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Body Shape Archives - Signature Five - A Personal Styling Service, Zurich

wardrobe detox

Decluttering Your Wardrobe Isn’t The First Step

By | Mindset & Confidence, Wardrobe Detox

Many stylists (me included) often talk about a wardrobe detox being the first activity we do with our clients.

But it’s recently occurred to me that I actually need to do a little rewind on that. Because, in actual fact, before I start doing anything physical with my clients, the very first step we take is an internal one.

You see, to truly find a style that speaks to you on every level, the first thing you need to do is get clear on your vision. And having a true vision means understanding your mindset and the limiting beliefs you have about who you are, what “society” expects of you, how comfortable and accepting you are of your body, and so on.

When you can be really honest about these things, you bust your own BS around them, the excuses about why you can’t have the style you want stop, and you’re free to just go for it.

Encouraging and supporting my clients with this mindset work can feel as enjoyable to me as the styling itself. When the internal pieces slot into place, magic happens and it’s like seeing a woman reborn and ready to take on the world – it’s truly glorious!

So, before you fling open your wardrobe doors and go full throttle into a declutter, first let’s find out…

What’s going on in your head?

Your mindset is the thing that will have the greatest impact on how you dress.

From believing you’re worth investing in, to challenging the idea that some women are just more stylish than others, how you think about these things will determine the style choices you make.

The most common disconnect I see in women when it comes to mindset, is that they want to prioritise their personal style but come up with a million excuses that hold them back…

  • I don’t have the perfect body
  • I have kids
  • They don’t make nice clothes in plus sizes
  • I need lots of money to have a great wardrobe

Sound familiar?

It’s easy to look at super stylish women and think it’s a breeze for them, but that simply isn’t true. There’s no such thing as effortless style; it takes work and commitment and a desire to genuinely care about how you look.

What style vision are you holding?

When it comes to your style you need to have a vision that’s fully aligned with your goals. How do you want to be in the world? How do you want people to see you? When you align your inner vision with your outward appearance your whole demeanor changes. You hold yourself more confidently, you command attention in an authentic way and you allow yourself to fully show up.

A great example of this is going for a promotion at work. If the promotion requires you to step up and lead a team, create a clear vision of how your outward appearance can support this? Never underestimate how much dressing for the role you’re stepping into can help you embody the mindset and confidence you need. Your style really is that powerful!

Once you’re clear on your vision and goals, give yourself permission to have some fun browsing magazines or searching Pinterest. Resources like these are brilliant for sparking your creativity and helping you understand what styles speak to you. In the ‘Get Visual’ section of my recent blog “Oh My God You Can’t Wear That!” I share more about using Pinterest as a tool for this purpose.

Are you working with your body?

Knowing what suits your body shape, skin tone and features is an absolute game changer. But I want to be clear, I’m talking about owning your body shape as it is right now, not how you hope it will be one day!

You deserve to feel amazing in your clothes whatever shape and size you are! And, when you use your clothes to your advantage, they can really accentuate and elevate your assets and minimize any less than desirable aspects.

Knowledge about which styles work best for your shape will help you create a more cohesive and streamlined wardrobe, which makes putting outfits together a dream.

Does your wardrobe reflect your time?

If you find yourself saying you have nothing to wear, it’s because your wardrobe is not entirely matching your lifestyle. Your clothes need to be aligned with how you spend most of your time.

When you have a few minutes spare, record how your week is broken down. Are you 60% at work, 20% doing sports and 20% socialising? Look at how this breaks down. Then look at your wardrobe and see if it represents how your time is split.

When your wardrobe is aligned with your lifestyle you’ll find it’s more cohesive and easier to dress every morning.

Once you have clarity on all of these elements, it’s finally time to throw open the doors to your wardrobe and let the decluttering begin! And I can guarantee you’ll do it with a far greater feeling of purpose and ease.

If you’re ready to commit to finding your style and would like support with piecing your your vision together, get in touch – it would be my pleasure to help you.

style and confidence

Why Your Style is Stuck (and How to Change it in 2020)

By | Style Tips, Wardrobe Detox

There are a million and one reasons why your style might be stuck right now. But knowing what to do to change it, isn’t always easy! 

I find a helpful way to start changing stuck energy around anything, is to ask myself a couple of key questions. My answers give me clarity and excitement, and this is no different when it comes to my clothes. 

Here are a few questions to ask when your style feels stuck…

  • Are you dressing how you actually want to?
  • Do you feel confident with your current style?
  • If not why not?

Many women I meet believe they have certain style-blocks that they just can’t move past, but more often than not they’re nothing to do with how to wear their clothes. In reality their blocks are mind ones about their body, their finances or whether they look like they’re trying too hard to be stylish. 

Let’s take a closer look at these…

‘My body is too…’

As a stylist I hear so many weight related excuses holding women back from dressing how they want, by insisting they need to be X size before they take action.  If this one is you, believe me, I hear you – media & society paints a very specific picture of what we should look like. 

“You really can look like a million dollars whatever shape or size you are!”

But I’m telling you now, you really can look a million dollars whatever shape or size you are, and feel great about yourself instead of hiding away behind clothes that make you feel down right blahhh!

When I have money, I will invest’

Have you ever heard the phrase ‘rich people have no style’? There’s actually an underlying thread of truth in this! I can assure you, you don’t need to make a big investment to have nice clothes and look great. Money is not the source of style – what is, is knowing how to combine and wear your clothes in a way that compliments your shape, personality and lifestyle.

‘I look like I’m trying too hard’

I hear this excuse a lot, especially here in Switzerland! Is it really such a bad thing to present yourself at your best and feel great? Let’s face it ladies, life is way too short to dress in a way we think other people expect. Forget everyone else – if you want to wear that tutu skirt and edge it up with a biker jacket, damn well go for it! Who knows, you might even encourage others to step up their style game in the process.

 So, do any of these ring true as obstacles you’re putting in your own way?

If they do, don’t worry, I’ve got you! Now let’s have a little look at how you can switch things up and elevate your style game for 2020:

Enough With the Excuses!

First things first, it’s time to stop making excuses and take some action – that may seem harsh but it’s true! If all you do every day is open your wardrobe doors, groan and tell yourself nothing will ever change, then low and behold it won’t! 

“Make this the year you take your style by the proverbial balls!”

So make the decision now – are you going to continue staying stuck in a rut, or are you going to make this the year you take your style by the proverbial balls and do something about it?! 

There’s Nothing Like a Good Review

With every 1:1 client I have, the first action we always take is a wardrobe review. If you want to create and embody the style vision you have for yourself, your first stop has to be your current wardrobe – it’s essential! 

There really is something magical that occurs when you clear your wardrobe and make it look aesthetically beautiful. But the magic is not just in how it looks, it’s also in the understanding it gives you of your style, what you like wearing, what makes you feel good and what is missing. 

If this is something you’ve been wanting to do but it seems like too much hard work, why not join my ‘Wardrobe Detox Challenge’ – it’s always more fun doing a task with other great women!

Take the Time to Plan Your Clothes

I have no doubt that as a busy woman you have plenty of know-how when it comes to planning your business, home, family, social engagements (the list goes on!), so why not use these skills to plan out your outfits too.

You could even put a variety of top-to-toe looks together in advance, take a photo of each and create yourself a little image reference library for future use – imagine the time that would save you! 

Small Things Can Make a Big Difference! 

The saying goes ‘the devil is in the details’, so gaining knowledge around the best way to dress your particular body type, and finding ways to add colour or extra touches with accessories, can make a huge difference to how you feel about your style. 

“Don’t be afraid to try something new”

Don’t be afraid to try something new. Just remember the colours you choose need to lift your complexion and your accessories must complement your clothes, rather than going into battle with them! 

Invest in a Style Expert

If you’ve been trying for a while to up your style game but always slip back to what is tried and tested, then it might be time to think about investing in some expert guidance. 

So many people think it costs an arm and a leg to hire the services of a stylist, but I promise you that’s not the case! When you weigh up the time it takes you each day to decide what to wear, buying clothes you don’t end up wearing, the dissatisfaction you feel wearing the same-old-same-old clothes every day, or the insecurity of not knowing if the style you really want to embody suits you, it really is an investment that’s worth making.

Now the decision is yours – are you going to stay stuck or will you take action and knock your style game out of the park in 2020?

If you’re up for the challenge of clearing out the cobwebs and deepest darkest crevices of your wardrobe so you can make better outfit decisions every morning, come and join me in the ‘Wardrobe Detox Challenge’ – I can’t wait to help you create wardrobe heaven! 

Dress for the Body You Have Now

By | Accessories, Style Tips, Uncategorised

All too often I hear women complaining about their bodies, and using all of the negative things they see as obstacles to dressing in a way that they truly desire.

What’s fascinating is that the way we see ourselves when we look in the mirror, is more often than not worlds apart from the way others see us! 

I mean let’s be honest, who hasn’t had the experience of staring at your reflection and then laser focusing in on all the bits about your body you don’t like – “I’m too fat”, “I’m too thin”, “My hips are too wide”, “My bums too big”, “My boobs are too small”. On and on and on we go, magnifying each little thing to be so much more than it is.

I get it, truly I do – I’m a recovering self-abuser myself! But you can bet your bottom dollar that if you let someone else listen in to your internal dialogue, half of what we see they won’t even have noticed.

The struggle feels real

Women who are interested in my styling services contact me because they really want to elevate their personal style. Many have a desire to start dressing like the woman they visualise themselves becoming, but find it challenging because they’re struggling with their weight or body image. 

These women will often arrange their appointment for 3 months time and, as the appointment approaches, they’ll then call me to move the date, telling me they haven’t quite got to the place they want their body shape to be.

Every time this happens I give a little sigh inside, because I know, hand on heart, that living a life continuously dissatisfied with your body and chasing a perfect ‘ideal’ shape is a soul destroying exercise. The reality is your body is amazing and a miracle and by learning how to dress it properly, whatever your shape or size, will help you embrace and love the hell out of it, so you feel gorgeous every day.  

Can I really wear this? 

I’m often asked, “If I’m a certain shape can I only wear certain clothes?” The honest answer is no… aaaand yes (sorry)! Of course, you are free to wear whatever you want, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise! My only rule is your clothes need to match your personality and lifestyle, and most of all you need to feel confident in them – that is always the end goal.  I mean let’s face it, no one wants to be fidgeting or feeling self-conscious in their outfit.  Your clothes should feel like your second skin, so that you forget about them as soon as you walk out of the house.

With this in mind, let’s dive in to some common issues I hear and some ways you can address them…

How to hide your midriff

I understand that the urge is great to shroud this area with as much coverage as possible, but don’t do it! PLEASE! Doing so just ends up creating more bulk, which in turn draws more attention there. Cover by all means, but keep it to no more than a couple of well fitting layers.

Don’t conceal your waist

If you have a small waist really emphasise this asset by wearing tops that skim your body but are not baggy. You need to ensure the top fits you well across your bust and waist, and then from there it can flare slightly – the key is to make sure it isn’t too baggy.

Alternatively if you feel more comfortable in loose tops, focus on ensuring the bottom half is drawn in, perhaps with an elasticated ribbed panel or tucked into a waistband.

Shapewear

For some outfits shapewear is every girl’s best friend, and a godsend for creating the silhouette you want.  I personally keep a pair handy in my underwear drawer for those occasions when I’m wearing skimming dresses, to help smooth any lumps and bumps I want to hide.

Shoes

It’s a little known fact that wearing the right shoes can help slim down your midsection.  Yes, I know that might sound daft, but I’ll repeat it again, the type of shoe you wear can help you slim down your midsection! How? Well, wearing a thicker heel helps balance your proportions out. 

For the diehard stiletto wearers amongst us, I recommend opting for a pointy shoe, to help elongate you through the body.

Wear the right size

We need to be realistic ladies – wearing clothes that are a size too small does not make you look smaller! While we don’t want to be hiding behind clothes that are baggy and shapeless, squeezing yourself into something too small is definitely less than flattering for any figure, and not to mention fraught with potential wardrobe malfunctions!!

Accessories for distraction

The humble and massively underestimated belt is fabulous for drawing your eye to your smallest area and creating a great waistline.  Also, jewelry can be used to great effect as a distraction from your least favourite areas. Wear bold statement earrings to draw your attention up and away from the body, or a long necklace to make the eye travel inwards rather than outwards. Clever hey!

How to conceal your thighs

Another issue I hear a lot about is slimming the thigh area. This can be a really problematic area for many women, but a few simple tricks can have you conquering this troublesome spot with ease! Let’s take a look…

No thrills or frills

Opt for trousers with minimal detailing, especially around the pocket area or down the sides, as this widens the thighs and draws attention there. 

Long & lean

Straight and bootcut pants are the perfect style to elongate your silhouette, and give a longer and sleeker look to your thighs. Who doesn’t want legs that look like they go on for days!!

Fabrics

It’s amazing what a difference certain types of fabrics can make to the appearance of your thighs! Choose lightweight fabrics rather than heavier ones, as the latter will add more bulk where it’s least wanted.

Choose the right length of skirt

The most flattering skirts have a hemline that finishes on the slimmest part of your leg. Think 50’s wiggle skirts – now there’s a style that accentuates curves and elongates the legs!

The key thing to remember is…

The best way to divert the eye away from your least favourite bits, is to showcase your best assets as much as possible.

If you’re unsure what your best assets are, and would like some expert guidance, feel free to get in touch at info@signature-five.com – I’d love to help! 

And if you have any particular body/fashion challenges that you’d like me to address in my next blog, I’d love to hear from you – again please email me at info@signature-five.com.

 

What to Wear on the Beach?

By | Style Tips

During the summer months, going on a beach holiday can stir up all sorts of anxiety about our bodies, and dread about revealing ourselves to the world in a swimsuit or bikini. We start to worry about our wobbly bits, our too skinny bits and all the bits in between, and sadly for many the excitement of a lovely holiday becomes tinged with a little (or a lot of) dread!

Finding the perfect beach look can, for some, feel like an uphill battle. So many of us can’t bear the idea of trawling around the shops trying swimwear on, so instead we opt for ordering it online and keeping our fingers and toes crossed that when it arrives it fits and looks as we imagine.

My advice when buying swimwear is to really shop around (even if that is online) and don’t just settle for the first thing you see and hope for the best! These days we’re really lucky as there are so many more options to choose from for every shape, that help you look and feel as fabulous as possible in your swimwear.

Bikini vs Swimsuit

Can you remember the time when bikinis were the thing everyone wore and swimsuits were seen as, well, a bit mumsy! Fast forward to today and the swimsuit is now hot property and is personally something I feel more comfortable in than a bikini.  With a bikini I’m constantly fidgeting and fiddling to make sure there’s been no embarrassing slips, and everything is still where it should be after going in the water!

The range of bikinis and swimsuits is so vast now, that with a bit of time and thought you really can find the perfect style that flatters your body shape, and helps you feel confident and on-trend.

Body Hang Ups

Not in shape?If you feel your body isn’t the shape you would like it to be, swimwear anxiety can feel crippling! If this is you, I recommend going a for a swimsuit rather than a bikini and choosing one that has the most Lycra possible. A good brand is Miracle Suit, which has three times the control of ordinary swimwear fabrics – godsend!

Tummy Concealer

If you want to conceal your tummy and enhance your waist, look for designs that have ruching around the tummy area. As you can see from the image shared, this style is extremely flattering for the curvier amongst us.

Reduce That Bust

If you’re large busted, I recommend a bikini or swimsuit that is underwired and provides plenty of support, so you can feel confident that things will stay where you’d like them too!

Increase That Bust

If you have a small chest, then padded swimwear is a great option for you. The padding will help create better proportions, and halter necks are a really good shape to flatter and enhance your bust.

Bottoms Up

Bigger bottom area? I advise going for bottoms that offer more coverage and support. 50’s style high waisted bikinis are very fashionable this season for all ages and are great for covering and enhancing the waist and bottom in a very elegant and flattering way. I also recommend keeping any pattern or detail to the top half of your swimsuit or bikini, as this helps to draw the eye upwards.

Miracle Suit

Norma Kamali

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cover Ups

Welcome to the wonderful world of cover ups! Nowadays you’ll be relieved to know that you can look super-stylish on the beach without having to bare all. I love cover ups as they’re so versatile and can also be worn as daywear, which is a godsend when you’re putting together your holiday capsule wardrobe.

To give you a little inspiration on the variety of coverups available, here are a few of my favourites:

Marie France Van Damme

Mara Hoffman

Melissa Odabash

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Accessories

This season there are so many gorgeous holiday accessories to choose from, it’s sometimes hard to know where to start! My advice when it comes to beach accessories is less is definitely more. Adding a couple of well-chosen pieces elevates your look and helps divert attention away from the areas of your body that you’re not so confident about.

Here are some of my favourites beach accessories for this season:

Tohum

Rae Feather

Kenneth Jay Lane

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We all deserve to relax and enjoy our time at the beach, without dragging the nagging negative talk around in our heads, and with a little bit of thought you really can create a fantastic look that has you feeling like the confident beach goddess you are. And if you need any extra support to find your perfect beach style, please feel free to get in touch and see how our styling services can help you.