One of the things I love most about getting older is looking at my past. Every hill and valley, joined together, brought me to today. And today is pretty damn good. I know there will be more ups and most certainly downs so I am enjoying this “peak” I am on right now at the end of 2017, particularly when it comes to this little-engine-that-could business, DC Style Factory.
I couldn’t ask for better clients, a more dedicated team, or a more fulfilling career. I am having more fun working today than I have ever had in my life. There is nothing quite like the thrill of watching this business grow and thrive. This past year was our busiest year to date in terms of client volume and business partnerships. As a business owner, I always think it’s important to take a minute to recognize accomplishments, learn from mistakes, and recognize the good work we all did this year. So, without further ado, here are highlights from 2017!
- We worked on nearly 300 closets, shopped a total of almost 400 hours for and with clients, and created 2,000-plus looks for clients in Lookbook, Shop Your Closet and Closet Audit appointments.
- All our stylists more than doubled their business from last year and consistently received positive reviews. Our process, attention to detail, and the care we provide during each of our services is all designed to make our clients’ lives easy. Style matters, but it does not have to be a headache!
- In January I launched a second business — The Stylist Studio — with another local Washington, D.C. personal stylist, Lani Inlander of Real Life Style. We developed a comprehensive introductory two-day training program designed to give up-and-coming personal stylists the nuts and bolts on how to work with clients and start their own businesses. Our first training at Kit & Ace and Betsy Fisher exceeded expectations. Our second intro training with a new group of trainees is in just a couple of weeks!
- In February, we launched our #wednesdaywisdom style tips on Instagram to positive feedback! We are always looking for ways to connect with and provide value to our clients and social media community. We love that you loved these video snippets and we plan to do more in 2018!
- A Washingtonian article featuring one of my long-time clients who decided she wanted to simplify her life and wear the same thing every day went positively viral in March. Her story about creating a signature style uniform with DC Style Factory resonated with people across the country. We continue to field calls every week from people looking for that same polish and ease to their everyday style.
- We produced and participated in 10 style workshops, trainings, fundraisers, and pro-styling events this year with local partners The Hive, Betsy Fisher, Scout & Molly’s, Steadfast Supply, Oak, Girls Night Out, and Current Boutique. We tackled timely style topics such as building a capsule wardrobe, creating a waste-free wardrobe, easy ways to look pulled together everyday, savvy shopping tips to add value to your closet, and more.
- We grew our remote styling business offering the spot-on, personalized work our local clients have come to know and trust to new clients around the country in Arizona, New York, Colorado, and California.
- In June, we embarked on our largest project to date: styling a commercial marketing shoot for Procter & Gamble. The three-day shoot was comprised of 18 models — adults, children and infants. Our team was tasked with conceptualizing looks, shopping for clothing, fitting models, on-set wardrobing and consulting, and much more. DCSF stylists Marisa and Lenà took the lead managing the day-to-day on-set responsibilities. The results were positively gorgeous.
- We strengthened our corporate partnerships with Lenà Burns as lead stylist on multiple portrait and headshot branding sessions with top DC photographer E. Brady Robinson. She also styled and provided image consulting, shopping services, and personal styling to a team of five architects for a high-profile job pitch to a client out West.
- In November, we launched a partnership with a national matchmaking service to provide personal styling and shopping services to its clients.
- We had a banner year at Alexandria Stylebook, styling, shooting and writing style tips each month for some of the most well-read posts at the daily fitness, style and lifestyle newsletter. The most popular post of the year was Five Style Blunders Easily Corrected.
- We appeared in local press and TV segments including a spot on News Channel 8 on how to transition your summer look to fall. We were profiled by local and national bloggers for our work. We are always thankful for the love and recognition that comes our way!
- In December, I partnered with Alison Gary of Wardrobe Oxygen for a style workshop designed to help new political candidates dress for the different events while on the campaign trail. The Dress for Respect workshop covered do’s, and don’ts for new women political candidates canvassing, speaking at town halls, fundraising and more. We traveled to Forth Worth, Texas to work with a group of professional women embarking on their first journey as political candidates. The weekend was one of the most gratifying moments of the year for me as a personal stylist.
We are so thankful for each and every opportunity that has come to us this year. As we close out 2017, I want to say a special thank you to all of you: our clients, our readers, our friends, our cheerleaders. Thank you for always supporting what we do. We love every minute working and connecting with each and every one of you. Happy New Year!