303 Style Profile is an ongoing series highlighting unique locals and they’re incredible style and stories. Go here to see past profiles.
“Every morning is essentially a blank canvas,” said SheStylesCO founder, Anne Marie Liebman, “meaning, what am I going to adorn myself with for whatever it is that I’m tackling for the day?” SheStylesCO, a style consulting company based in Denver, with clients around the country, has a unique approach. It’s not just about adding the company’s mantra, “Balance. Pop. Purpose” to your daily wardrobe, but working with the team also entails incorporating this mantra into clients’ daily life. We sat down with Liebman to discuss her style philosophy and how she became a top stylist in the Mile High City.
303 Magazine: Tell us more about yourself? How and when did you know you wanted to work in fashion?
Anne Marie Liebman: My whole life, I’ve always had a significantly creative side. I come from a smaller town in Wisconsin and decided to go to a big school, the University of Wisconsin Madison, for college. There, I became more exposed to bigger brands and designers and it was an exploratory time in my life for fashion. The fashionista in me was coming out more and more. I started to acknowledge how much I just enjoyed that part of my life, and realized I must have been doing a good job because friends started asking me, “what should I wear to this?” and “I don’t know what color to put with this”.
After starting my career at Target Corporation in Minneapolis in 2007 and working at a few different marketing, creative marketing positions over the years, I decided I was ready for a new adventure. I wanted to get out of the Midwest and explore what else was out there, so I moved to Denver in 2014. Sunshine is one of my favorite things in life. Now that I’m here, I don’t know if I could ever move anywhere else. Once I got to Denver, I continued my marketing and advertising journey at a couple of smaller boutique agencies.
I got to a point where I was sitting at my desk thinking, “do I really want to do this anymore?” I wanted to have more of an impact on the world and wanted to do my own thing, whatever that was. At lunch with a friend, half-joking I said, “you know, what would be really fun? If I could be a stylist.” My friend looked at me and said, “well, why don’t you do that?” And so I did. With some encouragement from very special and supportive friends, I decided to start SheStylesCo.
303: Tell us more about your style philosophy: Balance. Pop. Purpose.
AML: From my professional stylist perspective, these are the three key elements to incorporate into every outfit you put together. Without one of these three pieces, a thoughtful outfit isn’t reaching its fullest potential.
First, how balanced is your overall look? For example, if your top is more loose and flowing then your outfit should be more fitted on the bottom and vice versa. Colors also come into play here: how do the light and dark work together? Are you including any prints and how do those work with the other colors in your outfit?
Pop is next and it’s the piece you incorporate into your outfit that creates interest, makes you stand out and is often the most memorable. This one is the most fun and where you can incorporate trends. Pop could be a hat, a pair of great sunglasses, or even a fun nail color on your fingers or toes. Think of Pop as that piece that creates interest.
Finally, bring purpose into whatever you decide to wear and how you wear it. For example, with some women, wrists and ankles can be very sexy parts of our bodies and we want to show them off when we can. To bring purpose into the situation, to show off a particular area, rolling up a sleeve to show off the wrist, or adding an accessory to highlight your wrists can be great. You want to style your outfit with a purpose. You’re not doing it just to do it, you’re doing it for a reason.
While this idea covers what we want to think about when we put our outfits together, it can relate to our own lives as well. We can be just as thoughtful and intentional about incorporating these three elements into our daily lives as well. We need to remember to balance the gazillion things we’re all juggling. Pop can be that thing about you that makes you stand out and makes you memorable — how can you do more of that and fully realize it? Purpose is more straightforward and tangible. Ensure you’re acting and living with purpose and intent, whatever that means to you. Tap into how you truly want to show up in the world.
303: Who is SheStylesCO meant for? Who is your audience?
AML: When I first started, my target audience was women between 35 and 60, C-Suite executives, what you’d typically expect. At this point in my career, I’ve had the opportunity to work with so many different people. I’ve found that my clients get to a point in their lives where they’re ready to make an investment in themselves. It could be a new job, a life transition or they’re ready to take themselves to the next level. I always ask “how do you truly want to show up in the world? What does that look like?Aand what does that feel like to you?”
I’ve met my clients in all sorts of situations and love to work with the differences between male and female clients. Most men just want somebody to tell them what to wear or buy. They want to spend their money and be done with it and not have to think about it. Whereas women, it’s more of a recurring, ongoing thing with the change of seasons and everything. I love the dynamic of both.
303: How does your process work? What could a client expect when working with you?
AML: I like to have an initial conversation, whether it’s five minutes or 20 minutes. I offer a complimentary 15-minute consultation to get a feel for the person. It’s really about getting as much of an understanding as I can about where they’re at and what they’re looking to accomplish based on their goals and lifestyle. I have different service packages but I customize packages for every client.
For example, I offer the Style Up-Level Package which starts with closet review and plans — this can take a few hours or more, depending on your closet. We go through everything and you try on every single piece. We let go of what no longer needs to be there. From what remains, we get a chance to see the existing wardrobe from a fresh set of eyes. The goal here is to break the routine of putting together the same outfits. And all of a sudden with their existing wardrobe, they’ve got all kinds of new outfits that they had never thought of on their own.
After the closet process, I’m also creating a shopping list to help in identifying gaps of the pieces that I think that every man or woman should have in their wardrobe no matter what. This shopping list is also based on the client’s specific lifestyle and what they’re trying to accomplish. Armed with this list, we’ll go on a collaborative shopping [trip] together for these additional pieces.
Finally, I offer the service to create a digital closet for my clients. During the closet review, I’ll take a photo of each of the pieces that we keep and categorize and upload everything onto a digital platform. I can create outfits for them from this digital platform without being in person, which has been really helpful during quarantine and also for clients who don’t have a lot of time. Clients can also work with me month to month — for the summer, for a new job, things like that.
Now that everything is virtual, I’ve had to adapt my business. I’ve faced new challenges that have provided new opportunities.
303: What about Denver, or Colorado, inspires you?
AML: I’m inspired by the lifestyles here. They call it the melting pot because people from all over moved to Denver — but they all move here for the Colorado lifestyle. It’s kind of like we’re all tied in a positive way in that regard. The outdoors is beautiful, but I’m such a city girl — I love Denver. And of course, you know, all the creativity, the entrepreneurs, startup world, all of that, that happens in Denver and in Boulder.
303: Where are your favorite places to shop in Denver?
AML: When I’m planning the collaborative shopping trips, the shops in Cherry Creek North have the classic timeless essential pieces that I’m looking for. I do love that there is a great presence of local boutiques here in Denver. Cherry Creek and the Highlands have some great boutiques and I like Stitch Boutique and A Line Boutique. I don’t necessarily frequent these places super often, but I definitely acknowledge and appreciate them.
303: Where do you see your business in five years?
AML: I would say I’ve been in growth mode this year. The past several months have had me take a hard look at my business and get creative. I’ve been working on a handful of videos and photoshoots, getting a library of content together, and in planning mode to strategize and elevate my brand.
It’s been a roller coaster of an adventure these past four years. I made the jump into entrepreneurship and went full into this company, with all the highs and lows. But without the lows, there aren’t the highs and vice versa. I really appreciate that.
Over the summer, I worked on a video project with two other amazing, badass women and friends of mine. It’s a reality, transformational TV show called “Not Just a Haircut.” It’s more than just a makeover show. It has the grooming and the haircut, but also incorporates style, wardrobe and life coaching. Starting last month, we put an episode out each week on YouTube and we plan to pitch it to networks. It’s really exciting to see where it might go!
All photography by Adrienne Thomas.