Students first styling experience as part of fashion course
Real learning comes from doing….at least that’s what I say! This weekend three Stylefish students experienced that first hand as they styled two ladies in Dundrum as part of their Diploma in Personal Styling fashion course.
Many elements of personal styling theory comes into play when working one to one with ladies who want to create a style they love. But sometimes I have to remind students that a lot of the theory that people place so much importance on is outweighed when you get on the shop floor with a real person! That is when practicality, creativity, confidence and time management skills come into play as you create a fun, relaxed and stylish experience for your client! So, for today’s blog post (budding stylists!), let’s forget about the theory and start thinking about a common sense approach to styling that sometimes can get lost in the mist of the ‘theory’.
Personal Shopping Top Tips
1. Have a coffee with your client before you start shopping. 15 minutes spent getting to know each lady will teach you so much about her lifestyle, her habits and her feelings towards her style. This will help you so much to pick looks that tick every box for your client!
2. Keep things tidy in the fitting room during your consultation and keep items moving. Once she has tired on, it either goes to the ‘yes’ rail, the ‘maybe’ rail or straight back to the shop floor! Organisation is the key to success and to a happy client.
3. Keep in mind just how much your clients personality plays a part in what you choose, how you put things together for them and the risks you take.
4. Time management is a key part of personal shopping (and all consultations). It is up to you to manage the clock, keep things moving, mixing getting results for your client with making sure the experience is relaxed and fun. Learning to move quickly around a shop forms part of this also.
5. Your confidence is really important. Confidence in getting to know your client, building trust and respect, building a relationship as a style expert with the shops you work with and your confidence on the shop floor in choosing. Confidence in your own style also is a must! A big part of women’s journey in their Stylefish fashion course is defining and working on their own style.
6. Break down the shop. It is time to lose preconceptions about what shops ‘only’ suiting certain people. You will find your client somewhere in most shops as long as you are open minded and creative in your approach. Don’t pigeon hole shops. Be open minded and keep yourself up to date with whats going on in the shops.
7. Being aware of the staff in the shop. They are not their to make your life easier so it is up to you to get them to like, trust and want to help you. You are likely to add to the shops bottom line but retail moves so quickly, unless it is a small boutique and they really know you most high street retailers are more likely to feel stylists add to their workload unless extra effort is made with the shop.
8. Understand the important of choosing two or three key basics first and building looks around these.
9. Bring in a selection of accessories which you can use with lots of different looks will save you time and help your client visualise the finished look.
10. Think of the whole experience for your client. What ‘type’ of experience do you want to create? Think through the materials you will give them, little touches like bringing a bottle of water, a follow up email and anything else you feel that is important to you and the service you want to offer.
11. Think creatively. It is important to think creatively for your client. Doing the same thing they do might feel to you like it will make them comfortable and is the less risky option but getting the right balance between making them happy and comfortable and introducing them to new things and new ways of doing things is important.
See, learning the little things that make the biggest difference for your clients is all about doing!