Mood Clothes

06 Oct 2015



It is interesting how clothes can affect our emotions.  Colours have the same power to affect how we feel.

How clothes feel, the social implications attached to them, or what they symbolise for us can affect our mood and emotions.  Could we actually manage our moods with clothes?

The most important thing is that whatever you put on makes you feel good.  Even if something might not be regarded by the outside world as "age-appropriate"!  I often find that phrase demoralising and restrictive.  Who cares, if it makes you feel good and lights you up?  As soon as you light up, you are more attractive to others which you feel subliminally, which in turn lights you up even more. 

I see this in clients sometimes when we are having a "trying on" session.  I had a client recently who was showing me a favourite dress she wears on holiday.  It is her "holiday dress".  The colours in the dress were right for her skintone.  The cut and style of the dress was "sexy", even if some may have said it wasn't "age appropriate".  

I am honest in my appraisals and may point out how a piece could be improved for a bodyshape or suggest it be put aside.  But in this case, as soon as she put it on, she just lit up!  She looked gorgeous.  Her whole face lit up.  She looked happy, and exuded confidence and allure.

That was one dress she was going to be able to keep!  After all, it was her "holiday dress".  Holidays are about having fun, feeling good, happy, bringing out your "diva" and sexier self.  If an outfit can make you feel happy it is worth keeping. 



Clothes Do Matter

04 Oct 2015

Clothes or concern about clothes may come across as a shallow concern.  Some of us are ashamed to admit we care.  

Sheila Heti, author of "What Women Wear", says "I don't think people who care about clothes should feel ashamed:  we are humans in a society who talk to each other, and one of the ways we talk to each other is through what we wear".

Emily Spivack, author of "Worn Stories" had become fascinated by the way people view clothing when she'd set up a charity for women with breast cancer, called "Shop Well With You", and saw how clothes could be used to ease their discomfort and improve body image during treatment and after surgery.

Her research project called "Sentimental Stories" became her book, "Worn Stories", which explores our relationship to clothes.

These two books express how clothes do matter.  As FT's style editor, Jo Ellison says, "Clothes are a language by which we are judged: a shorthand that allows us to communicate with others, and an expression of our feelings of self-worth or status."

I completely agree with this angle on dressing and styling.  Fashion is psychological, as well as visual. 

What we put on in the morning says something about how we are feeling or what we want to convey to the outside world.  It is an instant language.

Viewed like that, it elevates the status of clothes to a much higher level.  We should pay more attention to what we are putting on!

I love to explore what that means in terms of how to improve someone's sense of self and of well-being using clothes. My approach to styling has a "therapeutic" element.  

I will be looking at various aspects of that and incorporate real expriences (some personal), or just express my general musings on this or other aspects of fashion.........



The Power of Clothes

26 Sep 2015

Fashion is psychological as well as visual.  It has the power to affect how we feel.  It also has the power to influence how other people view us.

As a Personal Stylist, I am more interested and inspired in the psychology of fashion for my clients and how it makes them feel, than just in trends.

I love observing the affect a change in style or outfit can have on others.  I note it in myself too.

I observe this all the time in the work I do for Smart Works charity in London.  As a volunteer stylist, I help style financially disadvantaged women for interviews, with charitable donations from high-street stores.

Apart from struggling financially, they may also have self-esteem or body-confidence issues.

The transformative effect of a new outfit on a woman like this is palpable.  She can feel different about herself which in turn going to affect how the interviewer sees her.  It is this, along with interview tips, which can make the difference between obtaining a job, or not.

In the right outfit, a woman carries herself differently, and sees a better outward version of herself, which gives her more confidence.   

In my work here I've seen a woman who couldn't bear to look at herself in the mirror generally, not want to stop looking at herself!  

The right outfit could subliminally persuade an interviewer to offer a job over another candidate.

This is the power of clothes!