To coincide with the fabulous Stylist Pick pop-up shop in Westfield White City, former Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model judge and celeb stylist extraordinaire Grace Woodward turned up for an exclusive VIP event at the weekend, where she imparted her styling wisdom on us and some other very lucky people.
But, before Grace addressed her awaiting audience, we managed to sit down with her and have a chat about fashion, style, The Oscars, shoes, Cheryl Cole and all else in between.
Grace was so easy and wonderful to talk to, we admit that we got a bit carried away all cosied up on the Stylist Pick sofa, so here’s a few snippets of the best bits of what she had to say.
Let’s start with the basics: what are you doing here today?
Well, I’m a founding member of Stylist Pick and obviously, it being a new service about stylists, I was thrilled to be one of their first choices so I’m here to support them! Because it’s a website, we don’t get to meet the shoppers so it’s great to be here to see who’s buying into the brand and just to say hi and meet some of the cool girls; and maybe to steal some of their style!
It’s amazing to see the Cheryl shoes in front of us! Do you have a favourite piece from her collection or any of the previous celeb ones?
I love the Cheryl range, it’s very her, but I said this morning that I’m not going to wear them until they have my name on them!
Is a collection with you in the pipeline, then?
I haven’t got a range with them, no, but I think that’s going to be the next thing. I don’t know if it will be shoes or bags as I’m kind of known for both. I mean if you actually saw my shoe collection at home… my boyfriend tried to make a rule, which I don’t adhere to, but he tried to make it a house rule of “one in one out.” And then he starts to go, “are those new shoes?” and I’m like, “no I’ve had them for ages, looking shifty!” But yeah, I have a lot of shoes! That’s why it’s so great to be involved with the brand because I love shoes and nobody can dispute that.
We love Louise Roe’s accessories that she’s just brought out, would you consider branching out into accessories too?
I love Louise Roe’s collection, she’s a girly girl and you can tell she loves that sort of thing; it’s very her, but for me I’m always about a killer pair of shoes. I also like to highlight a look with a statement bag, so it might be a bit of both. I think there’s room for all of us on the site to express our fashion niches.
Your shoes are fab, by the way, who are they by?
They’re Lara Bohinc. She’s done my bag and my ring and my shoes; I’ve been a long term wearer. Me and my boyfriend are talking about a “special ring” at the moment, and Lara said she’ll design it for me. Squeal! (You heard that here first, people!)
Talk us through how you give a person the Grace Woodward styling treatment.
Well the thing is, I don’t believe in trends per se, and I don’t really believe in one trick fits all. When I used to work with people a lot, I would in essence take a lot of time. When I did Florence, I was working on it a month beforehand, taking the essence of who she is as a brand and what she does as a look, and going back to look at fine art and other references that fill her brand. For her I looked at people like Elizabeth I and as a result used a lot of Vivienne Westwood, but if I was to style you, I’d want to get in your head.
Is that how it was when you styled X Factor then?
Yes, definitely because people have blockages, and when I was doing X Factor, some of the girls came up to me and said, “but I don’t want to wear that because that’s not me,” and although we all have those views, I like to push people into slightly newer territories. I like them to experiment, so I like to find out their style default, find out what they’re afraid of, and push those boundaries.
We all have emotional baggage surrounding our style, and it’s about helping people to try things they wouldn’t think about because at the end of the day, I have a vision. I’m an editorial stylist, so I create images.
Finally, is there anything you want to plug?
Well, I’ve just met a new designer that I’m wearing today, his name is Atis Artemjevs and I’m wearing his top and his lovely coat; I’m going to be hosting a drinks party to introduce him to London and all the bold and the beautiful in my address book!
And of course, my forthcoming range for Stylist Pick, whenever that may be, so watch this space!