What happens during a style and shape consultation and what can you expect?

Whilst most people start with a colour analysis consultation, a style and shape consultation is often the missing piece of the jigsaw when it comes to clothes fitting and suiting you.

If you read last week’s blog or watched the video on Youtube this month, you might be wondering what to expect when you book a style & shape consultation at the studio. Here’s the low-down.


You’ll have received details about where to come and what to expect in your email booking confirmation. No need to worry about what to wear, it’s covered here.

When you arrive for your appointment, I’ll greet you and invite you into the studio. As you get settled on the sofa and fill in a record card, I’ll put the kettle on.

Drink in hand, we’ll have a brief chat about your wardrobe, your clothes and any challenges or expectations you’ve got.

Introduction to style personalities

How many times have you tried to copy the look of a celeb only to feel…well, let’s say flat? Quite simply, it’s because you’re not the same! But, that doesn’t mean you can’t take some inspiration, and still be you.

What you wear tells a story. Your clothes are a way of expressing who you are, your likes and dislikes. Even if you don’t feel that you have a style, everyone does. There’s a little quiz I get you to do with 10 questions. There’s no right or wrong answers as this is about you and how you dress and feel.

Understanding your style personality is the real you. It’s about the clothes you reach for and how they make you feel. Everyone has style, it’s just learning what it is and how to use it to represent who you are so that you can feel like you in what you wear. We’ll also discuss how you might want to push your style boundaries, because nobody has to sit in a box!

I’ll show you some examples to bring things to life. When you nail your personality type it can help you to create a wardrobe that works for you. It’ll help you avoid further shopping disasters and frustrations too and stop buying things which don’t make you feel good.

Your body line, shape and proportions

Now you know more about what works for your personality (fabric, styles, fit etc), we’ll take a look at your body shape. Size doesn’t matter, but shape certainly does.

There are no tape measures used and you can happily stay fully clothed too!

A lot of women tell me that they don’t know their body shape, or that clothes don’t fit them properly. Sometimes, it’s not your body shape which you have challenges with, but your proportions. (I’ve talked about this previously in this video).

For example, if you struggle with the fit of jeans, trousers or skirts, it may not be the size of the garment which isn’t right for you, or even your shape. Instead, the rise of the garment may not be right for your proportions.

Take a jumpsuit. It’s the perfect example for when you know your shape, it can still mean the garment doesn’t fit you correctly. This isn’t about your body being wrong, but that the garment proportions might not be the right fit for you. Body length, leg length and rise length; they all matter! The wrong rise and it could be too long giving the appearance of a saggy bum, or indeed it could be too short so it digs uncomfortably in.

Understand your body shape and proportions so you can refine your clothing choices and make sure they work for you, and not the other way round. Clever techniques exist, it’s just learning more about it, which is what we discuss in detail.

During this section, I’ll also talk about fabric – specifically the cut and weight. These factors have an impact on whether something fits and flatters you. Rise, seams, darts, necklines and sleeves are all elements to take into account when dressing to flatter YOUR shape. Your fabric choice can be a friend or a foe! I’ll show you some examples of weight, texture, cut and feel too.

To give you an idea of what’s discussed, you can watch this video too. During this, I’ll be showing you examples and talking you through how best to wear clothes which fit and flatter you. Learning clever tips and tricks to create different outfits which fit and flatter you.

Clothing review

If you’ve brought along some of your own clothes, we’ll revisit the ones which you felt didn’t work for you. Now you’ve learnt all about what suits you and flatters you, you’ll be able to see why you’ve not been able to make them work for you. This is an opportunity to get ideas on how you may be able to re-work it, or wear it differently, if you decide that you can or you want to of course!

Summary and end of session

Having reached the end of your consultation, you’ll take away the colour me beautiful book which we’ll have used during your session. This works as a reminder and contains some helpful advice to revisit at home.

After you leave

Most clients head straight home to their wardrobe to review what they’ve got and the rest hit the shops! A style and shape consultation can last up to 2.5 hours so you’re unlikely to remember everything we’ll have discussed! So, I always follow up afterwards to help keep you on track. To inspire you further, I’ll also send you over my own brand/retailer list too using the email address you provided on the record card when you arrived. You can opt-out any time.

Should you have any further queries, or you’d like to book your appointment, get in touch: toni.carver@tlcstyleandcolour.co.uk.

When you understand why certain styles, the fit and fabric work for you and why things don’t, then it helps you to create outfits and a wardrobe that works for you. It rarely happens overnight, but trust me, it will.

I hope this answers any questions you have about what to expect during a style and shape consultation, but do let me know if you have any other questions.

Should you wait to lose weight before buying new clothes?

I hear this a lot and my heart goes out because it’s a vicious circle. You don’t want to buy clothes that fit you now, because you don’t intend to be remain the same weight. Yet, feeling like you don’t deserve to buy something nice because you’re not your ideal weight, means you compromise on your clothing.

Granting yourself permission to buy new clothes when you’re thinner, sends a message to yourself that you’re not worth it if you’re carrying a little extra weight. This leads to wearing clothes that you don’t feel good in, and your self-belief is knocked down further. You end up trapped in a circle of despair.

Shape not size

I see very few people who are 100% happy with their body. Most people are too concerned with their own body to be looking at yours! Everyone’s body changes anyway!

With no universal sizing, it means you could be one size in one shop and another elsewhere. Unless you make your own clothes, garments you buy aren’t specifically being made for you, so you might have to make them work for your body (rather than the other way around). Size is just a number after all – it’s dressing your shape that matters.

If you’ve found a garment and it’s perfect for you in all other aspects (colour, fit, fabric), but the number on the label isn’t, will you really deny yourself the item?

Clothes can be altered or styled differently. They can be sold, swapped or given to charity. Waiting until you hit your goal weight is commendable, but it’s absolutely fine to feel good and look good whilst you’re working towards it. You don’t have to lose weight to look good or feel good. But, wearing clothes which are comfortable and which suit you will make a vast difference.

If you’re reading this thinking you won’t be able to pull something off, let me assure you it has nothing to do with your size. It’s all about your confidence and self belief. Many people end up reaching for oversized garments hoping to hide their body. Unfortunately, it often just makes you look bigger than you are. There’s better ways of doing it.

Too many clothes

Having a wardrobe full of clothes in multiple sizes, which don’t fit can lead you to keep beating yourself up. These clothes can end up taunting you every day, making you feel frustrated. They’re an unhelpful reminder of your former self rather than who you are NOW or, could be in the future.

Remove the clothes that you don’t wear because they don’t fit you and store them away. Most people need far less clothes than what they have in my experience! Curating a small wardrobe of clothes that fit you and which you can happily wear will make you feel good too.

Do you know what actually suits you? Not everyone is clear about the colour/style/shape/fit/fabric. Knowing what suits you will improve your confidence and help you to feel good in what you wear, right now as well as in the future. So, don’t put off booking a consultation because you’re waiting to lose weight.

Wearing colour is not limited to size! Using colour is a clever way to enhance your features and provide an instant boost to your confidence.

Remember, clothes don’t just cover your body, they tell a story.  What story are you telling the world?

If you’re not sure where to start or what package is right for you, get in touch with me first so we can have a chat.

Autumn Spotlight trend: Styling the bias cut midaxi satin skirt

Satin is one of the many trends I’ve highlighted within my seasonal updates this autumn and winter. Like many trends, it’s not the first time we’ve seen it. It’s got a 90s vibe about it (just me?) and we saw it during spring and summer too.

Something which many people struggle with is how to wear a skirt. More specifically; what to wear with a skirt. Skirts can throw up all sorts of issues; the best length, what shoes, fitted or baggy top, to name but a few.

During my recent seasonal update workshop, I picked this bias cut satin skirt from New Look.* The colour was fabulous and the fabric just devine. Satin can add elegance to an outfit and make it feel dressier.

To demonstrate that you don’t need to restrict it to evening wear, I raided my wardrobe for things I could style it with. Here’s a selection of 8 (9 if you include the jacket):

Alternative options

– Smarten the skirt up with a blazer or jacket

– Try a waistcoat

– Wear a cropped top or t-shirt

– Swap the trainers for a pair of boots. Both long and ankle would work

– If trainers are not your thing, try some flat shoes, brogues or loafers

The skirt

As mentioned, the skirt featured is the burgundy satin bias cut midi skirt from New Look*. It comes in eight other colours too: black, dark grey, khaki, green, dark green, navy, red and gold.

It has an elasticated waistband which sits hidden inside the skirt. New Look classify it as a ‘midaxi’ length (which is somewhere between midi and maxi).

If you’re shorter in the leg or petite in size/scale, it’s likely to finish lower than it does on me. I’m 5 foot 5 and you can see that it comes to my ankles.

A bias cut can be flattering because it’s cut on an angle which creates more stretch and movement to the material. Whilst this is 96% polyester, it has an amazing soft, lightweight feel to the fabric and has elastane so it’s got some stretch.

Style personality and fit

However I’ve styled this skirt, your own style personality and shape needs to be taken into account. I talk you through fabric and styles plus your style personality influences during a style and image consultation.

I can help you select the most flattering styles and fabrics for your body shape – just get in touch to book your appointment.


*Please note that this is an affiliate link which means that should you make a purchase using it, a payment of commission may be made to me at no cost to you. Thank you for your support.

How to choose the right dress

I’ll admit, I am a sucker for a dress. It’s an all-in-one outfit which means I have very little to think about!

There’s definitely a dress for everyone! But, that does not translate into one dress will suits everyone the same way (remember my rant from last year with the Zara dress??)

SS23 dress trends


Dresses feature again this coming season.

But, they feature every season!


So, what do you need to look for when choosing the right dress for you?


Lifestyle appropriate

It goes without saying that you should choose a dress which is comfortable to wear! Often when I speak about dresses to clients, they think they won’t work for them. This is what I call choosing lifestyle appropriate clothes. By way of an example, if you’re crawling around on the floor after a toddler then your choice needs to suit what you’ll be doing. Longer styles with lighter fabrics worn with leggings may be much more suitable than a PU short body con dress.

So, consider what activities you’ll be doing to help you decide on the most appropriate style of dress for the occasion!


Throughout history and different traditions, men, women and children have all worn versions of a dress. In many warm countries, men wear tunics as a method of staying cool. I can guarantee that it won’t be made of polyester but instead, a lightweight and breathable fabric such as cotton!

If you’re shopping for a dress, check the label to see what it’s made from. In fact, it’s worth checking your wardrobe for the clothes you love wearing and compare the fabric to the ones you hate wearing! If you’re in the throws of the menopause then polyester will not be your friend! Choosing the right fabric can enhance and flatter your figure and shape. But, make a mistake and it can change your shape and add bulk which may not be flattering.

Shape (and proportions)

I’ve touched on this already. There are all sorts of dress styles, cuts, shapes and fabrics which will flatter your shape.  Essentially, choose something which flatters and mimics your shape and you’ll be onto a winner. It boils down to how the dress is made, where the seams are (empire, waist, dropped waist etc) and the cut and shape of the dress. If you don’t have a waist, or you want to detract attention away from a waist, then an empire line could be flattering (depending upon the fabric of course). That’s why it’s important to understand what suits you.

Style (personality)

We talk about style often in terms of how something might look or be seen. But, how you dress, where you shop, your choice of styles, cuts and fabric are all influences of your style personality. A dress can really showcase your style personality which is why if you wear something which doesn’t suit who you are, you won’t feel happy or comfortable! Those dresses that you constantly faff around with or pull or take off immediately? Partly down to your style personality influences. Learn this (during a style and image consultation) and where your style boundaries are and it’ll be the lightbulb moment for you saving you so many mistakes.


Colour is just as important of course as all these features mentioned above. You may well have chosen a dress on the colour alone. If this flatters you and makes you feel good, then it’s a winner. But, don’t hang onto it just because of the colour if the other boxes aren’t being ticked or you won’t get your wear out of it. If you’ve had a colour analysis consultation, then you’ll know your best shades of colour and can use your swatches as a guide in choosing the right shade.


There isn’t a one-size-fits-all, so why should your dress choices be the same? Yes, there’s certain styles which tend to suit most people (like a wrap dress). BUT, if this isn’t in the right fabric or length for you then it won’t flatter you!

Experiment with dress styles, prints, fabrics and designs. And remember, that the most flattering dress for you will showcase YOU the best.

Identifying these features can take time but if you need help then consider booking a colour and style session.

You’ll find me featuring some of my fave dresses on Facebook and Instagram on Monday 6 March in celebration of ‘national dress day’!

Style & Image Consultation – Frequently asked questions

A style and image consultation is for you if you feel like you need help identifying how to dress for your body shape and your proportions which reflect who you are and your lifestyle. Not everyone is blessed with perfect proportions and a celebrity budget, but the good news is that you don’t need either; you just need to know how.

These sessions are about putting the pieces of the jigsaw together so that so you can feel confident knowing that you can dress for any occasion and still feel like you.

Here are some of the frequent questions asked in regard to style and image consultations.

“Do I need to have been for a colour analysis before?”

Not at all. Many clients start off with a colour analysis consultation first as it’s the quickest and easiest way to update your image but it’s not essential.

“Will I have to strip off??”

Of course not!

Assessing your body shape and proportions isn’t about getting a tape measure out or assessing you in your underwear! (No offence Trinny and Susannah). Rest assured, you’ll remain fully clothed for the session.

“Do I really need someone to tell me what to wear?”

Only you can answer that! These consultations aren’t about telling you anything! You are an adult after all, so they are more about learning and understanding and gaining knowledge about what suits you, your figure and specifically why and what to look for.

“Won’t you need full access to my wardrobe?”

This isn’t necessary. You’re invited to bring a small selection of clothes from your wardrobe which we can assess during the session. Usually; something that you love wearing, something that you don’t and something which you don’t wear because it doesn’t look or feel ‘right’ and you can’t put your finger on why. These are great ways of highlighting clothes, styles and fabrics which do and don’t work for you. A wardrobe follow session can be booked when I can come and help you with your wardrobe if you need it.

“I don’t have the budget to start my wardrobe all over again, will you tell me to get rid of everything?”

Don’t worry, not many people do have the budget to adopt this approach! Besides, it’s about building and having a wardrobe of pieces that work for you and learning how to work with what you already have as well. If you need a little help, please download my wardrobe charts. You’ll find them here.

“Isn’t a Style and image session expensive?”

How many times have you bought something which doesn’t suit you or you never wear it? It’s this learning and understanding that will help prevent you from making more expensive shopping mistakes. You only have to look in your own wardrobe to see those rash purchases. Take a moment to tot up how much you have spent on things you never wear. I’m confident that the figure will be more than a style and image consultation with me. Prices start from £75 depending whether you choose an online or studio session. Group sessions or events are also available if you’re happy to have a taster or experience it with others.

“I’m unhappy with my current weight so am I best waiting until I’ve shed the pounds?”

That depends on how you feel. Depending on your body, your age, diet, exercise and your family history, you may not change your proportions or your underlying body shape. The size and how you feel certainly will change though and the consultation covers more than just shape but body lines, proportions (such as the position of your waist), fabric, styles and personality to name just a few. Booking a session whilst on your journey may be the confidence boost you need to help you reach your goals. Only you can decide when the time is right for you.

“Isn’t it easier to buy clothes when you’re small with a limitless budget?”

Firstly, size doesn’t matter but shape does. Size is just a number and unfortunately there is no uniform sizing in clothes across retailers. This is why understanding your shape, lines and proportions is so helpful as it focuses your attention on making the most of your good features (yes you do have some). And, how to take attention away from anything you don’t like and dress for you and your body. This is relevant no matter what size you happen to be. There’s far more options available now, it just depends on the retailer. In terms of budget, well money doesn’t always buy style! It’s what you spend your money on that counts and how often you wear things to get value for money.

“What’s the difference between an online and face to face session?”

The principles are still the same for both sessions but they are conducted in a very different way. Face to face sessions are much more detailed, last longer and take place at the studio in Wakefield, West Yorkshire. It’s down to you and what you’d most benefit from.

Here you’ll find details about the in person consultation and here’s the online details.

Ready to book or have a question?

Get in touch: toni.carver@tlcstyleandcolour.co.uk