Personal stylist and wardrobe consultant Nicole Otchy keeps abreast of all the latest fashion trends and offers up five of the best of 2014 with the most staying power.
When did you first get into personal styling?
“Before opening my business, my career spanned academia and public relations. A constant fascination for me along the way was always the relationship between our personal style and how that style impacts how we relate to others and to ourselves. I started styling friends and acquaintances in graduate school and continued in a professional setting when I worked in PR. I began styling full time in 2011 when I opened my own firm.”
What are some of the services you can provide for the average Bostonian who wants to dress well?
“Often what gets in the way of dressing well is not realizing our less than helpful patterns when we shop. Lots of times we shop when we’re stressed out and rushed, or we forget what we already have in our closets when we’re eyeing something new in the store. Because this has been such a consistent pattern with clients and I’ve found it to be a key source of frustration, all of my styling services start by taking a look in a client’s closets to see what they’re drawn to naturally and get a sense of what they already have that makes them feel great before we go shopping.
I offer three main services that cover most clients’ needs from updating a part of their wardrobe for one area of their life – like getting ready for a new job or dating – to a complete wardrobe overhaul. If a client has a particular need that one of my main services does not address, I’m always happy to create a custom package that works for them.”
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What is your favorite way to keep abreast of current trends?
“While I get (almost) every fashion magazine on newsstands in the mail, I’d say my top three sources for staying on top of trends is Style.com, street style blogs and spending a lot of time in stores. Being in stores is one of the most helpful because it gives me a sense of not only what has been deemed ‘on trend’ by the industry but also a sense of what translates well off the runway and into the closets of men and women with busy lives.”
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This past year has seen a lot of great and/or questionable trends in fashion. Could you name five of them that you think are not only smart fashion choices, but are also good enough to stick around?
Flats – “Flats in a wide array of styles have had a strong presence on the runway and in the closets of my clients. From colorful sneakers, to athletic slip-ons, to pointy-toe flats, this has been the year of the stylish and sensible flat. I hope this trend stays around for a long time.”
Wrap Coats – “Luscious, warm and waist-defining, wrap coats were a big hit for fall/winter 2014. This style flatters so many body shapes, making this a trend worth the investment.”
Monochromatic Dressing for Women – “Wearing one color head to toe was a big trend this year. Monochromatic dressing is always a smart strategy since it’s a fast way to look longer and leaner instantly while making a timeless, eye-catching statement.”
Double Breasted Blazers for Men – “This year brought an unexpected twist on this classic jacket with an updated silhouette that’s more fitted through the waist and slightly shorter in length than older, traditional versions. Styled with jeans and dress shoes, this menswear staple is a great option for more casual business settings and dressier social occasions.”
Modern Floral Prints in Menswear – “Floral prints joined the ranks of traditional menswear in 2014. Modernized by downsizing the scale of the print and using repeating patterns to keep patterns from being too loud, floral-printed dress shirts were a refreshing update to the classic suit and tie combo.”
Shelly Barclay is a professional freelance writer and amateur author. She writes on a variety of topics from food to mysteries. She loves to share the culture and rich history of her birthplace and home, Boston, with the rest of the world. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.