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What Is A Fashion Stylist?

How Did Fashion Styling Become a Job?

Have you wondered how a stylist or personal shopper appeared as a job?

The evolution of fashion styling has a long history: it goes all the way back to 1772 when the dressmaker Rose Bertin styled queen Marie Antoinette. However, it has not been a while since a Fashion Stylist has appeared as a job. It is said that the first stylists were fashion magazine editors. As ‘editors’, they edited fashion pages and chose designers to be featured in the magazine. Back in the 1960s, many models did their own hair and makeup. Also, it was mostly models who prepared their accessories for shoots. Then in the 80s, the first freelance stylists appeared. New magazines that did not have in-house stylists gave freelancers a chance to showcase their talents without being tied to a magazine. Ray Petri is mentioned as one of the first fashion stylists. He is well known for his Buffalo style, which is featured an interesting mix of urban and ethnic, high and low culture. For his photography, he chose real people instead of professional models.

Photography: Jamie Morgan

“Petri was a fashion stylist long before this was a coveted job description. Indeed, in the early 80s, selecting and arranging clothes on models was still known, if it was known at all, as ‘fashion editing’, but he was an instinctive stylist, using his visual flair and magpie intelligence to produce elegant, unfussy and invariably sensual images of timeless modernity.”

The Observer, September 2000

So, as a part of a bigger magazine team, a fashion stylist was available at an individual level only for celebrities. After a few decades, a professional fashion stylist became an essential component of stores. Today, many E-commerce websites offer styling ideas for their clients. All is making the job easier: based on shoppers' data, the curation is getting better. The industry has come a long way.

What Does A Celebrity Stylist Do?

Law Roach, Zerina Akers, Mimi Cuttrell; do these names ring a bell? Maybe you have not heard of the names, but if you are interested in how A-list celebrities like Zendaya, Beyonce, or Ariana Grande dress, you will be curious to know that these celebrity stylists are the ones standing behind some of the most incredible looks of your favorite Hollywood starts. Fashion stylists are responsible for the entire final image; working hand-in-hand with hair and make-up artists, they dress celebrities in couture gowns for red carpet-events, magazine covers, and photoshoots. Basically, for any special occasion, it is a fashion stylist who dresses a celebrity in an exclusive garment, ensuring that together with a matching hairstyle and according make-up, their famous client will appear in a statement look suitable for a particular event.

As celebrities' fashion styles always draw public attention, they influence how people dress and style their hair. Today, with more information available regarding the personal style team of every celeb, people follow not only famous actresses and singers but also high-profile stylists on Instagram. We want to see what our favorite celebrities wear, and fashion stylists provide industry-level insight into designer clothing archives, current fashion, and even hair trends. From dressing A-list celebrities to styling for magazine editorials, stylists work with big luxury fashion houses to provide their clients with the most fashionable pieces and help them make a significant mark on the fashion scene. Working with iconic maisons like Dior, Saint Laurent, Gucci, and others, top stylists can get custom pieces from luxury brands for their high-profile clients. They ensure their stars shine in the best costumes for magazine covers, red carpet-events, awards, and photoshoots. However, a celebrity stylist's job does not end there: they style their famous clients not only for public events but also for everyday life. Today, one common styling task is creating an overall persona image. Working with their clients daily, a stylist suggests trendy streetstyle outfits. By doing that, they create a particular image that compliments the star's character and elevates their fashion appearance.

Discover Famous Fashion Stylists & Find Out How to Dress Like a Celebrity

If you would like to know more about Law Roach's or Mimi Cuttrell's work, read our article Fashion Stylists Behind the Looks of Celebrities; and if you wonder how to elevate your fashion style to a celebrity level, read our article How To Dress Like a Celebrity.


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