Interview with a Stylist – Part 1

Annie Aldworth has been a stylist and photo producer in Toronto for 20+ years. She’s worked with some great fashion photographers on some outstanding brands and for all the big city Unknownretailers. I got together with her for drinks and biz chat.

modacarta: When and how did you get started as a stylist?

Annie Aldworth: In my last year of Fashion at Ryerson University, we had a co-op stint where I met Marilyn Toombes, a freelance stylist. I asked her what a stylist was and from her description, I knew I had found my career. She was a wonderful mentor.

mc: What brands/retailers have you worked for?

AA: When I started out I did a lot of catalog work for Eaton’s, Hudson’s Bay, then gradually moved on to more editorial work for WedLuxe and advertising work for Sporting Life. I have also done Pro bono work for the Herbie Fund. They published The Oceania Magazine.

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SCAN019mc: What’s changed about the business?

AA: When I was starting in the business the client (brand or retailer) directed the look and the clothes were super styled – extremely severe. We had to stuff everything to create a smooth appearance – they didn’t let anything drape or flow. Now it is far more free – the client still directs but the styling of clothing is freer­ garments flow.  To gain recognition a stylist needs to have a presence on social media. Frequent posting photos of your work especially on Instagram.

mc: Tools of the trade?

AA: One of the most important things a stylist must be able to do, is notice what no one else will. Every small detail.  You have to be open minded but focus on a finished look.

mc: Is there a photo or image that you saw that you never forgot? That really made an impression on you?

AA: Not one particular image but collectively the work of Avedon. He made beautiful pictures. There was an elegance to all his images. Very graphic.

mc: What’s a trick of the trade to taking a good photo?

AA: Holding a white card at chest level to reflect light onto your face. We call it Œ”Phil”

Read Part 2 with Annie on Fashion, the Costume Institute at the MET and style.

Photos

Annie – personal photo

3 images from Annie’s portfolio

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