Q&A with Stylist Kathryn Edmonds

Kathryn Edmonds is a Senior Stylist and Creative Partner at id couture since 2012. Kathryn is a trained and qualified freelance fashion designer, visual Merchandiser, Personal Stylist/shopper and trend & Image consultant. She has nearly a decade of industry experience. She has worked with some of the biggest names in fashion retails, and offers services to both local and national clients. With her lovely personality, her work is much valued in the fashion industry.

1.Tell us about your career and how you became a stylist?

I’ve always loved dressing up and experimenting with my own style. Ever since I was a little girl, I would rummage through the ‘dress-up box’ at home. It had a range of funny fancy dress items in there that Mum would add to over the years. But I think my REAL obsessed began during high school when I would watch the RAQ Fashion Awards on TV, and I would LOVE seeing all the up & coming fashion designers showcasing their collections on the runway – I was mesmerized and knew, back then – that I was going to work within the fashion industry, in some capacity.

I started out as a Fashion Designer and I had my own womenswear label in 2008 for approx. 3 years but eventually I found that my love for styling overtook my love for all the stresses that came with running a fashion label. I felt it was a great balance. I still got to work with fashion – yet I wasn’t limited to just MY OWN designs, I can the luxury of working with multiple brands and businesses and essentially, as a natural ‘people person’ this was much more rewarding for me.

2.What inspires you?

Now days I can find inspiration in the strangest of places. Back in the early days, I was very much inspired by visual aspects of Travel, Art, Fashion Trends, runway shows etc. I still do find those things a constant source of inspiration.  I also find that meeting new people and having conversations that make me think on a deeper and higher level. Experiencing something that makes me “FEEL” a certain sensation can really inspire the way I look at an overall image now. I love to be able to conjure up an ‘emotion’ or a ‘feeling’ in the images I style. If a woman can look at one of my styled outfits in an editorial and feel ‘empowered’ or ‘strong and confident’ than that to me is a hugely gratifying and rewarding feeling.

3.How would you describe personal style?

It has evolved with age and time, but right now my style is quite minimal and monochrome. I still love a bit of structure and soft tailoring, but I have managed to incorporate that into my day-to-day wardrobe without it being too dressy. So soft collared button-up silk shirts, styled with the sleeves rolled up for a more effortless look, worn back with a fitted leather pencil skirt and some killer ankle boots  – that’s me!.

4. Who are your favourite fashion designers?

I love Australian Fashion. Some of my favorite designers are from Australia such as Dion Lee, Tony Makschefski & Thurley Official.  I also love some of the big international designers too like Tom Ford, Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen.

5.What is a typical day at a styling job?

There is never a ‘typical day’ in the styling world, and that’s what I love about my industry. Every day, every client, every shoot brings a whole new energy and experience. But, I guess there are always some constants and they would be the prep that goes into a shoot consists of lots of research, sourcing, garment prep and adjustments, fittings, location scouting and model castings to name a few.

6.How do you stay updated on the current trends?

My methods of keeping up to date have evolved over the years. Back when I started out in fashion officially – I had access to ‘Trend Forecasting’ websites as a student designer. I would draw a lot of inspiration from my overseas travels and the places I would visit. Now that I am in a different faze of my life and career, I tend to keep up to date ensuring I am aligned with the right fashion sources (both digitally and manually) that are leaders within the field. I follow lots of great international bloggers, forums & forecasting sites as well as having close relationships to leading retailers that are always up to date with the new trends.

7. What tips do you have for aspiring stylists?

Never be afraid to add your OWN stamp to your work. In fact, it’s super important that you DO or else it is easy to get lost in the sea of thousands of other aspiring stylists who are doing the exact same thing as you. You want to be able to create a bit of a ‘trademark’ for your work, something that is recognizable by others when they see it. It could be that ALL of your shoots incorporate pieces from emerging & up and coming labels (rather than all high-end, well known brands) this was something I used to do a lot of, being a Fashion Designer myself, I loved nothing more than to get other emerging designers involved in my shoots by helping them gain exposure for their work via a feature in a fashion editorial I styled. It’s nice to be able to give back where possible.

8.What do you love the most about your job?

I love that I get to meet and work with REAL people on a daily basis. I love the variety of working with a model on a fashion set one day, then a busy mum for a styling session the next day. Connecting with them all as individuals and hearing their stories and what makes them who they are. Everyone has their own story and I thrive of that one-on-one connection.

9.What do you think is challenging in this industry?

There are LOTS of challenges in this industry (as with all industries). In fashion in particular commands a certain type of personality type to withstand the sometimes harsh and brutally fickle nature of our field. One minute you can be the ‘hot favorite’ and you might be getting a constant flow of great quality work, the next you can hear crickets and there’s no work to be seen. It’s totally up to the individual to embrace a sense of self belief and tenacity to continue to build strong relationships and networks in order to maintain that constant flow of work, especially as a ‘freelance stylist’. It’s having a ‘likeability’ and ‘relatability’ to your approach whilst still know your stuff that will ensure you are kept busy as a stylist.

10.Main style tips and shopping tips for your clients?

I always tell my clients, don’t be a slave to trends – by all means, incorporate the ones you like into your existing style, but don’t EVER forget your own personality and style for a ‘fly away trend’.  Know what pieces to ‘invest in’ each season and how they can be worn with multiple pieces in your wardrobe to gain maximum value.

Kathryn is available for styling bookings, fashion workshops and design consultations. For your next styling projects please get in touch HERE

Check out Kathryn’s Instagram & website.

By Atifa Castillo Khani

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