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Making the Switch From a Corporate Career to the Styling Industry

Published on 28 October 2020
by ASI Team
Category: Inspire

“It’s too late”, “It’s too risky” or “I don’t know where to start.” Have you caught yourself using these phrases while considering a career change? You’re not alone. 

Each week, we chat with dozens of prospective students who are unhappy in their current jobs and looking for a sign that it’s okay to change their path to pursue a passion.

Hear from 5 ASI Stylists who made the switch from corporate to creative careers and never looked back. Perhaps it’s the sign you’ve been looking for?


Fernando Mens Suiting Specialist

Fernando:

Hi everyone. My name is Fernando and I started at ASI in 2017, so three years ago now. I’m currently working at Oscar Hunt in Sydney as a men’s suiting specialist. I’m also a freelancing personal stylist with my niche being men’s wear and men’s style. My clientele are so diverse, ranging all the way from university students to CEOs and executives.

Before I was studying at Australian Style Institute, I was in Chemical Waste Management for 10 years, and I knew it wasn’t for me.  I remember this moment quite fondly during the Sydney storms at the tail end of 2016. I was laying in bed, had a cup of coffee, and I was thinking, “What am I meant to do? What is my calling in life?” Literally, with a crash bang of thunder and lightning, a career in styling came to me. I knew that was for me and that was what I was meant to do. I contacted Australian Style Institute and spent the rest of that Sunday afternoon drafting up my resignation letter. I went in to work on Monday and handed it in. That was it. I think that was the official moment I started my styling journey.

The one piece of advice I would give to anyone wanting to pursue a career as a stylist is to “embrace your inner f*ck it, I’ve got it”  mentality. The biggest detriment to your growth as a stylist is not believing yourself, not backing yourself, and not putting yourself in situations for growth.


Michelle Beltrame ASI Stylist

Michelle:

Hi, I’m Michelle and I studied at Australian Style Institute in October 2019 and I now work part-time as a Personal and Creative Stylist.

Before studying with Australian Style Institute, I was working in Corporate Marketing and also a mum of two children under the age of seven. I always thought I would go into quite a creative career, and while marketing, I guess, ticks the boxes on the creative front, I found myself wanting more. I saw styling as an opportunity to combine my creative eye and eye for detail, with an opportunity to work closely with people and help make a difference to them achieving their goals. In my experience, when you really own your personal style and feel good about yourself, you can really show up and that allows you to achieve your goals in life. I love that through styling, I get to help people do just that.

My advice is: if Styling is something that you really want to do, but you are getting in your own way or inventing excuses why it won’t work, really challenge that thinking. I know personally before I made the decision to study at Australian Style Institute, I was driven by, or I guess held back by, fear. The fear of not being good enough, the fear of failure. It wasn’t until I really challenged that, and I think it was also coming across a quote, which said, “the quickest way to failure was to not even try at all.” Once I got my head around that, yeah, I decided that I had to give it a go. If I was going to give it a go, I was going to give it 100%.


Justina Low of Beyond Styling

Justina:

Hi, everyone. I’m Justina. I studied at Australian Style Institute four years ago and now own my very own styling business, Beyond Styling, working with both men and women. I’m really passionate about helping and empowering my clients to feel good in what they wear and also to articulate who they are through their personal style. I also work with Feather and Noise, which is an Australian online retailer, as their Senior Stylist in their styling suite, enabling me to work one-on-one with clients in a more intimate, personal styling capacity.

Before studying at ASI, I was working as a Corporate Accountant. I had been working in the accounting industry for a good 10 years and what the job was for me was that it was safe. It was secure and ultimately, it paid the bills. I knew though, deep down, that that was not my forever job. Yet, at that point in time, I didn’t really know what exactly I wanted to do. All I knew was that I was sick and tired of dreading going to work and waiting for the next public holiday or just wishing time away. I did lots of research into different avenues of what I could get into in the creative space. This finally led me to Australian Style Institute. I spoke to Penny and then attended an info session and watched Lauren (Founder) speak.

Straight away, I knew exactly where I needed to be. I think beyond the clothing and the fashion side of things, what really captured me about styling was the human side and the heart and soul behind the work. I was really captured by the fact that we are able to work with our clients and help them discover their style and build new confidence and find joy in dressing up every day. I knew then that it was styling that I really needed to pursue.

My word of advice is go for it. There is no better time than now. I remember when I was making that decision for myself, a big factor in deciding was that I really did not want to live in the, “what if;’ what if I pursued that dream career in styling? What would have happened? I’d rather have given it a red hot go and know what the end outcome is. I guess for me, the end outcome now is that I am living my dream career and I’m loving every bit of it.


Emelia Morris ASI Stylist

Emelia:

Hi, my name’s Emelia Morris, and I’m a Personal Fashion Stylist. I studied with ASI in April of last year (2019) and never in my wildest dreams did I think my styling career would take off so quickly.

I’ve been working in government for the past 10 years, and it’s just not bringing me joy anymore. If anyone works in government, you’ll understand where I’m coming from, where you’re restricted to policies and procedures, which doesn’t leave much room for creativity. I wasn’t someone who from a young age knew I was going to be a stylist. I really wasn’t into fashion when I was younger. It’s just something that has evolved over time. I’ve always had a knack in putting outfits together and helping others around me with their style. It wasn’t until last year where I had that feeling in the bottom of my stomach, where I just knew I had to act on that gut feeling and take a leap of faith and enrol in a styling course with ASI.


Tanya Ellis ASI Stylist

Tanya:

Hi everyone, my name is Tanya Ellis. I trained with Australian Style Institute just over four years ago. I’m now working in my own styling business where I work with men, women, retailers, and brands across Southern Australia. Something that I’m passionate about in my business is bringing fashion and styling services to country areas. My heart lies in the country and to be able to bring those services that are normally, readily available in city areas to country areas is something that I’m truly passionate about.

Before studying with Australian Style Institute, I was in Agribusiness Management (I was working in my husband’s and my Agricultural business). At the time I was juggling business with three children and living remotely but I knew that styling was something I always wanted to do and really needed to pursue … I’m so glad I did.

My word of advice is probably quite a cliche but if you can’t stop thinking about it, do it. There are so many opportunities out there for stylists, and opportunities will come from places you’ve never even dreamt of. For me, the greatest thing about training at Australian Style Institute was the fact that they introduce you to all of those different areas of styling and it allows you to discover where you want to focus your styling career.


There’s a saying by George Eliot that goes: “It is never too late to be what you might have been.”  10 years we’ve been welcoming students from ages 18-78 through the doors of ASI in pursuit of their true passion. It’s never too late.

Download your free Course Guide here for tuition information and more.

Or why not book a chat with our friendly Course Advisors for guidance on whether our courses are right for you.

Here’s to your future styling success!


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