Birth of a Wardrobe Stylist: An Introduction
Okay. This is my first blog post. For those of you who know me, you can attest that I’m almost never at a loss for words and given the right opportunity, I can be down right chatty. However, in the context of my very first blog post, where words and first impressions mean so much, I’m feeling a bit reticent. I suppose the best thing to do is to jump in headfirst and explain who I am and why I do what I do.
A little background: I have been a stylist for years. It’s in my blood. I blame it on my Barbie dolls. Those little tarted up harlots had to have a different outfit for every event in their lives. Lounging by the pool. A new outfit. Date night with Ken. A new outfit. Driving the Corvette. A new outfit. Hanging out in Barbie’s Dream House. A new outfit. You get the idea. So it’s no surprise that upon college graduation, I got a job dressing mannequins at Neiman Marcus. It was a dream job, to be sure. Creating chic outfits for my well proportioned polystyrene friends and making an already beautiful store as lovely and eye-catching as possible. What could be more fabulous? But all good things must come to end, and often they lead to something even better. In this case, working in Neiman Marcus retail lead me to a position as a stylist for Neiman Marcus Direct, the folks who bring you those breathtaking catalogs, season by season. That’s where I really began to cut my teeth as a stylist. This was a while ago, before many people knew that there were secret little gnome-like people running around fashion photo shoots with clamps and fashion-fix tape (they didn’t call it that then) and lint brushes and safety pins, making ill-fitting garments look pristine and desirable. In fact, if you’ve ever bought something from a catalog and tried it on and thought, “Wait. This doesn’t fit anything like it does on the model in this photo!” You probably have a stylist to thank for that. We are the wicked people who take a size 8 photo sample and whittle it down to a size 2, through the magic of clamps and pins, so that that it fits that 5’11′, 125 pound model. Not fair, you say. True, but along with amazing photography, art direction and talented hair and make-up artists, it certainly does sell the merch.
I spent the following three years styling at Neimans, headquartered in Dallas, Texas and loved it, but I needed a change. Change is good. I felt like if I really wanted to kick my styling career up a notch, I needed to move to New York. So I did. There, I styled ad campaigns, editorials for magazines, and dressed a few celebrities along the way. Sometimes it was glamorous and at other times it was humbling, and I’m grateful for both. Most of all, New York was exciting. But y’know, after a near decade there, it was was beginning to define me. I had just had a baby when the husband and I decided to make a big lifestyle change and move our happy little family to Austin, Texas.
So here I am.