Rachael Zoe once said, "Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak". Styling isn't just a profession—it says a lot about who you are. For budding fashion stylists, the journey can be smooth or rocky. It is all about knowing the tricks of the trade.
Here are some secrets of fashion from Ami Patel, a renowned celebrity stylist that can help you achieve success in your styling career.
1. Style Yourself In Silence
Are you wondering if we are still talking about how to become a stylist?! It must sound strange that something as ancient as meditation can give you a breakthrough in the modern world of styling. But it can! Read on.
What does styling mean to you? An assortment of garments, shoes, accessories, and add-ons arranged in a stylish manner? Right. You envisage a dazzling and unique appearance of your model with the resources you have. This artistic brilliance has to be ignited from within you. It happens when you are calm and at peace with yourself. Inner silence enables you to tap your deepest source of creativity.
- The creative juices of the fashion designer within you come alive in silence and deep rest. It is meditation that takes you to that beautiful silent spot within yourself.
- A stylist has to strike a balance between being sensitive to the client's taste and being sensible with the costs involved in materialising the vision. Meditation can nurture these qualities in you.
- At times, work might become repetitive and that can prevent newer ideas from popping up. It is like you are stuck at the same place. However, if you meditate for 20 minutes every day, it is easier to deal with such road blocks. Meditation unblocks your creative channels and fills you with zeal enabling you to style people differently every time. Styling becomes an expression of your happiness!
2. Keep Styling Updates At Your Finger Tips
Let’s face it. Becoming a fashion stylist is no piece of cake! Fashion styling is a nascent and evolving industry. To be fashionable, you have to be fresh in your thoughts and ideas, and that can happen when you keep yourself up-to-date with all the latest happenings in your field. However, remember that while technology has made information more accessible, it has also bombarded it in disproportionate amounts. Taking 20 minutes out for meditation every day can give you the sensibility, maturity, and patience to filter important information from irrelevant ones.
Coming up with ideas is part of the job description. Meditation cultivates a tree of ideas within you that bears fruit for you all the time—you will never run out of them. Meditation nudges you towards meaningful thoughts and ideas. This is significant since all top fashion stylists need to keep themselves constantly updated.
3. Open your eyes and open your mind
"If you are a stylist, your eyes are everything", quotes Ami Patel, celebrity stylist. You have to look beyond what you see; you never know how one style can lead to another. For instance, you may come across articles in fashion magazines that talk about blending western and ethnic wear. Taking cues from such articles you can find your own path to mix and match the best of both worlds. Ideas can come to you from anywhere, and everything you see has the potential to change a constructive thought into something tangible. So keep your eyes and mind open to them. "You never know, your inspiration can come at any time—even at 10 in the night when you are reading a fashion blog or while watching something online", adds Ami Patel. Just with your eyes and your memory, you can create wonders that will leave people awestruck.
Meditating regularly can help enhance your awareness and make you more alert. It also helps you integrate your knowledge better to come out with something that can be a trend-setter.
A Handy Tool For Stylists
Not everyone has a perfect body. But with your creativity, you can make them look beautiful despite their flaws. Clothes! It can camouflage anything, if you use the right colour, shape, and silhouettes, to suit people’s figures and sizes.
- Use black to make people appear thinner.
- Vertical stripes can make people look taller.
- A simple and matching scarf can replace heavy jewellery and make your model look more elegant.
- A layered necklace is a better bet than multiple necklaces.
4. Wear many hats
Stylists have no choice but to wear many hats at work. You may have experienced it first-hand. For instance, if you have a photo shoot lined up, you will have to source dresses and accessories, launder, repack and return them in a respectable way. The stress involved in the management of the various articles of clothing and accessories, along with the million other details that add on can take a toll on your creativity, and hence lead to poor productivity.
The good news is that regular meditation will greatly help you in managing stress. Meditation makes you calm from within. It helps you to be centred and balanced even in extreme situations. You realise that panicking is not an answer when things go wrong. You are more broadminded when you deal with issues and are able to come up with innovative solutions. Being calm also helps you avoid taking rash and regrettable choices.
5. Be a reflection of your art
It is as important for a fashion stylist to be dressed stylishly, as it is to dress others. Your appearance is a mirror of your styling sense, and that is what the world sees. "But, while you are well dressed, you needn't be expensively dressed", suggests Ami Patel. Be a reflection of your ideas! Display your creativity to make a headline-grabbing style statement. A simple scarf around your neck can add so much élan and panache to your look. Matching bling-blings might just add that touch of flair to your fashion statement.
6. Be centred so you can see glamour at all times
As a budding fashion stylist, if you have been lucky enough to experience success fairly early in your career, chances are you will get overwhelmed by the glamour it brings. This isn't healthy for growth and should be avoided. As a stylist, the sky is the limit, and that calls for being anchored amid the feats and fame you enjoy and the challenges you face.
"Meditation stops your mind from being swayed in different directions and getting flipped around by the good and the bad that happens in life. It makes you rise above things like grand fashion shows and tame flops on the ramp. It keeps you grounded and makes you realise that there is more to life than just success and failure", quotes Ami Patel, who has been meditating for 14 years now.
Being centred when your styling sense is the talk of the town, and even when your style wasn't featured in the last few months, is the road to long-term sustainable success. That is because when you are grounded: you will do what is right, undeterred by variable situations and events.
7. Get inspired to create your own style statement
We asked Ami, if a fashion stylist can create his or her own style statement, while emulating his or her idols, in the early years. Her answer was an unequivocal "Yes!" These are her fashion tips: "There is a difference between inspiration and copying. It isn't necessary that you copy something that you are inspired by. You can think 'Oh, this is so beautiful'. You get that 'Ah!' feeling, and that feeling leads to something that is within you and brings out something that is very different and unique. You don't have to copy something blindly. By getting inspired, you can find creativity that is yours alone."
Budding power solutions
Every top fashion stylist, established or budding needs some power solutions, every once in a while. It is especially tough for a budding fashion stylist to find his or her footing in a world where the consumer is finicky and fickle. Differentiation in an over-crowded market requires original ideas and regular brainwaves. Meditation creates the space within you for inspiration and innovation. In the tranquil and relaxed setting of your internal world, you will be able to come up with designs that will make waves in the external world !
Written by Ravisha Kathuria