Dacy Gillespie: personal, mindful stylist

6 Minute Read: Slow fashion, sustainable fashion, ethical fashion, personal stylist, women in business, conscious consumption.

Here in Canada, Boxing Day is coming – occasion for big sales and much shopping. Even if December 26 isn't Boxing Day where you are, tis the season for snagging deals and buying stuff.

Uh, or not.

Given my love of less-is-more, carefully considered consumption, this seemed the perfect time to chat with Dacy Gillespie, personal stylist and owner of mindful closet.

Dacy helps people bring style and simplicity to their wardrobes, curating closets that feel good and fit their lives. Her tagline?

Getting dressed doesn’t have to be stressful.

Ahhh. Feeling at home in my clothes is super-important to me – as is buying fewer, better things. Such a treat to ask Dacy about mindful style and creating a "perfectly you" closet, starting with...

How would you describe your personal style?

It's almost too cliché, but definitely "less is more" and "quality over quantity." I envision my personal style as French art teacher in the 70's. I like functional, simple pieces with unique silhouettes, topped off with a cool accessory (usually a statement necklace or scarf). 

dacy gillespie black dress

Could you talk about the link between minimalist style, slow living and self-care?

Wow, I've never been asked about this, but there are so many connections. What a great question. Ultimately, having a minimalist style can contribute to both slow living and self-care.

By eliminating anything that doesn't feel good to wear or doesn't feel like "you," you are taking care of yourself. By eliminating excess options, you save time and energy in your day so that you can start off slowly, without stress. 

Can you walk us through a typical client session? 

Sure! It all starts with an email expressing interest. I have an auto-response that I send to everyone which gives them the details on how sessions work, where the style questionnaire lives, and how to book a session. This saves time on my end, towards that slow life goal.

Clients fill out a detailed questionnaire before we meet so that I have a good idea of where they've been struggling with their clothes, a head start on their personal style, and their communication preferences.

Our first meeting is always in their home. We sit for at least 30 minutes to get to know each other and help them identify their needs and personal style further. After that, we head into their closets, starting with their favourite pieces to set a standard, and then working through the rest systematically to edit their wardrobe down to only what they really need and love.

As we go, I'm creating a shopping list for things that will make what they have more versatile. Many clients only do this first session. Some also opt for a follow-up personal shopping session.

Taking their needs, preferences, and measurements into account, I shop (online or in-person) for the pieces they need so that they don't have to do the difficult work of sifting through all the options that are out there.  

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any advice for those who want a lean closet...but struggle with tossing stuff?

Truly listen to your emotional reaction when you look at each piece. You have a reaction one way or another, and most people don't listen. They then try to counter that reaction with excuses or justifications. Go with your gut.   

Any projects in the works?

I have a couple things coming up that are really relevant to your questions in this interview! I am launching my first online course in January, called Making Space. It's a four week course designed to lead people through the exact closet edit process I do with my clients. It'll help you get past any of those justifications for keeping stuff around – you'll be able to let go and "make space." 

The other big thing is that I'm officially launching my virtual styling services. I've done many remote virtual styling sessions over the years, but it's never been an official offering on my website.

This aligns with my desire to live a slower, more eco-conscious life by saving travel time for myself and for clients. To celebrate, I'll be offering 15 percent off the regular session price for virtual sessions until the end of January (sessions will actually be booked 8-12 weeks out). 

Photos by Celeste Boyer

Photos by Celeste Boyer

Thank you so much, Dacy! A mindful closet styling session is on my wish list! 

What about you? Is your closet full of what you most love? Anything you’d like to let go of (or add) in the coming year? Please share in the comments!

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In simplicity + alchemy.

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