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The Business Of Fashion Stylists Out -'FITS' have become a central aspect of how we represent ourselves and perceive others. No longer are clothes haphazardly thrown on the racks; instead, they are put together to create a cohesive look each time.

By Kavya Pillai

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Out -'FITS' have become a central aspect of how we represent ourselves and perceive others. No longer are clothes haphazardly thrown on the racks; instead, they are put together to create a cohesive look each time. A stylist strives to create relatable and attainable personalities for people, brands, periodicals, and movies. Among the most well-known stylists are Anahita Shroff and Vijendra Bhardwaj for magazines, Niharika Khan and Manish Malhotra for films, Rhea Kapoor and Ami Patel for celebrities.

How is a Stylist different from a Designer?

Fashion stylists create narratives around items to make them relatable and contextualise them within our own lives, while fashion designers provide us with goods. A fashion stylist creates a connection between the product and the customer by taking into account audience characteristics, consumer preferences, and aesthetic compositions. It creates aspirations and bonds with you as a customer.

Who can become a stylist?

A competent stylist must be a perceptive observer who keeps up with current events. Research is a crucial endeavor. Proficiency in graphic visualisation, photography, hairstyling, makeup and editing will be advantageous in supporting visual and digital communication.

As a stylist, you can work with celebrities, online series, TV shows, movies, and magazines. You can also work in public relations, fashion show directing, visual merchandiser, social media campaigns, e-commerce websites and for businesses. Rhea Kapoor - stylist, producer and entrepreneur shared, "The only way to work is to get more work and keep working with people that excite you, that inspire you. And if no one's hiring you, you have Instagram." She added, " I, myself have hired at least two or three of my senior assistants who are now stylist in their own right through social media. After coming across their contact I understood their style and skills."


Due to the increasing competition, a formal education will equip you with the knowledge and skills. These theoretical and practical learnings that you get from class work and projects will help you to be able to think quickly and produce original work. Kapoor shared the bottom line for anyone in this profession is "to find your own algorithm. Your algorithm is within you. It used to be called books. Now we depend on many different other things to tell us what the trends are. You have so many things around you to execute what you're like. Use these tools to execute your story and your vision."

Popular Myths in The Industry

While celebrities often don looks from successful and luxurious fashion brands. We asked Kapoor if it indicates that stylists or people who follow fashion need to be covered in labels to produce a good outfit? She answered, "I see there's two ways to answer the question. One, I don't believe that only luxury brands can make impactful looks. I can make you three or four impactful, appropriate looks just from a standard wardrobe. That's not the point. But what happens is, in the celebrity world often is gaining acceptance from certain luxury brands to elevate an actor or model's profile. That is not fashion, that's PR. PR is also important to establish who you are. But if you're talking about pure fashion. I promise you, some of the biggest designers and stylists on this planet are taking inspiration from people on the street."

A Stylist's Advice

While you may be used to sharing your work on social media where the stylist and the final say on the look is you, yourself. Things are completely different on the field. Kapoor cautioned, "As a stylist, you are providing a service. Okay? This isn't about you. It was never about you. You are trying to make somebody else have the best look of their life, the best day of their life, the best aesthetic of their life. So you have to give your best version of what they are telling you. If you think that something is not to your taste, but it's for that person's taste, you have to find a middle ground."

She concluded her conversation at the Amazon Creator Connect event held in Mumbai by saying, "This is something that I tell young people again and again and again. They're like, oh these actors, they don't listen and that they don't understand fashion. But they hired you, so make it happen. You have to believe that you're creative enough to have your ideas. And for them to have their ideas too, as you are not the star there."


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