On Being A Stylist W/ Clara Bouche
For CALPAK’s Spring Editorial shoot, we called on Clara Bouche, French stylist and now L.A. transplant to help us curate our “Secret Garden” theme. We were joined by models, Maly and Bleu and thanks to Clara, they looked elegant, timeless, romantic, and chic as they perfectly complimented the CALPAK collections. Read on to learn more about how she got her start and how sweet it is to go back and forth to the ever-inspiring Paris, which she calls her true home.
How did you get your start in fashion?
I’ve always been interested in fashion for sure but I studied art history in France and then right after, I got a job at Hermés. I wasn’t working with the creative team though. I was working on artistic projects because of my background in art. I worked for Cartier afterwards and started assisting the head director and it was a very administrative position.
When you moved to L.A., how did your styling career begin?
When I decided to move to LA, that’s when I really got started. All my very good friends are directors so I started to do costume design for music videos and short films. I loved it but I wanted to do more editorial, more fashion so I started to assist lots of stylists and that’s very important to do when you’re first starting out.
What’s something about being a stylist that people don’t often know?
Everyone thinks the life of a stylist is a very glamorous job, but it’s a lot of logistics and organization. I take photos of everything; each outfit to stay organized. I even take photos of every single pull I do at a studio — everything!
Since stylists are always on-the-go from location to location, what’s that like for you?
I get to travel a lot for work, all over. The best thing is since I’m from France and there’s the big fashion week in Paris, I get to go back home while I’m working. Since I know a lot of brands in Paris, I want to bring lots of outfits and brands from Paris to Los Angeles and style with them in the future. Soon, I’m going back to France for the Cannes Film Festival.
For CALPAK’s Spring Editorial, what was your process as far as choosing the looks?
It was very inspiring because it’s a Parisian look. I loved the moodboard and the references that CALPAK chose for this shoot because I even know some of the models in the references. In a way, it was easy to adjust to a Parisian look but also challenging because I wanted to make sure that it compliments the luggage and products. It’s very fun.
Where would you say your personal style is inspired from the most?
I’m very inspired by the 60’s in France. I love very structured jackets and clothing. I love leather mini skirts, again more structured and fitted pieces.
Does your personal taste challenge some of your work with clients?
I love doing my own projects because I have more freedom but it’s weird because I feel like when it’s for clients that have a specific idea, I love that even more because in a way it challenges me. Because I have to a respect a dress-code, themes, etc. I find it almost more creative because I have boundaries. I love it.
Aside from working with clients, what other exciting things are you working on?
I want to keep doing styling but I want to do art direction for big brands so I’m going for that as well. I want to be able to curate the atmosphere and vibe — the experience. It’s all connected. I’ve also been working on my own jewelry line, that’s exciting!
We look forward to working with Clara again in the future but for now, we'll be watching her career blossom and will continue to live vicariously through her travels.