PERSONAL SHOPPER ADVICE: HOW TO CREATE YOUR PERFECT WARDROBE

NO MORE WARDROBE MELTDOWNS is the title of the workshop I have handled on the 11th of May, in cooperation with Savio Los PT/Nutritionist and the Italian Fashion bran Liu Jo, at their flagship store in Marylebone, London.

The idea of this workshop came up from observing some of my clients. I have realized that more and more people, especially women, tend to buy lots of clothes and accessories every season, tempted by the millions of brands available in the high streets, by special offers, by the fashion trends of the moment and, sometimes, also by fashion bloggers.  As a result they usually end up with a wardrobe full of clothes and accessories, yet they feel they’ve got nothing to wear.

sounds familiar?! 

Well, Statistics show that the majority of people use a very little percentage of the items they own, and most of those items remain in their closet, sometimes still with the tags on.

I can tell you that most of the time having a minimal wardrobe can help us with our daily outfit choices and can turn out to be more functional than a full wardrobe! And the first step to get a functional wardrobe starts with our shopping choices. We need in fact to understand what to buy, to limit our purchases to what is really working for us: from the best cuts, shapes and combination to the best colours. It might seem difficult at the beginning but I can assure you that once you find your answers you will start shopping in a totally different way, more consciously and selectively and in the end you will find that this will also help you save money.

Another point that made me come up with the idea of this workshop is that most of my clients don’t just want to give a twist to their style, they actually want a dramatic change to their look and their image.  But, as I always say, while I can teach people how to enhance their features, I cannot change them.  So I thought to combine, in one single event, styling tips with fitness tips, thanks to the cooperation of Savio Los, an expert personal trainer and nutritionist.

Why have I chosen this particular store to host the event?! Liu Jo is an Italian fashion brand which is very popular in Italy and I’ve always been a fan. My opinion, as a stylist and a customer is that, apart from being original and different from other high street brands, their products have an incredible value for money, great quality and attention to details and great fit, especially for the denim, that is also their topic product, known above all for their exclusive BOTTOM UP formula. Yes...Bottom up! And it works!:-)

Anyway, fit and quality are, for me, essential elements for a good valuable shopping and a functional wardrobe.

Throughout the event we showed 5 models, each with a specific body shape and different proportions and colours. For every one of them I have created a personalized outfit, picking the best items to highlight their features; I called them one at a time, explained my choices to the audience. Savio could then give specific fitness and workout tips for every body shape we saw.

The first of the models was Benedetta

 photo by Julia Andrzejewska 

photo by Julia Andrzejewska 

Benedetta is a typical inverted triangle, which means she has quite broad shoulders that are wider than hips; her point of strength, the one to be highlighted, is surely her bottom part (hips + legs) while she needs to be careful not to highlight even more her shoulders. This is why I created this outfit for her : the details are concentrated on the jeans, focusing the eye attention on what is her point of strength, while I chooses plain simple clothes in soft fabrics for the top. Benedetta has also very soft colours and contrasts, that is why I choose soft colours as well for her outfit, trying to respect her natural colouring; this way the colours can highlight and complement her features without prevailing or dragging her down.

Being her quite tall I dared a bottom fold at her jeans (not suggested for petit or for who has fuller or short legs instead); as for the accessories I went for a medium to big size handbag, good for her proportions, and high heels, but she can even decide to go for flat or small heels, as she doesn't really need to elongate the figure.

the second model was Maeva  another inverted triangle but this time with bright crispy colours and high natural contrasts 

 photo by Julia Andrzejewska

photo by Julia Andrzejewska

To create her outfit I followed the same general rules as Benedetta, but I choose totally different colours and combinations, to highlight her features. For her, moreover, I choose a small sized handbag because she is a petit, and I also suggested (at least for her nights out) to wear always medium to high heels. 

To make targeted and right shopping choices, anyway, it is essential to know not only what works for us, but also what does not. For inverted triangles, like Maeva and Benedetta, here some clues of what to avoid: off the shoulders cuts, puffiness and volume on shoulders, stiff fabrics and horizontal stripes on top, specially if combined with plain darker trousers or skirts.

The third model was Crystel, this time a triangle, with deep colours and high contrasts.

 photo by Julia Andrzejewska

photo by Julia Andrzejewska

Triangles have, typically, hips wider then shoulders and, generally, the bottom part of the body is curvy and full while the top is smaller, also shoulders are usually a bit slope. The rules for creating a perfect outfit for a triangle are exactly the opposite of the inverted triangle :-) So what it is working? ..Details and volume on top, puffed and padded shoulders, plain items and soft fabrics instead for the bottom; usually triangles are characterized also by a narrow waist, in that case it is also good to highlight the waist point with cuts and belts. 

What to avoid instead? Sheath and bottom clinging dresses, details on legs and hips, trousers with pleats and darts, stiff fabrics on bottom, patterns (especially bold) on legs and hips. For Crystel, besides, pastels or too bright colours are to avoid.

Then we saw Anna, a full hourglass with soft colours and light contrasts

 photo by Julia Andrzejewska

photo by Julia Andrzejewska

We can say that someone is a hourglass when their shoulders and hips are even and they also have a narrow waist point; and when I talk about a "full hourglass" I mean someone with a quite curvy body. Basically hourglasses can wear any kind of clothes style, but generally speaking they need to pay attention to maintain their natural body balance with their outfits and full hourglasses in particular must take care to complement their natural curves with soft and fluid fabrics. They should also always try to highlight their waist through cuts and belts, being it a real point of strength. This is why I choose this dress for her, that gets all the elements to enhance her features. The outfit was then completed by a powder pink leather jacket (I am holing it in the picture) to create a nice soft contrast with the dress, high heels - good to elongate her legs - and a medium sized bag. 

What to avoid: stiff fabrics, sheath dresses, too much voluminous fabrics/shapes, horizontal stripes, stilettos (as their legs are usually quite full and needs to be elongated). For Anna, moreover, better to avoid bright or too dark colours and strong contrasts.

The 5th and last model was Giada, this time a neat hourglass with deep colours and soft contrasts.

neat hourglass_outfit

Giada, with everyone's great envy (in the good sense of course), is the luckiest of the models and in general she represents the luckiest of the body shapes: naturally balanced and proportioned and, in her case, also tall! As I said before, anyway, hourglasses must always take care to maintain their natural body balance; so for Giada I tried to focus the attention on the whole figure, by choosing a quite detailed top, enriched by the belt that is highlighting her waistline, in soft deep colours and soft contrasts to complement her natural colouring, contrasted by a white slim fit jeans. For her I choose flat sandals, as she doesn't really need high heels to elongate her legs, and a big sized handbags. 

What to avoid: I suggested Giada to avoid small sized handbags and pastel or bright colours, specially if worn close to her face.

For all of the models and the body shapes they represented, our PT Savio Los gave then his workout tips 

There are, obviously, many other kind of body shapes and features, everyone is different and have their own characteristics; would have been impossible to speak about and show all of them in one single event. But people looked impressed by all the tips they were able to get all at once, and the hour after the demonstration they could practice, with my help for a shopping consultation in real time.

We are willing to do soon another event, seeing the great success of this first edition! 

Now enjoy the photo gallery, with shots also from the backstage :-) and don't miss the video too 

Gallery 

All photos by Julia Andrzejewska

Video