Interview with Celebrity Stylist Miquelle West
Just as her biography tells us, Miquelle West was born into the world of fashion- and she fits right in.
Miquelle’s life of fashion began at just a few days old, when she left the hospital and made her debut into the world wearing Christian Dior. Her early love for fashion was cultivated throughout childhood, with dress ups, runway modeling and eventually landing a dream first job at Saks Fifth Avenue. Her hard work payed off when she has scouted for a full time role at a luxury fashion brand, before later becoming the protégé of super stylist Patricia Field, best known for her work styling the cast of Sex and the City on set.
Miquelle’s steady rise to the top has not been without challenges, her mother was incarcerated when Miquelle was ten, leaving a huge void in her life, but eventually inspiring her even more to succeed. Miquelle is now based in New York City and is a successful celebrity stylist, luxury goods specialist and blogger, amongst other talents.
Here, Miquelle gives us some insight into her world.
Your twitter account (@IAMFASHION) is indicative of a woman with strong drive to succeed- how have the challenges you experienced during childhood shaped your attitude towards your career?
The fact that a lot of people did not expect me to succeed in life has fuelled my desire to prove them wrong. My attitude towards my career has, and will always be, that failure is not an option for me.
You have an impressive work history- what is your biggest career highlight thus far?
Learning and working with the best wardrobe stylist in the business – Patricia Field. She is my mentor. I can pick up the phone and call her anytime for advice or guidance. Pat saw my potential and gave me my first opportunity to work on television and film. I had the opportunity to sit front-row with her during New York Fashion Week- it doesn’t get any better than that!
How would you describe your personal style?
I go for a minimalist, rocker-chic approach to fashion. It really depends on my mood but I always keep it classy. I’m an uptown girl with a downtown edge.
What is your favorite part of the job?
I am a very artistic person, so I love to create. My favorite part of my job is collaborating with my clients, discussing their personal style, and then bringing that vision to life. If the client doesn’t have a clue, I help them understand fashion and find their personal style.
Can you share some insight with us into the world of celebrity styling?
Celebrities are real people so they have insecurities like everyone else. They may even have more insecurity because they live their lives in the public eye. I have integrity, so I keep their secrets to myself, but I will share this- women are not honest about their size but men are always upfront about their actual size, which makes my job a lot easier!
What is inspiring you at the moment?
I find inspiration when travelling abroad. Later this year I will be backpacking all over Asia, starting in the Philippines, looking for new ideas. I would love to visit Australia one day.
What’s next for Miquelle West?
Everything and anything fashion related. I’d like to do more styling for men, and some red carpet looks. I’d also like to style for some big screen movies.
CELEBRITY INSPIRED STYLE FOR REAL PEOPLE with Miquelle West
Five secrets to nailing a polished celebrity look without breaking the bank
‘Polished’ is the key word, says Miquelle and it must be from head to toe.
1) Find a hairstyle that fits your personality and facial structure.
2) Pick a look that reflects your own personal style without imitating what you see. ‘Dress for yourself, not for an image, women, or men’ – Coco Rocha. Online stores like net-a-porter.com and high street chains like H&M and Top Shop offer the latest fashion trends at affordable prices.
3) Your biggest splurge should be on a fierce pair of shoes.
4) Always remember- you wear the clothes so don’t let your clothes wear you- get them tailored to fit by a professional.
5) Lastly, no look is completely ‘polished’ without a fresh mani-pedi.
Celebrity trends we can all pull off this season
There are lots of trends on the fashion horizon. Here are some that will be sticking around for a while longer:
1) Leather- one of my favorite classic trends- seen here on Salma Hayek, says Miquelle. Garments with PU Leather trim are an affordable way to carry this trend.
2) Menswear-inspired looks are here to stay for while too. Rita Ora wore a white trouser suit by Alexander McQueen on the cover of the November (2012). She is definitely on my fashion radar! Combine tailored shapes with some structure and keep in monochrome to look bang on trend this season.
3) 90s grunge is back. It’s the style that put Marc Jacobs on the map and later got him fired from Perry Ellis and was shown on the runway for Louis Vuitton in fall. I’m not sure if Mackelmore and Ryan Lewis’ song Thrift Shop inspired this trend- but I predict it will be big. Scour second hand stores for 90s gear, team it with boots and a bright lipstick to keep it fresh.
Number one celebrity inspired investment piece? The Bentley of all hand bags, the Hermes Birkin bag inspired by celebrity Jane Birkin. It’s the ultimate ladies status symbol and arm candy.