As a young teenager my life revolved around fashion and image. I remember spending many days in London being mesmerised by designer boutiques and high street retail stores. At the age of 16 I began employment at the high fashion store, Chelsea Girl, working as a Concession Manager. It was so much fun being surrounded by trendy clothes and helping customers put outfits together. But it was taking part in a local aerobics class that would lead me to a long term passion of mine - health and fitness.
Before long I had completed an apprenticeship in health club management and qualified as a fitness instructor. I then gained more experience at Europe’s leading luxury health club, Nirvana Spa. Being extremely ambitious, at 19 I set up my own business as a freelance fitness instructor and personal trainer. During this time I trained with many of the world's leading instructors to gain the skills required to deliver exercise classes and personal training to the highest standard. I earned advanced instructor status, made regular appearances in local media and on TV. Over time, the business developed to include consultancy work for health club investors, assisting in the set up and management of dance studios and gyms.
After ten years, in the late 1990s I took a short break to raise my son and loved every moment. However, being a working woman is in my blood so I returned to work in the fitness industry, initially in sales and public relations. I soon found myself running a leading health club, LA Fitness. By then my son was at school and I began to take an interest in education. I studied part-time, earning a Degree in Post-Compulsory Education, which focuses on psychological and educational theories in relation to Andragogy (adult learning) and qualified as a Teacher of Further Education. I started work in Further Education managing educational projects and teaching vocational qualifications, which was followed by 11 years in the secondary sector, working mainly as a Head of Careers and Life Coach, helping students and staff with their personal and professional development. I also gained a Post-Graduate Certificate in Coaching and Mentoring Practice (organisational and personal) which was further complimented by a Diploma in Hypnotherapy and Counselling Skills.
After working in education for 17 years, I began to crave more creativity. It was also around this time, I was really struggling with my own image. I found shopping uninspiring and even though my wardrobe was full of clothes, I could never find anything to wear. I felt really bored of being me and needed an update. I started exploring having my colours done, and it appears my love of fashion and style would lead me back to London where I trained as an Image Consultant with renowned Colour Me Beautiful, I completed additional training in hats, fabrics, glasses and advanced colour analysis. More recently, I earned an additional Diploma in Advanced Colour Analysis from the renowned Kim Bolsover, one of the countries leading image consultants. I am currently studying a Diploma in Colour Psychology,
So you're probably wondering how does all of this help you? In essence, I believe my love of image and fashion has provided my with a natural ability to visualise outfits on different people, and to recognise when colours look great (or not as it may be). Personal styling is very similar to writing a fitness programme in a gym. As a fitness instructor you become an expert at looking at bodies and deciding on what you need to do to sculpt a physique to create a balanced, equally proportioned body. Personal styling is the same, accept you use clothes to reshape a physique instead of weights. It's not just about how a person looks, equally, if not more important it's about how the individual feels inside. Clients soon come realise that beauty is individual and doesn't have to follow any particular mould.
I apply coaching techniques by goal setting, reviewing and monitoring client progress and learning is central to personal styling and colour analysis, drawing extensively on my education background. Having an understanding educational theory, specifically learning styles and teaching methods can really make a difference to a client understanding a new idea or concept, which can be the deciding factor in whether change occurs and a client achieves their style aspirations.
My ultimate goal is to support clients in learning what's necessary to become autonomous in their ongoing personal journey of self styling. I lead clients through an incredible experience of personal discovery, leaving them feeling revived both inside and out, and with an incredible boost of confidence, style and happiness.