If you are a professional, a leader in your field or anticipating the next step in your career ladder, personal image and brand is key. Looking and feeling the part are both crucial in helping reflect the best and authentic 'you' . Here, stylist Keren Beaumont shares her key insights into her approach towards creating the wardrobe that will take you to the next level.
Tell us about yourself
I'm a Personal Stylist/Image Consultant with nearly two decades of experience working in the fashion industry. Before launching my consultancy, I was a Buying Director for brands such as Ralph Lauren and Coach. My mission is to help my clients discover their signature style by clarifying their personal brand and introducing them to the colours and shapes that make them look their best. I love to share my knowledge on style, shape and colour, by writing fro magazines and regular public speaking engagements. Working with small upcoming fashions desingers to build their brand is another passion of mine as it fuses my experience from my former and current roles.
What is your approach to working with clients?
Everything that I do with my clients should feel organic and comfortable to them. The intent is to get to know their personality and lifestyle well enought to help them find a style and build a capsule wardrobe that feels very authentic to them and firts the reality of their lifestyle perfectly.
Service is of utomost importance to me as I want my clients to have a wonderful and enjoyable experience when working with me.
What are the main reasons why clients come to you for styling advice?
Clients generally approach me when something is changing in their lives. It could be that their body is different after having a baby and they want to learn how best to dress for their new shape. It may be that they have the opportunity for promotion at work and they understand that looking the part is essential if you want to be the best 'you'. They may have experienced weight change. Or they may be developing their own businesses and want to create the right visual messages for themselves and for their brand.
What would be your top tips/steps for someone looking to revamp their wardrobe for work?
Decode the dress code. How far can you push the boundaries of your company's dress code whilst maintaining the integrity of your professional image? Decide on the visual messages that you wish to project and then think about the look that will do this best. Learn which colours and cuts make you look your best as confidence in your appearance goes a long way towards confidence in the workplace.
What key pieces do you believe should be in every woman’s wardrobe? Why?
I have yet to meet a woman who would not benefit from a great wool coat, a dress that compliments her body shape, a perfect pair of wear-with-everything jeans and a fabulous blazer. All of these pieces have the versatility to be dressed up or dressed down by combining with higher (smarter) or lower (more casual) pieces and would therefore work very hard for you as wardrobe staples
What would be your advice for women looking to buy a blazer?
Colour first. Colour is the first thing that the human eye registers and the right colour will either enhance or drain your natural complexion. Certain colours also send visual signals! Fit is key. Depending on your body shape, your will suit a tailored or straighter fit better. Length of the blazer depends on where you want the hemline to cut your silhouette and different lengths will suit different physiques. Lapel width is specific to how broad your shoulders are.
How would you style a blazer for work and for leisure?
In a corporate office I'd like style it over smart cigarette trousers and heeled pumps whereas at the weekend I love a blazer over jeans, T Shirt and trainers!
What are your personal go to pieces in your own wardrobe?
I love wearing dresses as I am slightly pear shaped I feel better in them and at the moment I love my knit dresses. My alternative is always a tailored jacket which I think adds an edge to my look which you never get from a cardigan. High waist jeans and trousers are my favourites as they highlight my waistline.
How do you think women’s attitude and relationship with clothing has evolved/changed over the last 10 years?
In the UK there's been a shift towards an 'anything goes' attitude when it comes to dressing. This has infiltrated workplace dressing too. Men and especially women, feel able to push the boundaries of what they can wear to work beyond traditional corporate dressing. One of the most common requests that I receive is to help my clients look less corporate but still professional.
How prominently has sustainable/slow fashion featured in your work with clients?
Sustainability is a cornerstone of my practice. My strategy for any wardrobe is to build a capsule of pieces that are carefully curated and selected with the intention they will last a lifetime and are certainly not just for this season! Whenever possible I support ethically sourced brands. The most important factor for me is that the pieces in my clients wardrobe are well made and will be well looked after to give them the maximum lifespan. Fashion trends are not a key factor in how I work. I believe that good styling with the right fit and colours will somehow always look fashionable!
For further information about Keren and her approach to styling or if you are looking to take your life to the next chapter but needing a little help with your personal brand image visit Keren's webpage for more details.