Heather is the only client who has ever asked me to analyse her colours without using the mirror. She explained that she was very uncomfortable with mirrors and asked if we could please not use it.
Now for me, it’s vital that my clients go away not only knowing what their most flattering range of colours is, but having really SEEN it for themselves. So using the mirror was non-negotiable. But I’ll let Heather tell you what happened in her own words.
Mary: So, Heather, what first brought you to House of Colour?
Heather: I visited my friend Yasmin, who had recently come to see you. I had noticed the difference in her and she explained how she now knew what colours and styles really suited her and what didn’t. She realised that she had some mismatches in her wardrobe and passed on some clothes to me. I was attracted to some of the clothes she gave me, but realised I didn’t actually know if they were right for me or not. So I decided that I had better find out for myself.
Mary: What were your initial emotions?
Heather: Before I came on the day, some of my friends had expressed concerns that having a book of colours might be limiting. I now realise that it is liberating, not limiting, because it means you can create a wardrobe that works. When they talk about a “Capsule Wardrobe” on TV, I now know what that means, and I’m working on creating mine.
It was, at first, daunting to be in front of your mirror and I really didn’t think I would manage it, but with my husband Tony literally holding my hand, it was easier than I thought.
Mary: What was your reaction when we discovered that you are a Spring?
Heather: My first thought was “I can’t hide behind black anymore!” I was saddened to think that I had just been playing safe with my black work wardrobe for years, and angry with the fashion industry for telling all of us that black is slimming and that there is no other option than the Little Black Dress.
Mary: I remember I had an email from you not long after you had done your colour day telling me about a new coat you had bought. Will you tell us about that experience?
Heather: It was a grass green coat which I would never have looked at before. I put it on and it just felt right; it felt like coming home. I had no idea of what it would look like in the mirror – remember I was very uncomfortable around mirrors: I hadn’t looked in a full length mirror for ten years – but I decided to trust the process and looked. And I looked good it the coat! It didn’t just feel right, it looked right too. My husband was amazed as I didn’t just look at myself from a distance, but right up close too!
Mary: You then went on to do your Personal Style Day and we found out that you are a Romantic Classic. What difference has that made?
Heather: That was the real start of my transformation. Suddenly I could see why other women bothered with their hair and makeup and the whole grooming thing. I had never felt it was worthwhile before because I felt overweight and frumpy, but suddenly I could see it was about self-worth. I started caring for myself in the same way.
Before, I had been guided by my husband in what to wear. He likes stripes (Well, of course he does; stripes really suit Tony – ed), and so I would end up wearing stripes, which don’t suit my curves or personality. Now I know what suits me; my colouring, my body shape and my character. Suddenly, everything in my wardrobe goes together.
I am now much happier about photographs. I have put a picture of myself on Facebook (yes, that’s it) and have even been able to give my mother an up to date photograph of me. The last one she had was of my graduation!
I have just bought a dress (in green again) to go to a Chinese New year Celebration. I bought it online, tried it on (in front of the mirror!) and loved it!
This has made such a difference to my self-confidence. I used to feel, when I walked into a room, that everyone just dismissed me. Now, when I walk in the room nobody necessarily says anything but their eyes tell me “Heather, you’ve got it right” and, you know what? I’m completely comfortable with that.