Sunday, August 16, 2015

The making of a makeover

The Raleigh News & Observer has had a Refresh Your Style column for the past 7 years. The column will end in August, and I am its final makeover.

I'd volunteered over a year ago, but a lot of other people had put their names on the list too. When the stylist/columnist, Sheon Wilson, contacted me in July, I was thrilled to hear that I'd been selected for a makeover. To be the last one? That was bittersweet. It's wonderful to be the final person for this experience, but I'm sorry for all the others who won't.
at booksigning

One of Sheon's first questions was: why do you need your style refreshed?

My answer is all about my second career. I've worked in the software industry since college (and still do, part-time). I wear yoga pants and T-shirts to the office. As an author, I love meeting with my readers at author events. Whether I'm at a school, library, or bookstore, I want to be approachable, look good, and feel comfortable (because some of those events can last awhile.)

So here we go. A few photos to document my makeover from Geek to YA Author in August 2015.

Makeover Day 1: The first day started out with a Before shoot by staff photographer Juli Leonard at the newspaper's office in downtown Raleigh. Later that afternoon, Sheon and I hit 2 stores to pick out new clothes-- Lane Bryant in Durham and Dina Porter in Chapel Hill.(And yay, the lovely ladies at Dina Porter's gave me 3 tops as a gift!)

hair before new style

Makeover Day 2: I am at the Samuel Cole Salon in North Raleigh for a new style. My hair stylist is Katie Manselle. She was amazing, listening to my ideas before suggesting some of her own. Within minutes, I was ready to trust her to do the right thing with my hair.
hair coated in gooey conditioners

My hair is silver on top, and I wanted it to stay that way. So Katie put on a glaze to brighten the silver and give it a shine.
hair, sideview, after new style

After the cut, my hairstyle has wispy bangs, a contoured back, and these gorgeous sides that can be fluffed out for a fun look or tucked behind the ears for something a little more serious.

author with makeup artist

Makeover Day 3: I returned to the Samuel Cole Salon on the day of the After photo shoot. Here's a selfie with the makeup artist, Jenny.

author with hair stylist

Katie restyled my hair so that it would be fun-and-flirty for the photo shoot.
outside salon after makeover

The image you see here (to the right)? This almost never happens! I do not like to have my photo taken (which made the 2 photo shoots way outside my comfort zone.) To take a photo of myself, especially of me alone? Virtually unheard of. But I really needed to capture how I looked after walking out of the salon. I loved what the salon team did for me!

author with Sheon
And here is she--Sheon Wilson, my miracle worker. She helped me select several outfits that I wouldn't have tried on my own. She found the perfect jewelry and shoes to complement those outfits. And she helped me grow to understand that a person can be beautiful at any age or size!

after photo shoot, husband takes full body shot

Once the After shoot was over, I drove back to my day job office and found Hubs (who works there too). He took a couple of not-so-candid shots of me--because I was completely rocking that denim jacket and skinny (ahem) jeans.
after photo shoot, husband takes head shot

Check out the before and after!

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