From corporate to colour - a session with a style consultant prompted a life-changing move for Julie Bramah.

After attending a colour analysis class with House of Colour, the former client relationship manager is now helping clients across the region to brighten up their own lives.

"I worked for JP Morgan for 21 years doing multiple client facing, project management and managing large, operational teams with numerous international assignments," says Julie, who lives in Bournemouth.

"I had a lightbulb moment and life changing event in 2015 when I went along to a House of Colour class."

Julie, 46, moved from her busy corporate role, where a typical day comprised a minimum 12-hour shift, to become a colour and style consultant, helping clients across the New Forest, Bournemouth and Lymington areas.

"Having always had a monochrome wardrobe of black suits and neutral tops, I was shown I suited bright, cool, winter colours," she says.

"Wearing these colours meant I gained a different sort of confidence in myself making me feel alive, happy and vibrant and I realised I wanted a better life work balance. I took the leap of faith to start my own business because I believe you are never too old to dream a new dream.

"I now work with people to unlock their potential and develop their own unique personal brand, which is key to looking, feeling and performing at your very best every day.”

Julie enjoys working with both female and male clients of all ages but is interested in also developing a bridal service and corporate offerings.

“I am a catalyst for positive change in transforming clients in how they look, as well as how they feel. My job is to empower individuals to look and feel fabulous through colour and style, so they have the freedom and power to do what they do best, thereby increasing their impact, influence, visibility and confidence.

"It’s not about changing who you are but enhancing what you have with the colours and style that are right for you. The best colour in the whole world is the one that looks good on you.”

Client Liz Gordon agrees: “In a few hours, my whole attitude to the colours I dress in and wear as make up has changed. What I wasn't prepared for was the way some colours made me look. I would never in a million years have chosen a raspberry pink, which is so pretty but it’s not me...except it is me because I discovered I am a "Summer".

"I am now armed with the information and insight to go shopping and revamp my wardrobe and makeup bag with confidence. I really wish I had done this years ago. Julie has helped make me, a 57-year-old who was really thinking that there was little I could do, feel really pretty.”

Decluttering your wardrobe for autumn Autumn is the perfect time to start decluttering your wardrobe, as it is out with the t-shirts and kitten heels and in with coats and boots. Julie Bramah, colour and style consultant with House of Colour lets us into her top decluttering tips.

1. If an item of clothing has a wonderful memory attached to it such as your wedding dress or the dress you wore the first time you met your partner (but it no longer fits), they can still be in your life but shouldn’t be taking up space in the wardrobe. File them elsewhere – maybe wrapped in tissue in a box in the loft.

2. Try a pyramid structured approach to building a complete wardrobe. Your every-day go to clothes, in your best neutrals are at the base such as denim, shirts or blouses, winter coat and smart jackets or jumpers and expensive boots and bags. The middle level contains bolder patterns and textures that suit your style and colour palette. These are probably your ‘wow’ colours - perhaps a smart mustard cardigan for autumns, or a deep burgundy for winters. The top level are your statement items and accessories which people will notice immediately. For men, these may be a bold shirt, a red tie or a more unusual on-trend jacket. For women, this could be an amazing hat, a bold necklace or fashion statement shoes or bag.

3. One way we can de-clutter is to avoid buying poor quality, excessive items that we don’t need and to have a more focussed wardrobe. This saves money, eliminates mistake purchases that give us wardrobe guilt, and is great for the planet by reducing the volume of clothes ending up in landfill.

4. If you prune your wardrobe by removing all the things you never wear because they don’t fit properly or are the wrong colour or style, then you will find that you have more outfit combinations from your existing wardrobe than you realised. You can then just fill the gaps with a few select items and add a few more items from the top end of your pyramid wardrobe to add flair and interest to your looks e.g. through accessorising.

5. A rule of thumb to bear in mind is if you haven’t worn it for a year you probably won’t – be realistic and make space for something else that is going to give you great value and style. If it doesn’t fit – let it go.

6. Create a capsule wardrobe. We are mistaken in thinking that we need hundreds of items of clothes to create a variety of different outfits. A fabulous capsule wardrobe of 35 amazing items all in your right colours and style will create hundreds of outfit combinations!

7. Create a seasonal wardrobe. You’re not going to be wearing your maxi dress in the dead of winter so pack them away until summer to leave room in your wardrobe for pieces you’ll actually wear over the coming months.

8. Only shop at the start of every season and have a plan. Many of us keep picking up lots of different pieces throughout the season, but if you vow to shop only at the start of the season it means you will only buy what you really want. Make informed choices, rather than just impulse buying.

9. If there are some things you’re not sure you want to get rid of, then put them in a bag for three months. After three months if you genuinely missed the item then reinstate it into your wardrobe, if you had completely forgotten about it then ditch it!

10. A perfectly assembled wardrobe of clothes should give you a thrill when you open the doors to look inside. Each item should be joyful to wear, consider letting go of those items that don’t give you that feeling of joy.

11. Finally, be prepared to come home from a shopping trip with nothing. If you don’t see something wonderful, don’t compromise by collecting things you don’t love just because you want to have something. You’ll still have the money in the bank waiting for when you do see the thing you really can’t leave the shop without!



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