Ilka Dunn wearing an Alexa Zip Jacket in Taupe with a Leo Print Scarf in Truffle print
We put our Autumn Colour Ambassador, Ilka Dunn, 39, a colour consultant for Red Leopard, under the spotlight to find out how she blends Kettlewell with her own personal style and her favourite piece from the new A/W17 collection
Do you have a casual uniform?
I like pairing skinny trousers in dark brown or dark olive with an interesting top or blouse. For cooler days, I love chunky sweaters. I always wear an eye-catching necklace or a scarf, and a pair of flat ankle boots or high boots.
Favourite dressed-up look for evening?
My go-to pieces are dresses and shoes with a heel because it takes just seconds to get dressed and yet makes a dramatic change. I like to wear slightly darker colours than during the day and I tweak my make-up to make sure that it still looks good when the lights are low.
Ilka wearing a Paris Textured Jacket in True Red, with a Silk Leopard Scarf in Bright Orange Print
Favourite piece from the Kettlewell A/W collection?
It’s not really like me to wear the bright colours of the Autumn palette, but I love the Paris Textured Jacket in Leaf and True Red. It’s great if you have limited time to get dressed in the morning: paired with jeans and a T-shirt, it will instantly make you look more put together. All you have to do is add the Leopard silk scarf to look perfectly stylish.
Your favourite seasonal colours?
Dark sage and moss – colours that are very flattering on most autumns. I also love coral as an accent colour in a pattern on a blouse or a scarf because it throws a lovely glow on to the face.
Ilka wearing an Alexa Zip Jacket in Forest Green with a Leo Print Scarf in Petrol Green print
Best feature (and parts you prefer to play down)?
I am slightly narrower at the bust, so this is where I try to draw the attention to in order to visually balance out my proportions. I have a slim waist and try to accentuate that with belts, tops that come in at the waist, high-waisted trousers or high-waisted skirts.
Ilka wears a City Poncho in Indian Ochre over a Silky Roll Neck in Chocolate
How does wearing the right colours for you make you feel?
Life is just easier and more fun when you wear the right colours. They can make you look healthy, energetic, more capable and radiant. When you look great, you feel great. And when you feel great, everything is possible.
I also love that dressing is much easier and faster with my clothes being from the same seasonal colour palette because everything goes so well together. My wardrobe is sorted by colour – it’s like flipping through an Autumn’s colour wallet.
Ilka wears a City Poncho in Chocolate Marl with a Leo Print Scarf in Truffle Print
No outfit is complete without…
…a smile! Twenty years ago I saw a Snoopy cartoon in which he was very beautifully dressed but looked miserable. Underneath the caption read: “The best clothes don’t work if you don’t smile.” It is so true!
With thanks to the Duchess of Cornwall Inn, Poundbury, Dorset
Photographs: Katharine Davies
To book a consultation with Ilka, visit the Red Leopard website.