During a recent press trip to New York for Vanity Fair Lingerie, I was getting nervous because the attire was business casual and the dinner I was attending with my husband’s company that was Summer Smart. I started looking into my closet and realizing I have not dressed business casual in years. I called my friend, Joanna Avant, a personal stylist, and asked her to come help me figure out a few outfits.
Knowing someone was coming into my closet, I immediately started organizing it, well putting winter and fall things together. Throwing away a few pieces I have been holding onto for too long as well. She ended up being sick so we did the styling appointment via text. She helped me put together a few items that I already had with simple accessory suggestions.
It was amazing to see that my style was not totally awful and I could put something together. (Disclaimer I did buy a few things in NY that were suggested items).source:joannaavant.com
I asked Joanna a few questions about why people should hire a stylist.
What got you started into being a stylist
I remember having a style “all my own” from an early age. I always had fun experimenting with clothing, and at some point, I figured out how to incorporate my sometimes quirky taste into a personal style that worked for me. I had been helping friends and family “get dressed” for years, when it occurred to me that lots of people could benefit from a service like this. I won’t pretend Stacy and Clinton (from “What Not to Wear”) didn’t have a little something to do with it, too!
What are your most requested tasks for your clients
Nearly all of my clients want to start with a Wardrobe Revival, where I help them make sense of their current wardrobes. They need help determining what to keep, what to toss, what to pair together, and what holes need to be filled in their closets. About half of my personal shopping clients want me to do the shopping for them, either because they don’t have time or because they don’t have interest (or both). The other half wants to accompany me to the stores so that they can learn how to shop efficiently for themselves.
5 must have items in any woman’s wardrobe
1. A great-fitting pair of jeans (I don’t care what shape they are, as long as they look look amazing on you.)
2. A sharp, 3-season black blazer. It can be part of a suit, spruce up a jeans-and-tshirt look, or add a sophisticated layer to a flirty dress.
3. A CUTE pair of ballet flats. Choose something with an interesting pattern, color, or texture to keep the look not-so-basic. Ballet flats work with skinny jeans and a button-down shirt, and some women are even wearing them with cocktail attire! The latter isn’t my favorite look, but it’s a polished option for women who can’t tolerate heels.
4. A tote-style handbag. There’s room to throw in phones and keys and diapers and gum wrappers and books, but you’ll still manage to look put-together!
5. Diamond stud earrings. Real, fake…makes no difference. Perfect for everyday, they add a bit of sparkle and work well with every, single outfit.
Biggest mistake people make when choosing special occasion outfits
This one is easy! People seem to always wait until the last minute to choose something to wear to special events, which leads to settling for something that is mediocre, at best. You wear it one time and one time only, because you don’t feel good in it. That’s a huge waste of money. If you give yourself plenty of time to shop, place online orders, exchange items, find the perfect shoes and jewelry (or hire a personal stylist to help you), it ensures you feel great in what you’re wearing! It might save you from going through that process a time or two down the road, because you’ll want to re-wear what you already have.
So when you are struggling to figure out what to wear to a special occasion or trip, consider talking to a stylist to give you hints to look your best.