Meet Gloria. She’ll super style you!
It’s all too easy look doe-eyed to London for fashion inspiration and expertise, but who has the time and dosh to traipse into the smoke for style assistance?
Lucky for us then, that Gloria Budd – preferred stylist for Matches London no less, and just-about-to-start lecturer at the London College of Style – lives out this way. Even more unusual that Gloria happens to have a a masters degree in NLP and further training in Clinical Hypnosis (are you feeling very sleepy?). I know that might seem an unusual skillset for a stylist but actually, what an amazing tool that is. Wearing clothes and feeling great is totally in the head isn’t it? So to have someone on hand to put you in a positive frame of mind without making you lie on the sofa and talk about your childhood, all the better.
If you’re in the market for a style update, definitely get in touch with her, but in the meantime, I’ve delved around in Gloria’s head and extracted her insider tips for how to zsush your existing wardrobe plus shop for this A/W16’s cool stuff.
The best places to shop
I’ll often shop for more local clients in Oxon and Bucks – no need to wade into London. Top of my list locally is Fluidity in Henley, Chattertons in Amersham and My Boudoir in Marlow for fab pre-loved pieces (check out the beautiful designer bags!). For more high street finds, Jigsaw and Whistles in Marlow are both great, or Zara and Karen Millen in Windsor. And don’t forget Bicester Village – I visit early morning or evenings Monday to Friday (avoid the weekend for your sanity). New deliveries often arrive Tuesdays and Thursdays so for supersmart shopping prioritise those those days.
Edit your wardrobe
Wardrobe edits are incredibly cathartic! If you’re looking to revamp your own wardrobe, be brutal and honest. Do you wear everything in your wardrobe? Do you find something to wear easily every day? If not, you’re probably overdue a clothes edit. You can do it yourself or employ a stylist to help you. When I go around to someone’s house, I’ll empty the wardrobe contents and rehang on portable rails. Then we’ll go through every piece together and I’ll check how often the piece is worn, does it fit, does it go with at least three other items in the wardrobe, do you feel confident wearing it? Depending on the answer, they’ll go into one of three areas – good, rethink or sell/charity. ‘Good’ goes back in the wardrobe organised in colours/season, ‘rethink’ is reworked where possible with some new combinations or put on the ‘sell/charity’ pile. Then we’ll think about new accessory combinations, work out any gaps and draw a shopping list to fill them (the fun bit!).
Focus on your waist
Creating a waist makes a massive difference to how you look and feel. Very few of us have a naturally proportioned shape but my job is to create attractive proportions! Some people feel they don’t have a waist at all and dress in volumes to disguise it, but there are ways to get around the issue. The most obvious way to create a waist it to cinch in the smallest part with a gorgeous belt but make sure you choose the correct belt for you by trying all shapes. For example, if you’re short waisted a wide belt can make your waist look bigger.
For an apple shape I might use an empire line just under the bust to create a ‘waist’, providing the client has a small bust. Great fitting high waisted jeans are our best friend as they create an illusion of a smaller waist and give more height, particularly if worn with heels. Vertical stripes are also great for slimming the waist, or wearing colour block dresses with dark panels at the sides will give the illusion of a smaller waist.
Break some rules
Please don’t feel you have to stick rigidly to a colour code based on having your colours done or advice in the past. Break some rules! The best thing to do is to study your skin tone, put the clothing next to your skin and ask yourself, ‘does this lift or drain me?’ That’s the only thing you need to go on. With dark outfits, don’t be afraid to spark them up with a colour block bag or shoes. Go big on statement jewellery, and try things that push you out of your comfort zone – I’m like Coco Chanel, a fan of ropes and ropes of pearls!
Buy smart for Autumn/Winter
Focus on key pieces to make your money travel further. Grab yourself something in velvet (the fabric of the season), whether it’s a coat, dress, top or trousers, midnight blues, luscious forest greens, luscious deep reds – all fab colours for this season. Boots, a winter staple, are chunky hee
led, laced up and, most importantly if you struggle with high heels, comfortable for once! The key sweater shape is elegant off the shoulder. For those of you wanting to sort out a A/W capsule wardrobe, I’d suggest going for one fab wool coat, a lightweight trench coat (the Winser London one is the best), a couple of well fitting dresses, tailored jacket and trousers, great fitting jeans, and a bit of cashmere here and there. Invest in an amazing handbag – pre loved ones are great buys, then mix all those classics up with some colourful and unexpected accessories.
High St hitlist
I’m just as happy helping clients buy from the high street as designer wear, so if you’re on a budget, my top five high street buys are, from left to right:
Button-front teal preppy A line skirt, £120, Karen Millen; handmade wool coat in Navy, Camel or Pink, £89.99, Zara; V&A ruched dress, £42 (now £29.50 at House of Fraser), Oasis; Luxe polo neck top in wool jersey, black or navy £69, me+em.
Gloria Budd, Personal Styling, London and Home Counties. Mob: 07714 244 404. gloriabudd.com
STOP PRESS 25 Sept 16: Lovely Gloria has just emailed me to offer the first ten Muddy readers a 25% discount on either a personal shopping session or wardrobe edit. Get to it quick and snap up your first bargain on the season!