Styling up the trend-setting girls of London seems like the most fun job we can possibly think of! So, we just had to chat with Rachel Bass one of the many amazing Personal Shoppers at our London Oxford Circus flagship store about her job and more importantly, how to survive London Fashion Week. Here Rachel talks vintage dressing, cool hangouts and the shows she’s most looking forward to.
What shows are you most excited about for LFW AW13? Will you be attending any?
I’m really looking forward to the Unique AW13 show, which I’ll be attending. The designs are going from strength to strength every season and it’s amazing to see the clothes I will work so closely with up there on the runway! I’m also really eager to see the Meadham Kirchhoff AW13 show. They always have a really strong story and their shows are lots of fun to watch! And not forgetting JW Anderson. I absolutely adored his last collaboration with Topshop and treated myself to a couple of pieces, specifically the black knitted bat jumper and navy kilt. So I’m so excited to see his next collection and treat myself to a few gems!
Any key hot spots to hang out at during LFW?
The Owl And The Pussy Cat and Callooh Callay which are both in East London. Callooh Callay does some amazing cocktails and has a real quirky, decadent vibe to it. And an old favorite of mine, The Friendly Society in Soho, which is always lots of fun!
Your top 3 tips on surviving LFW
Plasters! You may love your new shoes that you’re showcasing at LFW but they may not love you just yet….ouch!
Red lipstick ….it’ll always give you that instant glam in all those photo opportunities!
What will you be wearing to LFW this season?
What will you be wearing them with and what hair, make up and accessories might you add?
I will wear the above five pieces to the Unique AW13 show then out for drinks after. I will add my black vintage Cassio watch and my Ray Ban Wayfarers (if the sun is out). My make-up will be minimal with a tinted moisturiser, soft blush on the cheek bones, black mascara on the top set of lashes and finally my statement red lip (Topshop in Lipstick Hazard) I will have my hair blow dried sleek to one side ( like Lana Del Rey) I have my hair blow dried once a week at Tommy Guns Salon on Beak Street.
What are the key pieces you will be advising your clients to add to their LWF wardrobe?
How did you become a Personal Shopper at Topshop?
I worked as an assistant Personal Shopper at 214 for two years before I was recently promoted in January.
What do you love about your job?
I love that I basically get play dress up everyday. I love experimenting with new looks for my clients and getting new ideas for myself! As a child I always used to dress myself up in my Mum’s clothes and shoes and I can even remember dressing up my younger brother in my Nan’s clothes when we were really little.
How would you describe your style?
I would describe my style as mostly preppy but with vintage and ’90s grunge influence thrown in. One of my colleges once described me as “’50s pin-up meets Andy Warhol.” I love to wear my Doc Martins with skater skirts and blouses buttoned up to the top or high waisted trousers and jeans with a cute knitted jumpers and converse.
Who are your fashion icons?
Lana Del Rey & Fashion Director/Stylist Celestine Cooney.
If you could ransack anyone’s wardrobe, who’s would it be?
This is difficult but if I had to choose it would be Marilyn Monroe’s. I think she is one of the most beautiful people who ever existed. Of course, I love her amazing ball gowns and all the glamour but it would be her more casual ’50s kitch wardrobe that interests me. What she would have worn behind the scenes!
Which is your current favourite Topshop collection and why?
My favourite current Topshop collection is Comic Girl. I love the bold and block colour’s used and the use of polka dots too! It also has some strong street wear influences which I’m a fan of! With high waisted leggings, cropped tees, oversized jackets and beanie hats.
What are your favourite key pieces for SS13 season (tell us a little about why and how you will wear them)?
Crop contrasted polka dot shirt– Polka dots are huge for SS13 and this shirt has a cooler vibe with its short sleeves. I would wear the shirt buttoned up to the top, with high wasted jeans or denim shorts with red converse. Another are the Katz cut out strap shoes. Love these shoes for SS13, super cute with the ankle strap. I would wear them with coloured socks to make the most of the cut out detail and a skater skirt with blouse tucked in or cropped tee.
What piece do you always come back to, season after season?
My vintage pilot jacket… It’s just such a staple piece that has stood the test of time. Everyone needs one in their wardrobe!
What’s your secret style trick?
Simple lines and block colour always create an effortlessly chic look. But mix this up by adding say a vintage style watch, varsity jacket or heavy black boots to your look.
What’s the style rule you live by?
Less is more.
What’s your fashion weakness?
Knitwear! Sounds like I’m a grandma I know, but I love a good jumper!
What’s your favourite Topshop Make Up product?
Topshop lipstick Hazard… I wear it everyday!
What’s your first memory of Topshop?
My first memory of Topshop was wondering around the Oxford Circus store when I was 12-13 years old, thinking I just wanted to buy something because it was so cool. I didn’t care what it was, I just had to buy something just so I could parade around with the Topshop bag to show off!
Where’s your favourite place to go shopping where you live?
I shop with my boyfriend and when we’re not in Topshop we like to have a look around the vintage shops in Soho, such as Bang Bang for some great finds and bargains! Also the more boutique type stores in East London such as Good Hood and YMC are brilliant for more tailored street wear.
What would your best night out involve?
Hanging out with my boyfriend and friends. I’d definitely go for a bite to eat in Bodeans, Soho, it’s one of my favorite places to eat! Or out to some bars in Soho like the Endurance and Dean Street Town House.
Where do you like to relax on a Sunday where you live?
I like to relax at my mum’s on a Sunday with a roast dinner!
Why should someone book a Personal Shopping appointment with you?
Because I love my job. I’ve always been passionate about clothes and I think my passion is relayed in my appointments with my clients. I really enjoy experimenting with new ideas and trends and making them work for each individual. Shopping is so much fun! And I want everyone to share that opinion.
What’s great about the Personal Shopping service?
Topshop Personal Shopping has shown so many people that there’s something for everyone in Topshop. With our highly skilled team of Personal Shoppers we tailor make appointments to suit everyone. So whatever your age, shape or style we’ll find the perfect wardrobe choices for you.
Get your Personal Shopping appointment completely free of charge here.