I'm not in the habit of detailing or showing personal styling session because they are just that. However, yesterday Rachel was a willing winner of the style comp and happy for me to share the day. We both managed to arrive within 10 minutes of each other in Birmingham and successfully rendezvous.
We took a location photo of the architectural end of the Bull ring shopping centre, it is the outside of Selfridges. It does look amazing and again without a glorious digital SLR all the images will be sub standard but it gives a flavour. Next was coffee and then off to H&M. Rachel had a budget of £500 and needed to updated her wardrobe. She is tall, with a slim athletic frame and does marathon running, her next one is in Amsterdam. Rachel bought a list of items in her wardrobe so I could check what could stay, what was worn out or very outdated and what might be revamped.
I sort of worked out a style based on the seasons trends and what I thought would suit Rachel and her lifestyle. The baseline suggested and explained was the cuts of the 1930s/1970s with different textures and an intertwining colour palette plus a few this seasons items.
I'm not someone who says you must wear this colour or don't wear black etc. But when your on a budget and starting afresh a colour palette that enables you to mix and match items to create lots of different outfits is so useful. I drew lots of wide leg trousers for Rachel and blouses and dresses and explained cuts and the fit of clothes. After all she needed to be able to do this herself going forward. I wanted to substitute sheer chiffon blouses for business shirts. Introduce colour and ensure her look gave a nod to this season.
Oasis have a gorgeous purple sheer blouse with a tie that is so versatile and has lovely detail to dress up or down. I also selected a turquoise necklace and fuchsia large flower ring.
H&M provided much needed quantity for casual items, with 3 skinny polo tops in purple, black and grey. Also a funky organic cotton tee plus my favourite high street item a vibrant jewel turquoise blue cocoon coat. For £60 it is stunning in cut and colour and a radical departure from most coats. OK they've referenced Louis Vuitton and Giambattista Valli A/W 08 collections but for a wool high street coat it has a lot of presence and zing.
Back to basics, a black and grey £9.99 bat wing cardi completed the H&M spree.
Topshop yielded the great Evita exaggerated boot cut flare. I'd initially selected the Bette 70s flares but sometimes the cut doesn't suit the body shape so the Evita were the perfect ones on the day. A long black tassel necklace and dark romantic ring from the Freedom range were added to the spoils.
Zara was great for a work skirt, a cocoon pencil in dark grey, a long grey boyfriend cardi, a grey tank and their black lace dress offering. The last bit of the budget was reserved for flat pointy shoes from Pied a Terre - in purple. All items purchased on or rather under budget at £445
We did get sidelined by these cute baby uggs!
Rachel serene in her cocoon coat!
A flavour of colour and texture.
OK so we had a cheeky champagne at the end of it all! Darlings it was Selfridges we were sat amongst the Choos' it would have been rude not to!