A couple of weeks ago, I went to Britmums Live which is a conference for parent bloggers in the UK. I had the best time catching up with blogging friends, old and new. I'm amazed at the friendships that are formed through blogging - who knew? I came out of Britmums feeling really inspired about this site, about writing, about delivering content that (hopefully) entertains and just doing my best. And happy that I got a photo of one of the waiters (see my Facebook page).
|Like naughty schoolgirls at the back of the class, |
Penny from Alexander Residence vandalised my notes while I was trying to learn. ;-)
But I digress. One of the sponsors of Britmums was TK Maxx, who I just lurve. I was eyeing off their things when one of their stylists asked if I'd like to book a consultation where they tell you your body shape and what clothes suit. They had racks and racks of clothes and accessories, none of which were for sale. This meant you could try all different styles without feeling obliged to buy anything. Well since you're twisting my arm...
So I booked myself in. I thought the session was fantastic. Now you normally don't get style advice from me. But I thought this was worth sharing.
They started with body shape. "Right, let's see if you have a waist..." I've always wondered which body shape "category" I fall in, so it's great to be told by people who know. I'm an hourglass, and if I'm being honest, I was a bit chuffed with that. As if it's some kind of personal achievement.
Next they looked at what I was wearing. I don't have a photo, but it was a knee-length straight denim shirt-dress, with a scarf around my neck because my top two buttons kept coming undone. They loved that I had "added interest with a colourful scarf" (I didn't tell them about my buttons) but the worst thing I can do for my shape is wear something shapeless - which the dress was. A belt would have made all the difference. They put one on me and yup. It made all the difference. Also the dress's belt tabs are in the wrong spot. My waist is quite high (really?) so I need to unpick the tabs and put them back on higher. I'll get to that sometime around never.
They asked about the clothes I wear and "trouble areas." I told them I hate my knees, have never ever looked good in a skirt, that I love dresses, and I don't have even a hint of ankle.
Right - knees: don't worry about them. Most people hate their knees because really, they're rarely pretty.
Skirts: hourglass shapes suit pencil skirts. Pencil skirts are hardly what you wear to the park, but for an evening out I should give them a try.
Dresses: a good alternative to a maxi dress is a jumpsuit. Yes. A jumpsuit. Apparently, and don't shoot the messenger here, jumpsuits suit all body shapes. They work because they come in at the waist, many of them have a nifty drawstring there so you can adjust to suit. They look great when you 'blouse' the top part over. I didn't try one on so I don't know if this is right. Are there any jumpsuit fans out there who care to comment?
Shift dresses really suit an hourglass shape, and I was told prints and bright "jewel" colours suit me. They gave me a knee-length colour blocking dress to try, one that I would have walked straight past in a shop, and it really worked. I loved it. I didn't get a photo but it was similar to this:
And look, here I am! Shamelessly, shamelessly, posing up a storm. See what I do for you?? At least, I think it's for you. It could be for me and I'm actually incredibly vain? I can't work it out. I need therapy.
Now look closely at the shoes (which are clearly too big), for that's the main reason why I've included this hellish photo. If you are similarly challenged by legs void of ankles these are the shoes you should be wearing. It makes a difference. See how the shoe is cut low? Toe cleavage? That elongates the foot, making an ankle magically appear. Aha! Some height in the heel and we are done. Wedges for me as I can't walk in heels.
Oh God these photos just get worse.
|If this was on Facebook I would de-tag immediately. |
Yet somehow on the blog I don't care. Why? That's a bit weird isn't it?
Now this next outfit is sooo not what I would normally wear but I loved this one. Skinny jeans (that are too big but we'll ignore that) with the wedge shoes, a lace top and "statement necklace." At least I think that's a statement necklace. Anyhoo - the thing about this top that you can't really see is it's not fitted but it has panels along the front that draw the eye down to the waist. Apparently. And I never wear necklaces like that but I'm going to start to.
OK this next photo is hideous but it's the clothes we are looking at people. Got that?
And the only other option was this photo. I have no idea what I am doing here.
|"Are you there God? It's me, Rachel."|
Now I thought that floral top was revolting on the hanger. And I have to say that with the jacket and the bag, I like it. Although looking at it now, I know my husband would hate it. Still, at 35 I finally realise what my mother has been saying for years: you have to try things on.
See how that jacket is a classic cut, it's got a low v-neck as opposed to a straight, high neck? That neckline (do jackets have necklines?) is pointing to the waist, making it look slimmer. Ta da! And look, they put a "statement bag" on me. I didn't know we were calling them that, but apparently we are.
So there you have it. When you get good advice it's nice to share it. I hope you've enjoyed reading my second hand fashion tips and had a good giggle at my expense.
It was fun. And when I do eventually go shopping, I will know what to buy.
If you were at Britmums, did you get a consultation? Can you share some details? Or if you have any general clothes advice or comments, I'd love to hear them. Apart from "you are not a model" because that's stating the bleeding obvious.