Lucy Ansa-Addo – Stylist
So i’m up at 8am and its a Monday morning…. I have a casting to be a Hipster Groom at 9:25am before i go to meet Lucy to shoot her sportswear looks at 11:30am. I carry on about my business and all the while i keep on going over the questions i’ve prepared for Lucy in my head. Soon enough, i’m out the house, done with my first casting and en route to North Greenwich to work with Lucy.
I spoke to her a couple of days back to ask if i could feature her on my blog and she was nice enough to say yes!! I’m obviously really excited about this because this is my first interview with a stylist or anyone for that matter. Over the phone she sounds like a really chilled out person, and most importantly a happy one. So we go over a few details and talk about the shoot ahead.
Its about noon now and it seems as though everyone is running late due to traffic and the public transport system in London. When we finally meet, i extend my hands out to give her a hug and she does give a good genuine hug (very rare these days). I feel a certain comfortability with her and i immediately see why she has done well for herself so far. She had a smile on constantly and despite the fact she’s been up all night sewing, she’s also very energetic. Such joy and contentment comes from enjoying what you do. This is very evident!! Lucy loves what she does and has a true passion for it!!
Shystie‘s in the building and while she’s getting hair and make-up, i chill with her manager Christian and we talk about a few things. Simultaneously, i quickly email Lucy the questions i’ve prepared for her as we won’t have time to have a sit and go over them personally… here’s what Lucy had to say…
-What made you want to be a stylist? And how did you get your start? Also, can you tell me a little about yourself and fashion background?
I decided I wanted to be a stylist after I felt a number of musicians/celebrities were either dressing alike or wearing the same designer brand. A lot of them just needed a stylist that would be up for any challenge. I also wanted to offer a platform to showcase independent designers like myself and to style clients with one thing in mind- to stand out from the crowd.
I started through doing work experience at the age of 15 with renowned fashion designer Bruce Oldfield- he’s designed for the likes of the late Princess Diana, Sienna Miller, majority of the royal family, Rihanna, Joan Collins to name a few. I went on to assist other world class celebrity stylists all whilst still in school.
I’m also a fashion and print designer currently studying Fashion Sportswear at London College of Fashion. I’m also a singer/songwriter.
-seeing as you have worked with artists and I would assume on a film set, run me through how you get your brief to when the director says “action”. Basically, what is a typical day for you on set?
Styling a film is one thing I haven’t done yet funny enough, I have styled music videos, lookbooks etc and assisted.
Before the shoot is arranged I usually get a brief either via email or last minute on the phone, sometimes I have less than 2 days to prep but I manage. A typical day for me on set involves the client/model getting their hair and make up done. I’ll have the garments out on the rail with accessories and shoes, I will then go through the looks with the photographer, then literally start shooting- it does depends on the team, also sometimes you have to just think of the look on set.
-what inspires your styling? Any stylists in particular?And do you design as well?
I’m inspired by a lot of things but mainly, art, music, various cultures and books, I also use this inspiration for when I’m putting together a moodboard for a shoot. You can be inspired by anything in this world there’s so much going on at once you just need to find it yourself!
Yes, I design aswell. My bomber jackets have been seen so far on girl group Stooshe and Ruby Goe.
– how important is fashion week to your work? Or is it more about relationships with showrooms?
Usually when fashion week is on I’m always busy either at a shoot or prepping for one so I missed the recent one. Plus, it doesn’t seem as exclusive as it used to be.
I would say relationships with showrooms/PRs/designers are extremely important and a lot of stylists try and keep their contacts to themselves just because you can’t dress your client without these contacts, only unless you’re a designer yourself.
-is there a difference in approach to styling a man and woman? What’s your preference?
I love styling both men and women- I don’t have a preference but I would say men are slightly easier to dress depending on the project. However, I’ve styled a male athlete before and that was a challenge mainly because of their size but I would style both anyday!
– would you call yourself a celebrity stylist Considering you have worked with a few in your career? What are your views on that term ‘celebrity stylist’?
Ahhh good question! I personally don’t like the phrase, yes I have styled a number of celebrities but I feel like there’s more I’d like to do before I would call myself one. Anyone can be a celebrity these days so maybe there should be a new name given lol.
-can you name your biggest styling achievement?
So far it’s been styling girl group Stooshe and getting my design on them. Published in Dazed and Confused, seeing my styling in the U.S. 106 & park and styling Shystie- I was listening to her music when I was in school so it’s so cool to have the opportunity to work with her and call her a great friend!
-what do you think about using social media? Do you like to share your work?
Social media is the best way to promote yourself as a stylist and/or designer. I love sharing my work it’s good just as long as no one steals your images as their own lol.
– do you have any advice for aspiring fashion stylists?
A lot of people call themselves stylists these days but it’s not just about putting clothes/looks together it’s more than a job it has to be something you can never part with. I would say get experience assisting world class stylists not just anyone and not just a summer experience but at least 2-3 years because it’s not easy role.
– what 3 items in your wardrobe can’t you live without?
My Nike hi-top trainers (very comfortable and stylish for any season), also my white bomber jacket and trainer wedges- I love comfortable things as I’m always in Uni or styling so comfort is everything. Ohh and my trapstar beanie hat (damn it’s especially good for my bad hair days)!
– what shops/must see places would you recommend?
Right now there’s a number of online lifestyle sportswear independent designers that are releasing amazing designs such as http://www.swgnt.com
ASOS.com – have some pretty dresses and jewellery (I always buy my outfits from here)- their prints are beautiful!
– what are your favourite designers?
Currently it’s Katie Eary, Matthew Miller and Elie Saab- I love streetwear for the comfort and prints and I love couture for the detail and time those designers put in.
-very randomly, did you play doll house and dress up when you were growing up?
Yes I did! Always rocking my mummy’s jewellery and trying on her heels!
I would like to thank Lucy for taking the time to answer my questions despite the fact she’s busy as a bee and i hope all your goals and ambitions come to pass. Hope you’ve enjoyed this as much as i did working with her.
Much Love, P.