Fashion stylist Alecia Ebbels always knew she wanted to be part of the fashion world. Originally from Alberta, Ebbels moved to Vancouver with a desire to break free from the norms of a ho-hum nine to five office job - and she did. Now with Canadian mega-agent Judy Inc., this talented artist is doing what she absolutely loves. Since 2004 she has been working countless hours on various styling jobs. One day might be a Flight Centre commercial, the day before a punk rock music video and the day after an advertisement for Nickelodeon. It is the smorgasbord of gigs that keeps Ebbels excited for work each day. Like any success story, this did not happen overnight.
No Ordinary Day
By NATASHA BHATNAGAR
50% of her career can be attributed to the plan she set for herself. Ebbels matter-of-factly rationalizes, "I've always been involved in fashion and knew how I was going to go about it. I really wanted to [first] have a marketing and business background and then I was going to go to design school, just in case design didn't work out - or fashion didn't work out. [After] I got my first degree, I attended Kwantlen [for design]." This gave Ebbels different avenues to choose from within the fashion industry.
The other 50% was an opportunity in her second year at Kwantlen as she was putting her grad portfolio together. Ebbels met with a professional photographer to help her with the project and discovered her love of styling while volunteering on set. With a big grin she explains, "That was it for me. I was like ohhh I really love being on set, I really love the whole dynamic of it all and one thing just led to another. You assist a few people and then all of a sudden one photographer leads to a different make-up artist who passes your name along and then one day you are like `hmm so this is my real job now'. So yes it kind of weaved itself into what I'm doing now"
Before establishing herself as a sought after stylist, Ebbels wanted to see how her Canadian fashion education stacked up to the rest of the world .The summer after graduating from Kwantlen, she studied at London's prestigious Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. It was here the stylist was exposed to a mosaic of fashion insights. "It wasn't that I learned anything different, it was being in a classroom full of international students which was so amazing. That was a priceless experience. We had people from Portugal, people from Japan from London from Paris...".When Ebbels got back she was ready to face her biggest challenge yet - designing her own line.
With friend Brieanna Soo in tow, "The Penniless Fashionista" was born. The concept - "You may be penniless, but you will always look fabulous!" - was something the two of them knew too well. Their whimsical line ran successfully for three years, but proved exhausting for Ebbels who divided her time between designing and styling. She goes on to say, "Looking back it was a very valuable experience that can't be taught in school".
Alecia Ebbels relishes in the versatility of her styling career. "[I love] the diversity of it all, every job is different, every job you have to deal with new people, it's an adventure. I'm not sitting in an office I don't have a set schedule, there's lots of flexibility, and just the creativity of it all"
For a look at Ebbels portfolio or for bookings visit www.judyinc.com.