Review: Corine Styling – Colour & Style Consultation in Brussels

By - October 14, 2014 (Updated: November 30, 2015)

Add the right colours to your life with a consultation from Corine StylingDo you know which colours make you look your best or how to choose the right clothes for your body-type? A consultation with Corine Styling will help you look and feel great. Read on for a special readers only offer!

I love colour. As a photographer, I work with colour everyday and I have a good eye for shades and tones. However, when it comes to the colours I wear, I instinctively choose the colours I like, and the colours I think look good on me, without any sort of scientific understanding.

So when the lovely Corine, of Corine Styling, asked if I’d be interested in a personal colour consultation, I was curious how my own colour choices stacked up against those of an expert.

To be honest, I had no idea what a colour and style consultation would actually entail. When I arrived at Corine’s home-office, she explained the theory and her process.

In a nutshell, we all fall into one of four ‘seasons’ of colours, which make us look our best. As a colour consultant, Corine first determines your season and then works with you to find the colours and shades within that season that make you look your best.

Corine Styling - Passionate about colour!

Corine Styling – Passionate about colour!

It is clear Corine is passionate about colour. In fact, she left her job as a diplomat to pursue her passion for style and colour. After training in Antwerp, Corine launched Corine Styling, to help people discover how colour and style can benefit their personal style as well as their home interior.

We began our session with a quick computer presentation explaining the different seasons, basic colour theory, how colour affects the way others perceive you, and ending with some before and after examples. Then it was time to dive into my own consultation.

Corine used my hair and skin tones to help discover my 'season.'

Corine used my hair and skin tones to help discover my ‘season.’

First, Corine asked me a few simple questions about my colour preferences, personal style, (original) hair colour, and make-up use. Then she looked at the skin on my inner-arm to determine my skin tone. At this stage, Corine had a good idea of my season, but we went on to the next stage for confirmation.

At this point, I donned a very attractive hairnet (no you will not get to see those photos) to cover my hair. As it’s not my natural colour (thank you early grey), Corine didn’t want my hair to influence the results of the consultation. (The same goes for any brightly coloured clothing near the face, but luckily, I was wearing white.)

Corine placed my chair in front of a big mirror with natural daylight lamps. Then, standing behind me, she placed a series of different coloured fabrics across my shoulders. It was striking to see how each subtle shade variation could alter my skin tone – often with dramatic results.

We tried dozens of colour samples to see their effects on my appearance

We tried dozens of colour samples to see their effects on my appearance

Corine quickly confirmed her suspicion – I fall into the ‘winter’ season. This was a bit of a surprise, as I had always gravitated towards autumnal colours, until the last 5 years or so. Another surprise was the majority of colours in my current wardrobe are exactly the colours I should be wearing as a ‘winter’ girl. (Apparently, we winters are the only people who can effectively pull of true black and white. This is good news for my very monochromatic wardrobe!)

With my season confirmed, Corine brought out more fabric samples and we proceeded to go through all of the shades suitable for winter-toned people, to choose those that work best for me specifically. I was happy to see plenty of bold jewel-toned colours, no pastels, and minimal use of yellow.

However, colour choices don’t stop at individual pieces of clothing. Corine explained how I could best pair colours together and add splashes of the more difficult colours in my accessories.

We even discussed the best colour choices for my glasses (something I didn’t get quite right the last time around) and my hair (definitely off the mark on my last dye job.)

By the end of the session (which was about an hour and a half), I felt I had a good handle on my ‘best’ colours.

However, the best was yet to come, in the special tool Corine gives to all of her clients. I received my ‘colour passport,’ to take shopping next time. This little, purse-friendly folder contains small samples of all of the ‘winter-friendly’ colours we discussed. Corine explained how helpful this could be in tricky lighting situations in shops. Sometimes it’s difficult to see the ‘true’ shade of an article of clothing. With the ‘colour passport’, you can just hold the fabric up and compare.

My colour passport will live in my purse from now on!

My colour passport will live in my purse from now on!

In addition to the passport, Corine also emails a detailed profile to each client, within a few days of her session. In this report, she includes the tips we discussed in person, as well as the specific winter colours we chose together as most suited to me.

Although I focused on the personal colour side of Corine’s business, she offers plenty of other services to help you look and feel great. In addition to helping you choose the right colours, Corine can also help you pick the right styles for your shape and body type. Whether you want to appear taller, slimmer, curvier, or just camouflage a tummy (that may or may not be the result of a few too many Belgian chocolates), Corine can help.

If you’re new in Belgium or just not sure where to start, Corine also offers personal shopper services. Unlike other personal shoppers who simply choose things for you to wear, Corine explains how and why she makes the choices she does, so you feel confident to shop on your own the next time.

Another great service for expats is Corine’s interior styling business. Moving to a new home and trying to make your old furniture fit, or buying new furniture and starting from scratch can be overwhelming. Corine can help you choose the right colours, design a lighting plan, create a new furniture layout, or restyle your home to match your style, mood, and budget.

I love Corine's interior style - contemporary yet comfortable and functional

I love Corine’s interior style – contemporary yet comfortable and functional

I was able to experience Corine’s interior design skills first-hand when she took me on a tour of her new home. Her style is contemporary, eclectic, and, most of all, functional and comfortable. With two small children, Corine understands a family home must be practical, for all members of the family, in addition to being stylish.

On a personal note, Corine is an expat herself, and understands the needs of her expat clients. She hails from the Netherlands, while her husband is from the UK. Having lived in several styles of home in Brussels herself, she knows how to combine traditional architectural features with modern and contemporary design. She’s multi-lingual and flexible about meeting you at your own home or her office.

Dutch expat Corine understands the needs of her fellow expats

Dutch expat Corine understands the needs of her fellow expats

My own colour consultation with Corine was fun, informative, and I never felt she was trying to impose colours or styles on me I would never wear. I look forward to putting everything I learned into practice the next time I go shopping, with my handy colour passport of course!

READER OFFER: Corine would like to offer CheeseWeb readers two very special offers if you book before November 15, 2014.

PERSONAL STYLING OFFER:  2 for the price of 1 – Book a session of colour or style advice for two people and only pay for one.
INTERIOR STYLING OFFER: Book colour and lay-out advice for two rooms and only pay for one.  

You can find all of Corine’s personal styling services, including pricing, on her website. Contact her to book your own consultation.

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Alison Cornford-Matheson is a Canadian freelance writer and travel photographer and the founder of She is the author of The Foodie Guide to Brussels: Local Tips for Restaurants, Shops, Hotels, and Activities. Alison landed in Belgium in 2005 and, over the years, has become passionate about slow and sustainable travel, in Europe and beyond. She loves to discover hidden gems - be they museums, shops, restaurants, castles, gardens or landscapes, and share them through her words and photos. She has visited 45 countries and is currently slow travelling through North America in an RV, with her husband, Andrew, and two well-travelled cats. You can also follow her work on Google+
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