Style Development Sessions
Wardrobe Deep Dive
Originally, Olga came with the request to focus on the basics – develop an understanding of her characteristics of appearance, completing the Wardrobe Check and creating a shopping strategy. But as is often the case, after completing the questionnaire and our first meeting, it became quite clear that we needed to go deeper, find out what she wanted to communicate with her clothes, how she wanted to feel in them, and where her real focus point was. ‘What do you want?’ – a seemingly simple question, but one that can be very difficult to answer.
Olga´s true wishes and preferences seemed to be hidden deep under protective (and so powerful) layers of certain scepticism and inner resistance to change. Working with clients I am prepared for this resistance as it often arises when trying to get out of the comfort zone; an absolute necessity for styling with a deep approach. It is normal, but as you could imagine, quite challenging. Btw, I really recommend to read Olga´s reflection of this experience below on this page, she describes these challenges very deeply.
So … we ended up combining 2 services to make the work most effective: Style Development Sessions and Wardrobe Deep Dive. Let’s take a look at some work insides and the results, shall we?
Style Development Sessions
Style Development Sessions are mostly based on exercises, data analysis and visual representations. One of the most useful tools for Olga was keeping an observation/reflection journal in which she wrote down her thoughts. When she observed the people on the street (or online), she automatically focused on her personal perception. By trying to understand their message, their energy, their approach, she went deeper into understanding what is really ´hers´. I must say, that I was really impressed by the amount of time and effort Olga invested into this exercise, which of course had a positive impact on the results of our work. The exercise was systematized and extended through data analysis and a couple of individualized style tests. Here are some outfit favourites:
The focus point became clear; Olga wanted to demonstrate a certain status and be taken seriously, have a rather calm, thoughtful energy. Clean lines, simple finishes, high quality materials, mostly natural colors; minimalism, safari, casual were picked as the main style directions for her wardrobe.
This is why it is so important to have a clear focus point before getting into wardrobe analysis. Compare the desired message from the style test form above to some of the clothes Olga had in her wardrobe. Her closet was quite scattered, overloaded, unorganized. We can see the consequences of years of impulsive shopping, ´obsession´ with outdated silhouettes, lack of a clear wardrobe concept and style DNA. It became clear that Olga wore regularly best case 20% of her clothes. The outdated/unfitting items were sorted out, sold, or given for donation.
However, we were still able to find some items from the styles, colors and fits we needed. Here are some outfit examples with a beige long trench coat, white shirt, a jacket and a minimalist long silk dress. By the way, when a client puts on an outfit and starts to move more intensively (especially dancing), it´s a great sign for me, that we´re on the right track. It means that the clothes are giving him/her energy. I was happy to see that that was the case with Olga.
The wardrobe project is a visual culmination of our work, where different pieces of the puzzle finally come together. Items are selected according to passing colors and silhouettes, client´s lifestyle and current focus, desired style directions, wardrobe strategy, and so on. Simply put, a wardrobe project is a combination of client´s existing essential pieces and consciously developed shopping list.
The focus for Olga´s wardrobe project was to create a quality base for fall season that would allow many outfit combinations. We picked black, white and beige (and rather earth tones mostly), complimented by a bright-dark turquoise for a certain accent touch. The shopping list included items such as chunky black boots, classic cat eye sunglasses, a dark-grey trench coat, a basic brown first layer top, etc. Timeless choices that will last for years.
Chat support is a great way for me to guide the client´s attention, so that he or she can learn, experiment, but at the same time … minimize the shopping mistakes. Olga chose the items according to the shopping list and store recommendations. Via messenger we analyzed the fit, quality, completeness, nuances of care and tailoring together. Here are some examples on how the chat support works.
Conclusions & Review
I think the result speaks for itself … what a joy it was to witness such a significant inner and outer transformation. I am very proud of Olga. How determined she was to give 100% to her part of the work, despite some challenges. We could finally see a match between what is inside and what is outside. And now … her side of the story.
„Now 3 months have passed since our work, I would like to share my thoughts with you. As you know, it was not my first experience working with a stylist. The first try happened about 15 years ago and brought an understanding of my type of appearance. But back then I was not ready for a change (as I understand now), felt so much resistance and returned all the recommended clothes after shopping, came back to old habits, and of course … continued being not satisfied with my appearance and wardrobe.
And this summer, my fate unexpectedly gave me one more styling chance through you. I liked your approach to the formation of the wardrobe right away – logic, considering the psychological background, joint work together, without strong dictates of trendy fashion. Well, I had no idea how much afford is required from me in this work – no wonder, I felt the resistance again but decided that this time I will keep on going. 😊
You required from me a huge concentration on myself (something I was not used to): my aspirations, goals, preferences. You gave me many exercises, which made me search for (understand, accept, want) ‘my own’ for the current period of life. I will not hide, it was so difficult to delve into myself, and even more so to recognize my own goals! Seriously, the process felt like a self-development therapy-program.
And then wardrobe edit and this terrible feeling when we were getting rid of my favourite junk (thanks for the nostalgia box, btw) … When I saw myself the first outfits created from the clothes which remained, I felt unexpectedly beautiful. But your questions surprised me once again: ‘How do you feel? Are you expressing what you need at this point of your life? Let's check your request. How could we elevate this outfit to your main stated goal?’ So much food for thought, haha.
Shopping list was ready, which meant shopping consciously, with military discipline, purchase only well-fitting items of a very specific color. Totally new experience for me! Here I had to forget about this useless quick joy of buying unexpected, lovely finds, which get lost in jungle of clothes I already have – conscious approach cannot tolerate this! Only in this moment I understood how impulsive my shopping has been for years …
And finally results: first experience wearing new outfits, looks, compliments. Damn nice!
By the way, it's great that we used so many forgotten accessories from my ‘unbearable deposits’. Thought: ahh, now I understand why I bought this!
Now I'm creating outfits. By myself. I twist my soul with questions: What do I want to express today? And what does this outfit convey? How to achieve my goal today? How do I feel? And you know, indeed with practice the answers are coming easier and easier!
Here is the apotheosis of hard work and doubts – I feel great in the downtown of the capital, this is my jungle, I feel it with my skin! Thank you for our work. Truly deep and amazing experience.”