So y’all – I did a thing (somewhat unintentionally). I talked about this on one of my Youtube vids (which you can check out below) how I only consider myself an editorial stylist and now a “brand stylist”. I work with a few select professionals that have a distinct, recognizable brand, and want to use the power & tool of aesthetics to embody their brand 24/7. I’ve ALWAYS said to myself I never wanted to get into celebrity styling and being based in St. Louis, I knew this would be an easy thing to avoid.
And then – Cori Bush came along (cue me fan girling). Yes y’all, I styled Congresswoman CORI BUSH! A VERRRRRRRY talented photographer named Joe Martinez (who shot her Teen Vogue cover) reached out to me to see if I could style her for a very exclusive project (can’t release details until Fall but just know y’all gone GAG!). I sent my rate, and even went above and beyond to send a complete concept board (because that’s the creative director in me) – and booked the gig!
Not only did I book the gig, but quite possibly solidified myself as one of her go to stylists in St. Louis, which is HUGE. I know a lot of you guys look to my blog and social media on how to get started in the industry, so I wanted to create a post for those wanting to tap into celebrity styling – especially in a smaller city!
Make Nice With Local PR Agents/Photographers/Other Creative Brands
If you’re looking to connect with celebrities (local & mainstream), this is where the power of networking comes into play and the saying “it’s who you know” holds power. For example – make it a point this week to follow one of the following:
Basically – any creative who would be involved in having a connection with a celebrity is someone you want to get to know. I’m not saying you need to be the best of friends, but make it a point to research some key people, connect on social media, and stay in touch so you’ll be one of the first they think of if an opportunity arises.
Make Friends With Local Designers/Boutiques/Retail Brands
Now this may be one of the more difficult tasks, especially in a smaller city. I know the difficulties of working with designers, establishing your legitimacy with retail brands, or getting boutiques involved who understand the basics of styling (like what the term “pulling” means). For a lot of stylists, we end up having to come out of pocket or not be able to really show what we can do as stylists because our resources are limited. My advice is to start conversations now with designers, boutiques, & retail brands you want to work with and don’t wait until you’re trying to figure out how to dress your celebrity client. Email, reach out via social media, ask if you can sit down for a meeting, dinner, or coffee so you can build your rapport with the brands who could potentially supply your garments going forward. This is also way having a portfolio and example of your work is important.
Create Your Own Opportunities!
I cannot express this enough and I’ve said this in one of my first Youtube videos – getting into this industry, especially in a smaller city means you need to create your own opportunities to become visible. Now I cannot give you the EXACT formula for creating your own opportunities when it comes to celebrity styling but what I can tell you is my experience and how it happened for me.
For two years I’ve planned as the creative director editorials for my non-profit Black in St. Louis Fashion, and this year’s editorial was nothing short of AMAZING! When I was contacted to style Cori for a project, I found out Joe (the photographer) found me on social media from the campaign. It wasn’t necessarily me competing with other stylists for this opportunity, it was me being able to show I was capable of the job because of projects I already created under my own brand – simple.
Even with me styling Cori, I still won’t say I’m a celebrity stylist 100%, but – with what I was able to pull off for Cori, I know if I was to commit to it 100%, I would make it without a doubt. If you’re someone who’s confident that celebrity styling is for you – I suggest enrolling in one of Fashion Mentor’s courses. She provides an excellent foundation on how to get started, and has the resume to prove it as being a successful celebrity stylist in LA!
And don’t forget! You can always enroll in the HauteBoss Academy with our Start to Finish Stylist course! Perfect for understanding the foundations of fashion styling, no matter what niche you want to pursue! Our 1st 2022 cohort opens May 16th, and if you sign up below you save $150 on your enrollment!