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Running in heels

Written by Jody Blackwood on April 21st, 2012.      2 comments

Over the last 5 weeks my life has been consumed with styling the catalogues for three of the Westfield malls – Chartwell (Hamilton), St Lukes (Auckland) and Riccarton (Christchurch).I’ve been involved with these for the last few years and it’s wonderful to see that they’ve got bigger and better moving to a more magazine/editorial format.

They have been amazing to work on – a mix of adrenaline rushes (when it all comes together), stress, sleepless nights (wondering if I’ve missed something) and satisfaction when I’ve made everyone happy.
Each season they present three trends for the women’s pages, which we (stylists), put together from the stores from each Westfield we’re working on. It’s always a challenge (but an exciting one) to introduce an international trend keep it fashion forward, still make it accessible but inspiring so that you to want to try that jacket, look for that top.

This year the trends were really bold. First up (and the most fun to style) was mix and match which was more than just print on print as you also add into the mix fur, beads, sequins and touches of home craft (think patch work).There are fantastic prints everywhere this season so check out retro (think 70’s), tribal, Aztec or bold digital washes. The trick with combining print is keeping it in the same tonal family –warm - burnt oranges and caramels, cool - blues and greys.

mix & match mix & match 2
Mix and Match examples
Next up was leather and lace which is fairly self- explanatory but an absolutely gorgeous look and so wearable whether you’re heading to work or a glam night out. This is everywhere this season so it won’t be hard to find something that hits this trend weather you go for something cheap and cheerful like a lace top or find a piece worth investing in like a classic biker jacket.
Kate Moss 21042012
Kate Moss rocking the leather look

The last trend is long and lean – think slouchy, long sweaters, maxi skirts, tailored coats, skinny pants and simple statement necklaces. It’s a fairly neutral trend working in a palette of caramel, chocolate, blacks and greys but with splashes of mustard, burgundy and deep green. Look for graphic touches and bold stripes to add interest.
Long and Lean
The way it works is I get my brief, run round the shops like a mad thing collecting product to dress together, and then present it all to the agency and marketing manager. With a few tweaks here and there (making sure everyone is happy), we shoot. This year it was a bit different as we got to dress models for women’s, men’s and kids. It is fabulous to see to it all come together – how that dress works with that coat, that bag rocking with that shoe.
Lastly, we do returns. This means making sure everything gets back to the stores in perfect condition and in a timely fashion. This goes pretty smoothly with a few ups and downs – thinking I’d lost an exquisite mustard clutch from Saben at Scarpa only to find it neatly tucked into a boot box from Mi Piaci – heart failure! Through this whole process I’m entirely grateful for my long standing working relationship with the stores from years of bringing clients in to shop. They make my job so much easier – thank you!
For all the running round, blood sweat and stress I love this work. It’s hugely creative and amazingly satisfying when you nail it.

This is an exciting, wearable winter – so get inspired people!



Julie says ...
Great work Jody, can't wait to see the finished catalogues!! Loved hearing how it all works too. Thanks.
Ricky Wesley says ...
I know, this isn't easy, it isn't easy at all. I've been reading through the Brillassignment review as well and so far, their tricks have been working like a charm. I honestly expected them to be futile.
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