I Do Windows

Window Dresser v. Fashion Stylist

Posted in Fashion 49, Fashion 54A, Fashion Styling, Learn from the Pros by Arcadia on January 31, 2013

Lately students have been asking which of my two classes should they take?  They can’t decide if they should focus on visuals or styling?  I scratch my head with a bemused look and say why not do both!?!

Some give me an incredulous look and say, “really?”   I reply, “think about it, what’s the difference, between the two jobs?”

A visual person is a stylist ,and stylists do visuals.  I guess most people never really thought about it, but it’s true.  It’s how I can teach both subjects – the skill set is interchangeable.  If you can dress a mannequin, you can dress a model.  If you can prop a window, you can prop a set.  Both employ the principles of design, take loads of creativity, and are hard work.  Sure there are some differences to working in a store, as opposed to a photo shoot, but we are all cut from the same cloth.

I’ve had a few arguments with myself trying to decide which is harder, visuals or styling?  Sometimes visuals win the argument, and sometimes styling.  When doing a store, it’s very physically demanding, but there’s fewer people I have to deal with, as I change out mannequins, set-up interior displays, or do floor sets.  I oftentimes, just follow my store directives and do my thing!  When styling there’s a lot of people on set, but the atmosphere is very fun, jobs are almost always catered, it’s not too physically demanding (unless you are a prop stylist, and working with big items), and you get to play with clothes all day.

Which is more fun?  Only you can answer that.  I don’t really like styling as much as I like building and making things, so visuals win out for me every time!  Yet visuals can get boring if you work for a chain retailer, because you don’t get to be as creative as the old days.  Now you just follow a store directive and almost everything is sent to you to assemble and install.  Freelance projects is when you get to use your own ideas.

Styling still requires your creative skills, as the client is looking to you to bring their idea to life – so this can be really fun!

You will find that lots of visual folk, freelance as stylists, or are repped by an agent for styling work, and some stylists also do the occasional window.  You should too!

bracelets_on_display

Is this a display of bracelets in a jewelry case at a store, or was this image ripped from a magazine?

makeup_plate

Is this a makeup display in a cube at a store ,or was this image ripped from a magazine?

For both images above does it matter?  They could have easily been created by either a visual display person or a fashion stylist!

(images via Pinterest)

 

2 Responses

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  1. julie gejeian said, on February 3, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    hi arcadia~~ i accidently unsubscribed from your blog. hopefully, this will resubscribe me. thanks for the great blog!!

  2. MichelleAndrea (@curlygirlmimi) said, on June 6, 2013 at 7:37 am

    Having come across this blog post, and reading it I am really thankful that you wrote it. It offers a lot of insight as I’ve recently started researching visual merchandising and other surrounding subjects. I’m adding your blog to my favourites list.


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