Why we exist

Gill Thewlis

Designer and Director


I trained as a designer in 2000 - 2003, following a lifelong frustration with buying clothes for work.  I wanted to understand why it was so difficult to find clothes that fitted properly.  Since then nothing has changed!


Prior to training as a designer, I had a 20 year blue chip career in Banking and Financial Services, 15 of which were in the City of London, 10 as a commercial banker, 10 as a strategist, marketeer, corporate communicator and change manager.  In 1990 I completed an MBA at Warwick Business School.  My last role at Halifax plc was as a senior manager in the top 250 in an organisation of 35,000 people.


Since 2003 I have worked for myself as a consultant, business and executive coach focused on business growth, leadership development, Personal professional growth, strategy, organisational development, governance and board development for organisations in the private and third sectors.  Over the last 12 years I've  worked with people at all levels in small and large organisations to improve business and personal performance.  60% of my work has been in the creative industries and the remainder in manufacturing, technology, professional sevices, and universities.  So, dressing for work is sometimes complicated, particularly if I'm doing several things in one day.  This breadth of experience means I understand the complexities and nuances of most working environments.


I need a wardrobe that spans the very formal to the casual, which for me means classic shapes, jackets that work with dresses and jeans and a harmonious colour palete that means everything works together.  I like relatively plain fabrics with some texture and not too much detail.  I want to be seen as professional and knowledgable, whilst also approachable and flexible to work with the customer in the most appropriate way for them. Coaching underpins everything I do.


For me finding things that fit is a challenge because;

  • I'm 5'4" or 163 cm tall with a short waist to hip length - so everything in high street mainstream ranges is too long in the body and overall length
  • My hip to waist ratio is bigger than the norm, so I have that "if it fits on the hip its too big on the waist" thing
  • Tailored trousers have never ever fitted me at all, there is never enough room in them for my rounded backside
  • My cup size ranges from F - G depending on where I am on my "thin to curvy" spectrum - and almost no-one cuts jackets, fitted dresses, shirts, blouses or even knitwear with enough space to be appropriately modest - so often I'm wearing things that are too big everywhere else (shoulders, arms length etc)

So, I'm hugely sympathetic to the problems of fit - I think for many of us the fastest way to make yourself feel bad about yourself is just to go shopping!


Your Ultimate Working Wardrobe has been in devleopment since late 2013, and draws upon all of my business and creative experience.  Its a fabulous feeling when you see someone put something on for the first time that fits them properly, in a colour and style that they adore and energises them, and that they've had a part in creating.  They look so joyful!


If you'd like to experience that for yourself, then please do give me a call on +44 (0)1142 291324


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