Behind the scenes at a Style Day

Last week I had to dig out some old photos in my pre-colour, pre-style analysis days for a magazine article about dressing for your season. The editor wanted to show the contrast between me now in my vivid Spring colours and the old me in my twentysomething black polo-necks. I have to say it was like looking at two completely different people. Not only was the black doing me no favours (no surprises there!), but the baggy black jumper and jacket were practically swallowing me whole.

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Thankfully, I was rescued from a lifetime of monochrome and loose tops when I had my colours done and my style personality analysed. As a Spring I was told I should be wearing juicy brights (eg, apple green, watermelon, orangeade) that complemented my colouring. As an Ingenue, I should be showing off my waist instead of hiding it under baggy tops, and addressing my feminine side with pretty prints and details. It was a revelation.

If you’ve had your style personality analysed with House of Colour this will all be familiar to you – if not, I really do recommend it. By the end of your style day, you’ll have a much better understanding of your own personal style and what suits you best in your wardrobe. You’ll also become a lot savvier shopper in the future, only buying things that truly suit your body shape and lifestyle rather than pieces that randomly catch your eye.

For a little taster of what’s involved, we asked three members of the Kettlewell team to share their experiences of their style day with our resident blogger and House of Colour consultant, Jo Greene…

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Zoe Skeels

Product photographer and shoot stylist

Age: 29

Height: 5ft 7in

Season: Burnished Winter

Zoe’s objectives for the day: “To learn more about the styles that will complement my personality, lifestyle and body type. I want to be perceived as authentic, creative and relaxed – like I’m not trying too hard, while still looking a bit put together.

Jo says: Zoe has a really effortless, laid-back style, as well as a fantastic figure, which can take a range of styles. But her clothes don't need to be figure-hugging – I see her in clothes with texture and drape rather than body con dresses. During the style day we talked about her presence in a room, and felt that although she has a lot of energy, Zoe doesn’t necessarily naturally become the centre of attention – she’s much more likely to fit in comfortably. To fit in with her laid-back vibe, medium-scale prints and accessories work much better than either excessively large or too dainty.

Diagnosis: Double Natural – relaxed, laid-back, easy dressing.

Zoe’s verdict: “It was really helpful to get a better idea of the pieces in my wardrobe that work for me. Having taken all my measurements, one of the things that Jo picked up on was that I should avoid glitz, shiny fabrics and too much makeup. And I am better off choosing high necks rather than low necks.”

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Styles from the A/W collection that suit Naturals:


Wioleta Rajchel

Job title: Student and part time warehouse assistant

Age: 18

Height: 5ft 10in

Season: Jewel Winter

Objectives for the day: ‘To help me define and refine my appearance and, learn how to save money by buying only clothes that I really need. I want to make a good impression, and I want to be perceived as authentic and stylish.”

Jo says: “I was immediately struck by Wioleta’s natural elegance. She has an hourglass figure, which combined with her height and sophistication, gives her an amazing presence, but she’s a model of containment and doesn’t need to be the centre of attention to feel confident. Classic styles in rich Winter jewel tones really bring out her natural elegance, as well as accessories and sophisticated florals. Polished looks definitely suit Wioleta best.

Diagnosis: Romantic Classic (grown-up and sophisticated with a classic, timeless appeal)

Wioleta’s verdict: “I’m happy that I’ve now got a better idea of styles, fabrics and textures that suit me best. It’s also good to have a dress code for occasions like interviews and cocktails.”

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Styles from the A/W collection that suit Romantic Classics:


Claire Bowman

Job title: PR

Age: 49

Height: 5ft 7in
Season: Autumn­­­­­­­­­­

Objectives for the day: “To find out the styles I should avoid and use that information to get around to finally sorting out my wardrobe.”

Jo says: “Claire likes to look stylish and put together without being over the top. Her structured body shape looks best with a degree of fit within the outfit rather than loose or drapey. Small touches of texture and accessories and smaller-scale nature-inspired prints and details such as pin tucks work brilliantly to pull her outfits together without becoming overbearing.

Diagnosis: Ingenue Natural

Claire’s verdict: “It was interesting finding out that I should avoid anything low-cut or overly dramatic. We were asked to bring in an item of clothing from home that rarely sees the light of day, and I brought a dress with pronounced puff sleeves. It was an impulse buy, and now I know why I’ve never really worn it. As an Ingenue Natural I now feel I’ve been given licence to wear all the prints and small-scale details that I wasn’t 100% sure suited me.”

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Styles from the A/W collection that suit Ingenue Naturals:


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If you are interested in finding out your style personality, click here to find a House of Colour consultant in your area.

Lorna on Sep 21, 2019 10:42 AM

Hi , it would be great to be able to filter by season And clothing personality :-) Spring Ingenue Romantic please :-) :-)

Lorna on Sep 21, 2019 10:42 AM

Hi , it would be great to be able to filter by season And clothing personality :-) Ingenue Romantic please :-)

Hannah on Apr 26, 2019 1:35 PM

being barely I.50m I too would welcome a 'petite' range in a small size. Please remember its not only young/middle aged people who like to feel they look 'good' (for their own benefit) but the elderly too!

Michelle on Feb 14, 2019 12:29 AM

i was diagnosed Romantic Natural as per HOC but was then told i am really Romantic Dramatic....a little confused

Pauline on Feb 13, 2019 1:45 PM

What skirt styles have you got planned for the future. I have one of your Long Flirty Geometric Patterned skirts from 2014 which I have shortened (from the waist to retain the flirty effect).It is now the same length as the Weekend Skirt. I love this length and would like to see more skirts of this length in the future especially with an interesting style of hemline.

Kettlewell Colours: I'll pass your suggestion on to our design team!

Emma Green on Jan 11, 2019 7:21 AM

Yes, I do wish that there could be more older models and also people over size 10!!! The majority of women in UK are size 16 or above. Also, like others have said, what about shorter ladies?

Christy Boyd on Oct 23, 2018 10:28 AM

Definitely useful to have a style or colour day with HOC at age 65, I would say. And lucky Wioleta - I wish I'd had that opportunity when I was aged 18.

Audrey Youngman on Oct 21, 2018 9:11 PM

Brilliant and very interesting

Patricia Baxter on Oct 21, 2018 11:05 AM

I am interested in a Style day.

I did one before (about 30 years ago)

However at age 65 is there any point! All your email advertising shows young people.

My main problem is how to hide fat ankles. therefore I only wear trousers.

Jackie Reid on Oct 20, 2018 9:13 PM

I had my colours and style analysed a few years ago. I find the colour side really helpful (Bright Summer) but I'm not sure I've mastered 'Classic Ingenue'. I'm interested to see that your analyst is using a tape measure and also that all three team members are at least 5" taller than me. If the analyst is advising on garment lengths and necklines, I'm afraid Kettlewell styles don't always work for shorter women - waists are too low, necklines too low, tops too long in body and sleeve. It would be great to have more choice.

Catherine Holland-Cunnington on Oct 20, 2018 7:13 PM

I really liked this. Could you show more outfits that suit the style types please? I was told I am natural dramatic. What do you have for me?

Joanna Biddolph on Oct 20, 2018 5:18 PM

Would have liked to have seen all four of them dressed in their clothing styles - wearing the clothes you've highlighted for them.

Lisa Rossetti on Oct 20, 2018 9:09 AM

Very useful Blog. I’m a Blue Spring with silver hair, and a rare thing - a Dramatic Natural.

Though I’m tall (5’7”) my hourglass figure sometimes makes shopping for trousers and jeans difficult.

Can you suggest a Smart Casual look?

Hilary on Oct 20, 2018 8:41 AM

Having had my colours done some years ago I adore your styles but I am afraid @ 4’10 (petite) everything in Kettlewell range is too long in the body& legs please consider a petite range......

Stella on Oct 20, 2018 8:24 AM

So interesting to see the subtle differences between people’s colouring and style which slips them into a specific group and then the magic happens! Really educational! Thank you

Judith Makoff on Oct 19, 2018 4:49 PM

You missed out one category: Scruffy.

That's me ;-)

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