Mega Stylist Leslie Fremar: On Breaking In & The Perfect Tee

Kerry Pieri

Leslie Fremar is a mega celebrity stylist. Anyone obsessed with the world of celebrity styling know this is a girl who’s major in the game. Whereas many industry people in her position opt to make super expensive wares few can afford and fewer even have access to, Leslie opted to enter the world of t-shirts. Get your mind out of Kain Label and T by Alexander Wang varieties because Fremar collaborated with comes-in-sets-of-three, often found at Target, Fruit of the Loom. Her shirts for the brand, however, are available atBloomingdale’s locations around the country. The three styles are sold for $18 each, or three for $30 (in a nod to those aforementioned three-packs). Find out why Leslie took the more mass route and her advice for breaking into the small world of celebrity style.

Why t-shirts?
I’ve been wearing Fruit of the Loom for years, I used to wear the men’s ribbed under shirts. I’ve sourced the market and interact with clients and I think it was a general consensus that we were frustrated by t-shirt prices. There wasn’t anything that wasn’t commercial. We’ve been working for 2 year on developing a cotton that’s affordable and fashion forward.

What kind of shape were you going for?
Longer piped sleeves that are slimming they’re a little extra long ,sheer, so they can be layered. There was a more designer approach when coming up with the shape as opposed to the traditional shirt in that price range it’s more of a cool factor.

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Why did you want to create something accessible?
I really like high-low dressing, I do it in my life, I high low source for my clients. I think it was something organic to me, I’m a clean dresser, not eclectic. I like menswear, so t-shirts are in my every day wardrobe. I like the idea of partnering with a huge American brand that has the resources to develop the cotton that could have an impact as opposed to launching something small at small boutiques only. I wanted people to afford what I was doing and allow people who can’t afford designer tees to have access. It felt for me that the projects your passionate about work best.

What are some misconceptions people have about celebrity styling?
I think what people don’t realize is that it’s a hard job and people who get into it because they have a famous friend or like clothes aren’t necessarily going to succeed in making this a career. There’s a lot of time and effort and you need to be educated in the market and have strong relationships, so I take pride in doing my job well and doing well at my job. It frustrated me that every girl wants to be a stylist because they think its glamorous, because it’s actually not it’s a lot of hard work.

How would you explain the difference between celebrity and editorial styling?
I’m editorially trained, I worked with US Vogue for a long time. I was an assistant and learning about the business. I think in editorial, there’s more of a fantasy and an artistic point of view, where the models are at your mercy and you can turn them into who you want. There’s a lot of imagination and referencing in editorial. For celebrity there are rel women with opinions and body concerns and they’re thinking about their image there are things that come onto play when dressing someone. It feels more like a collaboration, so I really like collaborating. I learn a lot from them and they have different aesthetics so I find it challenging to be a chameleon, to say for her this would work and for her this would and to come up with these specific images. They both have their challenges, but they’re very different.

Are you comfortable telling me who you’re dressing now?
I’m lucky because I have great relationships, it’s not a secret Jennifer Connelly, Julianne Moore, Maggie [Gyllenhaal] my core group of clients. I have other girls who come in and out who want to try different things. Choosing your stylist is such a personal thing, when someone decides to use someone else it’s not a personal thing, it’s just they want someone different. It’s an interesting dynamic.

Who are your go-to designers professionally?
I have specific designers for specific clients that I always know work for editorial. There are designers that I gravitate to, but they’re always different. Julianne always looks beautiful in Lanvin, Balenciaga, YSL, someone like Reese looks beautiful in structured pretty like Jason Wu, Roland Mouret it varies.

Personally, I like Dries van Noten, Stella McCartney, my go to is a little Marni. I like interesting things that have interesting detail, where I can appreciate the workmanship and the craftsmanship.

Do you have any advice for girls who are serious about getting into the business?
I think assisting is key and I think for a young girl they think interning at a magazine is the best route and it works for some people, but they will get a more well rounded training actually working for a freelance stylist because we’re such a small operation so you get you hand in everything. Sometimes I’ll depend on my intern because I don’t have a staff, so they’re given a big opportunity.