How to find clothes that are the right fit for you

If you find it a challenge getting clothes to fit you, it’s tempting to blame yourself. Often, it’s that they aren’t quite right for YOU.

Unless you make your own clothes, or have them made specifically for your body, there might be certain aspects of a garment that don’t quite work. Rest assured, there’s tips and tricks to ‘correct’ many elements, it’s simply understanding and learning what to look for.

This quote sums it up perfectly for me:

The dress must follow the body of the woman, not the body following the shape of the dress. (Hubert de Givenchy)

Identify what’s right for you and work with your body shape, not against it. So, if you’ve got a curvy figure then a boxy shape to a garment will add pounds to your frame because it hides your frame and shape. Nobody wants that!

I meet a lot of ladies who feel that things don’t work for them and they dislike shopping as a result. This is totally understandable, especially if you don’t know what to look for. What’s more, you’ll spend lot of time and money trying to find out.

Right colour, right style, right fit and lifestyle-appropriate. Nail these, and you’ll be grinning like the cat that got the cream. Let me go through these in more detail.

Colour

Have you ever put something on and noticed that the colour drains from your face? Or that suddenly your skin has gone a funny colour?

That need to add a brighter lipstick or slap more blusher on, is because the colour you’re wearing isn’t quite right for you.

The transformation to your overall appearance when you’re wearing the right colours for you, cannot be ignored! It’s a subject I cover frequently here on the blogs as well as on social media.

Colour analysis consultations are by far my most popular service and I never tire of seeing the transformation with clients. I work with a tonal colour analysis system, which assess the colour of your hair, eyes and skin tone to determine the three elements of your colouring type and colours which flatter you the most. My colouring type is soft, cool and deep which means that my core colouring type is soft (low clarity to my features overall, muted and mid-tone colours), with a cool undertone to my skin (blue toned shades rather than yellow) and with some depth (my tertiary as the light pale colours really do wash me out).

Wearing the right colour will visibly lift your appearance but unless it fits like a glove (or vice versa), it will never be perfect for you, so you’ll need to factor these next elements in as well.

Style

Your style is really what feels most like you. Sometimes, it can be hard to describe what your style is, or you may feel like you don’t have one! But, I can assure you that everyone does. Just think – what feels most like you when you wear it?

When you put something on that doesn’t feel like you, you’ll immediately protest as much and take it off! But, wear something which you feel happy, comfortable and more like you when you wear it, and you’ll be much happier. No point dressing like Paloma Faith if you’re really more a Jennifer Aniston type.

That doesn’t mean that you can’t dress differently, or try something new. Try to push your style boundaries, but in a way that feels authentic and still like you. Sometimes it can be the choice of fabric, but more on that shortly.

Patterns can be a real deal-breaker in the style department. For me, I’m not a fan of fussy patterns or stripes. They just don’t work for my style personality, so I don’t tend to buy them as I know I won’t get my £’s per wear or be happy in them.

Fit

We all know when something doesn’t fit right, but often associate this with the number on the label. It’s more likely not fitting your body shape, body line and proportions. Understanding these aspects will help you identify the right style, fit and fabric to choose. Let’s say that you’re petite in height, with a long upper body and short legs – of course it will be harder to get the right fit! But, understand how to dress your features and you’ll make better choices with styles and cuts.

Don’t forget the finer details like sleeves and necklines. A high neckline when you’ve a large bust will enhance the area. You’ll find a lower neckline (like a v-neck), will break up the colour and be more flattering. Sleeve lengths and shoulder seams can be corrective; like a ruffle sleeve when you’ve got small and narrow shoulders. On the other hand, they can enhance the area if you’re broader with wider shoulders by merely extending the shoulder line out, visually speaking.

Most people who come to me for a style and shape session don’t consider the fabric of a garment. Yet, it plays a crucial role in the fit of a garment. Different fabrics have different weights and feels, not to mention how it drapes. Whilst both light in weight, cotton and jersey have a different feel and structure to them. The same garment made from both will look and feel different when worn, depending upon the body wearing it.

In this example, the cotton top left loose over a satin skirt hides my underlying shape and proportions. A few tweaks and hey presto! Learn much more during a 2.5 hour style and shape consultation.

These are just tweaks. Tailoring can be a game-changer in achieving the perfect fit and I often recommend clients have a good seamstress on hand, if they need one. Transformed into bespoke pieces that fit YOU and make them a perfect fit! Which is a huge benefit when you do make your own clothes, because you can create the garment to take into account your own body measurements and adjust the pattern accordingly.

Not knowing what fits and flatters you means you can still end up making costly mistakes so it pays to understand these elements of your body.

Lifestyle-appropriate

Being able to tick all boxes with your clothes, or altering them accordingly, will make it so much easier to dress in clothes that make you look and feel good.

I’m a big believer in having clothes which work for how you spend your time. If you’re the outdoorsy-type and love nothing more, those knee-high, stiletto, velvet boots aren’t going to fare very well…

When your clothes suit the occasion you’re dressing for, you’ll feel appropriate and comfortable, especially when you know they tick all the boxes: right colour, right style, right fit and lifestyle-appropriate.

Get to know what works for you!

Gaining the knowledge can take time if you’re not sure what to look for and it can be costly if you keep making mistakes. My consultations are designed to guide you so that you understand what works for you, and why.

Discover the colours which enhance your natural features and how to wear your colours during a Colour Analysis Consultation. During a Style & Shape session, you’ll learn how to find clothes that tick all the boxes for you as we identify your style personality, shape and proportions.

Get in touch to book your session with me now!

Christmas Jumper Alternatives (and the history of the Christmas jumper)

Let’s face it, Christmas jumpers can be a bit naff! There’s a huge range of options available but most people already have at least one in their wardrobe.

I’ve got some tips and alternatives to share with you in this blog because you don’t have to feel your style has to be compromised.

Christmas Jumper Day

The official ‘Christmas Jumper Day’ was introduced in 2012 to help raise funds for children facing serious issues like war, hunger and poverty. It’s an annual event, by Save the Children charity. Here’s more information and how to get involved: https://www.savethechildren.org.uk/christmas-jumper-day

In 2023, Christmas Jumper Day takes place on Thursday 7 December.

Christmas Jumper history

There’s many articles in circulation about where Christmas jumpers originated from. Norway, Scandinavia and Iceland are all named. Often knitted by hand in heavy, locally sourced wool and designed to keep people warm during the cold winters. Similar nordic style patterns still feature today which are much more traditional and less garish than some we see.

Pounds per wear vs cost

Are you like me and roll out the same ones every year?

Let’s say you buy a new festive-themed jumper from the high street giant: H&M. Currently they have Christmas jumpers online from £15.99.

Using my £’s per wear calculation, if you only wear it once, it’s £15.99 per wear.

Wear it another day and it becomes £8 per wear.

Roll it out next year and wear it twice more and you’re down to £4 per wear. Repeat again the following year and it’s £2 per wear.

These principles are the same for any clothes and not just for Christmas festive wear!

Christmas jumper alternatives

The cheap, comedy festive jumper might not be your style, so how about something more stylish which you can wear throughout the year?

I’ve researched and picked out 25 alternative festive styles which you can view (with links) here.

Do check eBay, Vinted and charity shops too.

A Christmas Jumper is not just for Christmas!

Finally, there is a serious side to the production of Christmas jumpers.

Millions are produced every year on top of the millions already in circulation. Arguably, it’s a prime example of fast fashion. Cheaply made by people who aren’t paid a fair living wage where the environmental impacts are questionable.

Get more use out of yours by wearing it every day – a jumper’s not just for Christmas after all!

Garments made from acrylic, will not be sustainable or biodegradable. Acrylic is a plastic which is made by fossil-fuels. When washing, they release microplastics into marine environments, polluting our oceans.

Those made with recycled plastic bottles might not be a better option. Once turned into clothing, the plastic cannot be recycled again so it removes them from the circular recycling loop. Plastic bottles can be collected and recycled multiple times, clothing made from plastic cannot, so it’s destined for landfill.

This year, why not keep wearing what you already have or consider a swap with family and friends. You could even customise your own by adding decorations to it. Or, why not knit your own like Mark Darcey’s mum in Bridget Jones!

Remember: buy less, choose well  and make it last. Don’t compromise, even if it is just a Christmas jumper! If it doesn’t tick all of the boxes that suits you (colour, style, fit, fabric) that you can wear again and again, then does it deserve a place in your wardrobe?

What do I do with clothes I don’t wear (and can’t let go)

Each month on the blogs I try and address some common questions I get asked.

A challenge which many people experience is having clothes they don’t wear, which they can’t bring themselves to get rid of.

Whilst there isn’t just one solution, here’s some ideas which may help.

A new life

Firstly, if you’ve got a lot of clothes you don’t wear, it’s worth seeing if you can identify any reasons for not wearing them.

Perhaps you’ve out-grown them, or they are no longer appropriate for your lifestyle. Maybe you don’t feel like ‘you’ when you wear them. Whatever your specific reasons, it’s worth asking yourself if this is likely to change and if you will re-wear them again.

Can you give a new lease of life to any of the items? With clothes I’m not wearing because of the colour, I’ve dyed them! Refreshing the colour in an old pair of jeans or completely changing the colour of other garments has helped me to wear things again.

Are any of them the wrong length or fit? It may take more effort or skill, but these can be altered so you do wear them again – even if it means taking it to a seamstress. Re-purpose clothes into other things, like a cushion cover, a bag or make a top or skirt from a dress instead.

If you’re not likely to re-wear them or change them to make them work for you, why is it that you keep them? Let the guilt go, thank it for it’s time and let someone else get joy from them.

Having a constant reminder each time you open the wardrobe doors does you no good. It’s a shame to let them gather dust at the back of your wardrobe when others would love them. Donating them will keep the item in circulation, avoid landfill and lighten your emotional load too.

Swap and swish

When I was younger, my friends at school would regularly have a clothing swishing party. Everyone would bring items along they don’t wear anymore and swap for something new! These events still happen today encouraging you to bring along your unworn items in exchange for a ticket to swap for another garment. They’re a great way of obtaining ‘new’ items, refreshing your wardrobe and culling things you don’t wear. You could even organise your own event too!

Sell

I like my money where I can see it; hanging in my closet! Carrie Bradshaw

A famous saying in the original series of Sex and The City. This is the reason that many people can’t let things go. The truth is that you’re unlikely to get the same money back that you spent in the first place (unless it’s vintage of course, then who knows!). But, this isn’t always the best reason to keep hold of things. Especially if you’re not wearing them.

Selling clothes you don’t wear (and unlikely to wear again) will help to lighten the load you feel emotionally and put some money in your pocket. Think of it as a reward for keeping them safe! There’s a huge pre-loved clothing market which I can’t see disappearing any time soon. Sure, it means competition, but everyone loves a bargain and your lovely clothes can be enjoyed by someone else whilst you earn a little cash.

Use the money you earn to treat yourself to something new (which you will wear), pay off some debts or treat yourself to a night out or a takeaway!

Ebay, Vinted and Facebook marketplace are the common places to sell and there are pre-loved groups on Facebook for certain brands too.

Rent

Whilst it won’t solve a bulging wardrobe, if you’ve got good quality, high end clothing and accessories you can’t bring yourself to part with, consider renting them out. Hurr, ByRotation and MyWardrobeHQ will facilitate the rental of your items to people for days or weeks at a time. It’s another way to give life to your unworn garments, make some money on the side and doesn’t mean getting rid of things.

The three F’s

Opening your wardrobe and feeling fed up that you can’t wear them will not help you to feel good getting dressed. There’s nothing worse than having a wardrobe filled with clothes that don’t fit you.

My advice? Get those clothes out of there!

If you can’t bring yourself to undertake any of the previous suggestions, store them away for now. Removing them from view will improve your mindset and how you feel each day. You can always revisit the items at a later date when you won’t feel quite so emotionally influenced by them.

Your wardrobe should be filled with clothes that fit you right now. They will be appropriate for you, right now. This way, you’ll have clothes you can wear now, even if it does make your wardrobe look sparse.

Clothes which fit you, flatter your figure and which make you feel good (the three f’s) should be in your wardrobe right now! Everything else is taking up space in your wardrobe (and your head).

Having help from someone who can be more objective and who isn’t emotionally attached to your clothes can also be helpful. This could be a friend, relative or a professional so don’t be afraid to seek assistance if you need it.

Use my guides here if you feel up for tackling your wardrobe on your own or get in touch: toni.carver@tlcstyleandcolour.co.uk

10 Spring 2023 trends

Time flies doesn’t it? At the start of April, I shared the new colour and style trends for spring / summer 2023 at my ‘what to wear’ workshop.

Having hit the shops the week before, I found a number of items to help me illustrate some of the colour and style trends to the group. During the live workshop, I go through the presentation I’ve prepared all about what you can expect, what suits you and how to make it work for you. I also use the same presentation during the recorded video masterclass (the latest version is available here). The next live group workshop will take place on 7 October and showcase the autumn/winter 2023 colour and style trends.

I’ve showcased some trends I’ve found on the high street in my latest video which you can watch on Youtube: https://youtu.be/kAhXbMXh2U8

Here are 10 spring trends featured in the video:

1. Blue midi off the shoulder dress – Next

2. Lime Green Ruffle Sleeve Tie Back Dress – Next

3. Blue/Yellow Striped collared shirt dress – Next

4. Pink Broderie ruffle sleeve Blouse – Love & Roses at Next

5. Khaki Wide Leg Cargo Trousers – New Look

6. Blue button front midi dress – New Look

7. Metallic Silver clutch Bag – New Look

8. Pink animal print tiered dress – New Look

9. Blue Floral hanky hemline dress – Apricot Clothing at New Look 

10. Navy Botanical grecian occasion reversible dress – Apricot Clothing (also available via New Look, Next and Yumi)

Need more help?

Not all these will suit you of course! When you know what suits you, shopping really does become easier. You’ll learn this knowledge when you book a consultation, so do get in touch if the time is right for you.

If you missed the workshop, or you want to watch it again, the recorded version is available here until 30 September.

The Colour & Style guide for spring/summer 2023 is a physical handout you can pop in your handbag and available here. You’ll receive a copy of this if you book a Complete Colour Analysis Consultation between 1 April and 30 September.

Alternatively, if you’d prefer a complete digital kit of resources, my new E-Book is 20 pages and contains everything you need to know to help guide you on the spring and summer colour and style trends.

Please note. The above list contains some affiliate links which may result in a payment of commission.

Will I need to get rid of all my clothes after a colour or style consultation?

One concern with having a colour or a style consultation is that you’ll need to empty your wardrobe, get rid of all your clothes and start again!

This is wasteful, exhausting and expensive and not something I recommend at TLC HQ!

Gain the right knowledge

It’s not for me to tell you what to wear. Or tell you to get rid of things. I’m not your mother and you’ve chosen to come to me for help and advice. But, I do try my best to explain why things do and don’t suit you so that you’re armed with the right information when you leave your session.

You’ll get follow up emails from me too as you’re unlikely to remember everything we go through. I do pride myself on doing this, as I want to make sure you’re supported on your journey and you feel you get value.

My services are an investment in yourself after all.

How to wear colour

When you have a colour consultation, you’ll understand about colour, how to wear and combine your colours and how to wear what you already have. But, there’s bound to be items you’re itching to get rid of and if that’s the case then you’ve got my permission!

Experiment with your colours and making things work for you if they’re not quite right. Alter them to make them perfect for you too. You can dye them so easily at home these days (more on that here) and, if you’re a dab hand with a sewing machine then change them. Even without this talent, you can still swap buttons or cinch them in like I’ve covered here.

Style, shape and fit

Even with a more colour coordinated wardrobe, you may still find some things don’t work. This is where a style and image consultation will really help. Perhaps you’re not wearing things because they don’t ‘go’ or they don’t feel right when you wear them. If you’ve nailed the colour (and why wouldn’t you after your colour consultation!) it’s often the style, shape or fit that’s not working.

During a style and image consultation, we’ll focus on identifying your style personality, how to express it in what you wear and what you choose, before moving onto your shape and proportions. Even if you’re confident about what body shape you have, your proportions (such as where your waist is) or your scale can skew this meaning things don’t fit quite right. Learn what works for YOU. A pear with long legs and a short body who’s classic will need to style, shop and dress differently than an hourglass shape with a long body and short legs who’s a romantic style personality. Then there’s fabric, cuts and patterns to take into account during the session too!

style & image consultation

Enjoy the journey

A consultation on colour or style may feel a little indulgent, but it WILL save you money in the long run because you’ll learn what suits you.

Just because you’ve had a session, doesn’t mean your journey is over – it’s simply the beginning. You’ve got lots to learn and apply and whilst it may take time, do enjoy it!

My help and support doesn’t end with your session. My follow up notes continue to come, plus my newsletter with blogs like this, videos and tips to try! Ongoing support is available with help on what to buy each season and how to style it to make it work for you. Every April and October I update the material and you can join my online workshops. Plus, I’m happy to come out to help you shop for any specific items you need or go through your wardrobe with you if you’re struggling.

Remember, it’s about understanding what suits you. That shouldn’t mean getting rid of everything and starting again but understanding how you can make them work better for you.

READY TO START YOUR JOURNEY?

Get in touch now! toni.carver@tlcstyleandcolour.co.uk

Three tips when you get stuck in a rut

We all get stuck in a bit of a rut from time to time.

Clothing especially so and it’s something I hear of a lot.

Here’s a few simple tips so you can ensure that you’re dressed to impress every day and to help you feel a little better.

Add colour!

Come on, you knew I’d add this in at some point! Trust me, it really will help boost your mood. During the cold dark winter months in the UK, there is nothing better to lift the mood. Just imagine yourself in a lovely warm teal jumper or a pair of pink comfy joggers! It’s simple – think of your favourite colour and wear it!

A client recently bought the purple super soft scarf (see online shop) so she could “add colour and brighten up her dark winter coat”. Obviously I nodded in agreement as there’s no better, or easier way to transform your look or elevate an outfit. Simply wrap a colourful scarf around your neck to feel stylish, warm and toasty!

Try a new bag in a statement shade. I remember a client who came for a colour analysis some years ago now and the first item on her shopping list was a new bag in one of the shades from her new swatches!

If you’re the outdoorsy type, try a pair of colourful wellies for your walk! They really will up the style factor and make you feel great too!

Embellish!

All too often accessories get forgotten, but they’re actually an essential part of completing your look.

If you’re a natural like me or prefer an unfussy or minimal look, it’s easy to forget but trust me; try adding a simple necklace to your outfit and you’ll instantly see how it elevates your look.

Layer some necklaces over your favourite everyday top, cinch your waist in with a belt on your usual work dress or just switch out your stud earrings for something a little bolder.

Pamper

Hands especially have had a rough ride with more hand washing (essential) and sanitiser. Treat your hands and feet to a little extra care. You can do it yourself or pop to your local salon. I love having a manicure and pedicure (even though no-one can see my feet!). You can choose a shade which is subtle like a nude or go bold to up the glam factor! If I doubt on the colour, check your swatches!

Try a face mask too as just a few minutes relaxing can make all the difference. I love the avocado face mask (available from the online shop). It smells so amazing and makes my skin feel so much smoother when I use it too.

With just a few small tweaks, you can instantly switch up your mood and how you feel in what you wear.

If you’re looking for a little more in depth assistance then you can always book a makeup lesson, colour or style session to really get the star treatment!

Book now to get yourself sorted for 2022.

Choosing shorts

Gap have recently announced that they’ll be closing their high street shops soon and remaining online. It’s a common theme for the high street unfortunately.

It did remind me of my own shorts collection and a client of mine.

She contacted me to ask for some shopping advice for shorts as she struggled finding the right styles and fit.

Here’s some tips.

Firstly, shorts are for anyone of any age (just like most clothes in fairness). It’s all down to how confident you feel in what you wear. And, choosing your clothes which fit your shape, proportions and style preferences. This is covered in my style and image consultations. 

The main issue my client had with shorts was the width of the leg. She had lovely slim legs and was petite so if the shorts were too wide, they looked baggy and her legs looked too ‘spindly’!

If you are petite, it’s key to get the right size or they can swamp your bottom half and make your legs appear shorter than they are.

Short lengths and styles

The length of your shorts should also be considered. Just like a skirt or dress, shorts can also come in different lengths and styles.

That’s where Gap was one of my favourite retailers. They featured different lengths and styles and often in a range of colours and fabrics and prints.

Here are a few from my own collection:

Bermuda

These have a longer length. Bermuda styles are usually more fitted and straight legged too. I have 9 inch and 10 inch lengths.

 

girlfriend shorts

Offer a more casual style. Mine are a 3 inch length so the shortness of these may not be for everyone. You’ll also find activewear or beachwear this length.

3 inch girlfriend shorts

3 inch girlfriend shorts

city shorts

A slightly smarter version and similar to chino styles and come in different lengths. Mine are 3 inch.

3 inch city shorts

3 inch city shorts

 

Paper bag

These are high waisted and gathered at the waist, often a dressier very of shorts. Unfortunately, they aren’t universally flattering. They tend to suit those with a clearly defined waist and those with a longer body better.

pleats and darts

These will create shape so be more fitted and tailored. If your curvier, these will be much more flattering for your figure.

mid length

This would be the most universally flattering length in my view. Typically, around 5/6 inches length in the inside leg. This is because this is usually the point of your leg when it begins to narrow and therefore more flattering.

Sit and stand test

When you’re trying your shorts on, sit in them as well as stand! You don’t want them too tight on the thigh so that when you sit they are too restrictive.

Fabric

Natural fibres have more breathability to them. They tend to come from animals, plants and minerals. These include fabrics such as cotton, linen, silk and wool.

Synthetic fibres are usually made with artificial fibres and chemicals. As they are man made, they are more affordable and are designed to be used more frequently. Polyester, rayon and acrylic are common fabrics often created to mimic the natural fibres mentioned above.

The result!

Following my advice, my client sent me some pictures.

Here, in the first picture are her standard shorts.

Client in her standard baggy shorts

In the second picture, her new tailored fit shorts. Slightly longer in length but more fitted and much more flattering for her shape and frame.

Client in her fitted, tailored shorts

If you need some styling advice, get in touch.

 

 

What to do when your wardrobe doesn’t work for you

How many times have you opened your wardrobe doors and felt uninspired by what’s staring back at you?

Despite having clothes to wear, you still feel like you have nothing appropriate to wear for the occasion you’re dressing for.

This is something I find time and time again with clients. It could be that your lifestyle has changed and let’s be honest; lockdown has had that effect for many of us!

If the contents of your wardrobe no longer match your lifestyle or how you spend your time, then you’ll constantly feel like you’ve got nothing to wear.

The solution isn’t to get rid of all your clothes and start again (and nor would I advise to!). Instead, it’s worth looking at how you spend your time and what clothes you can wear which you own.

These charts have been created to help you do just that. First, map out how you spend your time. Things like walking the dog, working (from home or out), looking after kids or parents, exercising and so on. Next, review your clothes and if they fit in with your lifestyle.

You see, when your charts don’t match in equal proportion, you’ll need to focus on adjusting the balance. Seeing this will probably confirm why you feel the way you do.  And, you’ll be able to identify where the gaps are in your wardrobe. If you don’t adjust the balance then you’ll constantly feel like you have nothing to wear.

If the clothes you own do match how you spend your time, then congratulations: you have the right balance!

You can open and download the wardrobe charts below and if you need professional help, reach out and get in touch.

Download your wardrobe charts here

These charts will help you achieve the right balance in your wardrobe so you can stop feeling like you’ve got nothing to wear!

Wardrobe charts

Clothes to rent?

Would you consider hiring a one off garment? How about renting clothes that you’re not wearing?

My interest in this area has peaked recently as a few announcements caught my eye. Renting out clothes, accessories and hiring garments to others is becoming a growing market.

People have become more aware of the impact to the environment of ‘fast fashion’ and sustainability isn’t just a buzz word. Action is being taken and there’s some interesting results.

H&M

The high street retailer announced recently a free 24 hour suit hire for men under their new scheme: One/Second/Suit.

The initiative offers customers a single breasted navy jacket and matching trousers, a white shirt, a navy tie and red handkerchief.

This is a particularly pertinent initiative with people returning to work. Many are also facing the prospect of interviews. Frankly, I think it’s a fantastic idea as people don’t necessarily want to, or can afford to spend money on garments they’re unlikely to wear regularly. I saw first hand how young people could benefit when I worked with The Princes Trust a couple of years ago.

If you know anyone who could benefit from the initiative, send them the details here: https://www2.hm.com/en_gb/men/shop-by-feature/3022-one-second-suit.html

Wedding dress hire

It’s not unusual for the groom, ushers and groomsmen to hire their suits of course, but rarely do you hear of brides doing the same.

Carrie Symonds married Boris Johnson on 30 May and was reported to have hired her dress for the big day. I’m impressed at such a move and financially, it’s rather clever. She paid a fraction of the price for her designer dress which now won’t remain tucked in a box or hung up in her wardrobe.

Rental marketplace

There are various rental marketplaces which exist here in the U.K. Many may have begun with occasion wear, or even designer bags but now, it’s much more. You can manage the transaction yourself by renting out your garments to someone wishing to hire them and agreeing the price. Other sites will manage the process for you including cleaning and delivery and taking a percentage of the rental fees.

This isn’t fancy dress hire either. This could be anything right up to high end designer bags, shoes and clothes for one day or weeks at a time.

The impact of Fashion

I say it all the same to clients: fashion is what you buy, style is what you do with it.

Fashion is one of the biggest pollutants using non-renewable resources. I read an article on the bbc.com website stating: “fashion sucks up more energy than both aviation and shipping combined”.

Fast fashion is essentially mass produced garments sold for a low cost and because of the low cost, it’s easier to keep buying more. How many times have you bought another top or another pair of jeans even though you didn’t need them? One problem is that many of these garments end up unworn and thrown away to landfill.

A great book to read is Fashionopolis by Dana Thomas which was published a couple of years ago. The statistics are staggering:

– 100 billion garments are produced every year
– The average shopper was buying 68 items of clothing a year
– 20% of all items go unsold
– Less than 2% of workers in the clothing industry were earning the living wage
– 1 t-shirt and a pair of jeans uses 5,000 gallons of water

Make-do and mend

When I was younger, me and my friends used to have clothes swap parties. It was a great way to refresh your wardrobe and feel like you had something new to wear without buying and we would regularly switch things up.

Repurposing what you have or repairing it can extend a garment’s life but that only really works for you if you’re very creative or skilled so I understand that it’s not for everyone. I’ve recently taken up my previous love of jewellery making too. It’s amazing what you can make with old buttons and beads!

Donating is another way of extending the life of garments too. Charities are in need of support and the shops have a fantastic array of clothes at a fraction of the original cost and still be new to you.

Of course, why not help someone and make a little money for yourself by selling them on one of the many resale sites. eBay, vinted, debop and Facebook marketplace are all methods of selling on clothes rather than sending them to landfill.

Love your clothes launched in 2014 as a campaign to reduce the environmental impact of clothing across the U.K. They have some great tips for caring, repairing and upcycling your garments. Visit www.loveyourclothes.org.uk

Wardrobe detox

One of the easiest ways of reducing the impact of fashion on the environment is to buy less and wear more of your clothes. During lockdown, many people found they hardly wore their clothes. Some even stopped fitting! And many decluttered their wardrobe. There was a surge in the number of people who downloaded the five steps to spring clean your wardrobe guide from the website too.

Just take a look in your wardrobe and assess how many clothes you have that you hardly wear, if at all. Maybe someone else can benefit from them and love them like you no longer can?

If you’re not sure where to start, then begin with my new wardrobe charts.

If you need professional help, you know where I am – get in touch to organise a virtual or face to face session.

5 day challenge to help break the boredom of your clothes

In March, we introduced a five day challenge on social media. Aimed at helping you to break the boredom of wearing the same clothes on repeat: something which kept coming up in discussions!

Nothing too difficult or complicated, just a little motivation to get you wearing different things.

Some people took part by sharing their posts on social media and in our private VIP Facebook group. Others chose to take part behind the scenes but the messages received were so uplifting and joyful, it was a pleasure to be able to help.

We thought we would share the details here in case you missed out so that you can take part yourself. Feel free to tag us in any posts on social media and use the hashtag: #5daychallengetlc too.

Day 1 – wear a different colour

Day one challenge

Simply take a look inside your wardrobe and pick out something to wear in a different colour than you’d normally wear. Any colour you want in any garment you like! Simple. Colour helps to boost your mood too.

Day 2 – add an accessory to your outfit today

Day two challenge
Today why don’t you try adding an accessory to your outfit.

It could be a anything. A hat, scarf, gloves, brooch, tie, hair accessory, a belt or some jewellery! Just try to add something different to mix things up a little.

Day 3 – wear something you haven’t worn for a while

Day three challenge

It could be something smarter, something old or something you bought new and haven’t had chance to wear it just yet.

Just pick out one thing from your wardrobe that you haven’t worn in a long time.

Day 4 – take something out that you don’t wear or doesn’t fit

Day four challenge

Today is about going into your wardrobe or your drawers and actually removing something that either doesn’t fit you anymore (and so you’re not likely to wear it any time soon) or that maybe you’ve just fallen out of love with.

When you remove things you’re not likely to wear, you’re actually clearing clutter which helps you identify garments that you can and will wear! If you can bring yourself to remove something, do. Pop it in a bag or a box ready to gift, give to charity or sell on.

Day 5 – pick out something that needs repairing

Day five challenge

This could be a missing button, a fallen hem, loose stitching etc. Something that has likely stopped you wearing the garment. It’s a common reason that things remain unworn.

Then, we want you to repair it! You don’t need to be a seamstress and nobody will be inspecting your repair but when you repair it, you’re more likely to wear it again.

So when you repair it later today, you can leave it out tonight and wear it tomorrow ☺️

We hope you enjoy the challenge! Why not join us at our next workshop when we’ll help you feel confident in what to wear. Click here for full details.

How to create ruching effect

In this 2 minute video, Toni shows you how to create a ‘ruching’ effect on your clothes.

This could be particularly useful if you have an oversized or shapeless top. It’s a good trick if you’re simply trying to create some shape or detailing, especially to highlight a narrow waist. The effect will also help to disguise a tummy area too with the ruching.

You just need a hair band or elastic band – no sewing skills are required!

Watch it here on YouTube.

Is red the colour of the season?

It was predicted that red would be the colour of the Autumn/winter season and with the festive season fast approaching; it’s no surprise.

A quick wander round the shops confirms this and I’m sure the emails in your inbox do too!

Colour has been found to affect people’s mood and energy levels – how do you feel when you wear colour?

Psychology

Red is the colour of energy making many people feel confident and in control and there’s a red to suit everyone.

The undertone (whether it has a yellow or blue base) matters a great deal with reds so be sure to choose the one best suited to you if you’re wearing it close to your face. If in doubt, revisit your colour swatch wallet or book a consultation.

Just remember, you don’t have to go top to toe in red! Embrace as much or as little as you like – here’s a few ideas.

Red trousers

Surprisingly versatile! Wear with a slogan top (also on trend), animal print or simple understated top.

Red jacket

Wear with denim jeans for an off-duty look or over a dress for work or dinner out. Invest in a winter coat or mac for a truly statement look.

Footwear

Red boots have walked onto the scene this time and can make quite a statement if you prefer to let your feet do the talking. If you prefer a more understated look, there are plenty of trainers, loafers and ballet shoes to choose from too. Extra points for embellishments!

Accessories

A simple way to update any look is with a statement item of jewellery such as a necklace, wrap around a new red scarf or invest in a new bag.

The red lip

It’s not always just about the clothes that you wear, your makeup finishes your whole look off.

An element of confidence is required to carry off a statement lip so make sure you choose the right shade for your skin tone. To keep it in place, use a lip base and a lip liner – both can be purchased from me.

The Colour me Beautiful range of cosmetics has been designed around our colour types and as with clothes, there’s a shade to suit everyone!

A few weeks ago (16 September), I posted a red lipstick colour to suit each of our dominant colour types on my Facebook page. Purchase a Lipstick for £14.50* from me or through my online shop.

Click here to view it.

Alternatively, why not try before you buy and make an appointment with me to have your makeup prescribed to your individual colouring. These sessions are free and can also be done as a group or party.

Get in touch to book.

 

*As at 27.9.17