Born and currently based in one of the most prestigious fashion capitals – New York, Kanayo Ebi is an uprising wardrobe stylist and image consultant. She has had amazing opportunities to work with many stars such as the daughters of Run DMC’s Rev, Vanessa and Angela Simmons of the MTV reality TV show, Daddy’s Girls, ANTM Cycle 6’s winner, Dani Evans, former American Idol contestant, Joanne Borgella, Monique Coleman and Adrienne Bailon.
Not only that, but she has worked for many fashion shows and publications such as Teen Vogue, Tatler magazine, Hype Hair magazine, The Saturday Telegraph Magazine styling the glamorous Kate Winslet and much more! With this fashionista living by the very true fashion quote, “It’s not a hobby; it’s a lifestyle”, we get a lucky insight behind her love of fashion, approach to styling and tips for breaking into the fashion industry!
RV: What inspired you to become a stylist?
KE: My love and passion for fashion; I love all things fashion. It excites me; I love to shop, create and put together outfits. I love being inspired and coming across new fashion finds. Most importantly, I love making people feel good about themselves and being a part of their style evolution.
RV: Tell us about your individual style…
KE: I would say is rocker/bohemian chic. I like simple and edgy pieces; pieces that I can easily transform from day to night. Also, I am an accessory addict. I believe that accessories can make or break an outfit, and it’s the key to pulling an entire outfit together.
RV: Who do you draw influences from?
KE: Everything influences me; different cultures, architecture, food, animals, plants etc. Also, living in New York City definitely helps as well. People here express themselves so freely when it comes to fashion – it’s truly an extension of who they are.
RV: Fashion is…
KE: in everything and anything! Coco Chanel said it best, “Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street; fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.” That’s what makes it so fascinating – you can get influenced by just about everything. It’s universal.
RV: What has been your best moment professionally?
KE: Honestly I cherish each moment in my career but if I absolutely had to narrow it down, I would have to say when I worked as the stylist with Kate Winslet for the cover of the Saturday Telegraph Magazine. That was definitely an exciting moment because it was when I was just really starting out and getting to work with and under such influential people in the fashion industry.
RV: Tote bags or clutches?
KE: Definitely a tote or hobo bag. I only carry clutches when I absolutely have to, mostly to very formal occasions but even then, sometimes I still rebel.
RV: What trend should we look out for this autumn/winter?
KE: Definitely lots of mixing of prints and patterns. The menswear, military trend and colours are definitely sticking around for the fall, so it’s not just going to be the boring old blacks and browns. Furs, leathers and also just simply accents of leather on blazers, jackets and pants too!
RV: Name your worst fashion faux pas…
It was back in the day, in my Tomboy phase during the Tommy Hilfiger craze days. I used to have those Tommy two-coloured button downed men shirts and it was so ill fitted (baggy clothes were in then). I paired them with the worst mum jeans, and Kangol but funnily enough I’d probably wear the shirt again with better fitted jeans.
RV: What is the most treasured item in your closet?
KE: I would have to say all my vintage bags I acquired from my mother’s closet; a Ferragamo bag, a quilted small Chanel bag, and vintage Louis Vuitton tote.
RV: What advice and tips do you have for any young, aspiring person trying to pursue a career in fashion?
KE: Persistence and Perseverance! This industry looks oh-so glamorous and while it does have its perks, there’s so much that goes into it. Build & stay inspired. Networking is very important, find someone you can work under/learn from. Believe in yourself and your talent – people may not understand or share your vision but as long as you know what you have to offer and have the drive and vision, just keep going at it. There are also a lot of sacrifices pursuing your dream; lots of free work, sometimes no work and most of the time you have to start from the bottom. It will all pay off and come together. So stay driven!
There you go ladies! I was totally excited about this feature – Kanayo is fabulous stylist and friend. Catch up with her if you can by clicking the follow button on twitter and reading her blog. I hope you girlies learnt a thing or two. Enjoy fashion Angels.