Readers try out the Norwich Fashion Week trends

You've seen the trends from Norwich Fashion Week – but how do you wear them? Emma Harrowing takes two readers on a makeover journey to help them get a new look.

With so many trends, designs and style inspiration at Norwich Fashion Week, it would be a shame not to take advantage of all the fashion and style advice on offer.

And so, Life Matters teamed up with independent womenswear boutique Pure on Guildhall Hill to offer two lucky readers the chance to have a makeover at Pure's in-store colour and style event at Norwich Fashion Week.

The winners were Susan Whitmarsh, from Hethersett, and Beverley Birritteri, from Alderton near Cromer.

Both Susan and Beverley are 56 years old and both have reached the age where they discover that they just cannot find fashionable clothes that are tailored for the more mature woman.

Susan says: 'There aren't many shops that cater for the over-50s and so I find myself torn between choosing fashion that makes me look older for my age or dressing in younger clothes.'

Pure is known for its occasion wear, but recently owner Anna Hare has moved into more stylish casual attire. Some of the boutique's new looks were on the catwalk at the Independent Retailers Show during fashion week – so will some of the catwalk looks suit Susan and Beverley?

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For Norwich Fashion Week, Pure held a makeover day in store with stylists Chrissi Rix and Collette Hunton. Many women visited the shop for a colour and style consultation, but for winners Susan and Beverley their day started with a hair makeover at Barry Alan on Pottergate.


For Susan

At the moment Susan's hair is a mousey brown with a few red pieces running through the length. To bring her look up to date we put her in the capable hands of owner and stylist Barry.

Barry says: 'Susan has very thick hair, so for the cut I'm going to layer the sides and back to make her style a lot softer, but keep the length on top to bring roundness to the shape of her hairstyle. Pulling pieces around her face and making more of her fringe will build on her existing style and give her a fresh new look.

'Susan's depth of colour is perfect for her warm skin, but the tone of her colour can be improved to give her a more vibrant glow. I'm going to put through a rich brunette tone with red pieces around the front to give her hair more warmth.'

For Beverley

Beverley feels that her hair is slightly too long for her and is ready for a change, she is also allergic to hair colour – but what does Barry think?

Barry says: 'The colours we use have no peroxide and are the gentlest form of hair colour you can get, so I did a colour test on Beverley to see if these are safe to use on her. They are – so for the colour I'm going to change the tone of Beverley's hair by killing the warm tones and introducing more ash and cooler tones as these will lift her complexion.

'For the cut I'm going to give Beverley a classic, chic bob shape to get her hair in great condition with lots of gloss.'


To complement their new hairstyles, Lancome in Jarrold treated Susan and Beverley to a makeup lesson to help them update their looks for spring.

For Susan

After cleansing and moisturising Susan's skin, Lancome consultant Lauren finds a foundation that matches Susan's skin tone and applies it all over her face. Then using a concealer, Lauren covers up any dark circles and blemishes to give Susan a flawless base. The base is set with powder.

For the eyes, Lauren chooses warm creams and browns to create a simple daytime smokey eye. First she brushes a cream eyeshadow over Susan's eyelids from the lash line to the brow bone. Then she uses a mid-brown shade and applies this to the outer edge of Susan's eyelid from lash line to crease and blends.

As Susan is not used to wearing eyeliner, Lauren uses a soft brown colour along the top lash line from the outer edge to the middle and along the bottom lash line from the outer edge to the middle (wearing eyeliner in the corner of your eyes can make your eyes look narrow).

Susan's eyes were finished with a coat of mascara.

To bring colour to Susan's face, Lauren applied a dark pink blusher to the apples of her cheeks and blended with a brush upwards and outwards along Susan's cheekbones to her hairline.

Susan's look was finished with a warm red lip.

For Beverley

Lancome consultant Denise uses the same makeup technique for Beverley but uses pink and purple on Beverley's eyes, a dusky pink blush and a dusky pink lipstick; colours that suit Beverley's skin tone.


For jean lovers Susan and Beverley the changing of the seasons means either putting on a jumper or T-shirt in a fashionable colour to wear with their trusty denim.

So for their makeover our aim is to get them out of their jeans and into a dress. Stylists Chrissi and Collette were on hand to offer colour advice.

Chrissi says: 'If you wear the wrong colours you can look tired and ill, but wear the right tones and your skin can look flawless and full of life.'

To find out what colours suit Susan and Beverley, Chrissi and Collette layer different colour scarves around each of the women's necks. Each set of colours are different tones that range from bright to muted colours and warm and cool tones.

'Usually you would look better in either bright or muted colours and either warm or cool tones,' says Chrissi. 'Warm colours have yellow tones in them, whereas cool colours have blue tones.'

After the colour consultation, Susan suits warm and bright colours such as raspberry red, bright green and orange. Used to wearing more muted tones of navy and cream, colour is a big step for Susan but she embraces the advice of the stylists who put her in a bright green and teal patterned jersey wrap dress with raspberry heels.

'The soft and stretchy jersey material is easy to wear,' says Collette. 'As Susan is not used to wearing a dress and her look is quite casual, this dress should still give her the comfort she likes but will give her style a boost.'

Beverley suits warm and deep colours that offer depth and contrast. According to Chrissi and Collette this contrast can be found in this season's tribal prints, which when worn with gold accessories will give Beverley a glamorous look.

Chrissi says: 'Beverley is conscious of her tummy area and so the empire line of this dress will skim over this area and make her feel comfortable with her look – especially as she too doesn't often wear a dress.'

The verdicts

Susan says: 'I have been excited all day and I'm really pleased with my new look. I don't think my husband will recognise me! I'm still not too sure about the dress as I do prefer to wear trousers or jeans, however I think I will embrace colour now and put my navy and white clothes to the back of the wardrobe!'

Beverley says: 'I have never had a makeover before so this was a great experience. It was good to find out what colours suit me, and it was great getting my makeup done professionally. I also can't believe that I can have a professional colour on my hair without have a bad reaction!'