[AD] In my almost 26 years of being alive I have never had a personal styling experience so when John Lewis found out Jonny and I had got engaged and offered me a treat at their High Wycombe store I was thrilled. John Lewis covered a percentage of the cost while I covered anything over the agreed amount.
A few Saturday’s back, I headed off with my mum in toe (she’s honest, so a good shopping companion) to the John Lewis store and headed for Personal Style area. With a resent redecorating it feels like walking into a little living room and then into an area where you can sit and drink your complimentary tea, prosecco or wine!
Before I get into my experience I will say, this is going to be split into two posts as my other choice deserves it’s own slice of the blog too and you’ll see why very soon. I also want to explain why this Personal Styling service is incredible, wait oh yeah… and did I mention it is totally free?
John Lewis offer 5 womenswear personal styling experiences: Holiday, Wardrobe Refresh, Workwear, Special Occasion and Perfect Pair of Jeans. All at no cost to you with no obligation to spend. Before your appointment you let your stylist know your sizes, what your after and you have a chat about you so they get a selection ready for when you arrive. When you get there some of the choices are there waiting for you laid out on an easy to view rail so you can view a full outfit as it would look. The rooms are spacious and great to take a friend, even as a mother you can take your buggy in to help you feel at ease (of course I can only assume on this one). The pressure of a standard changing room gone and you can go at your own pace.
You are able to accompany your stylist throughout your session to get more items to try on or let them go and hunt for you while you sit back and relax, I did the latter as I was after two things. I wanted things that were versatile that I could wear more than once and add to a capsule wardrobe, something that would work for weddings but also something I could dress down after and wear day to day and something that I just wouldn’t normally pick up myself. Well my stylist Lucy (check out her instagram @jl_lucyw for great styling tips) hit that brief totally. The first thing I tried on was a winner and to go with it a pair of shoes I would never have thought to purchase that I totally fell head over ‘heels’ for.
I tried on a range of brands, styles and shapes from uber dressy to smart casual to help Lucy understand what I like and didn’t like. You essentially treat this relationship like you would a hairdresser over the years they get to know you and your style and what you are or are not willing to try. The aim is for your stylist t be able to walk round the store and think “Oh Kenzie would like that, I know she has such and such event coming up I will let her know”.
As I said I went for the first thing I tried on which was this stunning Whistles Jumpsuit called ‘Tulip Mariana’ in an exclusive print for John Lewis perfect with a white shoe which is the shoes I totally didn’t think I would love but did which are own brand John Lewis called the Alannah Court in white leather and are so comfy and chic they look great with pretty much anything from jeans to jumpsuits and everything in between. This combo can work wedding, race or just the spring/ summer season but you could easily pair it with some little white trainers or biker books and a leather jacket to change it up completely. I love the cinched in tie waist and straight leg, the cut elongates and looks effortless.
What the styling experience also adds, is that when you get home anything you liked but didn’t take home is sent to you via email (if you are ok signing up to email communication) your stylist will then drop you emails when similar things come in, things they think you may like or when they hit the sale!
This whole experience was really special, it took any stress out of shopping, helped me break out of what I would normally be cautious to try on but also what does and doesn’t work for my shape. It is personal and your stylist is open and honest and makes you feel so great about yourself.
You may have seen the death of the high-street hit every town you know but I think this may be exactly what the high-street needs, it is a re-invented way to shop and one I couldn’t fault it was much more enjoyable and my mum is even going to book herself in because she wants to find her style again and this will help her do just that.