A celebrity stylist whose looks have graced the pages of some of the world’s finest fashion magazines has revealed how she carved a glittering career in one of the toughest industries on earth.
Irish woman Aideen Feely, 28, dreamed of working in fashion since she was a little girl, dutifully marking the release dates of glossy magazines into her childhood diary each month and dressing her friends in quirky ensembles on play dates.
After graduating with a degree in fashion buying and merchandising, she dove into a string of internships, assisting some of Ireland’s best-known stylists before landing a job at Stellar Magazine, one of the country’s leading lifestyle publications.
Five years later Aideen has relocated to central Sydney and climbed the sartorial ladder, with spreads in Grazia Australia and a stint at the 2019 Mercedes Benz Fashion Week under her belt.
Irish celebrity stylist Aideen Feely (pictured) is enjoying a year in the sunnier climes of Sydney
Aideen’s looks have graced the pages of some of the world’s finest fashion magazines, including Grazia Australia and Irish Stellar
While it’s clear she possesses an innate sense of style that simply can’t be learned, Aideen draws inspiration from the sights and sounds she encounters in everyday life.
Key pieces for every season, according to Aideen
A pastel skirt or floral dress
A loose-fitting slip dress, paired with sandals or plain white trainers
A midi-dress with a pair of knee-high boots
A high-neck jumper or mini-dress
Art, architecture and the changing colours of plants and trees influence her just as much as the photos on her Instagram feed and spreads in fashion magazines.
‘The obvious one for me is print media. There’s something I love about holding [a magazine] – I engage more and I’m able to take more in,’ she told Daily Mail Australia of her greatest inspiration.
Celebrities also influence her personal look and how she dresses her clients.
Superstar singer turned fashion and beauty entrepreneur Rihanna has been Aideen’s ultimate style crush since she was a teenager, chiefly for the unique patterns and boundary-pushing ensembles she dares to wear.
‘One year at the CFDA Fashion Awards I heard her say, “She can beat me, but she cannot beat my outfit”. I totally agree!’ said Aideen.
A pastel midi-skirt or lightly printed floral dress are Aideen’s must-have pieces for spring
Superstar Rihanna has been Aideen’s ultimate style crush since she was a teenager, chiefly for the unique patterns and boundary-pushing ensembles she dares to wear
Aideen loves to experiment with fashion and beauty, naming feather trims and vibrantly coloured leathers among her standout trends for 2020
A lover of all things experimental, there are few pieces Aideen hasn’t tried on herself or on her clients – save for low-rise jeans, a style of tight-fit, low-slung trousers which sit below the hip bones, exposing every inch of the midriff.
‘I’m convinced they don’t suit anyone other than Jennifer Aniston or the Hadid sisters,’ she laughed.
And while she loves playing with different styles and prints, there are a few staples Aideen believes every woman should have in their wardrobe – namely a classic black dress and a blazer in ‘almost every colour’.
‘A little black dress is the perfect blank canvas for dressing up or down on a Friday morning. It takes you from work to drinks after in one swoop,’ she said.
Disco collars, feathers and vibrantly coloured leather are the trends which have most captured Aideen’s imagination this season, although she’ll be steering clear of sweat-inducing fabrics until she returns to the cooler climes of Ireland.
Aideen’s top three trends for 2020
1. DISCO COLLARS
Hailed as the number one tailoring trend for spring 2020 by Harper’s Bazaar, the wide collar beloved by the Studio 54 set made an unexpected comeback on the catwalk late last year.
Fitted on coats, jackets and shirts, the collar is often made with a striking colour to contrast the rest of the garment, making a real statement.
Acclaimed designers including Saint Laurent, Lanvin, Victoria Beckham and Salvatore Ferragamo all sent models sashaying down their spring runways in over-sized disco collars.
Dresses, tops and skirts bedecked with thick layers of feathers dominate the collections of legendary fashion houses including Burberry and Valentino, as well as up-and-coming names like Attico this season.
Fashionistas can give the feminine look a sharper edge by pairing a feathered piece with a pair of denim ‘mom’ jeans, leather pants or animal print trousers, ideally zebra – the print of 2020.
3. COLOURED LEATHER
Once reserved for crisp winter days, leather is ready to bask in the sun as it makes its transition to spring/summer collections.
The eternally fashionable material was seen on runways from New York to Paris where leather coats, dresses, skirts and trousers took centre stage.
Lime green coordinate skirts and tops were big news at Marni, while a quirky burgundy buttoned leather waistcoat was the talk of the town at Gucci’s spring showcase.
Boldly floral printed leather midi-skirts were the order of the day at Prada, while pastel hued leather pants appeared at Alexander McQueen.
The talented fashionista has a blazer in ‘almost every colour’ in her wardrobe
A lover of all things experimental, there are few pieces Aideen hasn’t tried on herself or on her clients
Since relocating Down Under, Aideen has been influenced by the Australian fashion industry’s commitment to sustainable materials and ethical manufacturing.
‘It’s already had a huge impact on me. I think it’s amazing,’ she said.
Australia has also inspired Aideen to write about her professional experience.
Her first eBook, Fashion Stylist Secrets, was released on February 5.
She describes it as a ‘step by step guide designed for aspiring fashion stylists looking to break into the industry’.
‘It’s educating and exciting, learning about the different aspects and trade secrets only industry professionals know,’ she said.