By: Fibre2Fashion.Com

Want to change the way you look? Want some trendy clothes for the season? Never seem to know what to buy and what will look good on you? Hire the services of a fashion stylist.

Fashion stylist � a word unheard of till recently - is one of the emerging professions in the fashion world globally. Who is a fashion stylist? A �fashion stylist�, as the name suggests, works with fashion trends to create a distinct style for a particular individual. The individual can be anyone from a model or a celebrity to a pressed-for-time business person or just anyone who wishes to create a distinct image of himself or herself.

Tasks such as keeping track of the latest trends in fashion, maintaining a network of contacts, deciding what would look good on people, finding suitable dresses and accessories and either hiring or purchasing them, helping people build a wardrobe as well as dressing up people fall under the purview of a fashion stylist.

The services of fashion stylists are generally employed by newspapers, magazines and advertising agencies. In this case, they are required to dress up the models for shoots. A major part of the job involves planning what would look good on each model, deciding from where to buy or hire these dresses and accessories depending on the budget, bringing them to the shoot and actually dressing up the models. They are in charge of generating the kind of image that the newspaper, magazine or advertising agency wishes to portray.

Fashion stylists are also used by celebrities like actors, singers and television hosts. Such stylists are typically referred to as �celebrity stylists�. Their job is to create a distinct image for the celebrity. This may be related to just a particular movie or show or an image change in general. The Oscar-winning Hollywood actresses Meryl Streep and Halle Berry owe their glamorous look to stylist Wayne Scot Lucas. In Bollywood too, fashion designer Manish Malhotra turned fashion stylist for actresses Karisma Kapoor and Rani Mukherjee to give them a new look He worked with both of them and transformed them from just talented actresses to trend-setting starlets.

There is another class of fashion stylists, who are referred to as �personal stylists� or �image consultants�. They work with individuals who need a makeover, a complete change of image. Many businesspersons are going in for the services of personal stylists today to build up a different image. Personal stylists work in close proximity with their clients to determine which style would suit them the most.

Fashion stylists have been known to set new trends in the fashion world. A fashion stylist can give a different look or a hip look to a traditional garment, which can become all the rage in the fashion industry. A stylist can give a celebrity a certain fancy accessory for a certain event and it might become the most-wanted one.

Stylists can be employed by magazines, advertising agencies or celebrities or their services may be hired on a temporary basis, but most stylists work on a freelance basis.

Fashion stylists should have a genuine interest in fashion in order to succeed. They should have an eye for style and keep abreast of the latest trends in the fashion industry. Some stylists have a degree in fashion, while some just learn from experience. There are some fashion schools which offer courses in styling. Stylists should enjoy shopping. They should be detail-oriented. They should have an idea of different colors and shades, different body types and the fit of different materials. They should know what colors suit what skin tones and what material and style would enhance what body type. They should love to experiment and should have the ability to present traditional things in unusual and trendy ways. They should be able to bring out the best in their client. Over and above this, they should have excellent interpersonal skills as they are required to interact with a number of people from models to lighting technicians and photographers. They need to maintain relationships with a large group of people.

If you think it is exciting to work with models, experiment with accessories and garments and be paid to shop, think again. There is a downside to the job of a fashion stylist too. First and foremost, fashion stylists usually work freelance and there is no job security involved. Of course, once stylists prove themselves and get established in the industry, they do not have to worry about this aspect. Initially, a stylist might have to work as an apprentice for an established stylist or work for free.

Competition in the fashion industry is cut-throat and stylists have to make their own mark in order to succeed. The nature of the job entails working long and irregular hours. Working with celebrities who have a demanding schedule makes it difficult for stylists to plan for a social life or a holiday. Moreover, there are other problems like putting up with the attitude of �stars� and working around their schedule.

The stylist has to go through a number of catalogues, fashion magazines and stores to be aware of the in things. In a world where trends change almost every day, this is a very hard task! In the midst of all this, the stylists themselves have to look good all the time and have a distinctive style of their own

A stylist usually has to manage his or her business independently and handle various aspects such as keeping a record of various things, handling budgets, receiving and making payments, maintaining contacts and other administrative tasks.

The work of a fashion stylist requires a lot of planning. Attention has to be paid to every minute detail. One of the biggest challenges faced by fashion stylists is building a balance between their own opinions and the client�s requirements. They should be neither too submissive nor too overbearing. They should be able to present their opinion in a way that does not offend the client.

In spite of certain shortcomings, fashion styling is an exciting career option for people who love fashion. More and more people are realizing the importance of overall image building in boosting self-confidence, which would in turn reflect on the person�s interaction with others. Thus, the number of people turning to fashion stylists is on the rise all over the world.

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