As most of you can tell through my profiles, I think art can be pretty much everything we use every day. Our dishes, or napkins, or clothes! Someone who shares this mindset is Scarlet Chamberlin, who owns Scarlet Chamberlin Styling Co. While she occasionally styles for brands, her main job is personal styling for regular women and men who want her help. I think the reason she has been so successful and built her business to the level she has is her belief that what she is doing is art.
Their bodies are the canvas and their wardrobes are the paints. My stylist perspective is the paint brush. This is my dream job.
Right? This perspective on work is probably the goal for most of us! Scarlet has got some of the best energy I’ve ever been around, and she puts it to use helping people find beauty and confidence.
Let’s talk about this sick studio. Dream space!! Photographing here was about as easy as it gets, just big natural light for days. At the studio Scarlet does a lot of different things. She goes through all the clothes she gets from closet overhauls for individual clients. Scarlet will go to a new client’s home and sort through their closet. She tells her clients not to pre-sort or hide things from her!
I want to know why you loved that item. It helps define the direction you are going.
She takes away anything that doesn’t work. Two local consignment stores, Seams to Fit and Modo, drop by Scarlet’s studio on a weekly basis to go through these bags of extra clothes. Anything not consigned gets donated to Rose Haven, a day shelter for women and children. She also does alterations in the studio, so it all happens here from start to finish.
Scarlet has many local designers whose clothes she loves and recommends often. She has racks of their things available to try on and work with right in the studio. I don’t know about you, but how incredible does this all sound?? Wouldn’t you rather try on clothes here in this sun-lit killer studio, with someone giving their honest opinion on sizing and color and cut and what to wear together? Instead of a cramped changing room in a store with someone working on commission? Yes. It’s no wonder she has clients all over the country. Scarlet also carries her favorite local jewelry designers as well.
I asked Scarlet if she only works with people with big clothing budgets, and it turns out she’s worked with clients as young as 18 who are headed off to college and shopping at Forever 21.
I think if I can get young people started early thinking about choosing quality over quantity, not choosing everything, but the right things for them, that’s a foundation that will help for the rest of their lives.
She likes to encourage people to think about the impact that they could have with their money on the world through their purchases. One way to do this on a budget is to shop second hand, which Scarlet is a huge fan of. People can find clothing that is made really well and unique, and fits perfectly through alterations. One of the current trends Scarlet is a fan of is a “capsule wardrobe” which means only having a few items each season that you are wearing over and over in different ways. I absolutely love this concept and witnessed it all the time when I was working in the magazine world in NYC. European editors would always wear the same thing over and over even days in a row, but what they were wearing was super rad and high end and so they always looked good. I try to follow that example still. For example, this winter instead of buying 3 sweaters, I splurged on one really good one and wear it EVERYWHERE. I put different shirts underneath during the day, and go sleeveless at night.
Scarlet is involved in many dynamic groups like Pantsuit Nation. I went to an event she hosted at her studio before the Women’s March in January and it was super cool to see her in action. Scarlet has an energy and warmth that is impossible to replicate. I am completely inspired by the way she blends her work with her passions and beliefs. It reminds me of something I’ve read about Picasso, that what he did was what he was. His life and his art were the same thing.
Something new Scarlet is starting this year she calls Style Social. It’s a great event idea for 15-20 people. Everyone brings a few items from home they either love and want to wear more, or aren’t sure if they even should be wearing! Scarlet leads the conversation from those items to bodytype, where to shop in Portland, where to shop online, items that people need to fill in the gaps, all while having so much fun in the studio. Think music, drinks, and clothes. Obviously this event has girls night written all over it, I can’t wait to organize one with my girlfriends. But what also popped into my mind is a work-event for any office who thinks it might be fun to step up their wardrobe game. The confidence people gain by the clothes they wear should never be underestimated. Especially for men who don’t enjoy shopping, this would be an amazing way to get their game plan for dressing. Reach out to Scarlet here for more information!
Be sure to share this post with anyone you think would love to hear about Scarlet or might be interested in working on their clothes!!
Thank you Scarlet!