5 Tips on how to stay Afloat in the Fashion Industry 

Lights, camera, ACTION!

The fashion industry is all one big show titled “Misconception”, starring Instagram pictures of parties full of celebrities, photo shoots and flashy labels.

From the outside looking in, this industry can seem very intimidating and cruel, which is somewhat true. But the good times definitely outweigh the bad once you actually make a name for yourself.

So, how do you survive on your journey to the top? Continue reading to and take notes on my top 5 tips on staying afloat and in formation with the ever so changing fashion industry.

1. Build Relationships

Making connections with people in this industry is crucial. Since the beginning of the year, I’ve been collaborating with different photographers, models, MUA’s, you name it. The more I put myself out there, the more people I met and was able to work with. Here are a few things that I did to build my network in the past 6 months:

– Attend fashion related events (fashion shows, mixers, launch parties, ect.)

– Follow and engage with people on social media

– Keep in touch

If you focus on actually building strong relationships, instead of adding the next person to your book of clients, the business will come. I decided to learn that the hard way. When you leave a good impression with someone, they’ll be excited to work with you again and refer you!

2. Do your Research

I always have trouble with this one. As a fairly new entrepreneur, I don’t know everything. But with technology, almost everything I need to know is at my finger tips. If you don’t know the answer to something, GOOGLE IT . I know sometimes Google isn’t always accurate but it’ll do.

Lately, I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts and have been learning so much about business and how to be successful at what I do. I could never finish a book so podcasts are perfect for a busy entrepreneur like me. I listen to them in the morning on my way to work, during work and even after work. Whenever I have free time, I’m listening and learning how to be a better business women. If you’re into podcasts, here a some of my favs:

Table Talk with Tottie hosted by Natasha “Tottie” Weston

Brand you like a Boss hosted by Natasha “Tottie” Weston

Black Girl Boss Podcast hosted by Tatum Temia and Milan Mobley

3. Be Consistent

I know this one can be hard when you’e balancing a 9-5 along with you business and all that comes with it. They never said it would be easy but trust me, with all these new apps out there, it isn’t as hard as you think.

Hootsuite

– This is the perfect way to stay relevant on almost all social media platforms! I’ve been using this app for about 4 months and it has definitely helped to grow my engagement and my following. Having the ability to schedule social media posts ahead of time is a life saver. With all that you may have on your plate, you don’t always have time to think of a caption, tag everyone involved AND post a photo at the perfect time. It can definitely be a lot.

Crowdfire

– I recently just came across this app and its definitely a gem. After listening to the “Table Talk with Tottie” podcasts and following her on all her social media handles (what? I wanted to be in the loop), I received a direct message from her on Twitter. I thought it was actually her until I saw that it was created through an app called Crowdfire. From there, I did some research and found out that it was like a mini marketing team. They track your social media analytics, allows you to post related articles and post them on all your connected social media accounts at the best time. How cool is that?

Airbrush

– One of my model friends actually put me onto this app and I’ve been using it ever since. Thanks Lashira! I always enjoyed using a filter every once in awhile but now, I’m really into photoshop and making sure each photo is pristine and up to my standards. It’s use friendly and lots of cool features to play around with.

4. Ask for Help

I’m the type of person that thinks I can do EVERYTHING on my own and I’m sure I’m not the only one. I confide in google, webinars and blogs to gain more knowledge on what it takes to be a successful but that just isn’t enough. If you’re anything like me, then I’m sure you follow lots of successful people on social media that live in your area and/or state so REACH OUT TO THEM!

They were once in your place and I’m sure they are willing to help you be as successful as them. Being able to pick the brain of someone who you look up to in your industry is gold. Don’t be afraid to ask them personal questions and what they did to get where they are today. 9 times out of 10, they’ll be happy to answer the laundry list of questions you have…if they have the time.

Learn from the people around you who are doing it right and follow their tactics.

5. Use your Resources

I’m still getting used to this one. I always found myself with a laundry list of excuses about why I couldn’t do something or reach out to someone. It took me awhile to realize that I was the only person stopping myself from doing what I wanted to do with my business.

I know it can be a little discouraging nowadays with social media and seeing everyone “living the life” you want or are working towards. But you don’t know their story and they don’t know yours.

FAKE IT TILL YOU MAKE IT

Want to build your portfolio? Plan your own photo shoots. Need a photographer? Use your phone to take your photos. Need a model? Be your own model or connect with a friend who wears the same size as you that can for your clothes.

You don’t always have to spend a bunch of money to accomplish what you need done.

These 5 tips were created through personal experience and many failed attempts. Everyone’s journey is different so these tips may or may not work for you but they definitely worked for me. The life of an entrepreneur is all about trial, error and patience so enjoy the journey while it lasts.

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are“.

– Natasha  “Tottie” Weston


The Look

White Dress: Royaltique

Floral Handbag: TJ Maxx (old)

Shoes: JustFab (old)

Gold Hoops: ALDO Accessories (old)

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A Moment in Song with Roundaboutvids

Jordan was asked to be a muse for Roundaboutvids “Moment in Song”.

Roundaboutvids “Moments in Song” asks people one simple question, “What are you listening to?” They believe that you can learn a lot about someone and their experiences based off of the music they love. They aim to show that no matter where we come from, what we do, or what we look like, music has the ability to bring us together.

It was extremely hot that day so I put Jordan in a pair of shorts. I had him wear his “ArtbyJlaw” shirt to represent his brand and to add a little personal touch. I was skeptical about the jacket but I felt like it finished off the look. It was his style but somewhat different than what he was used to.

Did you like your overall look?

Jordan: I loved it! I never really thought about combining a light jacket with shorts. That was really new for me. I also liked that you chose to also incorporate my brand in the look with the “Artbyjlaw” tee. 


Check out his interview and playlist here

Ria was also asked to participate. This was a piece of cake seeing that I’ve worked with her on multiple occasions. The photo shoot took place outside so I put her in a sneaker. The leather skirt I bought fit her perfectly and went well with the scenery. The pop of color in her lip and her headband gave her a sultry but playful look.

Did you like your overall look?

Ria: I loved my look! I think you did  great job pairing the skirt with my Huaraches. I mean I was sweating bullets but we didn’t know the shoot was outside. The style fit me well. You can turn something out of nothing which is why I like working with you. 

Check out her interview and playlist here

After the shoot, they sat down with Julian, one of the members of Roundaboutvids for an interview. They each discussed their meanings behind the songs they chose.

I had a great time styling these two. The concept was extremely creative and their playlists are dope. Be sure to follow Roundaboutvids for the next “Moment in Song” interview!

The History of Wardrobe Styling and why it’s Important 

You ever look at a celebrity and wonder who picked out their outfit? Like, who is responsible for creating this masterpiece of a look?

Wardrobe stylists are the musketeers of fashion. We have the power to portray whatever image you may want to the world by simply piecing together garments. TV hosts, mom’s and even musicians are always in need of our help.

But it wasn’t always like this…

“Styling a shoot is almost like producing a movie. Casting hair, makeup, location – all the ingredients are essential to bring the story to life.”

– Elissa Santisi

Let’s take it back to the early 1970’s when image consulting was first created. Before this time, it was pretty much seen as a foreign act and only considered normal to celebrities and politicians. People who weren’t on TV everyday or weren’t well known, believed that image consulting was a luxury and not a need. But as time went on, everyday people became more aware of their appearance, and the need for styling went from nonexistent to extremely popular.

As the public began to grow an obsession with fashion, style entrepreneurs such as John Molloy took full advantage. His popular style guide “Dress for Success” gained much international notice during a time when both men and women began to care more about their overall appearance and yearned for guidance from an expert.

“Look fabulous. You are trying to explain what you are thinking by what you are wearing.”

– Camilla Nickerson

As the 1980’s approached, image consulting firms began to increase; offering services to everyday individuals who wanted a more star-like image.

Since this was such a new market, only a few firms were open to the public which made it a lot easier for them to monopolize. Celebrities began to not only hire image consultants for red carpet events and public appearances but also for their everyday wardrobe needs. This change brought much light to what we now know as the wardrobe stylist.

“Life’s too short to wear boring clothes.”

– Carly Cushnie & Michelle Ochs

Today, wardrobe styling is one of the most popular and emerging professions in the fashion world globally. It is simply known as someone who selects the clothing and accessories for published editorials, print or TV advertising campaigns, music videos, performances, and any other public appearances made by celebrities, models and/or public figures. But wardrobe styling has emerged into many other types of of styling that most people fail to realize.

Personal Styling

  • involves providing advice or assistance to clients on how to improve their image by selecting clothing and accessories that complement their figure and skin coloring and are suitable for their lifestyle. This can also involve taking clients on shopping trips and selecting clothing items for clients to wear to events etc., providing advice on skin care, hair style, self esteem, beauty treatments and etiquette. Personal styling is the basis of all other areas of styling. It is also known as image consulting, personal shopping and celebrity styling.

Editorial Styling

  • involves conceptualizing and organizing the photo shoots for the pages in fashion magazines and other media publications. This may also involve selecting items to appear in fashion product pages for magazines and writing articles on personal style, fashion trends etc. Here you will find yourself working closely with photographers, art directors, designers, artist managers, and fashion editors.

Video/Commercial Styling

  • involves styling models or actors/actresses for advertising commercials, film clips, industrial and educational videos. This could be anything from selecting the wardrobe item to coordinating the shoot – selecting the locations, models, makeup artists and even the photographer. 

Show Styling

  • involves organizing events and fashion parades. This could involve public speaking/comparing, working backstage at fashion parades, selecting models, organizing the running order, selecting garments and/or accessories, selecting the venue, developing the event concept, dealing with the media, photographers, and PR companies.

“Fashion is not necessarily about labels. It’s not about brands. It’s about something else that comes from within you.”

– Ralph Lauren

Stylists are seen as trendsetters. And because of our close relationships with designers and boutiques, most of us have an “early access pass” to their inventory which allows us to stay ahead of the fashion game.

Depending on the occasion, our main goal is to make our client’s style memorable, in a good way of course. From red carpet events to speaking engagements, stylists do more than dress people. We create an image that sticks.

“Fashion is what you’re offered four times a year by designers, and style is what you choose.”

– Lauren Hutton

Some people think stylists aren’t important. Why spend money on a stylist when you can dress yourself, right? Well, just like teachers, stylists educate and inform their clients of ways to dress for their body type, their complexion and their age. Google doesn’t offer you one-on-one shopping sessions that show you how to shop while also staying within your budget. Google also doesn’t tell you what looks good on you and what doesn’t. Trust me, Google doesn’t have all the answers.

Fashion is and always will play an important part in everyone’s life no matter if your’e Beyonce or the manager at Applebees. Your appearance is important and if you look good, you feel good!

If you’re currently in need of a stylist or just need some fashion advice, let SophisticatedChic show you the way!

Send us an email at sophisticatedchicbrand@gmail.com or schedule you’re 30 minute consultation today!

Schedule your consultation HERE

The Look 

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Nude and Yellow Floral Applique Dress: Royaltique (not yet available)

Blush Adidas: DSW

Baby Pink Clutch: American Apparel (old)

Gold Hoops: ALDO (old)

Be Encouraged Tour | The Look

TUESDAY, JUNE 6TH

BE ENCOURAGED TOUR: CHANCE THE RAPPER

ROYAL FARMS ARENA

It’s 3pm on Sunday and I get a notification from Ticketmaster with a reminder about the Chance the Rapper concert….

I can’t believe I forgot! Me and Jordan bought these tickets FOREVER ago. Thank God for calendars 🤦🏾‍♀️

The Look 

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I know nothing about baseball lol

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All the Orioles fans were hating

Bleached Tee: ADayNJune 

Clear Orange Shades: StayxShaded

Navy Blue Trousers: Worthington (gift)

Converse: SRI Shoes (old)

Navy Stripes Crossbody Bag: Thrifted (old)

I found this cool shirt at the recent “Birthday Mixer and Label Release” that took place at ADayNJune in celebration of their 1 year anniversary. I’m always pulling clothes for photo shoots but haven’t really had a chance to find anything for myself. So when Lindsey told me she was having another event, I knew this was the perfect time to support!

The Look 

Denim Pom Pom Dress: Forever 21 (sold out)

Black Ripped Jeans: Nordstrom Rack (old)

Black Cut out Sandals: Uptown Cheapskate

Grey Suede Monogram Clutch: Mark & Graham (gift)

She actually gave me a sneak peak of this new bleached tee shirt and hat line when I visited her boutique a few weeks ago and I fell in LOVE. My style is very clean and chic but sometimes I like to spice it up a little. When I saw this red “Boston” vintage baseball tee, I knew it was perfect.

Congrats Lindsey!

I wish you much success with your boutique. I’ll probably be contacting you in a couple of weeks to pull 😂

Cover Talk with Claire Sulmers

SATURDAY, JUNE 3RD

LORD & TAYLOR

W.O.E MAGAZINE PRESENTS:

COVER TALK WITH CLAIRE SULMERS

There is no glamour without groundwork

– Claire Sulmers

Guess what yall?! I finally met Claire Sulmers! YES. The Claire Sulmers of FashionBombDaily, one of the top 50 influential style blogs in the world for multicultural fashion. Remember when I was featured as “The Bombshell of the Day” in 2016? I was pressed. But this time I was pressed times a thousand.

I made sure I got a photo. I’ve literally been waiting for her to come to Maryland for while so I knew I couldn’t pass up this opportunity.

Look how hard I’m smiling 😂

Stylist United was asked to assist with the spring fashion show at the WOE Magazine: Cover Talk with Claire event. Never heard of WOE Magazine?!

Go check them out here

The Creator/Editor-in-Chief, Ayo Thomas has been in the industry for awhile now but just recently started publishing Woe magazine. She and her WOE team have been working hard to help women reach their full potential and they did just that on Saturday.

We looked so cute in our all black attire

I missed the photo-op 😩

Claire was not only featured on the cover of the latest issue of WOE, but she also allowed the audience to pick her brain with questions about her life, her journey and how she does it all without looking stressed out.

Check out the digital copy here

I wanted to ask her a question but at the time, I had no idea what to ask. I was slightly starstruck and didn’t want to stumble over my words or ask a stupid question. But if I could go back in time, I would ask her…

“How do you know that what you’re doing in life is what you were mean’t to do? Like, I know that life is a journey, but how do you handle the set-backs and the let downs that get in the way you achieving your goals”? “Sometimes, I let my discouragement get the best of me and that doesn’t do anything but make matters worse”.

Claire, if you’re reading this, please answer!

woe-magazine-conversations-with-claire-sulmers-fashion-bomb-daily

As the #bts assistants, we steamed, prepped and primped each look while the models practiced their walks. We removed censors, re-tagged items and made sure the labeled looks for each model were in the right order on the rolling rack.

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It was fun designing these

The event opened up with the fashion show. I swear I wanted to take home every single look! Even the guys outfits were cute! From the floral bomber and dress co-ard to the sexy, satin pajama set, I couldn’t help but to be inspired. I literally wanted everything.

Each look was styled by the fabulous Tamiko White; a style influencer and media personality with a lot of personality. She rocked the event with her Eliza J floral pleated skirt and white sleeveless lace blouse. Yassss!

 At the end of the event, Claire had a book signing! I didn’t purchase a book this time but it’s definitely on my list. In the meantime, I’ll just borrow Tonae’s 🤗

It was definitely a long day for us so we had to end it right. We stopped at PF Changs on the way home and enjoyed a drink and some apps.

Coconut mojito

Crab wontons and King Pao Dragon rolls

Overall, we had an amazing time and met some prominent people that we could possible collaborate with in the future. Yall know I’m all for a good collab!

“When women work together, great things happen”. 

The Look 

Pinstripe Satin Dress: Target

White Tee: Old Navy

Black/Silver Block Heel Sandal: JustFab

Black Choker: Forever 21

Baby Pink Wristlet: NY&Co.

3 Easy Ways to add Prints into your Everyday Wardrobe

So we recently showed you guys how to spice up your look with accessories but, now we’re talking prints!

Summer is coming and it’s the perfect time to rock your bold prints and colors. It’s out with the dark color palette of winter and in with the vibrant hues and fun patterns of summer.

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Photog: Tyrone Wilkens Model: Ria Freeman MUA: Virginia Smith Stylist: #Sophisticatedchic

Adding prints and colors to your wardrobe may seem easy but in reality it’s a difficult task for most of us. No matter how hard we try, we always end up resorting to solids (mainly black) with the thought of wearing any type of pattern or color being intimidating. But this isn’t an excuse to avoid wearing them. There are an abundance amount of ways to work a few colors and patterns into your everyday wardrobe and we’re here to share our top three!

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  1. Start off with one printed piece of clothing then gradually build up from there

Not all prints are meant to be loud. You can take a soft check or plaid top and pair it with a matching solid bottom (pictured above) or a classic pair of denim. When in doubt, wear jeans. Because they’re so versatile, it’ll be easier for you newbies to match any print or color with them.

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2. Match your accessories with your printed/colored item

Even with a bold color/fun print, an outfit can STILL be boring. Take it up a notch by adding in some matching accessories. Here, we paired a vintage navy blue belt with the navy blue polka dot shorts. Matching your accessories to your printed bottoms like this, allows you to pair any color top with your look.

Style Tips:

– Match your shoes with your bottoms

– Match your bag with your belt

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3. Let the print speak for itself 

Printed jumpsuits are our absolute fav way of adding some patterns and colors into a wardrobe without even thinking about. When your dress or jumpsuit is all one print, you can easily pick out one color and play around with it. This particular look can be paired with a navy blue shoe, a green purse or even a red lip.

Wearing patterns should be fun and easy, not stressful!…

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Now for those of you who are familiar with prints and have already been incorporating them into your everyday wardrobe for ions, then our tips are old news to you. So since your’e a pro, have you had any success with mixing prints?

If not, check out our list of style tips on how to mix and match the right way!

Mix & Matching Prints
 

 

 

 

 

Diversifying Industry Standards | MARZ Master Class

It’s time to EDUCATE, ERADICATE and TRANSFORM the industry!

There are countless talented models in the world, but often times they’re blind to what being a model really means and what it takes to conquer the fashion industry. So, they lose weight, bleach their skin and alter their gifted beauty to fit in. Many women and men don’t realize that the sky is the limit and that they don’t have to submit to those industry standards. But unfortunately, this cut throat industry is boxed in by the capacity of a preconceived notion.

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Photographer: @r.stewartphoto Model: @jasmine.nicole.williams Stylist: @tonaelee MUA: @chrissycolour

Often times we’re comparing ourselves to others through the world of media, forcing ourselves into society’s beauty standards, and creating a negative mindset that tells us that we’ll never be good enough. Models who struggle with this tend to forget the sole purpose of fashion, modeling, and the likeness of their journey.

The Marz Enterprise LLC team will serve as the liaison for all clients with a passion to create an outlet of opportunity in the fashion industry. Their core business is the management and industry development of models, photographers, designers, makeup artists and stylists.

Their goal is to revamp the fashion world by creating an inclusive environment that will not limit someone based on their gender, size, ethnicity or height. Marz will take a new approach to managing and marketing talent brands by building a network of prosperity. They plan to build a community that will use a models talents to add to the fashion industry without altering their identity. They will create a pathway for the next super model and diversify the industry.

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The MARZ team will cultivate runway techniques and model call tips when educating others with the skills and preparations needed to succeed in the industry. They will help create simplistic layouts for model portfolios, electronic portfolios, and prepare composition photo cards for various castings. MARZ is also the reliable team for any project whether fashion show, production, and creative directing. They will provide an outlet for individuals to build their self-esteem and create a safe place for the next generation to thrive on the east coast to build an international platform.

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Are you wondering why you aren’t receiving a call back from that model call or go see? Have you been modeling for sometime but still feel stuck? Does your runway walk need to be cleaned up?
Well, MARZ is here to help. Their master class was created to inspire, empower and guide tenured or aspiring models. They want to see you succeed in this cut throat industry even if you don’t meet the typical model standards. You don’t have to be a size 2 or 6 ft. tall in order to be successful.

What’s included:

Model Bag requirements

Model Etiquette

Portfolio Requirements

Full Runway session with critique and Etiquette

Commercial Session

Digitals *not required

Posing

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Purchase your tickets here

Let’s Dream, Create, and Inspire; We vow to empower women to not fit into the standards of beauty but to create their own. We vow to educate, eradicate and transform the industry.