My wardrobe has a serious case of winter blues.
It’s sad to admit, but I’m wearing the same uninspiring outfits day-in day-out. Lacklustre sweaters, badly fitting jeans, neutral toned turtlenecks; it’s the fashion equivalent of bland porridge. I’m leaving the house every morning in a state of ambivalence; while I don’t hate what I’m wearing, I’m just not smiling ear-to-ear and sashaying down the road like I’m a cast member from La La Land. A major issue for me because I believe that is the whole point of fashion.
I’ve sought out some antidotes, but their effectiveness has fallen short. Multi-coloured knit jumpers won’t sit right, and pom-pom beanies have just left me looking like a character on Sesame Street. I’m throwing in the towel and waving the white flag. I need help.
Thankfully, enex understands the winter fashion blues and has perfectly presented an answer. This Winter, shoppers are able to book a free 1-hour styling session with one of three acclaimed Perth stylists: Jan O’Loughlin, Marcia Ball and Clare Ryan. Discover your own, personal style or simply refine the one you have created.
Read on as I take you behind-the-scenes of my enex styling session with Marcia.
Personal style is a concept nobody quite knows what to do with. As creatures who regularly mingle face-to-face (this is of course until Google comes up with a way for us to never leave the house) what we wear and how we dress is essentially how we express our inner selves to those around us. We’re endearingly outlandish in Gorman prints, or peacefully luxurious in Decjuba threads.
With this in mind, you’ve got to know a little about me to truly understand the outcome of this styling session. I’m Johanna, born to Avenarius (a loud dutchman) and Jennifer (a eucalyptus-obsessed botanist). While I would describe myself as ‘enthusiastic, starry-eyed and completely oblivious to practical realities‘, strangers would lean more towards ‘blonde girl in the coffee line humming off-tune‘. I watch Mad Men on netflix & have a fondness for pistachio ice cream. I’m a Libra and (according to the horoscope I just googled) the sun is currently in my expansion zone. This is apparently explosive for my personal growth this month. I’ll take that as a positive sign.
But the key ingredient to who I am is an inability to sit still. Things change and I’m not the same person I was 6 months ago. I’ve graduated university, landed my first corporate job, made some mistakes and eaten a lot of gelato. This presents a problem: my wardrobe is now an accumulation of things picked out by someone who is no longer me.
When I meet up with Marcia for our styling session, she sits me down and asks about the kind of clothes I like to wear. When I reply ‘structurally interesting’, I know that she gets it. After all, she’s wearing a Christopher Kane sweater, which – at first glance – seems deceptively simple. This is of course, until you realise the elbows are cut out and it’s made of neoprene. It’s that commanding subtlety I’m after. That dramatic second glance in the street at something you didn’t quite catch the first time.
We’ve agreed on two looks to find: one work-appropriate for my new job and another casual for the weekend. Heading into HATCH, I start lazily browsing as Marcia gets to work in a flurry of movement. HATCH stocks unique offerings from West Australian designers, so every now and again Marcia asks if I like the cut on this Wheels & Dollbaby dress, or the fabric on that Jonte skirt (yes, and yes). She’s picking out pieces I’ve never considered trying on myself, but it’s oddly calming. More so than a 2 hour yoga class.
Marcia presents me with 4 outfits to try; 2 for casual wear and 2 for work. The first thing I note is that she’s picked out leather jeans. Not quite sure why, but I’m telling myself this won’t end well as I slip them on. They’re shiny, form-fitting and incredibly flattering. My biased mind is wrong, I look less 80s fashion tragic and more off-duty model arriving at Heathrow Terminal.
We work through the next couple of outfits, Marcia offering style advice as it comes to mind (which, for a professional stylist, is often). She instructs which looks should have a tucked-in shirt and the correct way to tie a scarf. The best advice is how to wear all these clothes – namely, with the same airy, easy confidence she exudes. A state of mind that says ‘Look, I know Anna Wintour’s on the phone, but I really want to finish my latte in peace.’
Look 1: Staples For A Corporate Career.
Classic coat; power pants & silky, white button up: the totems of a functional work wardrobe. It’s simple, it’s serene, and it’s the perfect base to get experimental. I’m rubbing my hands greedily in anticipation of all the accessories I get to wear.
Side note: My love for this Megan Salmon coat can be likened to a teenage girl’s obsession with Harry Styles; overwhelming but coming from a place of pure affection. It’s got this timeless elegance that makes me feel like a career girl navigating the streets of London. Is it 1960 or 2060? Who knows. I’d look just as good in a black-and-white photo as I would in a hologram.
Megan Salmon Birdie Coat ($201.75); Empire Rose Rider Pants ($210); Amare Florence Shirt ($249); Bianko Double Chain With Freshwater Pearl Pendant ($55)
Look 2: Frolick-Proof Casual Attire
There’s a good chance that you’re not like me and don’t spend most of your work week pondering over outfits for Saturday brunch. Or maybe you are – in which case, we should both get together over chai latte’s and banana bread. This little woolen-sweater/mini-skirt number is perfect for brunch dates. And other dates, I assume. If I ever stopped to think about clothes and focused my attention on boys instead.
But then again, men don’t complement my hooped earrings as well as this outfit does.
Amare Vale Knit in Grey ($349); Amare Skirt ($219)
WANT TO RE-INVIGORATE YOUR OWN WARDROBE?
Book your own free 1-hour enex styling session with Marcia Ball, Jan O’Loughlin or Clare Ryan.
Johanna Borger x