I think as we grow up and mature our style and tastes change. When I was very young my mum said I use to change ten times a day. I broke her heart because every time I changed, the old outfit got thrown to the wash.
As I entered my late teens I started earning my own money, so I was able to start creating my own style. I became a bit obsessed with tailored jackets and I had a navy blazer that I wore everywhere. I also remember a trouser suit I bought. My fabulous patterned trouser suit was a statement piece that I really admire my younger self for. It was like a pair of curtains and a terrible pair of curtains at that. I think back now and laugh as I knew it wasn’t the norm and I knew it was definitely outside a lot of people’s comfort zone, but I loved it and I wore it anyway. Looking back now, the purchase of that suit was the start of me creating my own style and not following the trends.
Fast forward past my college years, where my style wasn’t really a priority, and then to my move to England for a year, this is where I thought my life turned around. While there, my sisters arrived for a visit and we went on a big shopping trip. We had a wedding to go to and I bought gorgeous black pants with a satin trim down the sides. I tried a size 14 but they were a bit snug, so I had to buy the size 16. I had been a size 10 through my teens and college years so this was a shock. I didn’t feel good about myself and shopping was no fun that day. I realised I was purchasing items that had a function, they covered the bits you didn’t want to show and also looked presentable. Once I looked reasonably good, it would have to do.
In November 2003, I decided to join Weight Watchers. I thought, this is about me and my body, ‘I need to lose weight’. I was 11 stone 10.5 pounds (75kgs). I got my little pack and went home. I stuck to the rules and with the support of my now husband, it slowly came off. By February 2004, I lost 24.5 pounds (11kgs) and was now weighing in at 10 stone (64kgs). This is where I thought my life had changed, I was a size 8 to 10 and I loved it. I got my hair cut shorter with some highlights and even (and don’t hate me for this) started doing sun beds to gain a tan.
My wardrobe took a complete reconstruction. I remember the delight at being able to go into shops and know I could try something on that would fit me. I felt good about myself and became obsessed with my weight and clothes. We returned to Ireland in 2004 and my clothes obsession grew, I was in the shops every week picking up one item or another.
Fast forward again to March 2010, this is the month I fell pregnant with my first child. I have 3 gorgoeus children now and all my pregnancies were good, and I enjoyed them. I always worked hard afterwards to get back to my size. I had three wardrobes by then, my pregnant wardrobe, my post pregnancy wardrobe and then my normal (back to size) wardrobe. I always thought that once I was back to that 10 stone (64kgs) mark I was normal again. That everything I wore looked good again. Then in 2015 I enrolled in an Image Consultancy programme. I thought by just losing the weight was the turning point in my life, but this programme gave me so much more.
It thought me that;
(a) Colour was very important, that wearing the right colour gave me a bright, warm, healthy perception.
(b) Mixing and matching all the different colours gave me numerous outfits and I didn’t need as many clothes.
(c) I looked good and felt good in everything I wore, not just the few items for special occasions.
(d) I discovered body shape and my own body shape and what it was all about.
(e) I got an immence sense of satisfaction pulling clothes out of my wardrobe to wear every day.
(f) By changing my wardrobe, one item at a time, my confidence grew and grew.
(g) I not only love my colours and clothes, I loved myself in them and now I love me.
My weight loss wasn’t as monumental as I first thought, yes it gave me satisfaction and a sense of achievement but now I had more. I love every item I wear, not just on the hanger but on my body, over all the lumps and bumps, loose skin from having three children and cellulite that realistically will be there forever. I am now 7 pounds (3kgs) over my 10 stone (64kgs). It’s not the end of the world but a few years ago I would need to lose it, like an obsession.
I love my shape for all its faults and for all its perfection. I would never have taken a selfie of myself 3 years ago as I would class myself as been vain or full of myself. Well now I am vain and full of myself in a confident and positive way.
I hope to bring you some more information about colour, body shape and other tips and tricks over the coming months. In the meantime, drop me a message on my facebook or instagram page and let me challenge you to a new colour or item of clothing for your body shape.
Thank you for reading, Cheers from Olivia @soyouconsulting