303 Style Profile is an ongoing series highlighting unique locals and their incredible style and stories. Go here to see past profiles.
Séverine Baraldi began her journey in fashion at the young age of 15, walking the streets of Paris, where she grew up shopping at the local thrift stores. At 18, Baraldi worked at Zara on the weekends while also attending university, and years later found herself working for A.P.C Clothing under the designer, Jean Touitou, who greatly inspired Baraldi. After falling in love with Isabel Marant’s creations, Baraldi ended up working for the renowned designer for two years, and it was during this time that Baraldi began styling more and more people and fell in love with the styling process.
Eventually, after many more experiences in the international fashion industry, like working with Ambre Dahan of SPRWMN CLOTHING and Ambre Victoria Jewelry, and working in Advanced Retail in Paris, Baraldi landed in Denver and began working at Anthropologie and the Cherry Creek boutique, A Line. Baraldi now works as a personal stylist and shopper in the Denver area, while also traveling out of state frequently to visit and work with clients. Her personal styling business has been up and running for the past five months as she gains more and more popularity among Denver locals.
303 Magazine: What intrigued you most about the fashion industry?
Séverine Baraldi: As far as I remember, I think my mother helped a lot because she used to explain to me why she picked that dress and why that color was better to pair with this color. I was asking a lot of questions about clothes as well. She definitely was trying to get me involved in fashion. I still pictured her in the ’70s and ’80s as the chicest and feminine woman. That’s maybe why I cherish those two decades more than any other.
I always thought that looking good is feeling good — not because the clothes make you, just because that outfit that you wear and choose makes you feel empowered, chick and sexy — and picking the perfect outfit that reflects who you are and what you’re feeling at that moment, and that is the most amazing gift to yourself.
303: Describe what a personal shopper and stylist does. Run us through a day in the life.
SB: Every morning, I wake up at around 8 a.m. and read french magazines to see the trends, a bit of Instagram, check emails/texts and answer my client’s questions that are wondering what to wear, where to shop for that event, suitcase packing and closet cleaning appointments. If I have a personal shopping [client] that day, I already thought about it a few days ago. Depending on the shopping budget and the expectations, I choose to pre-shop in a thrift shop, online or in stores and set up a fitting room in the different places I picked. Or, if the client wants me to come over to their house, I will go shopping and pick the clothes and then meet the client at their place.
During the shopping, I put outfits together and add accessories to make it chicer or, if I know the client’s closet, I will pair the pieces I bought with their own clothes. Then, the clients can try everything on and choose what they like most. We are talking a lot during the process, my purpose is to make the client feel empowered, chic, feminine and sexy. I push their limits because most of the time their own expectations are not that high and they feel like they don’t deserve it. The main comment when they discovered some of the pieces I’ve picked is, “Oh, that dress is gorgeous but won’t be any good on me.” My answer is, “Try it, maybe you will change your mind.” I can say that 90% of the time they buy the dress they were so afraid of. Trust is key.
303: Who do you most admire? Who are your fashion icons?
SB: I have always admired some ’70s icons like Jane Birkin and Serge Gainsbourg — their style at that time was super simple but so chic. Vanessa Paradis —a French singer/actress —embodies La Parisienne the best. Kate Moss and Erin Wasson are the two models I am still following and their vision of fashion is a bit more rock n’ roll than the others. Yves Saint Laurent was and stays my favorite designer. He helped women glow and feel that nothing is impossible for them. Anthony Vaccarello or Hedi Slimane with Karl Lagerfield for Chanel too, of course.
303: Describe an ideal client. What is it that you like about working one-on-one with someone?
SB: My ideal client is the one that is struggling every day in front of his/her closet and that needs some help figuring out the best cut for their body, what colors fit their skin tone and the style that will pair the best with their identity. Working one-on-one is super interesting because the person in front of you needs to be heard and I need to hear their story before working with them. I need to know if they are ready for a change and working with a personal stylist/shopper is like therapy, you have to let go. It sounds a bit weird to say that but their vision of themselves will change after a session. They just have to trust me.
303: Any future plans regarding your styling and personal shopping business, or fashion in general that you can share with us?
SB: I really need to travel for the needs of clients and to evolve and grow. I am working on developing my brand with new clients in L.A. I would love to be based in L.A. and come back and forth to Denver to still help my clients here. I definitely want to go more often to Paris and shop there for my clients. Mentorship is something I am thinking about too — I would love to share my vision of style. I will finish with a quote that defines what I am doing perfectly, “Fashion fades, but style is eternal,” Yves Saint Laurent.
All photography by Lauren Magin.