Did you study at degree level?
I’ve lived in South London my whole life. I did photography for A Levels, then I went to Ravensbourne to do a one-year Foundation course because it was free. I wasn’t really sure if I wanted to do styling or photography – I was already working as a stylist at the time, even though I was pretty young. My friend was in a band and knew that I would dress people for my shoots, so she asked if I could help getting clothes – I did, and they got signed. I just fell into it that way, but I realised quickly that I didn't know what I was doing at all, which is when I started assisting and learning.
After first starting out, what were your initial steps?
I was scouted for an internship at a prestigious British fashion house from my course at university. They told me it was a one-year internship to study in-house photography, but it wasn’t paid for a year, just travel and expenses – this was when you didn’t have to pay people for longer than a week. I was 17/18 and money was the most important thing to me then. I couldn’t afford to work for free for a year, so I turned it down. That’s how I started focusing on styling anyway, because I was making money from it and I enjoyed it.
It felt silly continuing to study as I was being offered the things I wanted to do, and the styling courses at the time weren’t for me. I didn’t know what I was doing and I decided to assist – at the time, I was working as a visual merchandiser so I could afford to work and assist. I did that for a year or so, and I didn't have much money for a very long time. I was lucky that my parents lived in London, so I was able to live at home and save on rent. All the money I would make from visual merchandising would go straight back into styling and wanting to make this happen. After I went full-time with styling, it took me about three or four years to make enough money to live off.