Jenny Monroe speaks to re-stylist Lucy Smyth
LUCY Smyth, 42, is a re-stylist who hosts demonstrations and presentations about re-styling and re-vamping clothes. Her business has taken off and she is a familiar face in the Lisburn area.
Lucy studied business finance and fashion at college in London and graduated in 1991. After a number of years working for alteration firms she decided to set up her own business Stitch, which was established in Newcastle. Since then she has also set up ‘Tailormaid’ which involves Lucy re-fitting, re-sculpting and re-styling people’s wardrobes transforming forgotten fashions into individually tailored garments, exclusive to them.
Most days I am at my shop at 6.30am. I have a lot of work on both in the shop and my Tailor Maid service is really popular too. I use my experience and qualifications as a fashion designer to bring this newly developed concept to people who want to revamp their clothes. I work with individuals and groups as well as delivering talks around Northern Ireland.
Working one-to-one or with small groups, I personalise and customise their wardrobe giving them advice on key styles, through tailoring, to suit individual body shapes and bring new life to dated looks. I take into account body shape, what styles flatter most and what people are actually willing to have revamped. It means you can have exactly the clothes you want made from what you’ve already got and for a fraction of the price.
I’ll personalise and customise your wardrobe, giving you advice on key styles, show how clothes can evolve to keep up with the latest trends through tailoring and adapting pieces to suit individual body shape and bringing new life to dated looks.
A garment can be tailored to fit an ever-changing figure. It also can be easily customised in many different ways to carry the wearer from day through to evening.
We only need to look at the increasing popularity of frock-swaps to see that as part of beating the recession, people are changing the way they look at consumerism and are starting to go green and trying to make the most of those ‘bad buys’ by swapping them with other people.
In the current economic and environmental climate, this is a great way to bring out the Gok Wan in you all.
As well as running ‘Stitch’ and working with individuals or small groups in the comfort of their home, I also really enjoy doing the lively presentations and demonstrations. It’s just super the way this part of my business has really taken off through word of mouth.
Essentially on a typical presentation I will prepare all the garments that I will be revamping on stage and I’ll pack up my car with the necessary bits and pieces and head to the venue where will set up and get the stage ready.
I try to set the stage are up in a way that everyone can get a clear view of what I am doing. I am very chatty so I always have plenty to say on stage. I cater for all ages and can show how to turn a grandmother’s garment into something her granddaughter could wear for example. It really is very light hatred and entertaining.
I will maybe transform a skirt into a top or revamp a coat for example. People are always fascinated and keen to learn more about sorting out their own wardrobes. I just love stitching and showing people how easy it is to revitalise your clothes.
It is a very satisfying job and I am so glad to be fortunate enough to do it. I am very practical and it’s lovely being able to show people that you don’t have to throw out clothes. I have a real passion for it. The whole industry has taken off and I am delighted to be part off it all.