time and money we spend on clothing, what I learned from Lisa has changed my clothes shopping habits for good. Lisa made me feel at ease straight away and I really enjoyed trying on clothes in stores that weren’t on my usual ‘go to’ list.
Lisa has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to choosing the correct clothing for your shape and has generously shared some of her top tips.
What is the ‘number one’ mistake women make when buying clothing?
From my experience there are 3 main area’s my clients fall into:
1. Buying clothes that don’t fit and suit your body shape. A number of people are unsure of their body shape and by default end up wearing clothes that don’t flatter them. There are cases where clients are covering their gorgeous bodies in excess fabric and hiding their shape, or wearing clothes that are clinging in all the wrong places.
2. Creating a mish-mash wardrobe by buying odds and ends. Most women I deal with are time poor and will often buy in a rush or when under pressure. For example shopping on the run with little kids hanging off them. Not an ideal shopping experience. Purchases made in these situations tend to be impulsive and without thought or planning of what’s already in your wardrobe. Buying one top here and a pair of pants another day is not a guarantee for a complete outfit. You will end up with a wardrobe of odd and ends.
3. Getting stuck in a style rut. It’s easy to keep shopping in the same shops season after season, year after year. It feels safe and comfortable. Clients will tend to buy the same styles and colours and this can create the rut. We also need to take into account that their lives and bodies can change over time and often their wardrobes don’t change with them.
What top three items do you think every woman should have in her wardrobe?
I have one mandatory requirement that needs to be addressed before we even get to essentials.
Correctly fitting undergarments – Your bra and undies are the two essential ingredients for any great outfit. They are your foundation garment – they are your building blocks.
My essential top 5 suggestions (I couldn’t restrict it to 3):
1. A pair of jeans that fit well. You can dress them up or down.
2. A tailored blazer that is classic, feminine and generally looks great on all body shapes.
4. A bag for every day and a different smaller clutch style bag for evening.
5. A pair of sunglasses.
How important is knowing what colour/s suit you?
Knowing the colours that suit your skin, eyes and hair is helpful and do play a role however I wouldn’t get too stuck on them. I would suggest using them as a guide only. Some colours work for all skin tones and hair colours. I believe it’s good to try on different colours and to try to steer away from always wearing black. Yes, black is an easy option, however, it can be ageing and a little severe on many people. I believe that knowing your body shape and what clothes and styles suit your shape has a more important role to play. Try to remember that you should be wearing the colour and not the colour wearing you.
How do you incorporate current trends into your wardrobe?
I would never suggest totally remodeling you entire wardrobe based on a trend. A trend is usually seasonal and may only have a life span of six months – here one minute gone the next. Unfortunately it’s an expensive exercise to constantly update your wardrobe. I would suggest playing with trends in a small way. Buying a few key accessory pieces such as a beautiful scarf or belt will update your outfit and keep you on trend without breaking the bank.
What accessory can’t you live without?
1. Jewellery. I love wearing earrings, rings and necklaces (the key is not wearing them all at once, less is more). I’m fascinated with artisans (the designers and craftspeople) so I’m drawn to a unique hand-made treasure. I try to buy something special when I’m travelling.
2. I will always dress up or complete my outfit with a scarf in winter or summer. I love linen, wool and fur scarves against my neck.
3. A great pair of sunglasses: Karen Walker, Oliver Peoples, Vincent Kores, Ray-Bans.
What are your trend predictions for this spring/summer?
There are a number of influential S/S 14 themes in Womenswear. Art will be one of the freshest influences with bright colours, prints and patterns. Another trend once again is the monochromatic palette with the addition of a new soft minimalist theme. I’m really looking forward to this. It’s the prettiest and most feminine message of the season. Think a powdery pastel colour palette. A mix of fabrics including chiffon, organza and lace. You will see fuller silhouettes (full skirts and dresses) and below-the-knee hemlines. Florals are also a popular theme, from cherry blossoms to botanical screens and romantic blooms. For footwear, slides are going to be very popular, think double strap Birkenstock in white or black.
What do you love most about your job?
I love the personal and individual aspect of my job. I’m passionate about clothes and helping people. The excitement, rejuvenation and air of confidence they exude after a shop is fantastic and very satisfying for me. I’m left on a high as much as they are. It’s a profession that also allows me to constantly use my creativity and challenges me in all the right ways.
I believe that how you look should reflect who you are inside. I want to encourage women to step out of their comfort zone and experiment a little with their wardrobe, whatever their stage of life.
“Over the years I have learned that what is important in a dress is the woman who is wearing it!” Yves Saint Laurent.
If you would like to experience a similar epiphany or fashion styling session, here are Lisa’s contact details:
Mobile: 0403 386 376
Lisa also has a business selling beautifully illustrated prints for children’s rooms. Head to www.pigeonpudding.com to check out the range.