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Meet West Hollywood Wardrobe Stylist: Kristin Bjorge

Photographer credit: David A. Solorzano

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kristin Bjorge.

Kristin, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
After college, I had a couple of desk jobs in advertising and publishing but moonlighted as a commercial photographer’s assistant whenever possible. It was fun work and I got to interact with a lot of interesting and successful people. Since we rarely had a wardrobe stylist on set, I began weighing in on clothing choices and stepping in to adjust clothing between frames. One day a pro stylist joined us and after picking her brain all day, I decided that I wanted her job. When I casually mentioned this interest to my mentor (the photographer), his reply was “well you’re not getting any younger, is it going to be New York or LA?”. It was exactly what I needed to hear. The warm weather and magic of Hollywood called my name, so I packed up my car, waved goodbye to Scottsdale and ventured across the desert to the city of Angels.

I arrived in LA knowing only two people. I had no formal fashion training, no clue about how the industry worked and a WGA strike had just started. With bills to pay, I sweet-talked my way into my very first serving job, a temp gig at a sports bar that helped me meet a ton of people. A few months later, I had secured a steady but possibly boring job at an animation company. My first day, I got a call from a friend’s boyfriend who was the producer on a show for Spike TV – they needed an Art PA and he had heard that I was “artsy and could make stuff”. It paid peanuts and was only about 75% for sure available, so naturally, I promptly quit the new job with fingers crossed. It pulled through. I started 2 days later and came in SUPER green but was a fast learner, ambitious, and knew how to communicate with people. There were a ton of costumes needed and they didn’t have anyone dedicated to that role so I happily volunteered. After completely busting my ass to impress them, it paid off and they thanked me with a rolling credit as Head Stylist. The next season I was hired back as the Costume Designer AND Art Director.

Since then, it’s been a long, eclectic string of referrals and I’ve worked in many aspects of entertainment with over 40 major brands and networks. In the beginning, I took any and every opportunity, including logging time learning the ropes from established celeb stylists. The variety allowed me to discover my own strengths and preferences and at this point in my career, my focus is on commercial styling because I enjoy the flexibility in time commitment and range in projects. Occasionally, I will take on something creative like a feature or short, if time allows and I feel passionate about it. I also work with individual clients and that is always a nice low-key break from production and extremely rewarding.

Has it been a smooth road?
A smooth road in Hollywood, now that’s funny! No, it certainly hasn’t been easy but you get through it because you want it so badly. One huge struggle can be just getting consistent work! A major part of being offered jobs in this city is knowing people, but that’s not WHY you get hired. It’s important that you have a large network, especially if you’re going to be freelance. Those connections take the time to build. I’ve been lucky enough to have crossed paths with some amazing people who consistently hired or referred me because they simply liked me and respected my work ethic. Some jobs are definitely better than others and that has a lot to do with your crew and the support they offer.

Surprisingly I don’t have a ton of horror stories, besides the random snafu such as rolling racks tipping over into muddy gutters or wardrobe being locked in or lost at the dry cleaners. There are a lot of things that you learn along the way: how to squeeze a budget, the nuances of navigating the client/creative hierarchy, utilizing psychology while interacting with talent, how to establish trusted relationships with vendors/showrooms/costume houses, etc. There are many aspects of professional wardrobing that have nothing do with clothing or fashion. You’re constantly seeking solutions to new challenges and you just wing it until it works and sometimes that can be pretty stressful.

Do you feel luck has played a role in your life?
To me, “luck” is randomly winning tickets, stumbling upon a $20 bill, or getting a stellar parking spot. How I like to think of my life playing out is through intention, energy exchange, and synchronicity. When you consciously create an environment of what you want and choose to stay in alignment with that, including the people you surround yourself with, doors naturally open. It’s like a breadcrumb trail of opportunity. I’ve met so many amazing people over the past decade in LA, I’m never surprised anymore when I discover overlapping circles. Through personal ups and downs, my career has taken many turns, but I always trust that everything is in perfect order. My role is to stay focused on how I want to feel, which is open, inspired, and grateful. Timing is key in manifesting thoughts into things and it can actually be pretty fun to see how it happens if you can stay in a positive place and enjoy the ride.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
In the past, I might have answered “determination”. Everyone says that LA is a rat race and it will eat you alive unless you’re ruthless about what you want. But I don’t believe in the hustle mentality, I believe in a strong work ethic. I always do my best on every job, no matter who the client is or how much it pays. Someone has chosen me to be a part of their team because they recognized my professionalism, so I make a point to deliver that. It’s a genuine dedication of passion to my craft and people recognize that and come back for more.

Tell us about your favorite and least favorites things about our city.
Ohhh LA, she’s beautiful and sassy AF. There are so many awesome things to do here! With friends scattered all over the city, it keeps me motivated to constantly explore different neighborhoods and hit up new spots. Every part of the year has different things to get excited about, from Halloween to Christmas to summertime – concerts, art shows, popups, festivals, screenings… it’s endless. The weather is always perfect. I won’t even mention the cons because they’re so overshadowed by an abundance of good stuff. Sometimes it feels like I’m on a permanent vacation living in Los Angeles and I couldn’t be more grateful that this is my life!

Contact Info:

  • Website: www.KBstyling.com
  • Email: KB@KBstyling.com
  • Instagram: KBstyling
  • Facebook: KBstyling

 

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