Personal Shopping in Santiago: 24 hours to a Brand New You

Ameriga Giannone is a girl on a mission. Disregarding Santiago’s limited shopping opportunities when it comes to clothes, shoes and accessories, she’ll help you make the most of your closet’s contents, boost your confidence and prepare you sartorially for just about everything life throws at you. We tested her personal shopping service.

Photo by Nicholas Charlesworth
Photo by Nicholas Charlesworth

I associate personal shoppers with the celebs on TV. The high-strung, high-maintenance Rachel Zoe or worse _ Trinny and Susanna, the British mega-bitches who make unfortunate contestants stand half-naked in front of a 360° mirror while one of them gropes breasts and the other fleshes out muffin tops. I’m not prepared for that.

Photo by Aune Ainson
Photo by Aune Ainson

Having someone go through your closet and drawers carrying Bridget Jones-type underwear for colder or ahem…feminine days and wooly socks a seasoned hiker would snub requires self-confidence. No closet is entirely free of embarrassing specimens. In mine, there’s that ‘80s silk leopard shirtdress I picked up on eBay or the bleached skinnies ripped at the knees (hello?).

Ameriga sashays into my apartment with what looks like a pink doctor’s bag. Inside, there are hundreds of color swatches, manuals and knick-knacks. First, she measures me up, defines my body type and coloring. It turns out I am an inverted triangle, more yang than yin and have warm undertones. From the onset she also advises me to bleach my eyebrows_ a suggestion I haven’t quite come to terms with.

As we enter my closet, there’s no trace of mockery in her kind but piercing stare. The blonde and blue-eyed Italian bombshell goes through its contents with the deft touch of a professional, holds a few hangers up to the light, looks at me then back at the clothes, pensive.

In the end, Ameriga’s job is much more than just helping you to shop.

Photo by Aune Ainson
Photo by Aune Ainson

“Most of my clients hug me at the end of a consultation. They need new clothes but also renewed confidence. I’d say I’m half therapist, half stylist,” she jokes.

What you should wear all depends on your figure and coloring but some rules apply to all; wear the color that suits you best closest to the face, avoid horizontal lines unless you are tubular (super skinny, in other words) and accentuate your waist to trick the eye into thinking that you have that all-important hourglass figure.

She suggests wearing purple for a hot date, while blue with a touch of red is perfect for a meeting or job interview.

Ameriga also offers make-up sessions, coaching and she can create a personalized look book based on your closet’s contents. She regularly brings back clothes from Italy and will even travel to Buenos Aires with you for a mad dash around the Argentine capital’s boutiques.

Most clients will hire her services for the day; it will take an entire morning for Ameriga to take you through the anthropometry routine, peruse and edit your closet. In the afternoon; let the real fun begin as the both of you amble down Santiago’s shopping streets or malls.

Our session leaves me giddy as only a girly afternoon can. Out with the old, in with the new; the skinny jeans are being donated to a tubular friend and replaced by a belted bodycon black dress. Now, about those eyebrows…

Ameriga Giannone Styling

Editor's Note: Ameriga Giannone is the director of Tu Closet, a division of Revolver Chile.

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