Fashion has a tendency to be overwhelming for many people. There are a lot of trends floating around, and it can be hard to pinpoint what your style is, not to mention which clothes are most flattering for your body. Fashion is powerful though, because when you look good, you feel good. When you feel good, you can go out into the world and do good. It really is so much more than cool clothes.
Enter Katie Schuppler. She's the CEO and owner of KS Style Consulting, which offers style consulting to men and women around Chicago and Southeastern Wisconsin. She does closet clean-outs, personal shopping, look books – the list goes on. But really, Katie is helping people be their best selves by starting with their wardrobes.
Check out my Q&A with Katie to find out more about her and KS Style Consulting:
My Midwest Is Showing: What's a normal day like for you?
Katie Schuppler: There isn't really a "normal" day for me; it's always different! But usually I wake up to answer emails, work on my blog, and head to my appointments for the day, and at night I stop by Chicago fashion events that are going on.
MMWIS: What skills did you learn in college and/or previous positions have proven to be helpful at KS Style Consulting?
KS: My marketing and business classes in college were most valuable to me in school. You really can’t teach someone how to style, it’s something you get or you don’t and I truly believe it can’t be taught. You can learn the “rules” of fashion, but that doesn’t translate to an entire look. Also, working at Fred Boutique as their Style Director taught me how to work with client’s one on one and give them the best and most personable experience.
MMWIS: What's your number one style tip?
KS: Dress for your body type!
MMWIS: What's the biggest style mistake you see people make?
KS: The biggest style mistake I see most make is piling on more clothing because you feel bigger. More is more and adding more bulk to parts of your body that you are self conscious about will only create a larger look.
MMWIS: Favorite part of your job?
KS: My favorite part of my job is helping men and women find their personal style and seeing the smiles on their faces when they feel comfortable in what they are wearing.
MMWIS: Least favorite part?
KS: I would say the driving is the worst part because Chicago traffic is so awful!
MMWIS: Greatest business accomplishment so far?
KS: It sounds lame, but I feel like every time I get a raving email from a client on how I have changed so much in their wardrobe and self confidence, it feels like the greatest accomplishment over and over again.
MMWIS: What advice would you give to someone who wants to start their own business?
KS: The one thing I always say is to be willing to work for free...A LOT. I know that it can be the hardest thing in the world to do that but there isn’t a entrepreneur out there that wouldn’t say they only get paid for a few hours that they work and the rest is unpaid. In fashion especially you have to work even harder to stand out these days!
MMWIS: Tell me about your Style Contributor role at Chicago Woman Magazine.
KS: I am a Style and Beauty Editor for the magazine and I write pieces for the online magazine as well as one editorial piece for every print issue. The women that are a part of this magazine are so amazing, welcoming, and inspirational. I feel very lucky to be a part of Chicago Woman and among such great company!
MMWIS: What are you currently reading? Watching? Listening to?
KS: Reading books isn’t really my thing, but reading lots of fashion magazines and local Chicago magazines is! I watch basically everything on Bravo and am currently probably the only person in the world who is watching the show “LOST” on Netflix for the first time.
MMWIS: If someone was visiting Chicago for the first time, what would you tell them to do first?
KS: I think walking Michigan Avenue is a MUST! But, I would say to window shop there and travel to Gold Coast and/or Bucktown to shop the neighborhood franchises and local stores that way you get a better feel for the city.
MMWIS: You're originally from Wisconsin – what are the biggest differences between there and Chicago?
KS: I think the style and want for fashion is much greater in Chicago than in Wisconsin. I would love if Wisconsin got more higher end stores or boutiques like Chicago so that people could be exposed to that more and want it.
MMWIS: Favorite thing about the Midwest?
KS: The people! There's nothing like the people here, their morals, way of life, and women supporting women.
MMWIS: How does your Midwest show through your personality and/or what you do?
KS: I would consider myself much more of a city girl than a burbs girl, but I grew up in Delafield, Wisconsin on a lake so I always come back to that. The city has my heart, but there’s nothing like spending summers on the lake and listening to some country music with a cocktail in hand!
Photography courtesy of Mike Connell.