Like so many little girls I discovered the world of fashion in the equivalent of a sugar lover’s candy store - my mum’s wardrobe. Playing dress-ups with her clothes, shoes, jewellery and make-up transported me to another world and I couldn’t wait for the day when I would be grown-up enough to wear heels and to fit into her beautiful 70s dresses. My Nanny Jones’s jewellery box, along with her treasure trove of hats and gloves also gave me endless hours of play, delight and daydreaming. Distant memories of hope, and much finger-crossing, that the dressing-up box would be brought out on rainy days in infant school were also early signs of my love affair with style and fashion.
Discovering Vogue in my teens, sent me headlong into a world of fantasy that I found irresistible then and still do. I distinctly remember a Vivienne Westwood fashion story in the September 1993 issue of British Vogue featuring Supermodels Christy Turlington and Linda Evangelista, and shot by Mario Testino. I instantly fell in love with Westwood’s work, her reinvention of traditional techniques and textiles. I also became aware of the potential power of clothes - fashion, call it what you will - to create a new persona, as a form of self-expression, a tool for building self-confidence - wearing great clothes with style feels fabulous and the knock-on effect can’t be underestimated. As Judith Rasban, Author, Fabulous Fit says “The way we dress affects the way we think, the way we feel, the way we act & the way others react to us.”
Friends and family were my first styling ‘clients’ although I don’t think the term stylist even existed back then! From wedding and party outfits to hair and make-up. Of course, my biggest project as a teenager was ‘Style Rhi’ and my own journey has seen me traverse gothic, indie, new romantics, 80s power dressing and much more. With my fair share of fashion blunders along the way - we all make them!
In tandem with my thirst for fashion, I also began developing an interest in psychology and body image triggered by a close family member’s battle with an eating disorder. This took me on a journey to London to, officially, study Psychology and it was here that a young girl from Wales began her affair with fashion in earnest. Over the years the lure of fashion and the arts has been too strong to resist and I have studied fashion, art, printmaking and jewellery making. As well as being a practically self-taught dressmaker and knitter.
A career in marketing and communications spanning 15-years has seen me undertake a range of projects including creative direction, commercial styling for photography and video shoots, event management and styling, and brand development.
Today Rhi Stylist brings together my passion for style, fashion and the arts and marries it up with my curiosity and interests in psychology and body image . Working with a personal stylist is about more than just acquiring a fabulous wardrobe, the knock-on effects for many clients include renewed confidence and self-esteem – benefits you can’t put a price on.