Over the past five years, having a personal fashion stylist became a trend in Saudi Arabia. Hala Al Harithy is a stylist based in Jeddah.
She is a wife and mother of two boys and lived most of her life in the United States. She studied psychology, but was always passionate about fashion.
“I started about a year and a half ago when I decide to take a course in styling and realized it was what I wanted to do.
The first company I worked with was the well renowned fashion house Ralph Lauren,” Al Harithy told Saudi Gazette.
Al Harithy explained that throughout her career, working with many globally renowned brands such as Cartier, Burberry and Ralph Lauren to name a few, is a great accomplishment.
Talking about her educational background in fashion, she said she was trained at the Sterling Style Academy based in New York.
“Of course everyday hands-on training with the Middle East clientele and big businesses help with fashion consulting,” she added.
However the Psychology major said it helped her in understanding customers’ needs. “Psychology compliments my job really well.
In order to understand people’s needs and requirements when it comes to personal styling and makeovers I find that my psychology degree allows me to better understand my clients and also how fashion is run in the Kingdom,” she added.
As a stylist, Al Harithy believes that knowing the customer’s personality and lifestyle is very important and essential to create the perfect individual wardrobe for each client.
“You come across both types of women. The ones who trust you fully and need a complete change and others who like to stick to their comfort zones and are not able to change their style or taste too much,” Al Harithy said.
“One thing I have noticed about women in our society is that they are much more private about hiring a stylist than women in the West, who consider it a luxury to have a stylist and may even boast about it.
The art of the job is the same, but of course with the cultural differences there have to be tweaks.” According to Al Harithy, Saudi stylists have to work harder to prove themselves because it is a new field.
“But on the upper hand, we get to work directly with major fashion brands that every girl dreams of.” She said being a Saudi stylist opens doors to lots of fashion and luxury designers, as well as getting to know new upcoming designers.
“While also allowing us to be creative by combining our culture with fashion,” she added. One of the main struggles is the perception about stylists in Kingdom.
“I found that it took a while for people to understand and accept what a stylist is and actually does. Maneuvering in the market is a challenge since it’s a new endeavor yet the opportunities are vast and flourishing in the kingdom.
As any other field there are do’s and don’ts that you realize you should implement.” Al Harithy prefers to focus on styling women only.
“The latest trends are available within reach whether through new boutiques opening around the Kingdom, online Saudi sites, or through social media and especially by the talented Saudi fashion designers who are making us proud.”
Al Harithy is working on creating the first styling house in the Kingdom that provides fashion and image consultancy services as well as courses in styling for those eager to learn.
You can schedule an appointment with her via email. She prefers to keep payment details private.
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