7 Tips for Bringing Some Colour into Your Wardrobe

Image ConsultancyOne of the things that people know about me is that I have a love for colour and that I am passionate about encouraging people to wear beautiful colours that really make them shine. Whilst neutrals have their place in your wardrobe,  colour is what will really make you stand out, look healthy, vibrant and show your personality. Over the years of being an image consultant I have learnt that it is common for people to shy away from colour, preferring to stick with the easy and safer option of black or other neutrals. People tend of feel a bit afraid of colour mainly because they are not sure which colours suit them or how to put an outfit together that goes. Often people have certain colours they stick to, that are easy to grab when they are rushing round the shops and don’t often branch out to try new ones. If that sounds like you don't worry, you are not alone!

PLEASE NOTE - I am not against black! Black looks amazing on certain colourings and can really create a striking image. Unfortunately on other colourings it can over power and drain the colour from your face. If this is the case for you then focus on wearing a colour by your face and stick to black on your bottom half.

As there are so many lovely colours in the shops for Spring I have compiled my top 7 tips to wearing colour to help you out if that is something that feels a bit daunting to you:

1. You do not have to match your colours. This might be a bit shocking for some people but it is ok to clash colours or just wear colours together without neutrals in between, it is actually more up to date to do so. Matching shoes with your clothes with your eye shadows can look a little twee and out of date.

2. A dress is a really easy way of wearing head to toe colour. If you are not sure how to wear colours together then make it really easy for yourself and go for a dress!

3. To build your confidence around wearing colour experiment with some accessories to start off with. Shoes, scarves, handbags and necklaces are a great way of doing this.

4. If you have not had your colours analysed yet, which I recommend doing as it makes it all so much easier, then really assess the colour when you are looking in the mirror. Ask yourself does this colour make me look alive, vibrant and amazing? If not then it’s probably wrong. You never want a colour to detract from your natural beauty, change the colour of your skin tone, show up dark circles and lines or make you look washed out. This season there is a mix of very bright shades and more soft pastel colours, if you have soft low contrast colouring brights will over power you so instead go for the softer muted shades.

5. Light and shiny colours reflect the light which means they can make you look bigger if you wear them on an area you are not comfortable with. Dark and matte colours absorb the light which is why they can be more slimming. This is why people feel safe with black, although it is not only black that has this effect it’s any dark matte colour.

6. Watch where your colours break on your body. Where an item of clothing ends it will create a horizontal line across you, horizontal lines shorten or widen an area if you are not careful. This is also why people like to dress head to toe in black as it creates an uninterrupted vertical line which is lengthening and slimming. This same effect can be created with any colour though; you just have to blend your colours so you don’t have any horizontal lines ending on your widest parts.

7. Set yourself a challenge, the next time you go shopping ban yourself from going for your usual colours and try on some new ones. Only allow yourself to buy something if it is in a colour you have not worn before and looks great when you try it on. Then see what happens, often when people I have helped have started to wear new colours they start to get compliments from people or they simply feel a shift in their confidence/energy that day when they are wearing something different.

Often after having a session with me, and experimenting with new colours, my clients report how many complimentary comments they get from their new clothes. When a colour suits you perfectly you will naturally stand out with out having to be the most loud or confident person in the room. You simply are going about your everyday business but people notice and remember you which is fantastic if you are aiming for a promotion, looking a partner or networking for your business. Knowing you are looking great also helps to boost your own self confidence levels from within, you look in the mirror and like what you see. This creates a shift that will spill over into your how you move your body, speak and your actions.

If you'd like some help with knowing which colours will really suit you please get in touch. I offer 1-1 colour consultations and also group colour parties. The group sessions are a great excuse for a girlie get together and it's really helpful to learn from watching each other have your colours analysed.

Have some fun with colour and notice the difference it creates!


Show The World How Fantastic You Are

  Do you dress to show the world how fantastic you are? You know, all that great lovely warm stuff about you; like what you are good at, your loving characteristics, your playful side, your creative flare, you loyalty, your courage?

Or do you dress to hide something away? To shrink away from the limelight.

Many people I meet to discuss their image and how to make the most of how they look do the latter. Their main focus is hiding their bottom, their thighs, their tummy, their chest, the list goes on.

Most of the time when I ask someone to tell me something they like about them self they get a stuck.

Many of us are so used to looking in the mirror and focusing on what we don't like that is all we see and that makes it exaggerated. People always think they look a bit bigger than they actually are.

How about this year doing something completely different?

How about this year choosing to just focus on what you like about yourself?

Then show this to the world.

We all know that people make assumptions about you in the first few seconds of meeting you, which is largely based on your image and body language (followed by how you speak, only a small per cent is the actual content of what you say). If you are hiding yourself away how are they going to know how fantastic you are?!

Consider the times when it could be important to make a great first impression;  a few examples are networking for business, dating, wanting to step up your career ladder or make new friends.

I am NOT saying you need to dress to conform, wear something that does not feel comfortable to you or be head to toe in high fashion.

What I am saying is celebrate your greatness, dress in a way that feels totally authentic for you not based on a need to cover up or hide away.

Look in the mirror and focus on only what you like about yourself, dress to draw attention to this.

Grab a pen and paper to make notes on the following;

  • Write 3 qualities you love about yourself
  • Think of someone who loves you, write 3 qualities they love about you
  • Think of someone you have worked with and write 3 qualities they like about you
  • Think back to a time when you feel really good about yourself, write 3 words to describe how you were feeling, what you were saying to yourself.

Looking down at your pad these words are an expression of who you really are. Pick the top 3 you are drawn to the most, that you really feel represent your true self.

Next consider how you could show these qualities through how you dress. A few suggestions are:

Fun - bright colours, fun jewellery, quirky accessories.

Creative - mix matched colours and patterns, individual vintage, hand made pieces, unusual make up.

Friendly - softer colours are perceived as more approachable where as anything really contrasting (eg black and white) or really high fashion can be perceived as more powerful so could give off the impression of being less approachable. Yellow and orange are seen as friendly colours.

Loving - red, pinks, flowers and heart shaped accessories or patterns.

Confident - bold patterns and colours, statement pieces, high heels.

Have fun with this and enjoy fully expressing yourself. Remember like attracts like so if you are really showing the world your true self you are likely to attract people like yourself into your life.

Louise x

PS If you'd like some extra help with your image, learning what colours and styles will really suit you and how to express yourself fully please do get in touch! [email protected]

Learn to Accept Yourself

  Over the past 8 years of being an image consultant there are three common things I have noticed that we humans often to do at least one of when looking in a mirror;

1. We focus on the bits of ourselves that we don’t like

2. We think we look bigger than we actually are

3. We have a tendency think we are not good enough

Most of this is to do with comparing ourselves with others. We notice other people’s good bits and revert back to thinking about our perceived “bad” bits. The bits we don’t like about ourselves we look out for in others and they always seem to look better.

For example if you don’t like your bum, you will be constantly checking out everyone else’s behinds to see how they compare to yours. However if you are happy with that area you probably never look!

Ultimately people are so concerned with how they look they probably won’t even notice the parts you dislike about yourself.

I am often surprised to find when I ask my clients to tell me one thing they like about themselves, many struggle. Even when I have met people with model looks there is always something not right.

What if you were to purely focus on what you did like?

We are all different, we all have our own unique beauty……after all wouldn’t it be dull if we all looked the same?! Attractiveness is purely subjective, what I may find beautiful may not be your cup of tea.

Could you imagine the chaos if we all were attracted to the same things?!

Plus it’s not just about how you look, it’s the way you move, the way you speak, your personality and also your chemistry with who you come in contact with.

By truly accepting yourself you learn to appreciate all your great bits, make the most of who you really are and stop all that negative self-talk that just puts you down.

You are amazing, inside and out. Other people know this; it’s time to appreciate it yourself.

My mission for you this month is to;

1) Whenever you look in the mirror pay attention to what you like about yourself.

2) Ask yourself “how can I draw attention to the bits I like?” You can do this with colour, make up, hair, extra details, lines of clothing, having that area on display (for example your legs or arms) and so on.

3) Every time someone says something nice to you, accept the compliment (we have a bad habit of dismissing compliments sometimes!) and if this really is a challenge for you write it down as well. Collect compliments and refer back to them when you are feeling low! To learn full how to make the most of your body, wear the most flattering styles and colours for you please contact me at [email protected]

Business Wear Check List

It’s easy to be a little unsure what is totally appropriate for work or not these days with businesses having a more flexible approach to work wear. Unless you are told you have to wear a suit it can be a bit confusing as to what you can and can’t get away with. Whatever the dress code you are likely to want to project a fantastic professional impact, to stand out and get noticed by your boss. A great professional impact is when the style of your clothes is appropriate, in good condition, looked after and fit you properly.

Following is a helpful check list from Aston and Hayes (where I trained as an image consultant) to find out if your clothes are an asset to you or a liability:



Does your jacket fit properly across the back of your shoulders?



Is there 2-3cms of fabric spare at the side of your torso?



Are there any obvious creases or stains?



Is there any puckering or fabric sheen caused by dry cleaning?



Are there any loose buttons or threads?



Is your skirt long enough to cover your knees



Does the fabric pull or gape anywhere?



Can you slip your hand easily into your waistband



Are your pockets or pleats gaping or pulling?



Does the hem rest on the top of your shoe?



Are your shirt collars and cuffs pristine?



Are you showing too much cleavage?



Does the fabric pull anywhere across your bust or torso?



Are your tops long enough to avoid showing your midriff?



Does your knitwear have any bobbles or pulls?



Shoes & Hosiery
Are your shoes in immaculate condition?



Are your tights free of snags or runs?





Now count up all your A’s and B’s. A is the most appropriate wear to create a professional impact so if you have scored lots of A’s you are doing well! If B was your higher score then it might be a good time for a wardrobe weed to sift out the clothes that don’t work so well anymore and create a key items shopping list to build a fabulous working wardrobe.

Contact me for more details: [email protected]

New Year, New Image Resolutions

  It’s the time of year when everyone is making New Year’s resolutions so I thought I would come up with a few suggestions for getting dressed in 2012! 1) Be Yourself. It’s great to get inspiration from others but then use that to dress exactly how you feel, show your personality, dress to suit your body shape. Whenever we try to fit ourselves into something we are not it can end up feeling uncomfortable and not right somehow. You are amazing just the way you are, dress to show that.

2) Try a new colour. It’s easy to get stuck in a routine of wearing the same colours most of the time. For example many people I meet say to me “I only ever wear black”. Make 2012 the year you experimented with a new colour! Be brave, try one out and see how you feel.

3) Try a new style. As with colour it’s very easy to get into the habit of grabbing the same styles of clothes. Often when I take people shopping I will pick things out they would never have thought of trying and then find themselves pleasantly surprised when they see themselves in the mirror. So next time you go shopping, just take a bit of time to experiment, you never know what you might find!

4) Before springtime plan a wardrobe clear out. It’s the task we often put off month after month but once it’s done you feel fantastic for doing it. Getting rid of clothes that don’t work anymore or remind you of past times you would rather forget is extremely cathartic. It makes way for new energy to come into your life, plus any new purchases! 5) Wear lipstick for a week. If you don’t normally wear lipstick just try out for fun wearing it for a week and see how it feels. No hidden agenda or reason.

6) Try a new hairstyle. As we see on all the makeover shows hair and make-up really make a huge impact. Your hair can dramatically change how you look. If you have had the same style for a few years, how about trying something different for 2012. Again, just for fun! If you really want to treat yourself, go see Jamie Stevens at Errol Douglas in Knightsbridge. He is the hairdresser on Gok Wan’s TV shows and X Factor.

7) Try a new exercise. Exercise makes you feel good inside and out. Whether you don’t do any at all or are stuck in the same routine, try something new this year and see how it feels. I love Zumba and Hot Yoga, both totally lift my spirits and put me in a fantastic mood! When you feel good this shines out.

Happy New Year!!!