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How To Look Stylish without Following Fashion

What a joy to spend the morning in beautiful surrounding at a styling workshop with Kate Evans. I have been following Kate on Instagram (check her stylish and accessible squares out) for a while and have admired her informative stories and blog posts, so when an oppountity arose to hear her in ‘real life’ I jumped at the chance.

She was leaving the Glos to enlighten a group of ladies at a styling workshop and lunch hosted by Jo at Blaegrove Barn, who runs gorgeous events & workshops from a barn in her garden.  It is available to hire for your own event such as hen, baby shower, corporate or party too.

Blaegrove Barn

Kate kicked off the morning introducing herself.

KE Styling

Everyone was immediately reassured that she wasn’t some super stylist who was going to throw high fashion on us, but who would teach us how to wear clothes that would suit us to reach our potential.

Inside the barn

Not only is she an expert in the colours and shapes, she is also a trained life coach and a bevy of knowledge on which shops suit which style personality and shapes.

She generously pinpointed what colours we should be wearing – I should wear deep (dark), bright (jewel colours) with a warm undertone (i.e. yellow based) and although I had my colours done a few years ago and trained how to do women’s seasonal colours (i.e. Spring or Summer) this updated version knowing your key characteristics was much more helpful!

Luckily, I was wearing the right colours!

Black & Pink

Kate went through the key trends for this Spring / Summer, and as we had learnt what suits us, we knew whether we could wear them or not.


Trouser Suits 

If you feel a trouser suit is too formal, dress down with a logo T underneath and some trainers.  This Boden trouser suit is a particular favourite of Kate’s (she nor I are endured with any of these recommendations FYI!)

Remember if black isn’t one of your colours, there are other neutrals that you can wear top to toe such as navy blue, grey or chocolate-brown that will suit you and look smart if they are the right colour for you!


Bomber jackets – Zara is always good and for the perfect jumpsuit head to Rock The Jumpsuit.  Best worn if your shoulders nd hips are the same width apart – if not – get those shoulder pads on you! Very 80’s…

Tapered trousers are also a winner this season. (My trousers in the above photo were a bit blousy…)

Fluted Sleeves 

Perfect if you have a small top half and to even your proportions out if you have a heavier bottom half!  (Monsoon are great for that latter problem – really good this season)

What can you wear with these though? A gilet!

Crazy Brights 

If you aren’t good with brights around your face, accessorise it up!  Gift Pop have gorgeous brightly coloured horse hair belts.



If you are tall, wear large patterns and if you are small wear smaller patterns! Reflect!

Ted Baker is doing fantastic florals at the moment.


We sat down for an incredible lunch that Jo had prepared surrounded by beautiful interiors.


From the nibbles to the homemade lemon posset and the salads in between – it was absolutely gorgeous.

Pepper salad

These tulips were from Jo’s garden – I forgot to ask how she gets them to stay so upright!


After chatting and enjoying top fodder (Jo humbly said she used Tart London’s latest recipe book but I think most of her salads were totally from her own repertoire) we set about to glean as much info from lovely Kate on what’s what, who’s what and where’s where…


Who does good t shirts?

Options to dress down a blazer?
Lucy Dodwell (great for a flash of neon) and FWP by Rae (great for slogans) do super cool sweatshirts in lightweight fabrics.

3 favourite small clothing brands
Miranda Dunn
Be4 Ballerina’s who can personalise your trainers!

Top 3 go to items in your wardrobe when you are in a rush
In the summer, Maxi dress, Cropped trousers, Statement tee


Best return of investment on an item
My Keith Scarrott gold backed boots….I just love them and they make me feel so happy when I wear them!

3 favourite Instagram accounts
Suzie Verrill – she is hilarious
Caroline Hirons – brilliant beauty advice and she cracks me up
Mamma’s Scrap book…stunning interior shots but also brilliant instastories. Anna is a Psychotherapist and does lots of work on promoting support of mental health issues.

Silver or gold jewellery?
Mostly gold as I have a warm skin tone- so works much better- but I also like mixing my metals and wearing both at the same time. Cotton and Gems is my favourite!

Last book you read?
Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi…an incredibly moving book about Ayaan’s upbringing in a strict Islamic family in Somalia and her escape from it into Dutch Politics.

The song you pelt out on your own?
Anything from Train or Christina and The Queens

3 favourite apps
Snapseed for photo editing
Hairy Letters (for kids)
Wunderlist (sharing to-do lists between yourself and someone else. I love it I can add things to my husband’s list!)

Best tip for Instagram
Be yourself and make connections with other users so you can support each other. It can be a harsh place…but it can also be SO supportive and positive. Be strict with how long you are on it, how often you check it otherwise it can easily take over.

Follow her here!

Kate Instagram

I am seriously considering booking a shopping trip wth Kate. She is so lovely and has a super fun sense of humour, and totally just gets it.  Also tempted by her ‘online shopping’ package – give her your brief (an event for example) and she will edit a Pinterest board for you with suggestions.

Now that is service!

How much?

Prices start at £75 per hour…  but the amount of money you will save in the long run far outweighs the initial outlay.

Kate & lucinda

What a fun day! I feel so inspired and am going to go through my warden with vigour!

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