Monday, June 23, 2014

Q&A with a Personal Stylist - what the heck do you actually do?

As a personal stylist who has been in business for over 9 years, I find people are quite interested in this job I do and love. I thought you might find it amusing and interesting to learn about some of the usual questions I am faced with on a daily/weekly basis from my clients and the people I meet. So grab a coffee, get the baby settled (yeah right) and I hope this makes you smile.

Is there a market for that? I mean WHO uses you?

I was recently asked this for an online fashion magazine and here is what I told them. People use a personal stylist when they realise that when you invest some money in learning how to buy and wear clothing that suits you, you end up saving money. You end up enjoying what you have and feeling confident you are doing the best you can with what you have. I’ve seen ages 2-78, Sizes 4-36, mums to musicians, priests (yes it’s true quite a few!) to professionals. A call is often triggered by a life event, or reasons like weight loss and gains, bodies changing after babies, a step up the corporate ladder, returning to the workforce or a significant birthday.

Which season do people find more difficult to dress in?

Hands down, Summer. It’s because loads of people feel they can ‘hide’ in winter clothes. When skin is on show (arms & knee in particular) people feel quite nervous.

What do people find the hardest to buy?

Good ole Jeans. Always hits No.1. Keep an eye on my Facebook page as I’m going to be giving a lot more helpful hints on how to buy jeans and what to look for. You will even find a video instruction from me. People really want a great pair of jeans and really struggle to find ones that fit them.

Do you throw away loads of people’s clothes?

Yes and no. We don’t personally do it, we don’t fill a bag and leave with it, but we do put it in a pile and it has been explained by either us or the client has seen it for themselves WHY it isn’t right. Often people tell me then and there “I’m going to sneak that back in you know!” which makes me smile. Because guaranteed 6 mths later, they say “I tried to wear it again and it just didn’t work so I threw it away”. When you understand the principals of why something isn’t right, it’s much easier to let it go rather than use the normal excuses of ‘I’ll fit it one day, it might become trendy again, I spent SO much money on it, I was given it, it reminds me of a lovely memory”.

Do you see clients’ who love shopping and have loads of money to spend?

Not often on both counts. Our job is not about wandering around town buying the latest fashions for wealthy clients. It’s helping everyday people to spend wisely on clothes they actually need for their lifestyle and within a budget. Most of our client’s really dislike shopping. We do lots of Op-shopping with clients who need a decent amount of clothing within a small budget. It’s a great idea if you are fluctuating in weight after having had a baby. You are sick and tired of your maternity clothes, but not willing to go the whole hog and spend too much in case your weight/shape changes!

Do you ever get tired of shopping?

No. Never. Ever.

Have you ever not been able to help anyone?

Nope. Because each person takes different things from a session. For some it’s about the de-clutter of the wardrobe. For others learning about colours. Some people have a great instinct for colours but struggle with their body shape and what suits it. Many just feel like they have lost their mojo with clothing due to life circumstances – age and childbirth being a couple of major ones.

Do you see many male clients?

Yes, loads. They actually really like the process because it’s logical and problem solving. When you can tell a man this suits you, this is why, here buy this. They go “oh, ok”. I’m also sure they quite enjoy being bossed around a bit by someone else other than their wife.

For more details visit the website or making a booking with Trudi (Auckland) or Sarah (Wellington) on

Regards Trudi - follow the fashion!! Blogger MyStyle Fashion blogger for

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