Julia Blank reveals what’s on trend when it comes to creating a suitable and modern style for business and fashion in Singapore
Top stylist Julia Blank provides modern styling and quality grooming services to some of the most influential people in Singapore.
Her warm, personal approach to styling for fashion in Singapore has seen her attract a plethora of high-profile clients, including top business executives, public figures and successful entrepreneurs.
Julia’s significant success within the corporate world has also seen her conduct perfectly executed workshops for institutions including Shell, The American Club and The National University of Singapore.
Whether Julia’s clients are overhauling their wardrobes or participating in a fashion shopping spree, Julia guides them in a sincere and caring way.
Here Julia tells Nativa World how confidence and identity building lie at the core of her cutting-edge personal styling brand…
Julia, how did you become a personal stylist?
Becoming a personal stylist came through many years of hard work and experience. I discovered from an early age how it important it was to take care of myself and also how I looked. I think my mother was my role model within this area. I also developed a love for nice clothes and of fashion and beauty as a whole. My parents were also retail store owners which helped spark my interest in fashion and so after I finished university I started to work in the industry too.
It has been a long process and it’s been really interesting. I learned early on in my career that some women unfortunately don’t have the best eye for style and what looks right on them. With that in mind, my main focus has become not just about working with a clients shape or figure, but also working with their personality. I focus a great deal on dressing well without necessarily following the latest trends or spending a lot of money on clothes. It’s all about knowing what works best for the client and what colors make them look young and fresh!
What styling services do you provide?
As a professional stylist, I offer style consultations, wardrobe revamping and personal shopping with clients for everyday clothes. I also offer shopping and styling for special occasions, beauty and makeup training. Finally, I host group image consultation workshops for corporations in Singapore to identify and help their employees project the right image so that they represent their company in the best possible light. The ultimate goal in all of my services is to find clothes that will make my clients feel beautiful, confident and a little sexy!
For the personal shopping I begin with a brief interview to determine needs, lifestyle and budget. After that, I analyze body types and talk about things that clients like and dislike and what style suits them. Then, for this particular service we will go on a shopping spree where I will demonstrate how the right cut and fabric can conceal the flaws and reveal the assets of a clients body.
What’s your favorite part of styling?
Over the years as a stylist in Singapore I have worked on so many fascinating projects, including celebrity styling. But, a favorite part of my work has been serving ordinary women who are either mothers who need a wardrobe revamp, or businesswomen who for example, have secured new jobs and need to change their look to suit their new roles. No matter what job or role they have though I thrive best and am happiest when I’m helping women look their best and feel more confident. When I see a good transition in a client’s style, or whenever I finish a style transformation and I see a smile on my clients face, it’s hugely satisfying for me.
Fundamentally though, I set out to inspire and help. I believe that a women’s personal style is so important and shouldn’t be undervalued. Style has a huge effect on a woman’s self-confidence and in turn getting the right look can only have a positive effect on other aspects in her life such as her career and her personal relationships.
What’s currently on-trend in Singapore for businesswomen?
Singapore is a tropical city and so bearing that in mind you have to invest in clothes that are not too heavy or dark. For instance a black or brown suit looks amazing in colder climates. I always provide alternatives for business suit colors in plum, deep blue or beige. These colors still look sophisticated without looking too harsh. Another big item is a designer bag. Every girl in Singapore is either carrying one or really wants to have one. What’s so great about being in Singapore though is the availability of beautiful statement jewelry. These can give an old ensemble a new lease of life and will also help dress up something that may be a little tired or out dated.
Are there any special local boutiques that you can recommend in Singapore?
Everyone’s budget is different. For mid-range Massimo Dutti and Club Monaco have decent selections. For slightly higher budgets there’s a unique boutique at Dempsey which nobody knows about. I also have a source who sells samples of designers like: Tibi, Melandrino, Marni, etc.
Any suggestions for managing the humidity in Singapore?
My main advice would be not to wear rubber shoes or flip-flops in the humidity here because they can hurt the feet and don’t look good regardless! Instead I would suggest buying a nice pair of flat shoes with nice detailing on them.
Who inspires you in the business and/or fashion worlds and why?
Paris Hilton is not just a pretty face with a big wallet but she has built an empire for herself by working different venues in fashion and TV. Her sense of style is not for me, but I still admire her. Olivia Palermo is my absolute favorite. Her impeccable style and her new business ventures are something to admire and strive for.
And good designers coming out of Singapore?
Do businesswomen dress differently in Singapore compared to New York City or London?
Definitely yes! Sadly many business ladies in Singapore have crossed the line of looking unprofessional in the office. There are no firm policies in place and the clothes choices are left up to employee’s discretion. I often see very short skirts and low plunging backs that belong on a cocktail dress vs work dress being worn in the office. You would rarely see something like this in a corporate environment in New York City or London.
What sets you apart from other personal stylists in Singapore?
I work on a very personal level with all my clients and take my time and get to know them properly. In fact I can remember every single client that I have ever had and what they needed from me at the time. Whenever I work with someone, I take their style conundrums and fashion or image concerns to heart. I also strive to make sure my clients are fully comfortable and open with me about what they want. Dressing clients involves knowing their personality and ensuring that a clients personalty and identity shines through.
Julia’s top fashion items for a business trip to Singapore:
- Designer bag
- Fashionable sandals for after work drinks
- Maxi dress for doing some sightseeing
- A good sunblock
- A comfortable pair of shoes in your work bag
- A cardigan or shawl as offices are freezing cold inside.
Julia’s beauty products for a business trip to Singapore:
- Hair straightener as frizzy hair will be your challenge
- Evian water face mist
- A fan to help you cope with heat
Photography courtesy of Julia Blank