Personal shopping: Is your finger on the fashion pulse?

Sonya Leahy interviews a VIP client executive

Name: Dean Aslett

Occupation: VIP client executive

Employer: Selfridges & Co, London

Qualifications: BTech National in Fashion

"My career in retail started with a Saturday job at Marks & Spencer in Croydon when I was 15. But it was actually due to my passion for music that I got into fashion as I saw the two as being very interlinked.

After finishing school, I did a BTech National Diploma in fashion, but rather than staying on for a degree, I went to work as an assistant to couturier Anthony Price when I was 18. I was thrown in the deep end, dealing with Anjelica Huston, Jack Nicholson, Johnny Mathis and even royalty. The role was so diverse and I absolutely adored the job. One day I would be working on Oscar award ceremony outfits and the next a photo shoot for a rock album cover. I also took on some public relations work, dealing with press enquiries and helping to promote the label.

Since then, I've worked for two major design houses - Versace and Gucci - where I was in charge of the women's ready-to-wear collections and VIP accounts, dealing with everyone from Elton John to Bon Jovi. I also ran my own boutique before joining Selfridges as their head of personal shopping.

I'm now their VIP client executive, so my focus is more on managing the relationships with our important clients, than day-to-day management of the personal shopping team. Other aspects of my job include liaising with buyers on key looks and trends for the coming season, organising fashion events, and working with stylists and production companies to create looks for television, film and music videos.

When customers come in for an appointment with a personal shopper, we have a consultation to find out what they like and dislike and what has and hasn't worked for them in the past. It could be a celebrity needing an outfit for the red carpet, the mother of a bride or a guy straight out of university who needs a suit for a job interview. The personal shopper will go on to the shop floor, while the client relaxes with a coffee and a magazine, and come back with a selection of outfits for them to try on. It's a free service and the majority of customers leave with a yellow Selfridges bag and a smile!

The retail industry is full of great career opportunities. If you want to be a personal shopper, fashion has to be your passion and you will need to keep your finger firmly on the fashion pulse and be prepared to work in a fast-paced environment. You must also be bubbly, enthusiastic, flexible, self-motivated and have an "anything is possible" approach to your work."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Student

SThree: Recruitment Consultant (Trainee / Experienced)

£18000 - £27000 per annum + doe OTE £45K: SThree: SThree are always looking fo...

Recruitment Genius: Project Assistant

£18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are a recent psychology graduate ...

Recruitment Genius: Junior / Graduate Graphic Designer

£17000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Largest Independent Motor D...

Ashdown Group: Training Programme Manager - City, London

£40000 - £45000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Training Programme Manag...

Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own