Fashion Careers | The role of the stylist

If you're interested in the role of the stylist you should read this + advices from the stylists of Natalie Portman and Olivia Wilde

This post is also available in: Italian

We analyze the careers in the fashion industry to give you some tips from the inside and to help you to find your right fashion career path. Today I would like to talk to you about the role of the stylist. If you like the mixing clothes game and you love to dress yourself and you’d love to do it as a career so you should read this posts.

The job of a stylist is basically dressing stars for events and models for shoots. When you see those beautiful outfit on Vogue, Glamour or your favorite magazine or commercial ads, there is a person behind what people/models are wearing and that person is the stylist.

It sounds a cool job right? Yes, of course it’s, but it also requires lots of work, research, creativity and inspiration.

A stylist decide on the models, hair, makeup,and shoot concepts, then pack everything up and take it to a studio or on a plane to get to the location.

If you want to be a stylist and work for a magazine to do editorial works, it’s fundamental to create a mood board for each shooting so that you (or your assistants) will know what to request from showroom. Books can be a great source of inspiration, you can also navigate through websites like to view the shows or find the inspiration from other past shootings. Researching is another golden rule, you need to know about the model you’ll work with, the location and who your reader is in order to understand what the reader will expect from the service to best fit his/her expectations.

A stylist creates a look based on 3 things:

  • the models
  • the location
  • the readers

You’ll build a story with your model, you should try to give her/him something consistent, you need to create something that could appear true, close to the model’s life .When thinking about the clothes that will be in the editorial shoots you also need to consider and be consistent with your location. Everything needs to be harmonious. 

If insted of shooting you prefer to dress celebrities, your main game will be to understand what they’re looking for.

When you dress a celebrity for an event you need to understand how they want to be perceived: you want to create a look that is flattering, memorable, to be on the Vogue best dressed lists?

The first question that you should have to ask to your client is what she/he doesn’t like, this is sometimes even more important than understanding what does it work.

It’s fundamental to understand the person that you’re going to dress. Being a stylist means lots of research

Advices from some of the most famous stylists: 

Kate Young is a famous stylist and her clients, among the others, are Natalie Portan, Dakota Johnson, Michelle Williams, her number one tip to an aspiring stylist is to work on creating an identify for yourslef. “It’s a really hard thing to do when you’re young. It took me a long time. When I was an assistant at Vogue, I used to do test shoots and stylist (Camilla Nickerson) would review them. After my third bad shoot, she was like, “ Stop trying so hard. You have to just always make it a version of yourself” That was the best advice.”
Karla Welch’s clients are Olivia Wilde, Justin Bieber, Felicity Jones among the others, she said that the best way to break intto the styling world is by interning and assisting as much as possible. Go and see fashion and photography-related movies, read style books and be super interested in what’s going on in culture. Make it your mission to work harder than anyone else. You have to know that there’s sacrifice before there’s any glory.”

What do you think about? Are you interested in this role? Leave me your comments below

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