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AUTHENTIC STYLING w/ Alison Bruhn & Delia Folk, stylists

I spend a lot of time talking about mindset, but I’m a firm believer that your external world is important too. That’s why I’m interviewing Alison Bruhn and Delia Folk of The Style That Binds Us. Get ready to find YOUR authentic style.

AUTHENTIC STYLING

“Authentic style is when your inside matches your outside. When you dress intentionally, you have the power, and most people don’t understand that. They miss the opportunity to really be able to tell a part of their story simply with what they put on their bodies.” – Alison Bruhn

As a leadership coach and mindset expert, my work is all about helping women look and feel amazing from the inside out.  

When women work with me, they often find that who they are authentically grows and changes.  This is a beautiful thing as life flows with more ease, promotions and opportunities come their way more and relationships blossom.  

What is often an uncomfortable part of their growth journey though is when they look at their closet, they see a wardrobe full of clothing that either doesn’t quite fit anymore (because they accomplished a weight loss goal with me) or it reflects a style that doesn’t feel authentic to them anymore.

This has become such a common issue with clients (myself included!), I knew I needed a resource to help.  

Then, low and behold a few months later, I was introduced to the mother-daughter duo of The Style That Binds Us, Alison Bruhn and Delia Folk. They came my way dressed well and full of information that helped a non-fashion woman like myself actually understand fashion. I knew I had to have them on the show and they happily agreed…and goodness, our interview OVER DELIVERS with information on how to find YOUR authentic style.

IN THIS INTERVIEW, WE COVER:

  • What authentic style is and how to find yours
  • How to start to find your authentic style even on a small budget
  • The top things to look for in your clothes
  • How to create a visual brand for yourself
  • What hiring a stylist, like Alison can open up for you
  • What to do when someone else (like your man) wants you to style him

…and so much more

Listen now via the link at the top of this page and be sure to reach out to Alison and Delia via the links below to learn even more from them.

RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

Apply to coach with me

Continue the conversation in my free online community

Get The 4-Day Accomplish Your Dreams Free Training 

The Style That Binds Us Website

Follow The Style That Binds Us on Instagram

Core Wardrobe Checklist

Podcast episode with tips on how to store/protect the items in your wardrobe

YouTube video “How To Look Slimmer In Your Clothes”

How to create a visual brand

YouTube video about how to find your style

Full Transcript

Episode 119: AUTHENTIC STYLING


This is the Become an Unstoppable Woman podcast with Lindsay Preston Episode 119,
Authentic Styling.


[music]


Welcome to the Become an Unstoppable Woman podcast, the show for goal-getting, fearfacing women for kicking ass by creating change. I’m your host, Lindsay Preston. I’m a wife,
mom of two, and a multi-certified life coach to women all over the world. I’ve lived
through enough in life to know that easier doesn’t always equate to better. We can’t fear
the fire, we must learn to become it. On this show, I’ll teach you how to do just that. Join
me as I challenge you to become even more of the strong, resilient, and powerful woman
you were meant to be. Let’s do this.


[music]


Hi there, Ms. Unstoppable, welcome to another episode of the show. I always say this all
the time, but I’m always so grateful that you’re here. Today, I’m interviewing two very
special guests. It’s actually a mother and a daughter. We are talking about how to style
yourself authentically. Styling meaning, yes, that external style that you present to the
world, how you dress yourself, and how you can do that in a way that’s authentic to you.
I know, for me, fashion at times can feel very overwhelming because styles change. A lot of
us got this recently when we were saying, “Skinny jeans are out, inside parts are out. Wear
the mom jeans with the middle parts,” and I’m like, “Listen, that’s just not my style, but I
don’t want to date myself either.” That part can be overwhelming.
Then we have body changes that happen. Then we have certain amounts of money we
want to spend or not spend on clothes. It’s just– I don’t know. For me, it just feels
overwhelming at times. I wanted to bring on my guests today because I wanted to just
start to understand style better.


I know, for many of my clients, they feel the same way. They really want to be able to
dress in a way that presents who they are in the world and really just find a way to show
up externally, because, for many of my clients, as we work together, internally they start to
feel really good. Then it becomes, “How do I make my external world look as good as what
I feel on the inside?” When I was presented with the opportunity to interview my guests
today, and my guests are Alison Bruhn and Delia Folk. When I’ve had the opportunity to
interview them, I thought, “Yes, this is exactly what I want to have on the podcast.”
I think both of them have exceptional style. I just love how it’s the mother-daughter team.
Just be prepared. The story of how they got into business together and both got into
fashion is very interesting. Get ready for that.


What we covered today is just, again, how can we authentically style ourselves and what
are some of the biggest blocks that keep us from that? What are ways, despite all these
changes happening with our body and fashion and all the things like, how can we keep up
with this? I know I walked away with some really great nuggets, what I can start to do in
my life. I must admit, I am very tempted to hire Alison who is the primary stylist of the two
to come and help me out. Again, I walked away with some great nuggets today, and they
gave some great resources, too, to dive deeper into some YouTube videos they have.
Make sure you catch that and to look in the show notes for those links so that you can
learn all about styling and do it in a way where you’re not killing your finances in the
process and you’re showing up in a way that feels really great to you. I hope you enjoy this
interview as much as I did recording it for you. Without further ado, here is Alison and
Delia.


Alison and Delia, so happy to have you both on the show today. As I said in the intro, we
don’t talk a lot about fashion on this show. We talk a lot about mindset, but I’m a big
believer that your external world is important and how you show up in this world, and
especially when you have the right mindset, then you’re going to express yourself in
different ways.


When you know who your authentic self is, if we want to call it that, then I want my clients
and listeners to be able to say, “How can I go express myself in these ways?” I’m so excited
to have this conversation with both of you today. Before we get into all of that though, I
would love to know how both of you gotten into fashion and how you guys have decided
to work together as mother and daughter, too.


Delia Folk: I grew up in Alabama. We are a mother-daughter team of the Style That Binds
Us. Fashion was certainly not something that ever crossed my mind. Both of us enjoyed
fashion. Mom and I would shop together always. She was very sweet to take me, and how
that goes depending on the age, the teens. She always knew the right thing, but
sometimes I was definitely resisting what she was suggesting to wear.
It was time for me to pick a career. I was at the college of William & Mary, and all my
sorority sisters had either one or two majors and career ambitions. I said, “I need to get my
act together.” Somehow we thought of, “What about moving to New York and working in
fashion?” Completely far-fetched, as I knew no one, hardly in the city, or in the industry,
and in fashion, it’s definitely an industry where you need to know people to get in, to have
an in.


It was just an adventure of networking. Thankfully, my aunt’s college roommate’s husband
actually worked at Versace in wholesale. The summer before my sophomore spring, before
I was even thinking of an internship, thankfully he sat down with both of us, mom and I
went to New York, and he said, “I’m not going to give you an internship, but if you want to
work in fashion–” and he listed all these things I could do, I am type A, as you may or may
not be able to tell. I did all of those things immediately and aggressively.


Mom was so sweet to help me. She had been a stay-at-home mom forever. Because when
you’re job searching or internship hunting, in college, those are two full-time jobs. I would
be studying for finals or midterms. I would say mom, “You study the history of Dior, I’ll
study the history of Chanel, and report back to me.” Through that process, and mom had
been thinking about, “What’s my next step?” Now I’m an empty-nester. She was dabbling in
antiques, but that was more my grandmother’s love.


She was able to re-establish, “Hey, actually I like fashion, too.” Then she came to New York
and went to FIT and got an Image Consulting certificate. She actually understands the
science behind dressing. Through a year and a half of networking, I interned at Versace in
wholesale and then worked at Barneys on the buying team. Simultaneously, mom was
becoming a wardrobe stylist. After a couple of years of doing that, then we joined together.
We had started our own blogs and we created the Style That Binds Us.


Lindsay: Oh my gosh. I love that story. I love it.


Delia: It’s mom, but I did not get into fashion because of her. She got into fashion because
of me, which is, everybody thinks it’s the opposite.


Lindsay: I know. I would’ve guessed like, “Oh, my mom had this business and she styled
me.” So amazing. That’s so awesome. Let’s get into authentic styling. The first question I
have for the both of you is, what is an authentic style? What would you define it as?

Alison Bruhn: An authentic style would be what you put on your body is a reflection of who
you are. A lot of people think that fashion is like fluffing a person up, “Here’s four looks
and you’re good.” Really, it’s a lot deeper than just what you see on the surface.
When you dress intentionally, you have the power, and most people don’t understand that.
They miss the opportunity to really be able to tell a part of their story simply with what
they put on their bodies. Authentic style would be, your inside matches your outside. When
you go for a job interview, let’s say, and you look like someone who is well-groomed,
intelligent, articulate, calm, all of these can can come through what you’re wearing. You
might be the smartest, most organized person in the world.
If you go into a meeting and your hair isn’t brushed, or it was a windy day and you come in
and you’re just unkempt and you’re fumbling with your coffee, or whatever. When you
come into the room immediately, the person looking at you is thinking, “Probably not
organized, probably really cute, sweet, but not right for this job.” If you come in, your
clothes are ironed and fresh, they fit you well, you don’t have too much makeup, but you
have on enough, and you are not wearing anything distracting, like polka dots, then you’re
setting yourself up for a better outcome.


Lindsay: Yes, completely agree. Completely agree. What do you both think hinders women
the most from being able to express themselves authentically with fashion?

Alison: Delia, do you want to jump in?


Delia: Mom is a stylist. Anything stylistically I let her speak to. The only other thing about
authentic styling, I think, hopefully, I’m 29, and so I think, maybe during COVID, everyone
has delved inside themselves, really get to know yourself. I think authentic style is
dressing for you instead of dressing for others, it’s very easy. Maybe people do this their
whole life, dressing either for men or for women, whether you want to look fabulous, and
your friends think that, and that you’ve got it going on, or whether you are attracted to
males and you want to be attracted to you versus dressing for yourself that then evokes
this confidence and ambiance and aura that then you are your most authentic self and
everyone will be very attracted to that inherently. That would just happen.
Mom, what do you think hinders women?


Alison: No, I think that’s good. It’s really true, when you feel good and confident, then it
shifts. The other thing I would say is, the biggest hindrance would be not understanding
your body type. What most people do is, they pick something because it’s cute, or someone
else had it, or it’s a trend, and they love the trend, and they don’t stop for a minute and
think, “Okay, with my body type, like the mom jeans, the big oversize jeans.”
For me, what I would think is, “Okay, with my body type, I have a curvy figure, I have a
waist, but I also have hips. If you’re putting on an oversized jean and you already have
hips, that look probably is going to make your hips look larger than they really are. If you
understand those things about yourself, “I love that look, but that’s going to be for
someone who has a boyish figure, they can carry off the jeans that are a little bit big and
baggy better than I can.”


I’m going to steer towards a very long flare jean because it makes my legs look 10 feet tall,
and it’s a super glam look. It balances out the body, things like that. If you don’t know that,
you just keep buying things, that’s when they come to me and they say, “I love this jacket,
but I cannot figure out how to wear it.” That’s because it’s a wrong jacket for your body
type, or it’s the wrong color for you. People need to figure out what their body type is.
There’s a million places you can go online, you can google it and figure out what your
body type is, which style clothes look best on you.
If you’re short-waisted, or if you have a tummy, or whatever, you can google all of that
stuff. Then once you maybe have an idea of it, then when you go shop, keep that in mind
or call someone like me, a wardrobe consultant. They could sit down with you and say,
“This is your body type. These are the things that you want to really accentuate. This is the
right neckline for you,” all of these kinds of things, so that they can make better choices.
Learning to dress your body type rather than what’s trending or what you think is just
simply cute.


Lindsay: Totally agree. Can I tell you both two things I see? The first is obviously budget
for a lot of women. Can we touch on that, especially cause I know, like in my 20s, it was
like, “Yes, I would love to wear all of these things,” but I was on a tighter budget. Can you
speak to that, of how someone can work through that?


Alison: Sure. There’s several ways. It depends on your age and other factors, but you don’t
have to have $1 million to have a great wardrobe. The best thing to do when you’re
building a wardrobe is to think about quality versus quantity. When you purchase
something, think, “How many ways can I wear this?” Because, if you get a simple maybe
dress or black dress or whatever, the sky is the limit. Different blazers, jackets, sweaters,
earrings, coats, shoes, bags, you can dress it up, you can dress it down. You can even wear
it with sneakers. You can wear it to a cocktail party. If you can find that piece, then it’s
worth investing some money in.
If you live like Delia did in New York, where your closet is this big anyway, you just don’t
have room for that many clothes anyways. We have a core wardrobe list, a checklist on our
website that Delia can probably explain how to find it. If you get those basic pieces, and
when you get those basic pieces though, you really need to make sure this is the jean that
fits me best, and get it in black, blue, and white, whatever it is, make sure these simple
pieces that you have are as well-made, as high quality as they can be for you so that they
will last you because there’ll be the work corsets.


Then you can blend in some trendy pieces or some pops of color, things like that. You can
also really, when you’re young for sure, start out by having fun with accessories. That can
be, right now vintage is a big deal. One of thrift stores found in treasures, cool scarves,
anything that can take a blazer and a white blouse to another level. We have some videos
about this too. There are a lot of ways that you can change the look of something, but the
most important thing is that the clothes fit properly. If you’ve got them at Zara, or Ann
Taylor, or Kohl’s, or wherever, get them altered if they don’t fit so well, that’s another
thing.


They did a survey where they showed two men wearing the same suit, and they were not
bespoke suits. They were just off-the-rack suits. One of them had his altered to fit, and
they sent them on several job interviews. Every time the guy that had had his altered got
the job, and they asked why, and they said, “He’s just so well put together. He looks
intelligent. We just feel like he’s the best for the job,” simply because of the tailoring.
Just by what you can afford, don’t mortgage the house on your wardrobe. Just be very
thoughtful about it. Versatile pieces that are right for your body type, and in your mind, it’s
so great to start out with this small and certainly consignment shop.


Then as you add in pieces, or add in your accessories, that’s what a lot of fashion people do
when they are starting out. They invest in fun statement earrings and things like that that
are fashion jewelry, not like fan jewelry so that they are having fun and being creative and
showing their personality. They have a small wardrobe, and keeping very good care of the
pieces that you have, making sure the taps on your heel, if you wearing high heels, are in
good shape, no scuffs, your clothes fit good. There aren’t any stains. Just create a polished
look. Even if it’s a simple black dress and a black top and some great vintage gold earrings
or something and a big fuf, and that’s a super chic look.


Lindsay: Here’s my takeaway so far is the fit, so important, and knowing your body type.
That brings me to another question. I’m going to go back to this other block that I see with
women. I work with women who- many times they’re either about to have kids or they just
had kids. It’s those years where the body changes a lot and it fluctuates. I know I just went
through this when I had kids, and then you come out of it and you’re like, “I’m not really in
my maternity clothes, but I’m not quite in my other clothes.” I had like this awkward time
between and then too of, styles change. When I entered my 30s, now I’m in my mid-30s, I
look at some of my clothes from my 20s and I’m like, “That’s way too short, or this is too
bright. How do you keep up with all the changes?


Alison: That’s a good question. I had a memorable experience from the time when I came
into a young mom’s house. When I walked in the door, I said, “What are our goals?” She
burst into tears. She said, “I’ve got these little kids. I’m still wearing my clothes in college.
I’m trying to put together a house and take care of my husband.” She was just
overwhelmed. We talked about things like her cutoffs in college. Now that she’s a mom.
Could she still reaching for cutoffs and wear all these dresses from college?
She literally was still wearing stuff from freshman year. We went through and we talked
about that and lifestyle and things like that. Again, at my age, the body’s changing too.
Then there was COVID, there’s always going to be fluctuations in our weight, in our body
shifts, after you have a baby, hormones, all that stuff. One thing that I really love to do,
that’s easy to get dressed too, is like you have a pant or a dress, and then you have some
sort of a jacket, or a blazer, or a lightweight coat that goes over it, like what you’re wearing
today, what it’s doing, because you have the pink and then the white, you have created a
column from the top of your head.


I don’t know what you’re wearing on the bottom half, but all the way down to the ground.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve gained weight or anything. What the person that’s looking at
you is thinking is, “Column, this white, narrow column.” The brain is thinking, “Slim.” I’m
not touting our YouTube videos, but I did do a YouTube video using D as an example of
how to look slimmer in your clothes. Those are the kinds of things that I would do.
The bigger things you put on, you’re not going to feel good and they’re not going to be
flattering, but there’s nothing wrong with having a couple of pair of jeans that are your
main size, but one or two for when you have that extra weight or you’re trying to get it off,
things like that.


The thing about maternity, one of the things, now you can get them and they grow as you
grow, and then you can wear them just like this dress I’m wearing as a maxi dress, but it
has a tie, the waist, you can take the tie off and it can be more going, just a shift long
dress. Then as you gain more weight, you can unbutton it and use it as a duster and have a
little tank underneath and some jeans. Then when the weight gets off, then you can tie it
again. It’s a maxi dress like that. Those are the kinds of purchases that are good to make.
Most importantly, go easy on yourself. Remember that maybe the added weight is there. I
just had three babies in three years, or whatever.


Lindsay: Again, I keep hearing is the fit, the fit, these quality pieces that fit or that can
fluctuate and still fit well.
Alison: You can wear a different way. Yes.


Lindsay: Yes. My mind is going with all that, I was like, “Okay, it’s so simple, but we make it
so complicated.” When you don’t know, you don’t know, you walk into a store and you’re
like, “I don’t know. Someone helped me.” I walk in Nordstrom’s all the time like, “You right
there, help me out.”


Alison: They might not know either. Unless they’ve been trained, they don’t know either.
They know what they like, but they’re not necessarily looking at your body and your color.
One thing to keep in mind is creating a column, whatever it is. If you’re wearing a solid
shirt, especially one that maybe is high neck, just sweater or something, that’s just, I don’t
want to say expands, but this area is not broken up at all. It’s just like a solid color. That’s
going to make you look bigger. Anyway, when you look in the mirror, so at least put a long
necklace there to break it up, you want to bring things back. Collars, bring things up to the
face.
This little white shirt that’s peeking out as a column. All of that is an optical illusion that
creates the look of– We’re just concentrating up and down the middle.


Lindsay: Wow. That’s great. Going back to one of the things I see hinder women the most
from really owning their authentic style is really disbelief. You touched on it earlier, Delia,
of dressing for others. It’s this belief of, “I want to be visible and I want to be pretty and I
want to be smart, but I don’t want to be too much of those things.” Because a lot of
women, it’s like walking this fine line between it. What would you say to that, to a woman
who’s like feeling that?


Alison: Delia.


Delia: No, I don’t have a good answer for this because I feel like I just fanned the flame.
That’s the terrible, terrible, terrible thing that accidentally happens when you just show up
and you’re yourself, and that makes you unique so you stay apart, and then that makes you
memorable and standing out. Instead of just trying to become this shell and tamper that
down, I just constantly fan the flame.


Alison: It turns out that normal isn’t great, that being just a part of the group doesn’t really
work for anybody, and especially doesn’t work for you, because if you keep tamping down
yourself, then at some point it’s just going to have to come out. It’s not fair to yourself to
live that way. If you love red, then wear red. I think one of the main things we’ve learned
from COVID is, life is so short and nobody really cares.
Everybody’s worried about what they’re wearing. Truly wear what you love, what feels
good on you. I’m not talking about, “Oh, my sweatshirt is just what feels good on me.”
Everything from evening gowns to sweat pants can be worn in ways that are comfortable,
that you’re not tugging on yourself the whole time, that you feel self-conscious.
If you’re trying something on and you wonder, “Is this too low in the back? Is this too low
in the chest?” If you have a question about it, don’t get it, and do not get it because you
will continue to have questions about it. Even if people say “No, no, it’s great, it’s great,” in
your brain, you’re still going to be going, “Is this too low in the back?”
Just do what you feel works for you and let yourself shine. Truly just realize, especially
after what we’ve just been through, that life is for living. Who cares what other people
think? If you are smart, don’t dumb yourself down. It doesn’t work in the long run. I can
assure you of that.


Lindsay: I so agree. I did a whole episode on this of, I forget what I titled it, but it’s like,
live like you’re dying. Almost of like, all we have is today. I love how you brought that up. I
feel like we’ve kind of answered this question, but I just want to ask it directly. How can
somebody start to tap more into their authentic style?


Alison: One thing they can do, we have this presentation that we offer to groups, now do it
with women one-on-one, you can create a mood board. When you do that, it’s a fun
activity. It doesn’t have to be specifically about fashion. If you sit down and you get a little
bulletin board or a piece of poster board, whatever you want, and tear out things from
magazines or pin special photographs or a leaf, you love the colors of a certain leaf outside
or a certain room in an architectural digest-type magazine, a recipe, I would say an album
color, but that’s aging me, but anything that resonates with you. It’s like you’re going on
this self-exploration journey.

It takes a couple of days, because you’re not going to have it all at hand, but do that and
then come back, and put it somewhere where you’ll just glance at it, walking back and
forth. You’ll start to see these things come out like, “I sure did pick a lot of things that were
green. I don’t think I have anything green that I wear. I should get something green. I
should incorporate green into my wardrobe because it really resonates with me,” or “I
seem to love textures. I put a bunch of cool fabric, swatches, and things that have texture.
I need to incorporate that into my house, as well as on my body too.”


You start realizing, especially when you have little kids, you start realizing, “Oh, I totally
forgot I like to garden,” or “I totally forgot that I used to do crossword puzzles.” Whatever it
was. You start to get back in touch with your authentic self. Then, as you notice on your
board things that you had forgotten about yourself, it will help you become more authentic
in what you put on your body. Like, “I don’t know why I keep wearing all these tailored
blazers, everything up here was like Boho dresses and festivals and twinkle lights with
parties, and everything.
Forget that stuff. I obviously want to have a lot more movement in that clothing. That’s
what I’m missing, and sometimes that buttoned-up look is a signal that you are uptight
and that you need to let yourself relax and have fun.


Lindsay: Yes. So good.


Alison: If your kids or your husband are going, “What are you doing?” You just tell your kids,
“I’m playing. Why don’t you make a little board too?” It can be a family activity.


Lindsay: It goes back to what I teach my clients of getting in touch with your desires and
who you are authentically and all that, so good. Couple more questions for y’all. The next
one I have is, somebody is listening to this and they’re saying, “Okay, maybe I need to
invest in a stylist.” Hopefully, they would reach out to y’all, but what kind of investments
are they looking at? Especially with their clothes, even if they were to go do it on their
own and to get a really good, what people call capsule wardrobe kind of thing.


Alison: Sure. Most of the time, when you create a capsule wardrobe, you don’t have to start
from zero. What a stylist will do is come in with you. I go in with that checklist and I say,
“We’re going to try everything on. Show me all your black pants.” They’re like, “Oh, I have
20.” We’re going to try them all on, and then we get them down to maybe two or three.
That’s checked off the list. We have the black pant. Then we go to the white shirt,
whatever it is, we go to those basic pieces.
It’s very rare, but some people do say, “I threw all my clothes away,” and they really threw
all their clothes away, but it’s very rare. You probably have more of the things in your
closet than you know that you do. There are several ways to go about it. You can either
bite the bullet and say, “I’m going to go ahead, and this is an investment, I’ve saved up this
money, I have $3,000, I really want to get this core wardrobe in my closet and check this
off my list.”


Then some peoples have this already in the closet. These are the things that we need to
bring in to pull it together. Then we have an ongoing list, which would be a black trench or
some piece that– Maybe it’s summer and you don’t even need a black trench right now,
but you know that’s going to be an important part in your wardrobe. You know it needs to
be one that can be worn with a cocktail dress at night and with jeans during the day.
That’s a very specific piece. There are a lot of almosts, but the perfect trench coat, it might
take you a while to find. It’s on the list of things like that. Then you, very thoughtfully, add
pieces into your wardrobe.


Lindsay: Again, as you’re talking through that, I’m thinking about, too, of the fits, makes
sure the fit is right. Because even if you find the right one, is it the wrong fit?


Alison: Exactly. Also, it could be that you have black pants, but none of them really fit
correctly. That’s when we go to an alterations person and you put on the pant and say, “It’s
really baggy in the back” or “It’s baggy in my thighs.” Anything we could do about that. A
lot of times I’ll say, “Sure, all I have to do is do this.” Then sometimes they’ll say no, “That
pant just isn’t right for your body.” Then you know.


When we get the core wardrobe in- when it goes into the closet, it’s ready to be worn. It
fits well. It’s been altered. So many people have jackets and coats and dresses. When they
put them on, the sleeves are really long. They come down to right here and they’re like,
“Oh, I never got it altered.” It makes it look like you’re wearing someone else’s coat. When
you just do that simple thing to wear your sleeves fit the way they should fit on your body,
the whole thing looks besides smaller and every time, invariably, they’re like, “Oh, I wish
I’d done this a long time ago.” You probably have more things than you think you do. There
are just a few pieces that need to be brought in to pull it all together, but the investment,
it just depends on what style is you use and how many– If you can say, “I just have the
money to do a season at a time right now. Let’s start with summer,” or, start at the end of
this summer, and that way you don’t store pieces that keep taking in and out that don’t
work for you.


Go through the old things, and then look at the new things, but you can either do it all at
once and spend multiple appointments, and it’s worth doing it that way for many people
because that’s definitely a process, regardless. Anyway, you could spend $20,000, you
could spend $3,000, you could spend– You just have to decide what your budget is. We try
and try things, especially for people like your age, that they can wear– What you’re
wearing right now, if you wore that to work, then you could switch to blue jeans and a
sneaker afterwards and a fun earring, or something like that. Like I said, functionality is
important to consider, and it saves you in the long run, for sure.


Lindsay: That’s the thing is, people are so into this fast fashion. It’s cute, it’s right now, it’s
cheap. Really, in the end game, it costs a lot more. It goes back to what you were saying
earlier with that study between the two men. One had it tailored, one didn’t. People don’t
realize how many doors are going to open from their fashion choices.
I know, for me, I upgraded my wardrobe some last summer because I finally got my prebaby weight and I was like, “Let’s invest again.” It just changes your whole demeanor of
just like, “Wow, this is stuff that I love.” When you’re feeling good, you’re going to take
more action from that place, and so it’s an investment. I have one more random question
for you. This is totally random. My husband, he’s always like, “You just dress me,” or “You
just do this.” I’m like–


Alison: Not a clue.


Lindsay: Yes. What tips do you have for that? I think he should just get his own stylist. Yes?


Alison: Yes, I am the same way with my own husband, and he’s like, “You’re the stylist.” I’m
like, “I don’t work with men.” I recommend that they have a store where they have one
person that they think really does know what they’re talking about, and they just pick out,
they have a couple of nice things, and then they just every season buy a couple of new
shirts.


Then after five or six seasons those button-downs, or polo shirts, or whatever they are, if
they’re looking pretty worn, they just need to be replaced, but if they’re interested in
looking super dapper with the gingham shirt and the plaid, kind of mixing the prints and
doing all that stuff, they definitely need to go to a men’s clothier and have them put that
together with the time and everything, because that’s what those people are trying to do.
Lindsay: Do you have any stores you’d recommend?


Alison: Usually those kinds of stores are- the local ones are the best. There are several
here, and that’s where all the men in the family get their nice things, and they don’t go
there often, but when they go in, they have a record of what they got before. You just look
for a men’s clothing store in your area, like a local Brooks Brothers, Joseph Banks used to
be good. I think, now, I guess it’s still around, but I think the quality maybe went down a
little bit, but those kind of stores are going to be more expensive, but they definitely have
sales. Brooks Brothers has an outlet. The only thing about that is, there’s not necessarily
going to be someone in there around your age, your husband’s age that he feels
comfortable with, that he can say, “What shoe do I need, what shoes should I wear I have
no clue.”


Then they give you the advice, because my husband would go somewhere, today he’s
packing to go on a trip and he said, “I really want to take my Merrells.” I said, “Okay, that’s
a good idea.” Because he’s going to see our younger daughter and his Merrells are 30 years
old, and it has always been a big joke in the family that he’s still wearing those shoes. I
knew when he walked off the plane and that she should be like, “Oh, Dad.” They don’t
know, he didn’t care. He wants to look nice, but most men are looking around and saying,
“I like his shoes. Oh, that’s a great jacket,” like women do.


Lindsay: So good. We have Brooks brothers just outside my office. I just need to send them
over there.
Alison: That’d be perfect.


Lindsay: Yes. Can you tell me how the listeners can get in touch with both of you and
follow you and all the things you’ve mentioned, some resources you have, but I would love
for them to reach out to the both of you.


Alison: Sure. Delia, can you do that part?


Delia: Everything is the Style That Binds Us. We have website, podcast, YouTube channel,
social media, the link to sign up for our newsletters on our website. Some of the things
mom talked about, the core wardrobe checklist. If you go to thestylethatbindsus.com in the
top toolbar Style Tools, that’s where the core wardrobe checklist is, and then the how to
look slimmer in your clothes, or the right print size for you, how to find your style. Those
are all going to be videos found in the style playlist of The Style That Binds Us YouTube
channel and also the visual branding information is in the blog section on our website, as
is, we just had a podcast episode with something called Garde Robe. It was all about tips
for how to store and protect and really take care of your clothes and make sure when you
put them up there and ready to wear quality, I am determined. Mom always said to do this
before, but really now, during COVID, and now I have my summer wardrobe.


I got everything altered, and then, now when I wear anything, it kind of goes into this little
place, that means you’re going to inspect it. It either needs to be steamed, it needs to be
cleaned, it needs to be whatever, before, you’re going to stick it back in your closet ready
to wear, because what I do is, I’m picking out my outfit day of. Sometimes you don’t have
enough time to steam it before you need to leave, for it to dry, all these, it will eliminate
stress if you take that little bit of time and really care for your things.
There’s shoppable links to these products that these professionals actually suggest of
different things to care for your wardrobe, because it will make it last longer, it will be
more pristine. You will look more stylish and put together and more fabulous. That is
where to find The Style That Binds Us.


Lindsay: Awesome. What do the both of you offer, especially with The Style That Binds Us,
for people how they can work with you?


Alison: To work with me, it’s one on one, or I sometimes work with groups. We can do a
virtual appointment, if you aren’t in New York, or Birmingham area, or somewhere within
60 miles 60 to 75 miles of either of those places, I have worked with a bunch of clients
during COVID virtually, it’s really tons of fun. I have clients in California and Richmond, just
all over the place. You literally walk around and show me your closet and we do the same
type thing. I could do body analysis and everything, virtually. That’s an option.
Also, special event dressing. Right now I’m just going crazy with all these weddings now.
The weddings are back. Some families are having two weddings within four months now,
and it’s the grandmother and the mother and the daughter, and that’s a big thing to take
all of that off of somebody’s plate when they’re planning a wedding. Traditionally, I have
helped people pack for trips, or if it’s working, like they’ve got to be in LA part of a week,
and then Rome, Georgia, the second half of the week or something, and they can’t figure
out how to do that. We do packing sessions and things like that. Everything is unique to
the person, whatever it is your issue is that we work our thing around that, and it’s always
about budget and lifestyle, keeping everything in mind. I think the main thing about a
stylist, or an interior designer, or anything like that is, people are scared to ask how much
it’s going to cost, which I understand, but usually, the cost could be between $100 and
$300 an hour for a wardrobe consultant. A closet clean-out body analysis type thing takes
two to three hours, depending on how many clothes you have.


Then, if you want the stylist to shop for you and bring things in or create a lookbook so you
can shop online for pieces and bring them back in and then come back and put everything
together, take photos, so you have an album with all of your looks, those kinds of things,
they take an hour or two, things like that, but it really is such an amazing experience and a
huge help.


Plus, for the rest of your life, you’ll be like, “Oh, I remember when I worked with that
stylist. She said, “I learned that scoop neck is the best t-shirt for me.” All of those things,
you know them for the rest of your life. Most of my clients say, “I wish I had known this
when I was in high school, I would have saved so much money my entire life. That, and
sometimes we have shopping days in New York with us, you can get a group together and
we can take you behind the scenes and do some really cool things, and stuff like that.
You can just go to the website. There’s a tab that says, “Work with us,” and you can look at
all the different ways of the different things that we offer, and then Delia does something
so exciting. I think it’s so cool, different than what I do. Delia, do you want tell?


Delia: Since I worked at Barneys on the buying team in beauty, ready to wear, and jewelry.
The way, we didn’t even talk about this, Lindsay, and I don’t know if you know it, but the
way that I became an entrepreneur full time was, I decided we were to go to fashion
month. That was my dream to go to London, Milan, or Paris fashion week.
I had gotten to go to some shows in New York, but if it didn’t have to do with your specific
division, I couldn’t 2:00 PM on a Wednesday, just say, “Oh, hey, I was invited to so and so
show,” if the jewelry wasn’t in it or my vendor wasn’t doing the beauty or whatever. I had
never really gotten to do the full New York Fashion Week. Anyway, I became a full-time
entrepreneur. I couldn’t travel for a month and still work at Barneys.


When I came back, I was thinking, “Okay, immediate source of revenue, I could consult with
emerging brands because Barneys was all about emerging brands. Now, I know the life,
mind, and brain of a buyer. I know the ins and outs of how retail works, to help brands with
their wholesale strategies. If you say, “I’m a jewelry brand and I want to be sold in Saks, or
Bloomingdale’s, or whatever, how do I even begin to go about that?” I consult with them
that way. Then also, direct to consumer, “Since we are entrepreneurs and without huge
financial budgets or VC backing, how can I create Jedi ninja mind tricks to grow brand
awareness, sales? I feel like, in the past, during COVID, it’s so interesting to me, you’re
always, you’re a coach, you know all these things, but sometimes people have to learn it
for themselves.

You’re like, “I could have told you that three years ago,” but everybody that was really
relying on wholesale, direct-to-consumer requires this whole set of marketing skills that
no one was necessarily prepared for. If you don’t have a mission, if you don’t have a
purpose in all of these things, anyway, so I cunsult it with emerging brands self and
navigate and create direct-to-consumer and wholesale strategy. It’s exactly the same thing
as to mom with styling.


If you invest in the beginning, we give you all the information, and it’s very tailored. Mom
has never like, “Oh, that’s cute,” or, “Oh, these are the trends for the season.” Everyone is
having a graphic tee right now. This is what I do with every client. It is truly very
thoughtful. Of course that takes more time for us, but that’s just how we run our business.
That is my consulting.


Lindsay: Oh my God. I love it. Thank you all so much. Today was so fruitful. I’m already like,
“When are they going to hire Alison? Oh my gosh. It just reminds me so much of coaching
of like, “Yes, you’re going to invest in the front, but you’re going to move so much faster.”
You’re going to have these skills for life. These are the skills we should have been learning
in school, dress your body and all the things. Thank you both so much for taking the time
to teach us today.


Alison: We loved it. Thanks for having us.


[music]


Hey there, Miss Unstoppable. Thanks so much for tuning into this episode. If you enjoyed
it, share it with a friend. Send them a picture of this episode via text, via email, share it on
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In my nine-month simple success coaching system, I am going to walk you every single
step of the way to ensure that you get the goals and dreams that you want. The first step is
to apply for a free 60-minute consult call. Just go to LindsayEpreston.com/apply to get
started. As always, my friend, remember, you’re only as unstoppable as you believe you can
be, so believe in yourself. You got this.

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