Introducing Consultant Jo Goode, of Jo Goode Image & Style


Jo GoodeIn another of our series about Study in Style graduates please meet Jo Goode:

Image Consultancy had been something I had thought about for years – and something I feel I have been doing in my head for years. As a child I used to dress my dolls (Daisy was my doll of choice; her outfits were designed by Mary Quant!) for a specific occasion and then mark them out of 10 for appropriateness, creativity etc! This must have inspired me to attend The London College of Fashion and launch myself into the fashion industry as a Designer/Pattern Cutter.

I specialised in ladies outerwear – tailoring: coats, jackets, suits – and I spent 10 happy years creating ranges for the High Street stores. Oh, and I also got sent shopping to New York, Paris and Milan regularly! But, always wanting new challenges, I then left the industry to travel; and then further study, ending up with a BSc in Zoology and an MSc in Conservation Biology and eventually working for the RSPB.

In January 2015, a few more jobs later and with my contract coming to an end in April, I decided that I needed to pursue the Image Consultancy idea otherwise it would be something I’d always regret not trying. Whereas in the past I’d only myself to rely on to pay the mortgage, I was finally in a position to explore ‘self-employedness’ as I’d managed to nail myself a husband who was willing to house, feed and water both me and the cat!

I decided on the Study in Style course quite quickly because it ticked all the boxes for me: distance learning, because I was still working 5 days a week and needed to have this flexibility; had affiliations with professional bodies like FIPI; Gail had tons of experience and knowledge; it had the potential for further industry recognised qualifications (I like a certificate!); covered all and more of the areas that I wanted to learn more about; and provided ongoing support, and training and development opportunities.

Vintage Jo 2For me it was also about putting a framework around my existing knowledge and experience, to know what was expected from an Image Consultant working in 2015 – and in this Gail and Study in Style course have done very well.

I’m still very much a newcomer in the business, having only officially launched 1 July 2015. I’m learning all the time – how to be self-employed, how to be patient, to hang in there, to network, to be a marketing guru (ha!), to take risks, to be true to me. And the rewards? Well, I’ve met inspirational and supportive people, expanded my social scene, expanded my knowledge and secured some income!

I am building my focus around transgender women as I have been greatly affected by their bravery and determination against so many barriers in the journey to their true selves. If I can help ease their transition and instil some confidence with their clothes and image, then that’s time very well spent.

As I said, it is still very early days, but I do feel I have come full circle career-wise: first fashion, then environment and now fashion and environment – because I’m championing Slow Fashion – and I am very happy with the direction my business is heading in…. Brighton Fashion Week, Miss Transgender UK, Clothes Swap Events, magazine articles, workshops and Champneys… I come!

Jo Goode Image & Style

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