So, you’re booking a personal shopper. What a great idea! Of course, you would expect me to say that, but long before I qualified I worked with a personal shopper and I still have the pieces today that I bought back then. It’s an investment for sure, but its one that should have lasting benefits to you. A great shopping experience not only results in some clever purchases but also a new found confidence in your own shopping skills.
To get the most out of your personal shopping experience I’m going to share my top tips to ensure you have any experience that is shopping trip gold.
Carve Out A Little Me-Time Before Booking A Personal Shopper
Like any investment it’s worth carving out some time to give some real thought to what you want to achieve. Consider what you need clothes for and why. Think about your lifestyle. If your wardrobe (full of clothes) is no longer working for you chances are they simply don’t fit your lifestyle now. Perhaps you once worked in an office but now spend your days running a business from the kitchen table. Or you’ve not long become a mum and are trying to work out who the new you is and adapt accordingly.
Answer these four questions?
- What’s in my wardrobe that I’m not wearing?
- What percentage of my wardrobe gets worn? If its only 20-30% consider why? Has your lifestyle changed? Perhaps you need to consider a Wardrobe Reboot before you go shopping to identify the gaps in your wardrobe?
- How has my lifestyle changed? For example, are there items I need more of now than I used to.
- What is coming up in my diary that I need an outfit for?
Spending time looking at what you need now will really help you reap the rewards when you go shopping. It will create a brief to give to your stylist and ultimately helps you get to the root of any wardrobe issues that has resulted in your need for some outside support.
Consider How You Want To Spend Your Money
It would be great if we all had endless wads of cash to spend on ourselves, but it’s likely that just like me you’re working within a budget.
So don’t just think about how much money you want to spend; consider how you want to spend it.
Are you thinking of making an investment. Do you want a coat, suit or statement dress that is essentially an investment purchase, or do you want to mix it up with high end/low end price point pieces?
Perhaps it’s a whole outfit that you need, in which case your stylist can help identify which piece within the whole outfit to spend a little more on. For example, you might fancy a trench coat, Breton top and Capri pants with loafers to finish. The coat and shoes would likely be more of an investment purchase with the aim of enjoying a great cost per wear ratio from the purchase, while the top and pants can be less expensive.
Alternatively, you could a set budget that needs to really work hard for you. You might need a lot of items. Either option is absolutely fine, but if you consider your objectives and brief the shopper from the outset, she or he will truly understand where you’re coming from. Their job is to align your budget to the shops they suggest when you go out together.
Have A Bra Fitting First
It’s actually not an obvious thing do to, but if you haven’t been shopping at all for a while it might be worth having a bra fitting before you go full throttle on a major shopping expedition. Or if you don’t have time beforehand make it part of the shopping experience.
What you wear underneath your clothes is truly the foundation for how clothes will fall and shape your body. A good bra fitting is a great place to start.
Fittings are free in most major department stores and the ones I’ve tried, House of Fraser and Marks and Spencer have not been pushy for you to make a purchase. There are also brilliant independent shops up and down the country. If you’re in Bristol or Bath I can’t recommend Perfect Fit in Keynsham enough. It’s a business that has been going for 26 years or more and offer a very personal service.
The last time I went for a bra fitting (House of Fraser, Cabot Circus, Bristol) I was wearing a 36c bra when I went in. I left wearing 34DD. Needless to say my boobs are back in the right place!
Open Your Mind To New Possibilities When Booking A Personal Shopper
No matter what your objectives for booking a personal shopper you should expect them to work to your brief but also, I believe, explore new possibilities when it comes to your style.
Yes, the stylist needs to listen to what you want, how you live your life and if there are more pressing pieces you want for your wardrobe than others, but you can also use the opportunity to see yourself in someone else’s eyes. So my advice is ‘go with an open mind’ and let the shopper show you fresh and exciting ways to wear new clothes.
There is nothing I like more, or have had a better response from, than when I’ve taken clothes into a changing room that the client would not have picked for themselves and they’ve been stunned by how great they feel and how good they’ve looked.
All I can say is for a true transformation, be open, explore all the possibilities personal shopping offers you and let stylist guide you to a new, stylish you.
Think About Where You Want To Go Shopping
Where to go shopping? Do you have a favourite brand or shop but you want a fresh pair of eyes to help you identify new looks for you? Or are you tempted to try a store but feel intimidated to go in? That’s where a personal stylist will come in to her own, because nothing phases someone who shops for a living!
Sometimes a department store is a good place to start, so consider which one has brands that you like or want to try. You’re going to be shopping for a few hours, so perhaps when booking a personal shopper think about the area. Independent stores can be stuffed with some really great pieces, but you’ll be wasting time in a car if you have to drive from one to another during your time with a stylist. My advice would be to pick an area where there are clusters of shops that interest you.
It’s likely you won’t get everything done in one big shop, for example, in Bristol, Zara is based in Cabot Circus, but you might also like Hush, which is only available in John Lewis at the Mall, Cribbs Causeway. At this point, you just got to prioritize or book more than one personal shopping experience. Whichever way, have a think about where you want to shop, to make the most of the time spent.
And that’s my five tips for you. Hope you enjoyed it. Please do share in the comments below if you have you worked with a personal shopper? How was your experience? Do you have any tips for readers booking a personal shopper?