This week we’re chatting with recent Committed Program alumni, Priya Virmani. Priya’s personal styling business, Privee by Priya, is based in Short Hills, New Jersey. Today she’s sharing with us what made her decide to take the Committed Program, her favorite places to shop with clients and her styling philosophy. Meet Priya!
What led you to The Paid Stylist?
I love to learn! I had been toying with the idea of becoming a personal stylist for many months but was convinced that I needed to first truly educate myself on the profession. I started looking online and came across the The Paid Stylist Committed Program. At first, I struggled to decide if I really needed the Committed program. I do have an MBA and 12 years of marketing and product development experience but I am glad I went with it. I immediately fell in love with the structure and content of the program. Reading the “About us” section and getting virtually introduced to all these amazing stylists was so inspiring and motivating. Through networking and social media (how did we live without it?!) I found two TPS alums (Neepa Sikdar and Elaine Yu) in my area. There was no doubt in my mind that I was meant to do this.
What did you do before you became a personal stylist?
After graduate school, I worked at Citibank in their credit card business for 10+ years. I managed a group of people who were responsible for new card development, branding, value propositions and new partnerships. I had to leave my corporate career to move to Paris (no arm twisting needed) with my husband and two babies. I spent the first year in Paris, struggling to find a job at a local bank. Visa and language issues did not make that dream come true but I have never looked back. I embraced my passion for Indian cooking and started a cooking school and a catering business in the city of lights. In my spare time, I roamed the streets learning about French style and enjoyed traveling around Europe!
Where in your city is your favorite place to shop with clients? Any hidden gems you'd like to share?
I live in a suburban town near New York City. I am fortunate that we have a mall nearby that has a Neiman Marcus and Bloomingdales. For the sake of convenience a lot of my clients prefer going there. For me, the NM last call store 10 miles from our town and the TJ MAXX with a ‘Runway’ collection are little treasure chests!
What are your favorite styling tips and/ or tricks?
When I style or get dressed myself, I love the challenge of adding one (or two) pieces to my outfit that are unique and edgy. For example, the pop of color in the shoes, a studded jacket, an eye-catching accessory or a vintage blouse. I like edge! I’ve asked my clients to think of the same when they put together their outfits. This philosophy really helps add a little oomph to an outfit and it helps while shopping with my clients because it gives them a framework and a mindset as a guide.
My other styling must: shop in your closet! It is incredible to be able to repurpose and restyle pieces that are already in a client’s closet. I am not a big believer of pushing my clients to shop unless there is a willingness on their part to do so.
Follow Priya on Instagram here.
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