Image Consulting

Be the best YOU!"

"To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people just exist" -  Oscar Wilde

Living well for one person is not what it is for another. If we are so fixated on our own happiness we will never be happy....

Happiness is created by ourselves! Being passionate about life, thinking positively and believing in yourself is a great place to start. We so often hear "are you an optimist or pessimist? Glass half full or half empty?". I am leaning towards the pessimist realist side of the scale, however, when I embark on my passion of uplifting women, the world is a far happier place for me. This is when I can say I live well!

When I started my image Consulting business 7years ago, the main motivating factor for me was changing women's lives. I pride myself on making subtle changes that are sustainable, and believe that enhancing what we already have is key. The cliche "look good feel better" does apply. A successful make-over starts from within and will in turn radiate outwards.

Women play so many different roles in their lives, and so often loose their identity along the way. At different stages in our lives like  reaching a milestone age, starting a family,  or even when children leave home, it is often easy to put less effort into how we look. This in turn can make us feel like  we are in a rut.

This is where my passion comes in! I Look at each individual and allow them to shine from within again.... and this is a key factor to living well.

Having a career that you are passionate about is a huge contributing factor to living well. I am privileged to have shared my passion with so many and will continue to do so.

Change begins with you.

Your friend in fashion

Tracey xx

DRESSING THE RECTANGLE BODY SHAPE

IMG_1872.JPG

 

Knowing how to dress for your body shape, will not only make shopping easier, but will give you an overall polished look, which will be an instant boost to your confidence.

What is a RECTANGLE?

 

The key to dressing the RECTANGLE  body shape, is to add shape and movement. defining the waist area is a great place to start. The rectangle is a pretty easy shape to dress. The only thing to be aware of is not to make your waist any wider

Lets look at some factors to consider when dressing a RECTANGLE body shape:

TOPS

y creating high focal points and emphasizing the bust area, you will draw the eyes up and automatically narrow the waist area. These blouses are also great as they offer shape as well as draping that creates movement over the body.

PANTS

Most Pants and Jeans Styles

All types of pants and jeans with any amount of details - from skinny/slim to wide leg. Look for styles with details on hips and bottom to add dimension. Anything flowy will look very elegant and soften your boyish frame. 

With your straight limbs you can pull off tapered and skinny jeans quite well. The trick is to make sure the jeans are tight around your hips to help you create curves. But avoid too-wide flare pants as it can unbalance your rectangle body shape. 

DRESSES

Any waist detailing is great. If you are well endowed I suggest wearing necklines that show more skin and vertically break up your chest, such as low V and scoop necks. Wrap styles are very flattering on you as they tailor your mid-riff and make it look trimmer as well as complementing your bust without over-accentuating them.

Make sure you add a camisole if the wrap neckline is very low - this helps add dimension to your rectangle body shape.

ACCESSORIES

Accessories are an affordable way to add shape and movement to an outfit. Scarves in winter are a must for a rectangle body shape. Something as simple as a gorgeous pair of trendy heels can add shape to the bottom half of your body. 

Avoid waist length handbags, as they will draw attention to this area. 

Its best to get your body shape assessed so that you know exactly what you are dressing.

Happy shopping

Tracey xx

 

 

WINTER LAYERING

Winter is definitely on its way, but in sunny South Africa (especially Durban) we can have 2 or more seasons in a day. Heres where dressing can become a task instead of a joy, as we dont know what the weather is going to do. Layering is the only way to go.

Here's how:

SWEATER OVER A BUTTON DOWN SHIRT

This classic style still looks great. Pair your favourite button-down shirt with a good quality sweater, in mustard, cobalt or  burgundy for this season. For a more preppy look, wear a plain white shirt with a striped sweater or the other way around.

A variation of layering, cropped jersey

A variation of layering, cropped jersey

 

STATEMENT SCARF

37efa5af4b31e9dbe01fc8ddc2d3378b.jpg

Scarves are my favourite winter accessory.By keeping your shirt and jacket plain, you can add a statement  scarf for warmth as well as style. There are plenty tutorials on the net on how to wear/tie a scarf. 

CAPES/PONCHO

There are so many different styles around for the season. This is an easy item to just throw over what you are wearing. Some bloggers argue that its a lazy way to dress, as you can wear pretty much anything underneath (unless you need to take it off when it warms up)

HATS

If you are  not confident wearing a hat it will show. For those who are, choose this option to add warmth to an outfit. 

RELAXED FIT SWEATER

You can also pair a loose sweater with a loose fit shirt, but make sure you wear them with fitted pants. 

JACKETS AND COATS

Cute way of layering a dress

Cute way of layering a dress

The options are endless here. Just make sure that your proportions are correct and that you are wearing the correct length jacket or coat for your body shape and proportions. The season seems to have lots of molten, suede, leather and heavy tapestry type fabrics.

Have a super weekend 

Tracey xx

 

WHATS UP FOR WINTER 2016

Brace yourselves, its winter in the shops..... I wonder when the buyers are going to look carefully at how the seasons have changed, and add at least 2 months extra to our summer season? Speaking for Durban, we have had one very hot week!

Anyway putting that aside, lets look at what is on the rails for winter.

SUEDE

Whether faux or the real deal, you will find in dresses, pants, jackets, skirts and even shorts. The colours seem to be chocolate brown, teal, navy and rust. Not much black I am afraid....

Wear with a gladiator sandal or an ankle boot. (Similar @ZARA)

Wear with a gladiator sandal or an ankle boot. (Similar @ZARA)

A flashback to my youth. Suede A-line mini with stripes and denim. Wear also with a plain t-shirt and tackies, or tuck in a  smarter blouse and add a pair of heals. The options are endless!

A flashback to my youth. Suede A-line mini with stripes and denim. Wear also with a plain t-shirt and tackies, or tuck in a  smarter blouse and add a pair of heals. The options are endless!

Swap the heels for coots on a cooler day. Can also be worn with stockings and pumps or brogues.

Swap the heels for coots on a cooler day. Can also be worn with stockings and pumps or brogues.

Suede pants are a little bit "out there " for most. If you choose to wear them, make sure they fit properly. 

Suede pants are a little bit "out there " for most. If you choose to wear them, make sure they fit properly. 

Suede with chambray works really well. 

Suede with chambray works really well. 

My advice would be to stick to the faux/faric suede in any high fashion style. If you are in a position to go for the real deal, invest it in shoes, a timeless jacket or handbag.

Next week we will be looking at another seasons trend.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Tracey xx

DRESSING THE TRIANGLE/PEAR SHAPED BODY

Wishing each and everyone a Happy New Year and all the very best for the year ahead...

Sometimes referred to as the pear shape, the TRIANGLE body shape is pretty common. Kim Kardashian is the first person that comes to mind when referring to this body shape. She really embraces those curves, but for me she sometimes gets it very wrong! 

Knowing how to dress for your body shape, will not only make shopping easier, but will give you an overall polished look, which will be an instant boost to your confidence.

What is a TRIANGLE?

  • Narrow shoulders
  • Appears heavy at the bottom half of the body
  • The hips and thighs are larger than the shoulders and bust
  • Generally wears a smaller size at the tp then at the bottom

The key to dressing the TRIANGLE body shape, is to add volume to the upper body, emphasise the waist area and detract at the lower body to create a balanced hourglass. The TRIANGLE can often appear shorter and out of proportion.

There is a belief that only plus size ladies fit into this category. This is not true. The TRIANGLE  body shape is for anyone whose hips and thighs are wider than the shoulder and bust area.

Lets look at some factors to consider when dressing a TRIANGLE body shape:

TOPS

Shoulder detail top

ADD WIDTH TO THE UPPER BODY

This is a great example of the type of top a TRIANGLE should wear. The detailing at the shoulder area will automatically draw the eye up, and add width to the shoulder area. As a general rule create focal points where you want to draw attention.

The frills on the image below adds volume to the top area, therefore balancing the body. A TRIANGLE body shape should avoid halter necks and vests. 

PANTS

The TRIANGLE should stick to a wide leg (if you have height on your side),  straight leg or boot leg style pant. Narrow legged pants will exaggerate the thigh and hip area. Make sure there is minimal detailing on the pockets at the back, and I suggest if there are side pockets, sew them up! A flat front,without a waistband is ideal. Elasticated waists are out of the question. Stable fabrics are best, as they wont cling to your body and will offer support.

 

This outfit is perfect for a TRIANGLE. Great fitting pants and structured blazer.

DRESSES/SKIRTS

This image is a great illustration as it pretty much takes all factors into consideration when wearing a skirt. The key is to create balance and emphasise the waist. If you were opting for a different style skirt, like an A-line or a flare, make sure that they are not too bulky. 

his dress skims over the hip area and is very flattering. A wrap dress with detail around the neckline, and a bit of rouching on the sides can also be a great option. 

Embrace the body shape you have! It's all about balance.

 

(PLEASE NOTE:The information above only pertains to the TRIANGULAR body shape. There are many other characteristics that one needs to take into consideration, like height, weight, vertical body proportions etc. This is merely a guideline on a few tips that will assist when dressing the TRIANGLE.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

OUR MAKE-OVER COMPETITION WITH MELANIE

We had a great response to our competition, and our lucky winner, Melanie spent two days with us. I am not a fan of extreme change, so we worked with Melanie to enhance her natural beauty. The make-over included a R1000 voucher from Lauday Boutique, as well as a spray tan from The Tan Lab.

We started with our style consultation (www.myprivatestylist.com) to analyse her body shape. Our goal was to help Melanie understand what body she is dressing.  "I really found this so useful, as I now know how to disguise certain areas as well as what lengths and styles work best for me."

Melanie also took our dress personality quiz. This is a great indication of what styles Melanie prefers.  Some examples are  classic, feminine, creative etc. 

The colour consultation was next. By looking at Melanie's skin overtone, eye and hair colour, we used drapes to assess her skin undertone and see what colour group she fitted into. 

Once we had all the information together, we headed to Melanie's wardrobe. This is such a valuable service, as it will give direction in terms of what you NEED and how to wear existing garments in your wardrobe. Melanie did loads of trying on, and we made a comprehensive shopping list based on what was missing. "This really gave me the push to get rid of all the things that I don't wear, " said Melanie.

We then headed to the shops to look at examples of what I had recommended.  Although Melanie was not buying anything, it was a great exercise to show her styles and stores that she should look to in the future.

Friday was the fun part- the hair and make-up. We were happy with her hair colour, as it really worked for her eye colour and complexion. Grant from Hairven cut a bit of the length of Melanie's hair, in order to create volume and movement. The make-up was done by Juliette Meintjes, who explained step by step what was being done. 

The make-over also included a R1000 voucher from Lauday Boutique, as well as a spray tan from The Tan Lab.

A successful make-over starts from within.

Melanie's changes were subtle in order to keep them sustainable. "I have learnt so much over the past two days. Tracey really took my lifestyle and personality into consideration, and did not try and change who I am.  She made me feel extremely comfortable. I loved every minute of it, thank you!"

Thank you to each and everyone who came on board. I feel privileged to do what I do, and love seeing the radiance and confidence that emanates from my clients after a make-over journey like this one.

"Before"

"After"

'A little less tummy.'

IMG_9083.JPG

I am not going to tell you to start banting and loose weight, I am going to show you ways you can hide your tummy by wearing the correct clothes. This is the most common problem area for many of us that have hit the 40 mark!

It does not only apply to the larger built  ladies, as even the slimmer figure can carry weight around the tummy area, which can be even more noticeable. 

The correct size underwear is a great starting point. I am not talking "suck me in to death" type panties, i simply mean a pair that fits properly. If the foundation iis right, then the rest is really easy. 

Before I say anything more, please get the idea out of your head that looser and bigger is always better, as this really is not the case.

THE CORRECT TOPS

 Anything that has drapes, softness, folds or gathers is good for a larger tummy. Make sure the top is the correct size at the shoulders and waist. Pattern is also a great detractor.

THE INCORRECT TOP

 I am sure I am going to have a few that will disagree with me on this, but here it goes. This is not good for a larger tummy, due to the shape at the front. The curved hemline can make one look even more "round". The "loosness" is great, but the fabric is very clingy and the excess at the front creates an illusion of bulk. 

Avoid tops that have elastic at the bottom, as well as anything belted in the tummy area. Rather have loose around the tummy, that fits onto the top of the leg (see below)

If you are keeping things loose on the top, than make sure you are wearing something fitted at the bottom. Please ladies not over sized flared tops with  3/4 leggings, hoping to hide the bulges. Think a great pair of straight/skinny jeans with a loose front top and a wedge.

There is so much to discuss with this topic, so I have simply looked at tops and will touch on other areas nest week.

Have a great week.

Tracey xx

 

(Remember we are just talking about the tummy in this article, so images are merely an example of clothing style and not model builds.)

Pant length.

This is something I get asked over and over again so I thought the best way to explain is by using images. Pant length (in fact all lenghts) are crucial when putting an outfit together. Length can make or break how you look overall, as it creates illusions  if worn correctly, for your height and body shape. So for the shorties out there, this is one thing that can add a couple of centimeters where you need it most!

Lets take a look at a few examples 

SKINNY PANTS INCORRECT LENGTH

SKINNY PANTS CORRECT LENGTH

If you look at the top picture, you will see that the incorrect length will give the illusion of shortening the leg, whereas the correct length will elongate the leg. In the second picture, shoe and pant colour are the same, which will also elongate the leg. Having a different colour shoe will cause a break at the ankle.

BOOTLEG/WIDE LEG INCORRECT LENGTH

full_length_toolong-667x1024.jpg

This often happens with this style pants. The whole foot is covered and there is no skin showing. The wearer will appear "footless". Again this shortens the leg, as well as damages the hem of your pants. There is nothing worse than frayed hems on pants.

PANTS TOO SHORT

full_length_wrong_1-1024x787.jpg

This is the opposite, where you are seeing far too much of the shoe, and it looks as though you are wearing pants that have been cut too short.

CORRECT LENGTH

Pants are sitting straight with no fold at the foot, and are just over 2cm above the heel. Also great colour shoe for the colour pants shown here.

Once you understand what your body shape is, you will find that dressing becomes a whole lot easier. By having the correct proportions and lengths, you will automatically appear slimmer. 

Have a great week.

Tracey xx

The Kimono

When you hear the word "Kimono" the first thing that may pop to your mind, is a typical Japanese garment. I am not referring to that, but the simple kimono jacket that you can wear in numerous ways, that seems to be back for summer. Long or short, tassled or plain, floral or lace, the choice is yours.

For those that are not brave, (or young) enough, a kimono over jeans looks great. You can vary the lengths quite a bit when wearing over pants, just be aware not to look as though you are dragging a robe behind you!  Keep whatever you are wearing underneath fitted and in a colour that blends in with the pattern/colour of the kimono. Keep pants straight unless you looking for a 70's boho look.

Gorgeous colour combination with jeans

Gorgeous colour combination with jeans

Break up an all white outfit with a colourful kimono. This is one of the easiest ways to wear a monochromatic look.

For the evening.

For the evening.

Love this feminine look of wearing a kimono over a summer dress. Remember the more similar the tones the softer the look.

These two styles are available along with others @laudayboutique. We are open Monday morning and by appointment www.lauday.co.za

Happy Shopping

Tracey xx

White Jeans

Last week I decided to go on a search for a flattering pair of white jeans.  It has taken me about ten years to venture on a search such a this, as I have always avoided wearing anything light on my (larger) bottom half.

I must admit, it was a lot less pain staking than I had imagined it would be, and I found a fantastic pair at Country Road.  They are a mid-rise cut, ankle length and have about 20% stretch in them.

Now you're probably asking "what is the importance of these three facts"?

Firstly, mid rise is best for those muffin tops! You want to tuck the excess in.

Secondly, if you are short like me, ankle length is great, as too long makes short even shorter!

Lastly, the 20% stretch allows for breathing, and they wont cling onto your legs.

For your reference they are called "side pocket sateen jeans"- I couldn't get a pic, sorry.

The next question I had, "how do I wear these?"

 

IMG_8725.JPG

White on white always looks very fresh and chic. Just remember to have the same tones of white. Gold and tan will work well with this look.

  Absolutely love the combination of a soft grey and white. By keeping her shoes white, her legs will automatically appear longer. You don't necessarily need white shoes, but opt for a light colour (not black!!)

 

Absolutely love the combination of a soft grey and white. By keeping her shoes white, her legs will automatically appear longer. You don't necessarily need white shoes, but opt for a light colour (not black!!)

  Casual and preppy. A black and white t-shirt is a great staple in any wardrobe. I love the fact that she has opted for a nude shoe and grey bag. This for me is more relaxed than having everything matching. 

 

Casual and preppy. A black and white t-shirt is a great staple in any wardrobe. I love the fact that she has opted for a nude shoe and grey bag. This for me is more relaxed than having everything matching. 

The only "rule" that I have, is try and keep your top as light as possible, to avoid creating a break at the hip area, especially if that is your largest part.

The options are endless. Happy shopping.

Tracey xx

The Shirt Dress.

What exactly is a SHIRTDRESS?

Classic.

Classic.

Its a shirt that is long enough to wear as a dress (and cover your posterior).  This easy to wear item is versatile, and can be worn in many different ways. Styled right, it will look chic and sexy.

Bear in mind that you don't want to look like you are wearing a sack, so I recommend belting and accessorising according to the occasion.  If you are short waisted, belt on the hip, and if you are long waisted belt in the waist.

Edgy

Pair with a leather jacket and printed loafers for a more "edgy look"

Boho

Boho

For those creatives out there, add a Panama hat and a pop of colour.

The choices are endless. Choose a style that you love, and wear it with confidence!

Happy shopping xx

 

"Be the best you"

Welcome to my blog.  It is here that I will be the real, authentic me.  I believe that there is a unique design in us all and that our character, combined with the image we portray, ought to work together to affect those around us in a positive way.  To make those we engage with feel comfortable in their own skin.  It is when we accept who we are that we can be confident and radiant, inspiring others to do the same.

My approach to image consulting is a little different.  I believe in subtle change to draw out the best you.  I feel that within the world today, especially in the corporate space, there is so little focus on how important it is to look good in order to feel good.  The reality is, that if you look good, you feel good, and your performance will improve- this will in turn improve your self-worth and overall success.

I feel very strongly that there is no “quick fix”, and a successful change needs to start from within.  This is done by embracing who you are (curves or no curves, wrinkles and all), and learning how to combine the correct colour and clothing styles, hair and make-up, to create a more attractive you.

Seeing an image consultant need not be intimidating.  I want Lauday to be known for its ability to encourage and admire women for who they are, in a society riddled with judgement.  

May this blog be a platform that encourages and uplifts, esteems and equips.  And if you choose to one day engage in a consultation with me, may you be transformed- not only in terms of your understanding of the importance of appearance and style but in terms of your very self-worth. 

"Elegance comes from being as beautiful inside as outside"- Coco Chanel