TV One personality reveals off-screen style tips

By Zoe Walker

Presenter Nadine Chalmer-Ross retains a structured style away from the camera.

Breakfast's business news reporter. Nadine Chalmers-Ross. Photo / by Babiche Martens
Breakfast's business news reporter. Nadine Chalmers-Ross. Photo / by Babiche Martens

Structured jackets: they're a major part of almost every news presenter's wardrobe, Nadine Chalmers-Ross' included.

"I tend to think they are part of portraying a professional, businesslike image, but there's no need for them to be dull, boring or boxy. The jackets I like best have a twist to them."

As presenter of the business news each morning on TV One's Breakfast show, Chalmers-Ross' on-screen style tends to be decided by TVNZ's styling team, but her fondness for structure carries through into her wardrobe away from the camera. She talks the business of fashion, 4am makeovers and her favourite place.

How do you see the fashion business in New Zealand right now? It depends who you ask. Some clothing retailers will tell you times are still tough. Others are starting to be able to reclaim the margins that were squeezed so much over the past few years.

On screen my style tends to be decided by someone else. But my favourite outfits tend to be structured, fit well and have a bit of colour.

Off-screen, my style is hopefully a bit chic and classy. I like structure, something that works with my shape. I like outfits to have something that's a bit different or interesting, but it's rare that I'd do something too bold or outrageous. Except when it comes to dressing up for costume parties - then all bets are off.

Latest discovery, in fashion, beauty or food? Kevin Murphy hair products. The makeup room at work has just started using them - they smell delicious and they work wonders. Buying clothes on Asos and getting them altered by a cheap and cheerful local Vietnamese tailor I reckon is a great way to get something a bit different quite cheaply.

Who's on your "team"? The makeup team at TVNZ transform me from sleep-deprived zombie to television presenter and provide a healthy dose of laugher, all at four in the morning. That makes them both magicians and heroes to me.

In my makeup bag is far too many half-used lipglosses, M.A.C eyeshadows in browns and pinks, M.A.C shimmer cream, Maybelline liquid eyeliner, a L'Oreal mascara, an eyelash curler - basically, the works. Before I started working in television I barely wore makeup, now I think I might be making up for it.

My approach to beauty is that health is beautiful. I take pride in my appearance, but I don't want to obsess over it. I just aim to feel good and look good. Sometimes I don't feel either, but that's the goal.

My favourite designers or labels are too numerous to count. Yvonne Bennetti has gorgeous dresses. I love Juliette Hogan's leather dresses, but also her feminine tailoring. Taylor has great belts and jackets, and Karen Walker's Hi There range is very wearable.

The most treasured item in my wardrobe is a black and brown striped jumpsuit I had made in Hoi An, Vietnam. It's a one-off, it fits me perfectly and it's a great summer outfit. For winter, a Misty Lang mustard-coloured cape-coat, even though it hasn't really been cold enough to wear it yet.

My style has evolved. Five years ago I would have worn whatever was in "fashion" and wished my body looked different. Now, I dress in what works for my body shape.

The best-dressed woman in New Zealand ... is probably my colleague Petra Bagust. She's the perfect clothes horse for the most beautiful clothes. We all ooh and aah when she gets ready in the morning. As for the best-dressed man - possibly TVNZ stylist Clifton Piper. I'm glad he's the one who decides what I wear on air.

The last book I read and felt inspired by: I don't know about inspired, but the last book I read was 50 Shades of Grey, just to see what all the fuss was about. I can report that it's true what the critics say about its, erm ... erotic content.

The last film I watched and felt inspired by was The Iron Lady. Whatever your take on Margaret Thatcher's politics, you can't deny she was a woman of strong convictions. Plus Meryl Streep is fabulous.

My favourite place is wakeboarding behind my friend's boat before breakfast when there's barely a breath of wind and the lake is glassy and no one else is around. That also tends to mean I'm on on holiday.

* Check out Viva's Facebook page, the place to find out what's hot in fashion, beauty, food, wine and design.

- NZ Herald

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