Many of my first-time clients come to me with the same complaint; that shopping is incredibly frustrating because, amongst other reasons, they try on a "million" things and go home with very little and, sometimes, even nothing. As their stylist and personal shopper, it is my job to identify the obstacles that are preventing them from achieving sartorial success and offer real-life solutions that will lead them down the path to a well-rounded, functional and fashionable wardrobe that will both flatter their body type and serve their lifestyle.
The solutions to this problem are as varied as my clients, but they often boil down to some combination of the following - adjusting the size that they are wearing (most often to a smaller one), recommending different silhouettes and cuts, suggesting new designers and retailers, providing lessons in successful outfit creation and encouraging the use of a professional tailor to make alterations.
And then comes the shopping. And when shopping with these new guidelines and solutions in mind, the success rate grows by leaps and bounds, resulting in happy clients headed home with as many bags full of new clothing, footwear and accessories as their budgets will allow.
However, that does not mean that these shopping trips are entirely without disappointments. In fact, far from it. And that is what brings me to today's topic - recognizing and appreciating the intangibles.
When a shopping trip isn't going your way and is not resulting in tangible results - i.e. the pants/dress/shoes/jeans that you were looking for - don't throw your hands up in disgust and chalk it up to another wasted afternoon. Instead, look for the silver lining and recognize and appreciate the intangible results. For example, perhaps you ruled out a certain brand of jeans because no matter how many pairs you tried, they all had too low of a rise. Or, perhaps you now know that you can't wear a skater skirt because no matter how many you have tried, they all added too much volume to your already well-endowed behind. Or, on a more positive note, despite not being able to find an "LBD" that you loved and were ready to make a permanent member of your wardrobe, you are confident that it should be a wrap dress after seeing the waist-defining and body-lengthening benefits of one in the fitting room mirror.
These intangible results, if recognized and properly filed away, will serve you well in the future, increasing your efficiency and success rate one shopping trip at a time. And, on top of it all, it's a great life lesson beyond the fashion world. Because we could all stand to delay gratification and look on the bright side once in a while.
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