Quayside Blogger Zara McDaid

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Check out what our blogger Zara got up to in her first month of working with us:

 I have recently starting an exciting blogging role with Quayside Shopping Centre in Sligo.  To launch my new PERSONAL STYLING VENTURE and my new role at Quayside Shopping centre we teamed up to run a competition on Facebook a few weeks ago where one lucky reader won a new summer wardrobe worth €250 to spend in stores of her choice in Quayside.  The lucky winner was a lovely lady from Sligo called Caroline. On Thursday morning I met with Caroline to take her personal shopping!  I had been really looking forward to this.  I mean, who doesn’t love shopping?!!! Before I met Caroline we had exchanged a couple of emails and also she filled out a personal shopping questionaire in advance of our meeting.  This questionaire helped me to gather as much information as I could about her, such as her sizing, shape, colourings, height, her style preferences and to learn a little more about her own personal style before meeting her.

Blogger Image 2From there, I could start prepping and planning the personal shopping trip in order to make it as fun and informative as possible for Caroline so that she could get the most out of it. Caroline also kindly emailed me on some photos which gave me a better insight into what she wore daily and to special occasions.  She had mentioned that her two favourite stores in Quayside were River Island and OASIS.  She told me that she had been attending weight watchers and since loosing weight she found it difficult to know how to dress for her new changing figure.  She also mentioned that she wanted to get some clothing for casual daily wear and also a couple of pieces for nights out. A few days before our personal shopping trip I popped into Quayside and spent some time in her two favourite stores, OASIS and River Island hand picking and choosing outfits for her. That way, when I met with Caroline we didn’t have to spend time trawling through the rails to find what we wanted.  I choose garments that I knew would suit her based on all the information she gave me and I also choose pieces that I knew Caroline would not normally choose herself!  Sometimes we dismiss certain styles and we assume they will just not suit us, but it is important step out of your comfort zone from time to time and experiment with fashion. You might just be pleasantly surprised!  I had Caroline trying on midi skirts, body suits, blazers, shirt dresses, jumpsuits and wet look trousers.  All of which looked amazing on her and she admitted she would never usually try on if she was shopping by herself. I could tell she was having fun trying out lots of new styles!  I also gave her some tips on capsule pieces that I believe every girl should have in her wardrobe.  We discussed clothing that she could easily mix and match to create different looks for day and night.

Blogger Image 3It was a lot of fun and Caroline was very open to experimenting with new styles which made my job easy.  She left with a couple of beautiful pieces that day based on my recommendations and since then I have sent her on a styling pack giving advice on what we had discussed with all my tips as to what styles, colours and shapes suited her the most and how to style what she had bought in a variety of ways.  Below you can have a little sneak peak into some of the pieces Caroline tried on that day. Caroline told me that she wanted to invest in a couple of pieces she could wear to the pub, out to dinner and that she could dress up or down accordingly.  She admitted that she usually wears a lot of dark coloured clothing so I suggested we experiment with much brighter, fun summery colours.  On our trip to OASIS in Quayside I suggested she invest in some of these gorgeous bright cami tops.  Cami tops are great as you wear them in a variety of ways.  Wear them under a blazer to work and for a night out popping on a statement necklace will instantly add a touch of glamour.  Style cami tops with a cardigan, jeans and a colourful printed scarf for a more casual day time look.  By night, tuck them into a high waisted pencil skirt and slip of a pair of stilettos for a ladies night out!   The possibilities with these extremely versatile cami tops are endless.  There is a really beautiful range in store at OASIS in Quayside at the moment and I spotted some very pretty cami tops on sale. Caroline had mentioned that she always loved the look of fuller midi style skirts but she was worried that they would not suit her so she always avoided trying them on! Here, I got her to try on this floral printed midi skirt for fun which we spotted in OASIS.  She was twirling around the dressing room in this skirt!!  I always think it is amazing how clothes can make us feel.  I think this is really lovely on her and would be a nice alternative to a dress for a special occasion. When wearing a printed skirt like this I always say keep the top half as simple as possible and let the skirt steal the spotlight.  Opt for light, less distracting tops that you can tuck inside your midi skirt.  This printed midi skirt is currently available in store at Quayside.  Blue was my favourite colour on Caroline as it made her bright blue eyes POP!  Here, we opted for a loosely fitted cold shoulder dress from OASIS. Cold shoulder dresses are sexy without showing too much skin. This dress would be perfect for a dinner date or a night out with the girls. It could also be worn casually on a nice summers day with a nice pair of sandals.  This gorgeous blue dress is currently available in store at OASIS in Quayside. Caroline tried some versatile casual day time pieces too such a gilets, wet look skinny jeans and denim and printed shirts. I talked Caroline through how to style and re-style each piece in a number of different ways to get the most out of them. For me, fashion is all about having fun, being creative, experimenting with new styles and re-inventing yourself. It was a such pleasure to help Caroline shop, she was such a lady and very open to all of my styling suggestions which was brilliant.  The next day I received a really thoughtful and encouraging message from her thanking me for my help and telling me that I had reignited her love of shopping and given her that little confidence boost on how to dress for her new shape.  This really did make my day!

A special thank you to the wonderful staff in OASIS and River Island at Quayside Shopping Centre for letting put pieces aside for the personal shopping trip.