Last week I was thrilled to get to host an event at Hobbs London to help celebrate the opening of their new Kensington High Street store! An evening of talking about clothes and outfits that I'd styled along with some bubbly and delicious nibbles is basically my idea of heaven.
Hobbs hold a Style Session regularly and this was my first - it was so much fun and so great to meet and chat with customers. Although I love blogger events it was nice to meet a different crowd who aren't bloggers for a change... You get a whole different perspective about attitudes to style which I'm really grateful for.
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I'd been to the store the week before to put together six outfits of my choice, all of which I absolutely loved. I've featured all the looks below alongside some shots of me doing my "thing", i.e. gesticulating wildly and talking a lot. (I mean a lot.) I had two gorgeous models who both looked so lovely in the outfits I chose - at least two of the outfits got an audible "gasp" from the guests so I knew I was doing something right!
The theme of my talk was "Going for bold" - Hobbs described the event as
CATHERINE WILL BE ON HAND TO OFFER HER EXPERT STYLING ADVICE. SAY HELLO TO COLOURS AND PRINTS, GOODBYE TO THE PHRASE, "I'D NEVER WEAR THAT."
What I wanted to do was 1. Dispel any notion that Hobbs only offers workwear, and 2. Show outfits for "play" - shopping, summer parties, lunches, weddings, date nights, etc. - in bright colours and patterns. I wanted to show off my signature style of mixed patterns, bright accessories and no black (though I did throw in one touch of black which was too gorgeous to pass up).
Which leads me onto that number one styling tip! This is such a great tip and I was so pleased to share it with the guests, it's something that really gets you thinking and encourages you to be more adventurous in your style choices.
My number one styling tipAsk yourself: Have you ever gone round a store and thought "Oh I love that, but I can't wear it / That won't suit me / I can't get away with wearing that"? And then just dismissed it because of one of those (rather lame) reasons?
If this is you (I've done it myself plenty of times), do this next time you're shopping for clothes:
AS WELL AS THE REGULAR ITEMS YOU'VE PICKED OUT, TAKE SOMETHING INTO THE CHANGING ROOM THAT YOU LOOKED AT AND LOVED, BUT THOUGHT WOULD NEVER SUIT YOU. RATHER THAN JUST DISMISSING IT, BE DARING AND TRY THE DAMN THING ON. IT'S CALLED THE "WILD CARD" - IT WORKS MORE OFTEN THAN YOU'D THINK.
As well as the regular items that you've picked out, take something into the changing room (add to basket if online) that you looked at and loved, but thought would never suit you. Rather than just dismissing it, be daring and try the damn thing on. It's called the "Wild Card" - it works more often than you'd think.
What's the worst that can happen? It doesn't look so good after all, or you're not comfortable in it. Or you may give yourself a bit of a giggle.
However... it may look sensational. You may look at yourself and think "You know what? I really like it on me / it makes me feel gorgeous / this colour looks great with my skin tone / I can wear yellow after all". Why deny yourself that pleasure because you thought to assume it would look terrible?
This is why I always say to dress for your personality first, not your shape. Shape comes into it, but you can take two people of exactly the same shape and size and dress them in identical outfits: One will look great because it suits her personality, the other one will look ridiculous because it does not.
Dare to step outside your comfort zone, you never know where it may take you...!
I must say a huge thank you to Hobbs for inviting me to host the Style Session: It was a lot of fun and a great opportunity to share that styling tip with your customers.
WHAT DO YOU THINK OF MY NO.1 STYLING TIP - WILL YOU YOU TRY IT? AND WHICH OF THE LOOKS 1-6 IS YOUR FAVOURITE? TELL ME IN THE COMMENTS OR TWEET ME @NOTLAMB!
P.S. The Hobbs sale is now on - there is up to 50% off many of the pieces I've featured below!
My outfit: Blue sweater | White jeans | Red sandals | Yellow necklace
Look 1: Relaxed daytime pattern mixing Polka dot sweater | Floral wide leg trousers | 'Winchester' hobo bag | Snake print sandals | 'Valentina' pendant
Look 2: Elegant evening or date night outfit Off-the-shoulder floral top | Wide leg chambray trousers | Red clutch | Red 'Ting' sandals
Look 3: Spring or autumn daytime shopping or lunch date outfit White 'Ruby' sweater | Pink trench coat | Grey skinny jeans | Mixed pattern scarf | Nude brogues | Soft blue 'Hampstead' saddle bag
Look 4: As featured in my post last week Striped sweater | Floral wide leg trousers | Navy wedge sandals | 'Hampstead' bowling bag
Look 5: Wedding guest or Day at the Races outfit Coral fit and flare dress | Wide brim hat | Chunky pearl necklace | Red pointed heels | Navy 'Mayfair' clutch
Look 6: Elegant evening outfit White pleated top | Black pleated midi skirt | Peep toe heels | Metallic 'Mayfair' clutch | 'Rosa' pendant
Rail items, left to right: Pink trench | Floral dress | Green sweater | Coral dress | White pleated top | Floral wide leg trousers | Red floral top | Black and white dress
Talking to a guest about the 'Delphine' jumpsuit
Something that made me giggle: Before the Style Session started, Sara the store manager checked with me that my name was "Catherine Lamb"... She'd of course got my real name and blog name mixed up.
However I'm warming to Catherine Lamb... I feel a name change coming on, what do you think?!
LIKE THIS POST? YOU MIGHT ALSO WANT TO SEE THE OUTFITS THAT I CHOSE FOR MY HOBBS SS16 PHOTO SHOOT IN EXETER!
Thank you to Kiri of Social Talent for taking the photos
Disclosure: I have written this post in collaboration with Hobbs (click here for my full disclosure) as a follow up to the Kensington High Street Style Session. All content is original, however, and opinions are my own and 100% honest.