The perks of professional help when it comes to sussing out personal style

Tape measure

A couple posts ago I wrote about defining one’s personal style, or rather the importance of figuring that out before one begins a wardrobe overhaul. The problem with this, though, is that often you’ve been dressing the same way for years/decades, and it can be near impossible to see yourself in something new. Or, your body has changed or you’re in a new workplace, and need to figure out a new style. How/where to start? Instead of wandering malls aimlessly or flipping through magazines that showcase clothes you can’t afford, I’m in favour of calling in the big guns — a personal shopper. (I’ve talked about the pros of using this sort of help before.)

When in Glasgow a few months back, I met with one of House of Fraser’s two personal shoppers, Emma, who is young and hip, and displayed a sense of style I really appreciated. I think this is key — if someone’s going to help you figure out your style, it helps that you appreciate theirs. (Sort of like liking your hairdresser’s do.)

Emma explained how HoF’s personal shopping works: The shoppers do all the work. Clients fill out a questionnaire, then the shopper grabs a variety of pieces and brings them to a private changing area where the guest can try things on at her/his leisure. (While you’re waiting there’s tea/coffee/bubbly, which is much better than wandering aimlessly through the women’s wear department.) Shoppers help with fit and as the session goes on the items are more closely tailored to what the client is after. They also help with shoes, bags, accessories and makeup — in fact, one could even book an appointment solely for these sorts of things. If you need help finding jewellery for a particular outfit or event, they can assist. (I would be all over this sort of help.)

Most importantly, and I think this is a fundamental when looking for a personal shopping service that you can rely on time and again, there is more charge for the service and no minimum bill.

Photo source Antoinette Paris

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