A job, a journey, a friendship…

 

Three years ago, not long after the launch of All About Style, I was asked to present my business to a group of ladies at a ‘BRAS’ networking meeting.

Little did I know that morning was going to lead to a close friendship and an adventure that I would never have dreamed of.

I was a bit nervous for my very first presentation, with some new and familiar faces all listening to me speak about my passion. That was the morning I first met Reshmi Kumar – remember this name! She introduced herself as the founder of Investor Women, a business which helps women invest in properties, to give themselves a future of financial freedom.

 

After chatting with Reshmi about our respective businesses she booked a styling package for both herself and her husband. Over time I learned more about Reshmi and Investor Women and our business relationship grew into a close friendship.

 

In December 2014, 12 months after we first met, Reshmi came to me and said “I’m going to India and you’re coming with me”.

“India, why India” I asked. To which she replied ” I want to record an album”.

And I didn’t even know she could sing !

 

I knew Reshmi only as a very astute business woman, not a singer. Reshmi explained to me that it was her childhood dream to record an album and that Investor Women was started in order to fund this dream. She wanted me to be part of it, as both her friend and personal stylist.

 

Reshmi-recording

Wow, what an adventure. Travelling to another country, where the culture is so different to ours, and to be able to use my skill and expertise to style and dress Reshmi appropriately for each song, was fantastic.

 

Before leaving I had to source garments and create outfits to suit each song, as they were all going to be filmed and recorded. To do so I had to learn about each song and what it meant.

 

outfits-ready-for-video-clips

Styling someone not only means looking at their body shapes but what is needed for the occasion. All the garments were sourced from Australia prior to travelling to Mumbai as I wanted to showcase our Australian Labels in India.

 

The trip was a great success. Reshmi recorded her first album, with some songs requiring 6 different outfit changes! A Fijian Indian female recording an album in India was a first and we made the most of it.

 

Spending a fortnight in India, experiencing the culture, the food and the music industry is something that had never entered my mind – why would it? The recording days were long and tiring but an amazing experience.

exploring-in-mumbai

I’ll tell you a little story.  One evening, as we returned to the motel after midnight, we were both tired and hungry. I asked the young gentleman at reception if we could order a snack, to which he responded “madam, you can go to the restaurant”.

 

I was thinking, what’s going on in the restaurant, it’s after midnight? We had a little peek and could see everyone was all dressed up, chattering,  eating and having a fun night. It was ‘Midnight Buffet’.

Guess what? We ran upstairs, got dressed up and joined in. Now I know why they call Mumbai ‘the city that never sleeps’!

 

We returned home and reorganised ourselves for the video clips and early this year we returned to Mumbai, to launch Reshmi’s album “Lost in your Love” and to record her second album.

 

at-launch-of-lost-in-your-love

antoinette-and-reshmi-art

 

During that trip we were included as extras in a Bollywood shoot and met famous Bollywood actors and singers.  We were able to fit in a bit of shopping and I just had to buy myself an Indian outfit – the colours and fabrics are so beautiful.

 

Wow my passion, my business.  All About Style has taken me to so many places, friendships and experiences I never dreamed of.

 

Can’t wait to see what comes up next!

Who – or What – is Gifted Life?

 

In the past few months I have mentioned the name Gifted Life on my social media.

 

I’m often asked about ‘Gifted Life’, what it is and what does it stand for. ‘Gifted Life’ is a charity which supports and empowers transplant recipients and was founded by the inspirational Lauren Rowe. Lauren is a double lung transplant recipient herself.

 

antoinette-and-lauren-rowe

You might well ask how ‘All About Style’ became associated with Lauren and her charity.

In 2015 Lauren’s mother Shayne purchased an All About style gift voucher for her eldest daughter, Katie.

That was the beginning of an amazing journey for us all…

 

Lauren and Shayne were amazed at what I could do with Katie’s wardrobe, so they also became my clients. We discussed the body shape; how to highlight your greatest assets and how to disguise parts you’re not happy with. Let’s be honest, we all have something we aren’t happy with.

 

We played with warm and cool colours, so we can choose a colour pallet to create a mix and match wardrobe which suits both their personality and lifestyle.

 

Early this year Lauren asked me if I would like to hold my ‘Dressing for You’ workshop at an Empowerment Day held by ‘Gifted Life’ in Sydney. I was very honoured and excited to meet these women and be able to share heaps of tips and hints on how to dress with confidence.

 

gifted-life

 

I believe without confidence we can’t live our life to its full potential.

 

The Empowerment Day was a great success and Lauren shared her dream to take this event around Australia and to be able to share fashion, style, makeup and plenty of fun and laughter with many other transplant recipients.

 

What she needed was funding and Lauren went on a mission to get it. She entered The Women’s Weekly Women of the Future competition – and guess what?  Lauren won the Peoples Choice Award and was placed second in the Judges award.

 

The dream has now begun in earnest, with first stop Melbourne.

 

The event was named ‘Love You, LoVe Life’ and was an inspirational day full of fun and laughter. It’s such a privilege to meet so many women from all walks of life and to listen to their journeys.

gifted-life-2

I truly believe I also have a ‘Gifted Life’ by association with this wonderful organisation.

 

Next stop,  Perth at the beginning of 2017…