Zita Alves is a personal trainer and owner of Zest Bootcamp. As well personal training Zita conducts early morning and evening exercise bootcamp classes outdoor in Alexander Park in Bath. A fantastic bunch of people of all ages, who are up at dawn excerising as the sun rises.
Its not just about the exercise with Zita, she has also produced a healthy eating plan, 7 day detox and regularly organises social event for her bootcamp members. We joined forces and I set up a style event for her fitness ladies.
Often when we make the decision to exercise its because we want to feel healthier, feel fitter and more confident about ourselves and we all know a few regular small changes can go such a long way in reaching positive results. I know I wouldn’t be the person I am today if it wasn’t for my early morning cross country run with my dog fizz. It sets me up for the day mentally and physically. So, I knew I had a lot in common with the Zest Boot Camp ladies (and if I lived in Bath I’d definitely be working out with them too!)
So Zita and I decided to merge fitness and fashion with a Style Event. The event was very kindly hosted by Laurie Hale, a Boot Camp member who earlier this year had a private Wardrobe Consultation with me. Laurie had been living in Hong Kong for 12 years so her wardrobe need to reflect her new lifestyle in Bath. She loved the experience of getting all her clothes out of the wardrobe, de-cluttering and I happily re-styled her wardrobe producing outfits and a ‘wish list’ of what to buy, for Laurie to refer to when shopping.
The Sip, Style & Swap Style Event is a format I devised 7 years ago when I started my business. My aim is to bring fashion into the front room in a relaxed environment. To inspire, to teach and to show women on trend styles, new fashion tips through demonstration and open conversation. No selling, just talking creative concepts of how to produce new looks.
So I kicked off the evening with a large glass of fizz for all the members and started with my presentation. I had asked Laurie and Zita what style dilemmas the group wanted to learn. Commonly, ‘What is smart casual?; ‘What trends can we wear that are age appropriate?’ As most were 40 plus they were keen to ask the question ‘How do I wear modern clothing without feeling like mutton dressed as lamb’.
With friendly connections with retailers in Bath, I got my style cap on and joined forces with three shops in Bath. Anthropologie, Hobbs and Instant Vintage. I spent a day working on a presentation that would hopefully cover all the of the above and more!
Displaying a series of looks on my mannequin, first up was ‘how to wear glamorous jackets with chinos and t-shirts’. I took the Kimono jacket to the cinema with black jeans, shopping with chinos and on holiday with pea green shorts.
Next up was this seasons prints from Hobbs. My main aim was to generate discussion and interaction with a tricky orange shirtdress with sleeve ties around the waist. I loved the attitude changing as I revealed its versatility and gradually all 15 ladies became happier to join in with the style debate on how to wear it.
I demonstrated popular prints with Hobbs ‘lemon zest’ 50’s print skirt, shocking them by teaming it with yellow gingham and denim. I talked key trends with individual pieces by Instant Vintage. ‘Yes ladies you can wear blue and white blouses with statement sleeves, metallic bombers and a ruffled jumpsuit!’
After a good hour of demos, inspired looks, the ladies were in full fashion swing on the sofa, chatting, buzzing from fizz and fashion.
The final part of the evening was for the Swap and Style Advise. I had asked all attending (who I had never met) to bring something for the swapping rail (one person junk is another’s treasure). They also had to bring a garment that they didn’t wear and needed Style Advise on.
For me this was such an interesting part of the evening. All 15 ladies openly decided that the ‘one to ones’ be conducted in front of the whole group. The feeling was, they wanted to learn style advise from the feedback I gave to each individual (either that or they didn’t want to leave the sofa!)
So, one by one, all 15 individually stepped into the ‘circle of style’. We had huge fun encouraging each member how to wear the garments that had been siting in the back of their wardrobes.
From suede mini skirts, designer red coats, fringed cotton striped skirts, black biker jackets, old work dresses and new designer blouses. Garments that had arrived with a big question mark ‘will I ever wear this?’ finally got a big ‘yes, great I’m wearing that next week’ .It was fabulous. The room was a buzz with excitement and confidence.
The swapping part of the evening was very relaxed, ladies now happy to get off the sofa (!) and try on clothes that others had brought in. They all went home with a goodie bag, a smile on their face and lots of ideas to try at home.
It’s been a while since I’ve had a style event, but very like someone who starts to dabble in exercise again, the room of enthusiasm has fuelled me to do more!
Thanks Bootcamp ladies!