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style sabotage

Are You Sabotaging Your Style?

By | Style Tips

Getting up and dressed is something we do every day, so we’d be forgiven for assuming that it should automatically be easy.

Maybe you’re one of the lucky few that wakes up every morning, bounces out of bed and excitedly flings open the doors to your closet because you know that every item that greets you is something you love and just can’t wait to put on?

Hmmmm… maybe, or maybe not!

The all too familiar reality for most women is quite the opposite. It’s far more akin to waking up with an impending feeling of dread and anxiety at the idea of having to think about what to wear, and whether it will look ok and if it’s actually clean and ironed! Then you begin the slow walk to your wardrobe, open the doors and, even though it’s packed to the gills, you look inside and feel like you have nothing to wear.

One of the things I’ve noticed is that when women feel like they’ve got nothing to wear, they tend to cycle their way through what I call the ‘6-stages of style sabotage’. style sabotage

Stage 1 – Belief

What we tell ourselves over and over has an impact on the beliefs we have about ourselves and our situation. Starting your day telling yourself, “I have nothing to wear” when in reality you’re staring into a closet full of clothes, just reinforces that belief.

Stage 2 – Hope

Because the belief, “I have nothing to wear” really doesn’t feel good, after a while you start to do something about your situation. Perhaps you look for hope in places like Pinterest, Instagram or YouTube. You get busy trying to find inspiration reading blogs, taking screenshots and pinning like crazy. Or perhaps you spend time watching videos trying to find out what kind of style, or what kind of items you need in your wardrobe.

Stage 3 – Purge

Then it’s off to your wardrobe to purge like crazy because everything you’ve got in there isn’t exactly what’s on your Pinterest board. So, you get rid of your clothes and just leave a handful of items behind. The problem is you now have very little left to wear, so you end up wearing the same things over and over and grow bored with them very quickly.

Stage 4 – Spend

The danger with getting bored is that you now want to go out and shop to fill in the gaps. Because you actually need new items now, you go on a massive spree and spend, spend, spend because there’s so many shiny objects in front of you. And of course, the sales assistant is telling you, “Oh that looks amazing on you”, so you buy the clothes because, hey, they make you feel good because they’re brand new.

Stage 5 – The High

For a while you find yourself loving your new clothes. You feel great and confident in them and enjoy getting ready each day. This is the way you dream of feeling every day and you don’t want it to end.

Stage 6 – The Low Wave

Once the high of your new clothes starts to fade, these items no longer feel like you. Slowly the feeling of “I don’t have anything to wear”, starts creeping back in because, let’s face it, you’re getting bored of them again now. They’re just not fulfilling you in the same way as they did when you first bought them. Slowly but surely you start wearing them less and less, and you might even start reverting back to your original clothes again.

And then the cycle repeats itself, leaving you once again with a wardrobe full of clothes but nothing to wear.

I find this perpetuating cycle happens with a lot of women. To break the cycle, you need to know the foundations of the style you want.

My Signature Five Style Formula

This is where my Signature Five Style Formula comes in. It’s the formula I’ve been using with my 1:1 clients for almost 5-years now.

It entails building a wardrobe based on:

  • Who you are – your personality
  • Your characteristics
  • Your lifestyle
  • Your body type (putting on clothes that really fit and flatter you), and
  • Your goals

style sabotageI take clients through each of these steps to get the style they want, so they no longer experience closet frustration, or waste money on the wrong items, or experience boredom with the clothes they wear.

So, what are your goals?

Because believe it or not your goals correlate to your style. You need to embody who you want to be and what you want to achieve in life, and how you show up style wise is part of that.

My Signature Five Style Formula enables you to create your Signature Style and stop the sabotage cycle of spending money on clothes that, in the end, end up being given away or given to charity.

I’m excited to announce that I’m running a workshop to teach women how to dress for their body. This is one of the things that really stops women from dressing how they want to and is one of the most common and major style blocks. Dressing for your body shape and wearing clothes that fit and flatter you are the easiest way to start loving your clothes. Click here to show me you’re interested and I’ll send you the details for the workshop.

Christmas Partywear

Finding Your Dressing Up Mojo

By | Style Tips

Last weekend I was in town shopping for a client who was going to be on CNN news and urgently needed something to wear. 

The weather was gorgeous, and as restaurants with terraces were open again, town was buzzing. It felt so good and just like any normal day with no sign of a pandemic.

What was also really special was seeing people dressed up again. Everywhere I looked there were women in beautiful dresses and heels, and some wore more casual outfits but still looked like they’d made a real effort. There was hardly a jogging bottom or lounge pant in sight – it was balm for my stylist soul!

It was such a wonderful sight and made me really happy, which inspired me to write this blog. 

I’ve always found the connection between getting dressed up and happiness really fascinating. I know being a stylist might make me a little biased, but I honestly believe, as Geraldine Wharry said in a BBC News fashion article, that “Dressing up is a way of reclaiming happiness regardless of outside factors”.

And let’s be honest, after everything we’ve been through this last year, I think we all deserve a big dose of happiness in our lives! 

Bye bye joggers!

No matter how popular or luxurious humble tracksuits and loungewear sets became in 2020, the fact is that these items of clothing will always be synonymous with a relaxed, comfortable vibe. 

In 2020 they fit the bill perfectly for our stay at home lifestyle. But now that we’re finally starting to break free and get out into life again, it’s time to refocus on our style and start wearing slightly dressier and more put together outfits again.

Finding your dressing up mojo

One of the things I’ve been noticing a lot over the last month, is just how uncertain so many women are feeling about their style right now. For some the uncertainty is because they’re out of touch and out of practice with putting together a great look. While for others there’s a desire to step out into this ‘new normal’ rocking a whole new vibe, but they just don’t know where to start or what will suit them.  

I totally resonate with the fact that gaining an understanding of your personal style can feel quite daunting. Sometimes it’s easier to just stick with what you know and refresh a few bits in your wardrobe, even though deep down you want something more for yourself. 

When you feel like you don’t know what you’re doing, it can be hard to motivate yourself. So here are a few tips that will help you get your style mojo fired up again… 

  • How do you want to turn upin my last blog I talked about the connection between your style and identity. Our clothes are such a powerful tool for helping us to express ourselves and embody certain roles and mindsets. So, as you’re getting ready every morning and are thinking about where you’re going and what you’re doing, also consider how you want to turn up and be seen by others. 
  • What’s already in your wardrobe – during 2020 most of us have worked from home, and for many of us we’ve been existing in some kind of weird fashion groundhog day, wearing the same few items of clothing on constant rotation. To rev up your motivation for dressing up again, it’s time to explore the deeper depths of your wardrobe and reconnect with all those long-forgotten items that you love. 
  • Get inspired – if you’re uncertain of your style, why not draw inspiration from other women. I often look at celebrities, magazines, Instagram and Pinterest for my inspiration. There’s no shame in falling in love with someone else’s style and then emulating that. Over time you’ll grow in confidence and start adding your own special twists to outfits that make them uniquely you. One of the things I do with all of my clients is create a Style Board with them on Pinterest. They’re a lot of fun to make and are a brilliant tool for getting our creative styling juices flowing again. 
  • Come and join my workshop – honestly you’d be crazy not to! You see the easiest and ultimate way to motivate and inspire yourself is to work with a professional like me. I have a wealth of knowledge and a whole lot of tools that make finding your personal style effortless. My live and interactive workshops are amazing for helping you get clarity and create a style board, so you know exactly what styles light you up on the inside, and will fit perfectly with your current lifestyle. 

As Spring continues to blossom and we slowly emerge from our own bricks and mortar cocoons, let’s get excited again about dressing up!

Are you ready to make 2021 the year you claim your unique style? Come and join me for my 2-hour ‘How to Create Your Personal Style’ workshop. I’m gifting you (yes that means it’s free!) this opportunity to completely revolutionise your style – click here and join us on Saturday 1st or Sunday 2nd May. Let’s make style magic happen!

inner critic

Oh My God You Can’t Wear That!

By | Mindset & Confidence, Style Tips

“No seriously, you cannot wear that! I mean, who do you think you are? You look ridiculous. You’re way too young/ old/ fat/ thin/ short/ tall…” Blah, blah, blah! Let’s be honest, most of us have an inner critic that can easily pop a word (or ten) onto the end of a statement like that!

The inner critic

As a stylist, I often find myself coming up against my client’s inner critics. I can see the moment when this internal dialogue kicks in. Insecurity and doubt surface, which holds them back from making decisions about what to buy or wear.

I recently worked with a client whose inner critic kicked in whenever she went to buy clothes. The insecurity she felt about her choices and whether items would suit her or not, stopped her from buying anything at all.

In almost every area of her life she was extremely successful and capable. But when it came to her personal style and shopping for clothes, she found herself constantly going back and forth about whether she should buy something or not, or whether something was her style. She kept having a constant inner dialogue with herself. So much so that by the time she’d made the decision to go for it, more often than not the item she was considering would be sold out!

Sound familiar?

If, like my client, you also find yourself feeling insecure about buying clothes because you don’t know if it’s the right piece to invest in. Or you don’t know if something is going to suit you. Or you don’t know how to wear it. I’m here to let you know there are solutions.

The solutions

The first place I always start with my clients is with their intentions and desires for their style. As with most things in life, if you don’t have a clear image in your mind of what you want, it’s so easy to get hijacked and thrown off by your inner critic. Start with how do you want to turn up in the world? How would you like to dress?

Then review your wardrobe. It’s important to see what you already have and to decide what you do and don’t like and, just as importantly, how each piece of clothing makes you feel. It’s amazing how many of us have wardrobes filled with clothes that are completely out of alignment with our lifestyles and the woman that we are right now and/or are working towards becoming.

Instead, we allow all sorts of other things to dictate our style. The expectations and habits of the person you used to be. The image that family, friends or your profession have of you. The “appropriateness” that society puts on you. All of these things create a disconnect between you and your true style personality.

Get visual

One of the most powerful and fun ways I help women connect with their style is by creating a mood board of images. Pinterest is hands down my favourite resource for doing this. You can start a board and then have a wonderful time exploring the incredible array of images available on the platform. What you’re looking for are images that light you up and speak to the woman inside you. You might pin complete head to toe looks or individual items, colours, textures, or even images that simply portray a vibe and energy and feeling you’re looking for.

Having this kind of visual representation of your style is so helpful for putting looks together. Initially you might copy a complete look, which is fine, or you might immediately find that the images spark your own inspiration for how you want to put pieces together and create looks that are unique to you.

And remember, you can always get a tailor to alter your clothes, so they fit you perfectly. So, don’t let your inner critic keep you sitting on the fence because an item you love doesn’t fit quite right. If you love it take the plunge and get it altered.

If you’re letting your inner critic hold you back from having the style you want, please get in touch. Together we can kick your critic to the curb, so you can sashay into your future owning a style that’s truly yours.

Pink Colour Shirt

Colour is Your Superpower

By | Colour Consultation

When I first started Signature Five, I had no intention of also being a colour consultant. My mission was to help professional women find their Signature Style, love their clothes and feel confident in what they wear.

I also wanted to help women simplify their choices in the morning by wearing clothes that not only flatter them, but allow them to simply and easily create stylish combinations.

With a background as a fashion buyer, putting colours together came quite naturally to me. Rather than using a colour concept with my clients, I followed my instinct with what I felt suited them. Having worked for global brands, I understood how colour reflects on different skin tones. For example, with a warm undertone to the skin warmer colours work better, and with a cool undertone it’s cooler ones.

The power of colour

I finally decided to train with Colour Me Beautiful, even though I initially felt it was slightly outdated and from a different era. However, I quickly realised that colour really can be a woman’s superpower!

As part of the training we all had our colour analysis done. I was surprised to see how different colours looked on me. Certain shades balanced and harmonized my skin tone and made it look more even, whereas other ones created shadows on my face.

“Colour really can be a woman’s superpower”

Another interesting aspect was the way certain colours made me feel. With red against my skin I naturally felt more confident and sexier, and the same with navy and neutrals. These are definitely my go-to colours. On the flip side I  saw how another of my favourites, light grey, didn’t really work so well for my skin tone.

I’m sure you’ve also experienced this when you’ve tried on certain colours and seen the effect they have on your skin tone; they either drain us or make us glow. We usually have an inkling as to which colours work best for us, yet sometimes we still wear ones that highlight certain things we might want to cover such as wrinkles and dark circles.

Colour characteristics

Colour Me Beautiful is based on the Munsell Colour System. I won’t go into all the history, but in brief, it was developed by an American artist, Albert Munsell, in 1988 and is now the most used and widely accepted colour measurement system. The system is based on three characteristics: Hue, Value and Chroma.

During your colour analysis I find your dominant characteristics and then your secondary and tertiary. By the end you have 42 swatches that best fit your characteristics. It’s nice to know its 42, but I do feel that having all these colours in your wardrobe can be slightly overwhelming. It can also end up making you look like a walking rainbow, and we definitely don’t want that!

“There are no rules to say you can’t wear certain colours”

So, I like to keep it simple and practical. With my clients I split their pallet into neutrals that best suit them, then their core colours, plus 2-3 accent colours. This simplification makes it easier to add additional colour to their wardrobe. The neutrals are brought into their foundation pieces and then we build from there.

What I want you to understand though is that there are no rules to say you can’t wear certain colours. Anyone can wear any colour they want. The most important thing is that you feel confident and comfortable wearing it. Colours are a wonderful thing that are there to be embraced, enjoyed, and used to help you stand out because you know you look and feel great.

Wearing the right colours can…

  1. Make you look younger
  2. Give you a natural glow
  3. Help you feel confident
  4. Make you stand out and get noticed and
  5. If you’re a business owner it can help make your brand stand out.

Colours make a difference

It’s amazing the many ways that colour can make a difference and influence our lives and environment.

It can elevate your style

One of the easiest and fastest ways to transform a plain outfit into something more exciting, is to simply add a little bit of colour. It also creates versatility. Once you know what silhouettes suit you, you can add colour to create more options in your wardrobe.

Colour influences

Colour can be used as a tool to express who you are and to influence others. It not only invokes feelings in you as the wearer but also in others when they look at you! You can make a statement about yourself by using colour. Whether you’re an entrepreneur or work in corporate, colour can be used to give you a distinctive personal brand.

Draw attention to your assets

By cleverly wearing colour on parts of your body that you like, you can instantly draw attention there and away from areas that you’d prefer to disguise!

Colour creates emotions

Colour not only affects your physical appearance, but also your emotional state too. Wearing the right colours can help to create a happier, more empowered mood, but wearing colours that drag you down can also have the opposite effect.

It’s your superpower

In the workplace, you can use colour to your advantage. It can help you stand out from a sea of blues, blacks, and greys, and can also give you the edge at interviews. As more of us are continuing to work from home and spend time on video conferencing calls, colour is a great tool to help you be more visible on screen.

It can also affect how others perceive you. For example, wearing navy and black can convey authority or simply make the wearer seem less approachable .

Overall, knowing what colours work for you can help you have a clearer and more decisive wardrobe. It can also take the frustration out of shopping when there is so much choice out there.

I will end here with one of my favourite quotes…

“The best colour in the whole world is one that looks best on you” ~ Coco Chanel

If you feel a little in the dark about which colours suit you best book a ‘Refresh Your Style & Colour’ call. I have two spots left and I’d love to work with you.

Signature Style

How do You Create a Signature Style?

By | Style Tips

Do you know why the likes of Amal Clooney, Meghan Markle and Katie Holmes all look amazing? Ok yes, they might have a brilliant stylist, but if you look carefully you’ll see they all have a signature style.

Every time you see them photographed there’s always a synergy with what they’re wearing, and they look extremely well put together.

These ladies know what they like and have a style personality that’s the perfect match with their lifestyles. They don’t necessarily follow trends, but when they do, it’s a trend that works for them and suits their physical appearance.

Take Amal Clooney for example. You’ll instantly see that she always looks well-polished and put together. She definitely dresses to impress whether she’s going to a courtroom or hanging out with her kids and gorgeous hubby. There’s a synergy with what she wears that oozes sophisticated chic – clean, feminine tailored silhouettes, minimalistic jewellery (often earrings rather than necklaces) and a bold lipstick to accentuate her pouty lips. Head to toe she always looks a million dollars.

What is a signature style?

Many might describe signature style as a uniform, but I beg to differ. Uniforms remind me of what I wore to school in the UK; polyester shirt with a navy and green striped tie, navy pleated skirt and a cheap navy V-neck sweater with the school emblem. We all looked like clones!

The way I look at signature style is that it’s an outward translation of who you are on the inside. Our clothing is our second skin that shows the world who we are. It needs to complement our first skin and our lives, and not dominate or become the only focal point.

“Our clothes should make us feel like our best version of ourselves and create a memorable and authentic image.” 

Something I believe and share with my clients are the five key components to creating your signature style. Some will be obvious and others less so.

Let’s take a look at each of them…

Component 1: Mindset

Quite frankly I think this is the most important of the five components, and something you may not have even considered when it comes to your style. However, 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. Of course, it also depends whether your personal style is a priority to you (if it’s not that’s absolutely fine). But if it is something you prioritise, you’ll be far more willing to invest the time, money and effort aligning your style to who you are.

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, such as…

  1. I can’t dress like her because I don’t have the perfect body
  2. I can’t dress how I want because I have kids
  3. They don’t make nice clothes in plus sizes
  4. To have a great wardrobe I need lots of money

I could go on and on!

It’s easy to look at super stylish women and think it’s a breeze for them because they have great figures, they have more money or they have more time, and if I had all of that it would be easy for me too.

But that simply isn’t true. There’s no such thing as effortless style; it takes work and commitment.

Style comes when you care

Style doesn’t come when you have all your ducks in a row. It comes when you care about how you look and decide to make it a priority. And if style isn’t your priority at the moment, there’s no shame in that.

But you can’t say your style is a priority for you and then not put any effort in – that’s where the disconnect lies. Your actions need to match your mindset.

Recently after giving birth I kept feeling crap about the way I looked and blamed it on all the baby weight I’d put on (chocolate bar regret felt very real!!). I kept thinking, “I need to lose weight before I can dress how I want”. I was giving myself a hard time, but in reality there was a disconnect because I wasn’t actually making much effort with looking my best – I was lucky if I had time to wash my hair!

As soon I came to terms with the fact that my appearance wasn’t my priority at that time, I freed myself up to focusing on what really mattered, which was adapting to life with a new member in our family and being a family of 4.

Now I’m back at work my priority has shifted again. My body isn’t quite back to how it was pre-pregnancy, but I’m not hung up on it, because I’m doing something about it. I’m putting in the time, money and investment and wearing clothes that flatter me best.

How do you feel getting dressed?

To find out how you really feel about your style, think about how you feel getting dressed every morning. Do you just see it as a chore, or do you see it as part of your self-care and self-expression? How do you feel about the clothes you put on every morning? These feelings are important as they set the tone for your day.

How highly do you prioritise your self-image?

Granted self-image won’t always be a top priority for everyone, and that’s absolutely fine. But if it is something you’re not happy with, do you believe you can learn about and stretch your style muscles? Are you willing to put the effort and time in and not make excuses?

Once you’ve given yourself permission to make your self-image a priority, you can then consider the next components.

Component 2: Personality

Like anything you do, you need to have a vision of how you want to look and what message you want to convey.

Think about it this way. If you were decorating a home, you wouldn’t just start randomly buying every piece of furniture you like. First you’d think about what kind of space you want to create and the mood – are you going for antique or shabby chic, or a cleaner minimalistic look? Then you’d buy furniture that’s to your taste and adds a finesse that makes you feel good about the room.

It’s the same with your style. Your style should translate who you are on the inside to how you look on the outside. (I’ll be exploring this in more detail in my upcoming blog, ‘How to Look Effortlessly Stylish’.) 

Component 3: Lifestyle

Do you often hear yourself saying you have nothing to wear? Well, this is because your wardrobe is not entirely matching your lifestyle. Your clothes need to be functional for your everyday activities, but more often than not we end up with a wardrobe that sways more to one aspect of our lives than the others.

Next time you have a few minutes spare, record how your week is broken down. For example, are you 60% at work, 20% doing sports and 20% socialising. Then look at your wardrobe; does it represent 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.

Component 4: Physical Characteristics 

Quite simply, this is knowing what suits your body shape, skin tone and features. Be true to yourself and don’t look at how you hope to dress if you were a few sizes smaller or bigger. Dress for the body and skin you have now because believe me, it’s the one you’ll be wishing you had in 10-years’ time!

Use clothes to your advantage as they can really accentuate and elevate your assets and minimize any less than desirable aspects.

Learning how to dress for your body and knowing what colours to wear is a long-term investment that can be a big game changer.

Component 5: Essential Pieces for a Signature Style

This goes hand in hand with lifestyle. Every woman needs to have staple pieces in her wardrobe that she can dress up or down, and that truly reflect her personality and lifestyle.

From my experience, one reason women struggle with building multiple outfits is because they lack good basics. Avoid trends unless it’s one that you can pull off and will last many seasons in your wardrobe.

If you look at the women who dress with style and ease and look comfortable in their skin, you’ll see how they use the right essential pieces that become part of their staple look.

Another point to remember is that your essential pieces don’t need to break the bank! Always remember to buy the best quality and mix high and low prices. For example, I spend around 30CHF on white t-shirts because I know they’ll wear out quickly. I’ll buy a few of them as they’re part of my signature style, but I also wear a lot of blazers and these will vary in price range. I have high priced ones as well as a couple from Zara that are timeless.

“The key to making a signature look work year after year, is to be consistent but not fall entirely into a rut” – stylist Kate Young

Once you’ve done all the hard work with establishing and building your signature style, you need to ensure you keep it current.

I’m not a believer of constantly shopping, but sometimes some styles do get outdated or look worn out. Just keep this in mind and always be on the lookout for a replacement.

I’ll leave you with one of my favourite quotes from Anne Klein…

“Clothes aren’t going to change the world. The women who wear them will.”

If you’re ready to create a signature style and would like to discuss these component parts in more detail, I’m here to help! Book yourself in for a style consultation and we can talk things through together.

How to Dress With Confidence & Style

By | Style Tips

Clothes that flatter and make you feel fabulous, help to tell a story about your personality and the lifestyle you lead. However, putting together a look that conveys confidence and style doesn’t come naturally to everyone.

But how exactly do you put multiple looks together that showcase these different elements of who you are? 

Let’s walk through the process together…

Don’t Forget Your Basics 

Most commonly when I do a wardrobe detox with my clients, the number one reason they find it challenging to build a cohesive wardrobe is they lack versatility in their basic pieces. 

If you find yourself in this same situation, I highly recommend that your first port of call is to shop for some basic staples that fit with your personality and lifestyle. For some inspiration on what these basics need to ideally consist of, download my Ultimate Wardrobe Checklist, which will give you some additional guidance. 

Choose Your Anchor Colours

Image by engin akyurt from Pixabay

Colour is super important with wardrobe basics. Not only is it important to wear colours that you love, but also to know which shades of those colours work with your particular skin-tone. Getting the shade right can transform the whole look, not to mention make you look younger and radiant. 

Choosing a few core colours anchors the look you’re wanting to create. For example, you may be drawn to navy and white, so ensure these are represented across your basic wardrobe staples. 

Once you have your basic colour pieces nailed, you can then start adding some accent colours that are more exciting and unique. 

Not all of us are always aware which colours look the best on us and make us look our most vibrant. If this is you, I highly recommend investing in a colour consultation, which will help immensely with understanding which colours, and in particular which shades of those colours, look best on you. 

Tie Your Outfit Together With a Theme

Visca Wedding

When you’re lusting after the style of a beautifully dressed woman, you’ll notice that the items she’s wearing are somehow linked together. There is a common head-to-toe theme that creates a polished look.

There are numerous ways you can achieve this type of uber stylish look:

  • Opt for wearing similar shades of the same colour. Or, wear colours that match well together – don’t over do it though, wear no more than three different colours together, but really the ideal ratio is two. 
  • Choose a style that links your whole outfit together. For example, it could be a bohemian vibe, a romantic look or perhaps city chic. This doesn’t mean everything needs to match, but there needs to be one clear theme working across your whole outfit that helps people identify with you.

Find Inspiration From Others

I must admit I love a bit of people watching! 

Now to be clear I’m not suggesting you become a stalker, but if you’re drawn to the style of someone, then take note of how they’ve put their look together and what makes it stand out.

As I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, one of my favourite places to find inspiration is Pinterest. As part of my styling service I create a style board for each of my clients using this fantastic tool – why not have some fun and create one for yourself? 

Find Your Signature Style

I’m a firm believer that if you want to look polished and feel super confident, then find a style that matches your personality and lifestyle (as I’ve alluded to throughout this blog).

To stand out, choose something about your style that people will always associate with you. Is it a certain colour you wear, or perhaps you always wear long earrings or a hot shade of red lipstick? 

For me, most often I wear blazers, silk blouses and stilettos and I’m also known for rocking a jumpsuit or two. These looks have now become my Signature Style.

So, what’s your Signature Style going to be? Or perhaps you already have one? 

If you’re interested in learning more about your style and colour, why not book a Style and Colour Consultation with me at my style studio in Zurich. Together we’ll work out what colours best suit you and identify a Signature Style based on your personality, lifestyle and body shape.

For more details, please feel free to contact me at info@signature-five.com – I’m excited to hear from you!

Christmas Partywear

Fashion That’s Not Just for Christmas!

By | Event, Event style, Investment pieces, Partywear, Personal Shopping, Uncategorised

This time of year can often be the busiest for Stylists, as we play Fairy Godmother to all the Cinderellas attending galas, parties, balls, and all things festive.

Trust me, I know how stressful it can be to find that perfect outfit for any such occasion.  

And this time of year it’s especially hard to resist the temptations that are dangled in front of us like glittering baubles on a Christmas tree, when our inboxes are bursting with fabulous partywear, and our instagram grids filled with dazzling outfits that makes us drool and want to dash out and buy something new! 

While there’s nothing wrong with wanting something new (it is Christmas after all), it’s actually super savvy to invest in pieces that you know won’t date. Why not have partywear that you can rely on every December (and for the other 11-months of the year as well), and still have heads turning because you look absolutely fabulous. 

Here are a few suggestions on how you can still look like a goddess with timeless festive pieces and also make the most out of your wardrobe.

Ravishing Rentals

If you have a more formal Christmas event, rather than finding a new dress, why not rent a dress. One of my ultimate favourite brands is ‘Peppermint Rent-a-Dress’.  Not only do they cater for all shapes and sizes, but both Daria and Benjamin (founders) go out of their way to give impeccable customer service. Prices are very affordable and it’s also a great way of looking incredible while adding less to your wardrobe and being conscious of the environment.

 

 

 

 

 

Add Some Sparkle

It wouldn’t feel like Christmas without having a bit of sparkle in your wardrobe, and this is something you can pull out time and time again.  Sparkle really has become a festive staple, and you can now get sparkly tops, dresses skirts, trousers – the lot! 

My first stop would be to invest in a gorgeous sparkly top that can can also be worn during the day with a cardigan or casual blazer.  With very little investment you can have a lifetime of wearability with this piece in your wardrobe. A fabulous sparkly top can be worn with your favourite tailored trousers, a leather skirt or even smart jeans depending what the dress code is for your Christmas party.

 

 

 

 

 

Shoes

I think I must mention this in nearly every blog! Shoes are an absolute game changer and can instantly elevate and enhance any outfit.  This Christmas why not let your shoes do all the talking! Whether it’s a sexy pair of sandals, some classic stilettos or maybe even some metallic boots (why not!) – these are all looks that can be worn again and again all year round.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Classic Suits

The emphasis here is to be adding to our wardrobe pieces that you can use over and over.  So, if you’re not so keen on a dress, why not try a classic suit. You can transition a beautifully cut suit from desk to drinks by simply wearing a silk vest underneath, popping on some red lipstick and a pair of heels and, voila, you’re ready to paartay!

A suit is so versatile – if your event is more casual, pair the blazer with jeans or for something more dressy, wear the trousers with a sparkly top.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hope these ideas have given you some inspiration and shown you that you don’t need a completely new outfit each time.  By having the right pieces that are timeless and versatile you can have endless options at your fingertips, and a little more money in the bank to spend on all those other Christmas goodies you’d love to buy. 

And if you’d like more ideas on how you can elevate your style all season round, why not download my free style guide.

Five Trends You Can Wear all Year Round

By | Style Tips

The two seasons in fashion can often appear so distinctly different that it feels hard to know how to transition from one to the other with ease. One week we’re in our cute summer dresses and sandals and then it’s on with the jumpers and boots! 

As a stylist I love to show women just like you how easily you can transition into the coming season. 

I don’t advise following trends. For me style is all about adapting your clothes to your personality, lifestyle and individuality.

“You are a beautifully unique woman, not a sheep who needs to mindlessly follow the fashion crowd!”

However when a new season starts I appreciate it can be difficult not to take note and slowly become influenced by trends.  Perhaps you find yourself wondering, “Would that fluorescent suit look great on me?” or, “Could I pull off those cycling shorts?”. To add to the pressure all the stores are celebrating the latest trends, with the most popular ones taking centre stage everywhere you look.

But never fear, I’m here to give you a little guidance on how you can rejuvenate your wardrobe without the need to go crazy and buy everything the latest season dictates. 

Blazers

You either love them or hate them! 

Personally, I’m a big fan because they’re something that you can easily dress up or down. The wonder
of blazers is that there’s a style to suit every shape, you just need to be careful with proportions.  

For instance, if you are petite, try to avoid long boyfriend blazers, if you are tall and broader, make sure the blazers don’t have shoulder pads and they are not too short on your torso. For the slightly more curvaceous amongst us, single breasted is best. 

One of the great things about blazers is you can also add a belt to give some chicness, or try rolling the sleeves for a more casual ‘street style’ look.  

Beige is Back!

I love beige every season, however this Autumn it is back with a vengeance.  For autumn/winter I find
a beige or camel coloured coat a staple wardrobe must-have, and for spring a beige trench is a timeless necessity.  This is such an easy trend to adopt, and one that will stand the test of time.  

Floral Dresses

Spring/Summer 2019 was full of short, midi and maxi floral dresses of various styles of prints, and this trend is likely to stay for another season or two, which is great news!

To easily transition your summer dresses into winter, try teaming them up with ankle boots and layering them with a cute sweater or cardigan to give you some extra winter warmth. 

White Shirt

If you Google ‘capsule wardrobe’ or ‘essential pieces for everyone’s wardrobe’, I can hand-on-heart guarantee you that somewhere will be written a white shirt. 

I’m also a big fan of the white shirt. It doesn’t need to be your conventional office 100% cotton white shirt without any stretch – you can be a lot more adventurous than that! I would strongly recommend choosing a white shirt with some stretch, which, for all women, is far more flattering.

There’s such a variety of styles of white shirts, which can also be worn in various formations. I encourage a lot of my clients to opt for a more feminine softer fabric, such as silk, as an alternative to a standard white cotton shirt for work. This can also transition into a more casual look and be worn with jeans. 

Ankle Boots

This boot has now become an all-year-round fashion favourite. This summer ankle boots were being worn with midi floral skirts, as were Doctor Martin inspired shoes. 

I personally wear ankle boots from Autumn onwards, and recommend this look for every woman’s wardrobe.  A tip to bear in mind if you have heavier calves is to be careful the boot doesn’t cut on the heaviest part. To avoid this either opt for a shoe/boot style or for knee-high boots. 

So there you have it, my five timeless trends, and click here for some more inspirational photos to show you how to wear them.

And for more inspiration on key items to have in your wardrobe to create a variety of fabulous outfit combinations, here’s my ultimate wardrobe checklist

Keep in mind that everyone’s style is uniquely different, so don’t feel you need all these items.  The idea here is to have a few key pieces that help you create a variety of gorgeous outfit combinations. Choose pieces that match your personality and lifestyle to ensure your style stays on-point and reflects you. 

If you would like help pulling your wardrobe into shape for AW19, please feel free to email me at info@signature-five.com – I’d love to help you.

Why What You Wear Matters

By | Style Tips

When people find out I’m a stylist, they either ask, “So what would you recommend I wear?” or they tell me, “I don’t really pay much attention to my clothes, I’m too busy”.

I totally understand the latter – life can definitely get busy! As women, we all too often find ourselves wearing multiple hats, and juggling multiple tasks because of our never-ending ‘to do’ lists. It’s exhausting and so paying attention to the clothes we’re wearing just doesn’t feel like a priority.

But this needs to stop!

What You Wear Matters

Even though we might not care to admit it, what we wear does matter. Even if you’re an online business owner, and it’s not a day-to-day requirement for you to physically meet people, or maybe you’re a stay at home mum raising your beautiful family – you’re not off the hook, it still matters! 

Because you see your clothes speak a language about who you are and what you do.  They are more than just threads put together. Your clothes are an expression of your personality, taste and lifestyle, and they also influence how you feel.

“Your clothes are an expression of your personality, taste and lifestyle”

I’m pretty confident that at some point we’ve all had the experience of getting ready in a rush, only to find that an item of clothing you’ve thrown on doesn’t quite fit or has a slight stain on it. You desperately try to get the offending stain out with water but, alas, it’s not budging and, given your lack of time, the only thing you can do is hope for the best and pray no one notices.  

Then sods law you end up bumping into the one person you really didn’t want to see, and throughout the entire conversation you feel self-conscious and tug and pull at your clothes in the vain hope you’ll make yourself look more presentable.

Confidence from Clothes

Believe it or not the clothes, shoes and accessories we wear impact our confidence.  

All too often I see women holding themselves back from reaching their true potential and achieving their goals, because of a lack of confidence in their outward appearance. Taking a little time to think about the look you want to create, has a really positive impact on how you feel about yourself. 

I’m not sure if it’s just a British thing or a universal thing, but we have this mindset that we should only wear our best clothes on special occasions! Why do we do that? We have these beautiful clothes that only get to see the light of day once in a blue moon, which in my book is just plain crazy! 

I like to look at it this way – every day is a special occasion and worth celebrating because you’re alive! Why shouldn’t you look and feel fabulous whenever you want to. If you want to wear your favourite dress and sexiest shoes and work from home – go for it! If you want to wear a gorgeous blouse and take your baby for a stroll around the park – then go for it!

When you look and feel fabulous no matter what you’re doing, your confidence skyrockets and life takes on a whole new level of interesting.

“Why shouldn’t you look and feel fabulous whenever you want to”

First Impressions

We’ve all heard the sayings ‘first impressions count’ and ‘it only takes 8-seconds to form an opinion’, and whether we like it or not there’s a great deal of truth in them. Before you’ve even opened your mouth and said a word, someone will have created a whole story about the person they think you are, based purely on your top-to-toe look – it’s harsh, but it’s true! 

A recent article from the The Harvard Business Review recommends you aim to ‘dress 25% better than anyone else in the room’, as this will create a positive impression and help elevate your confidence. I love that!

Performance and Productivity

When you take a few minutes every morning to get ready and wear an outfit you love, it makes you stand a little taller, which sends messages to your brain that are empowering and confidence building. This fuels your day with positivity, making you more productive and increasing your performance – how great is that!

This is also why many workplaces have a uniform. When we wear clothes that match our role, we are more likely to have that mindset when carrying out our work.

Dress for a Raise

Believe it or not I have first-hand experience that dressing well and looking polished, can get you a promotion and a salary raise.

There’s a saying ‘dress like the job you want not the job you have’. When people with a higher-ranking role than you see you looking the part and behaving the part, you are so much easier to promote.

Now I appreciate you might be thinking, “Our clothes shouldn’t justify who we are – in this day and age people should accept us however we dress”.  Believe me, I so wish this was the case, but unfortunately the harsh reality is us women are still judged by our outer appearance more so than men, whether we like it or not!  What you wear could be what’s holding you back from achieving the things you want in life.

I hope this has given you some food for thought as to why what you wear matters, and how your image plays an important role in your success. If you would like to learn how you can leverage your personal style and increase your confidence and potential, please feel free to contact me at info@signature-five.com – I’d love to hear from you.

Packing Made Easy

By | Summer, Travel

Let’s set the scene…

With only a week to go until your greatly anticipated holiday, you can barely contain your excitement as you count down the days!

As you busy yourself getting all your last jobs done to avoid dealing with work issues while you’re away, your mind starts to wander off to your holiday and the outfit looks you want to create…beach goddess anyone?!

Before you know it, you’re scrolling like mad on Instagram, screenshotting every influencer you follow so you can recreate their perfect squares. But then panic sets in – do you actually have the right clothes? OMG do you have enough time to shop?!!

Last minute shopping complete, it’s finally time for the dreaded packing! You have your fabulous new pieces, along with your existing holiday favourites, and as you squeeze them into your case you cross your fingers and hope and pray that your growing case isn’t over its 23kg allowance! Actually, who are we kidding, it’s more like 20kg allowance to leave room for cosmetics!

Now the stress is kicking in! You feel pretty sure that everything you’ve packed is vital to achieving your beach goddess look, but something has to give. And then the game begins, a few pieces come out, a few go back in, and this continues until the scales finally read 20kg…halle-freaking-lujah!

Sound familiar?

This use to be me, and now with a child I have even less space and need to utilise, multipurpose and minimise what I take.

As a personal stylist and also as a working woman who’s experienced the above, it’s my pleasure to share my wisdom so you can have a stress-free packing experience, every time!

Golden rule

Weather Forecast! Before anything, look at the weather forecast. Now I know this sounds like a no brainer, but I have been on many, many holidays where I just presumed it would be warm and to my surprise it rained 80% of the time.

Holiday planning

Outline a rough guide of what you’ll be doing on holiday (day & evening), and also where you’ll be going. What you pack for a city break will be very different to a beach holiday. For example, if you’re having a beach holiday with temperatures of 30 degrees plus, think of all the activities you might do… laying around the poolside 2-days, beach 3-days, visit the city 1-day, fancy restaurants 3-nights, etc.

Having a rough guide will help you plan what type of outfits you need, and also if you can multi-purpose some of the outfits – in other words, take a day time look to an evening look.

Create a holiday wardrobe

A week before your holiday start moving items you’d like to take onto a separate rail, or on one side of the rail in your wardrobe. This will help you see how many items you have, are there similar items doing the same job, are they all separate or can they be mixed and matched together, do the colours work together and is there anything missing that you’ll need.

Think in 3’s – Once you have your full selection, start editing and putting a capsule wardrobe together. The best way to do this is to see if you can create 3 ways to wear each item.  It’s sometimes easier to go bottom up.  So, for example you may have 3 pairs of shoes, see how you can wear these shoes 3 times with different outfits.

Accessorise – Accessories are your best friend for:

1) Creating a more personal style,

2) Taking a look from day to evening, and

3) Creating various combinations

Be careful not to go craaaaazzy with accessories! Look at the outfits you’ve created and see which accessories you can multi-use…do you really need 5 pairs of sunglasses or will just 1 pair suffice?

Dress up/Dress down – Are there items you can add that take a day look into evening.  For example, if you have a buttoned summer dress, you can wear it unbuttoned with your swimming costume by the poolside, as a dress for sightseeing and for the evening dress it up with sandals, jewellery and a clutch.

Your beach holiday guide

For a week-long beach holiday, here’s a guide for what to take:

  • Three styles of shoes – for example flip flops by the pool, a pair of sandals and then a heel/wedge for the evening.
  • 3 pairs of bottoms – this could be all or a combination of shorts, trousers and skirts.
  • 4/5 tops – 1 long sleeve, then some casual daytime tops and 2 tops for the evening.
  • 3 dresses – these can include a maxi, jersey dresses and summer dresses
  • 2 pieces of swimwear that you feel comfortable in and you will wear. If you are conscious of baring all, then find a bikini or swimsuit with a bit more coverage. There’s no point taking a number of bikinis that you won’t wear.
  • 2 coverups – these can also be worn as tops or a dress if not too transparent. You could even use a dress or a shirt as a coverup as well.
  • Beach bag for the day and a nice handbag for day and evening, and even better if you can use the handbag as a clutch as well.
  • Jewellery – this is very individual to your taste and how much jewellery you actually wear. My advice is to take a few necklaces that can elevate a plain outfit, that you can wear with your bikini, but also out in the evening. Statement earrings can also be great for poolside and jazzing up an evening outfit.

I hope these tips have been useful and will help you make better decisions and have a more joyful packing experience, and a lighter suitcase!

If you’re ready to create your own signature style that takes you from home to holiday with ease, get in touch and see how our styling services can support and inspire you.

My Signature Style

By | Style Tips

Keeping up with current trends, latest fashion or the next beauty rage can be slightly exhausting at times. I, of all people, love browsing through fashion magazines, visiting stores and reading blogs for inspiration. But sometimes it feels like we’re constantly trying to reinvent the wheel.

In my twenties, I followed the latest trends avidly and I was obsessed with fast fashion thanks to the likes of Zara, Topshop and H&M. These stores were my fashion haven. I could dress like the models on the runway for the fraction of the price. I would buy, buy, buy and a lot of the times not even wear the items I bought. Instead they would disappear to the back of my cupboard with the price tags still intact!

Now I am more aware of who I am and my attitude towards clothes has changed. I’ve found a deeper respect for my wardrobe and I don’t feel I need to fill it up with so many items. Instead I make sure I have the right key pieces for my style.

I have a capsule wardrobe that is redefined, refined and retuned to suit my lifestyle

I feel every woman’s wardrobe should contain basic pieces that can easily be mixed and matched depending on their personal style, and it doesn’t always need to be about reinvention. Sometimes the basics can create the perfect outfit with the right accessories.

Here are my five signature pieces I could not live without. These are items I wear on daily basis…

Denim

I truly am a jean girl. I practically live in denim and I love the way you can dress it up or down just by the top and shoes you wear.

Jeans are universal and there is a style to suit everyone. I personally love skinny jeans that are slightly above the ankle; worn with stilettos this automatically elevates a casual look.

I also love boot leg/ flared jeans worn with a high heel, with just the top of the shoe showing which looks very Parisian chic.

My favorite wash is dark denim with no fuss, something about dark denim just makes it look crisp and clean. Lighter washes work better in the summer.

Some of my favourite brands are:

  • On a budget: Topshop Jamie
  • True old school denim brands: Pepe, Levis
  • Premium: Paige, Rag and Bone and J brand
  • Wish list: Re/done

Paige

Rag & Bone

Re/done

Topshop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

T-shirts

I love T-shirts, and it doesn’t get more staple than a white one – this should be in everyone’s closet.
When it comes to T-shirts it’s important to find the right fit for you. A T-shirt can be worn out or tucked into your jeans or skirt. Once you’ve found your perfect fit buy lots of them! T-shirts are such easy items to create a relaxed and chic look.

My favourite brands for tees are:

  • Cos
  • Zara
  • J-crew
  • Splendid

Cos

J Crew

Splendid

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pencil Skirt

A pencil skirt suits most body types, and is one of those pieces that can work for the office and after office hours. Worn with a T-shirt creates a casual look; put with a blouse/shirt gives more of a smart professional look.

Rocking a pencil skirt:

  • All-time favourite Pencil skirt collection was Burberry’s 2014 collection
  • Victoria Beckham always rocks a pencil skirt!

DVF

J crew

Malene Birger

Victoria Beckham

Burberry’s S/S 14

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cashmere Sweater

“If you own only one sweater, make sure it’s cashmere”

Nowadays you can get cashmere sweaters at good value and my favourite are crew neck sweaters. They can be worn with a blouse/t-shirt, or adding heavy costume jewellery creates a different look. Everyone should own basic colours but one colour that is a must have is beige/nude.

My favourite reasonably priced brands for good sweaters are:

  • Duffy
  • Vince
  • J Crew

Vince

J Crew

Duffy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shirts

It’s always said that a white shirt is a staple piece. I do love a white shirt but I would say my favourite is a blue and white stripe shirt. It has a crisp casual feel but it can also look smart.

My favourite brands for a good shirt are:

  • Stella Mccartney
  • Tommy Hilfiger
  • Zara
  • Theory
  • Jill Sander

Jill Sander

Theory

Zara

Tommy Hilfiger

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’d like to discover your essential pieces that suit your style, get in touch.