There are those who often been wondering how celebrities always manage to look so good, whether they are on the red carpet, in films, music videos, TV shows or at shoots and find it hard to get it right.
Unknown to many is that they have a secret weapon, stylists, who put together or select the clothing and accessories to help them stand out. Planning your next shoot or you simply want someone to dress you or spice up your wardrobe something that many are too busy to do, just know that you don’t have to be an A-lister to make it work or look fabulous. Theirs is a new stylist in town who has what it takes to reform the norm in Namibian style. Meet Aubrey Tjerivanga, a Windhoek based fashion and personal stylist who works with women and men to help them achieve their ideal image in a fun and enjoyable way. Aubrey dresses individuals focusing on the type of event including photo shoots, music videos, films, talk shows, office wear, ceremonies and much more.
He also does comprehensive evaluation and assist you in organising your wardrobe efficiently by creating a wardrobe that is functional and stylish and reflects your own personal style and branding. As a fashion stylist Aubrey works with local businesses, brands, retailers and shopping centres to develop a positive brand image. He has so far dressed prominent business people, models, individuals as well as some of the biggest stars in Namibia, like Oteya and Gazza.Whether it’s a high-profile celebrity for a red carpet event or someone looking to update her/his wardrobe, Aubrey gives each of his clients the same respect and attention, making him easy to work with and definitely easy to love. Time Out’s Selma Neshiko caught up with this young and ambitious stylist for a peep into his professional life.
How did you discover what it was and how you knew it was what you wanted to do?
I’ve always been passionate about fashion. It’s the one thing I knew this was me. In class I was the top student in class so my parents would say my child need to be a doctor or this. Fashion to them is not a career but after I finished my Grade 12, I studied Information Technology (IT) but it was not working out so I decided to do Vet Science because it will benefit my parents but I realised that I’m lying to myself. I decided to drop out and follow my dreams and that’s where I took the first step, I didn’t care who was against it.
Why is a stylist necessary?
When they go to awards or music video or occasions they just pick things for themselves. They don’t know how crucial it is, how they need someone to pick an outfit for them or dress them. They feel they look good but they need someone to tell them what will look good on them or for your body type. Just coz it looks good on Beyoncé in her music video or wherever, you want to go try it. You don’t have the same body type and that’s why I wanted to be that person in the Namibian fashion industry. It is less stress and more time to focus on other stuff.
Who have you dressed so far?
I’ve worked with Gazza where I did a shoot for him and his wife for simply you magazine. They were impressed with what I did and from there they asked me to dress him for his upcoming shows or events. My dream was to dress Gazza and when I got an opportunity to dress him my dream cAme true. I also worked with Oteya and that’s when they realised they don’t have to stress about their outfit when there is someone there to do that for them. I have personal clients like MDs who don’t get time to do shopping and many others.
At what age did you start becoming fascinated with fashion?
I started at the age of 11. As a kid I knew how to coordinate cloths. My favourite day used to be casual day and it always got me excited. My interest came naturally, it’s not something I studied.
How do see what or how to dress a client?
I first need to know what they shoot or gig is all about. I style people depending on the kind of job they have, the kind of people they meet and the environment they in. I go shopping with this people, interview them in personality, colour wise, and out of what they tell me is what I suggest to them. I’ve never given something to someone to try it on and say that’s not me, they always love it. We don’t have personal shoppers, people see it in movies but we can make it happen.
How do you stay updated on the current trends?
I watch a lot of Etv, celebrity style stories, what’s trending, social media, fashion week. Attending fashion shows
Why did you decide to start your own business against working for someone else?
Being your own boss is the best thing ever. I like working with someone rather than for someone. You don’t have to answer to anyone and you [are] building your own empire.
What was the most difficult part of starting your business?
Getting people to trust you or convince people that you are consistent. I work with local designers to promote them but getting them to trust me with their garments is challenging. Building the trust is difficult but once built things become easy. Also people don’t want to pay for full services, not knowing that I need to buy accessories to go along with the different outfits and all necessities.
Can you name any moment of failure that you learned something from or that helped you improve your business or the way you work?
I see failure as something good. I can’t dwell in it. If one door closes I knock on the other. I don’t waste time. I just start, hustle hard and prove that I’m worth it.
Can you name your greatest success?
Stylist Gazza is like the biggest so far. I want him to go to the Grammy’s or awards and say I’ve been dressed by Aubrey. It’s a good credit to my business.
What’s the first app, website or thing you open/do in the morning?
Instagram and Pinterest are so to date. I sometimes get my inspiration from there.
What are your plans for the future? Where do you see yourself taking your styling career?
I want to be one of the top Namibian celebrity stylists. I want to style TV personalities, ministers, artists, actors, etc. I want them to live the stress work of what to wear to me and focus on other things. I want to dress at least four celebrities for the Kora awards, I want them to look so different and people won’t even notice that they were dressed by one person. I want to be that person everyone wants to go to and I know they will not look the same.
Name the top three things in your styling kit that are must-haves?
Lip balm, sun glasses and mini ready to go bag with cosmetics and necessities.
What else do you do besides styling?
Fashion in Namibia is not something big, it’s not something one can make a living out of and that’s why I enrolled into a piloting school. I want to style and still do my job.
Wise words for aspiring stylist?
Let other people inspire you, don’t be like them. Learn from them and do your own thing. No one said it’s going to be easy, just keep your head above the water.
Where can people find you?
Contact: Aubrey.firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0817498101