How to Create 24 New Outfits Without Spending a Dime

When a client does their own homework before your session, you know they are ready to learn. This was the case when I met with Rosie for our 1st outfit making session post closet cleanse (you can read about that here). She had pulled images from multiple magazines and circled the things she liked and asked the all important questions - why does it work? How can it work for her? There were a few images that she came across where she wasn't feeling them anymore, so out they went. After this, it was on to the outfit making where we pulled everything out of her closet and had a blast mixing and matching different pieces to come up with new outfits; making just a bit of a mess as we went along.

Like any experiment, we had some great outfits and some really awful ones. There are times when an outfit works in your head, but just doesn't play nicely together when it's on the body. In those cases, we both just agreed we weren't feeling it and off we went in the other direction. I was fortunate to have my intern Mollie with me and she was on it - making flat lays of the outfits to be photographed for the look book, photographing each outfit, and then putting things back. 

In both sessions we did a lot of education around what styles looked best on Rosie according to the fashion "rules" - creating proportions that would look good visually by adhering to the three parts rule - whenever you are dressing your body you want one item to be 1/3rd of your body and the other to be 2/3rds of your body. We did this with her long maxi skirt and the long jeans and keeping shirts tucked in, giving her a nice defined waist and visually enhancing her already long legs. We played a lot with accessories: turning scarves into belts, necklaces into bracelets. And of course her cat wanted in on the fun!

In total, we did two, two-hour outfit making sessions. So while she spent money on the sessions themselves, she got 24 new outfits without buying anything new. We just mixed and matched her tried and true pieces; paired items in ways she had never thought to before; and gave outfits some spark by adding in jewelry and accessories, especially since she has been in a jewelry rut and not wearing much.

Rosie purchased a Look Book as a way to have all of the looks we created right at her fingertips. I love making these as it truly helps clients remember each detail of the looks that worked so well for them. It takes all of the decision making out of getting dressed as I've already done that work!  I made a quick little video below so you can see what it looks like!

Sydney Lester is a Richmond, Virginia-based personal stylist who creates wardrobes that reflect your life + style.