The backing track I’ve chosen for this post is True Colours by Cyndi Lauper - now there’s a lady who loves her colour. I’ve not heard the song in a while and I appreciate now how emotive the lyrics are – a perfect tune to have in the background whilst I tell you how the last 7 months of training (and blogging) has influenced my life.
So, the news is that I have successfully completed my required number of ‘guinea pig’ colour analysis sessions (image of an actual guinea pig wearing a scarf popped into my head then!). For someone who thought colour analysis was a load of old baloney and a bit 80’s – I’ve had to eat a generous main course of humble pie and a side order of old hat. Colour analysis is magic – fact! See my first ever post back in January for a recap. And for more eye candy visit my True Colours Pinterest board.
It’s not easy to determine a person’s season and sometimes it’s very hard. It took 2 rounds of draping one of my guinea pigs, the gorgeous redhead Rebecca, culminating in a drive, SOS style, to Gail's house (my tutor at Study in Style) to finally determine her season. The truth is, Rebecca could look good wearing a hessian sack – but given that they are very itchy and the colour choices are limited, we’re glad to have finally got her sussed.
My guinea pigs have been a mixture of family, new friends, old friends, work colleagues and people that I’ve never met before. It’s been wonderful to reconnect with people I’ve not seen in a while and to meet new people - one of the reasons this new career appealed to me in the first place. I would like to share with you in this post some of the moments, happy and sad, that have reinforced my decision to train to be a Style Advisor.
One of my ladies who I’d not met before is a young widow. Her husband died 4 years ago leaving her with 2 children to care for and comfort. Until now, she hadn’t felt ready to do something that was just for her. She felt that getting her colours done would be a good place to start. And it’s true. Knowing the colours that suit you gives you a clear direction when shopping for clothes. And of course when the compliments come flooding in, it’s very good for the soul too. I’m not saying colour analysis is some amazing cure for the bereaved, that would be irresponsible of me and unfounded, but it’s a great first step to banish the blues, boost confidence and give direction when other things in your life have been turned upside down and you’ve been knocked for six (and then some).
Speaking to her before her colour analysis session I felt lucky that I was the person that she’d asked. I also felt hugely responsible, if I’m honest. Of course, I want all my clients to feel relaxed and cared for during the consultation but knowing this lady’s story, I wanted to ensure it was a very positive experience for her.
Thankfully, she loved the session and soon after requested a wardrobe weed. A wardrobe weed is where I help the client get rid of the wrong colours and styles from her wardrobe and compile a shopping list of items that will make her wardrobe work even better for her lifestyle, colour diagnosis and body shape. This wardrobe weed was a freebie for her and great experience for me which will form part of my training – so a win-win for both of us.
It was when I was in her home for the wardrobe weed that her situation hit me harder. Chatting in the hallway when I arrived, there was a beautiful family portrait hanging on the wall near my head. I told her it was a great picture. She said that she was still unable to look at it but had it there for the kids really. I realised then how privileged I felt to be part of this tiny section of her journey. Also, before we got started on her wardrobe weed she showed me the patchwork blanket that her late husband’s mum had made out of a selection of his favourite clothes – which I thought was an amazing idea, though the same tears that stung my eyes then, sting again now as I type - a very sad and yet truly beautiful blanket.
Another wonderful experience was draping a lady that I had semi lost touch with. We were Facebook friends but hadn't actually met up and talked face to face in about 7 years. During the consultation she mentioned that she really wanted to be an estate agent but had been doing a very different role, working from home, for years. I basically asked her what was she waiting for and told her to go for it. I had a text a few days later saying that she had got an interview and that it was my fault! The next thing I hear is that she’d got the job. Result! I’m by no means selling career advice along with style advice, no, no, no – but what an amazing feeling to have helped someone with their career – which probably wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t started my new career.
And aforementioned ‘now estate agent’ lady recommended my colour analysis services on a Facebook group and as a result I’ve been asked to be part of the Rennie Grove Ladies Pamper Evening on June 5th. I’ll be donating a colour analysis session to the raffle and presenting some styling tips throughout the evening. Have I done a presentation like this before? No. Am I scared? A little. Will I feel the fear and do it anyway? Yes, of course I will - it's for a charity that has helped some close friends of mine and continues to offer much needed support in our community, so I’m more than willing to stumble on my words, provide a giggle and throw in some style advice on the way. What’s the worst that can happen? I’ll tell you in June!
Better still, come along and enjoy the evening for yourself. Tickets are £15 which includes one free treatment and a glass of Pimms. There are so many exciting treatments available but you must book these in advance. See Rennie Grove website for more details and booking info.
Thank you to the people mentioned in this blog for allowing me to share their pictures and stories.
To celebrate my new learnt skill I will be offering colour analysis sessions at a reduced rate of £50 (includes colour swatch) for a limited period – so please get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested or want to book for a friend or relative. M x
Next time…I promise, promise, promise to show you my new purchases and how they’ve helped me create some new looks within my wardrobe. But before I go I just wanted to share with you one small tip to take your existing jeans into spring - roll them up! Yes it’s that easy. The turn up creates a more summery, casual look and the flash of flesh at the ankle is more than enough whilst the temperatures are still fluctuating – simples!