Being in fashion is being in style, and this is more important for a celebrity stylist, who has to be continuously updated about fashion and make celebrities look gorgeous each time they appear in front of shutterbugs! Celebrity stylist Karishma Gulati has a niche of her own, crafting her style according to her moods and styling celebrities from Bollywood. In addition to styling, the dazzling lady also has her skincare brand where she takes inspiration and ingredients from Mother Nature to create rich products for all. Celebrity stylist Karishma Gulati opens up to the Voice of Woman about her journey, her fashion style and lockdown saga. Tell us about your journey as a celebrity stylist Best things in life are unplanned and come to you as a surprise, and my journey of becoming a celebrity stylist is just a synonym of that! The journey had started with an internship nine years ago, soon came an independent break as a stylist to style a film, from one film to another, commercials and editorials, things kept falling into place very organically. But even as I say that being a celebrity stylist is no cakewalk – it’s only for mad workaholics like me that can survive the constant pressure that this job description demands – There’s absolutely no way out! What attracted you to this field? I was studying knitwear specialisation in NIFT, Mumbai, but still, we were exposed to take care of all aspects that deal in fashion and style- photography, modelling and styling, to name a few. Every time my seniors would construct garments – they would ask me to pose for them so they could click images of their collections. And that’s when I figured that the most fun part of this industry is to put together things to create a LOOK. What inspires your creations? Inspiration is everywhere, and a lot comes from what my mood is on that particular day. We are creative beings – creativity comes with a lot of moody behaviour. Plus my creation also depends on the vibe of my client that specific day – so I would say it is an amalgamation of my clients’ wavelength on that particular day. Example – some days I feel muted – so that would be my colour choice, some days I’m bright n bold – so that would instantly reflect in the look I create. You have styled many celebrities, which one of them all do you love styling the most? I have worked with several celebs, but there are two that I look forward to every single time – Riteish Deshmukh and Genelia D’Souza. These two are firstly two human beings I love like I would love my own family – working with them brings out the best in me – that is the kind of comfort, love and trust they show in me. Each day is different – Each look is thought off and executed- their keen interest and understanding of fashion are so inspiring. Working with them is like a total pleasure! Tell us about your recent/upcoming projects. As of now, I’m not sure when this lockdown will get over, and we would be able to resume work. Honestly being the workaholic I am – really cannot wait. I’m currently working on the second season of a web series for MX Player – a couple of films in the pipeline and obviously once things open up there will be multiple events to look forward to. How do you divide your time between work and family? This is a tough one – because there is no definition of personal life in our profession. I got married a year ago, and I was working until one evening before my wedding. I went shopping for my shoes in the morning of my wedding. That is the kind of stuff I’m talking about. It gets challenging sometimes because your family expects you to have some time for them. Luckily in my case, my family and my husband are incredibly understanding, and they find pride in the way I work and what I achieve – it is all a reflection of how they have brought me up and how they back me. What are the challenges you face in your work if any? So it is all about how you look at it. This profession is all about loving what you do and being excited if life throws challenges at you. I could narrate something, but literally, everything is challenging – as we are working on many permutations and combinations. An assistant can go wrong; the designer can pack a wrong outfit, a tailor can forget to alter one section of the many alterations, the outfit can get burnt while ironing, the outfit can tear while making your artist wear it! I mean there are just so many things that can go wrong – it is your presence of mind and skill that keeps you sane and afloat. How would you describe your style and what fashion attracts you? My style is a blend of two very different aspects of fashion – it is a blend of comfort but statement. I like creating looks that are statement and jaw-dropping, but they should be comfortable. Many out there might think I’m talking gibberish because this doesn’t make sense – but it does. You have to make sure you’re comfortable in wearing what you’re wearing because at the end of the day If you’re going to be uncomfortable then it will make you conscious and you’ll concentrate more on your outfit rather than what you had dressed up for. I’m a sucker for Vintage fashion. I feel there is nothing like classic looks styled with a contemporary twist to it. Vintage all the way! Tell us about Karishma Gulati interests other than fashion and styling. So apart from fashion and styling – I love beauty and skincare. I started my skincare and wellness brand based on formulations of organic ingredients. I have been blessed with great genes of good skin and hair, and that also comes with generation-old recipes of natural formulations to feed skin and hair. I genuinely believe in the magic and energy of Mother Nature, and there’s nothing that cannot be healed by Mother Nature. How has fashion evolved in Bollywood? Do you take inspirations from the yesteryear fashion? Of course! Now and then we go back and reference from old films, especially when I’m styling a period look! The best way is to sit and binge-watch movies from that period to understand the fashion situation back then. And not only that – fashion is a vicious circle – things that were a vogue in a certain way will undoubtedly come back in fashion. Like we have witnessed regularly in terms of silhouettes, prints and accessories! Tell us about a dream celebrity you wish to style someday. There are so many celebrities. In Bollywood – Kareena Kapoor Khan. I adore her, and I think she is so confident and always on top of her game and Madhuri Dixit. Is there anyone more beautiful and graceful than Madhuri Dixit? It would be a dream to style her. In Hollywood – Priyanka Chopra – That lady oozes confidence and makes a statement everywhere she goes and with whatever she does. It’s more of a girl crush reason why I would want to style her. Chris Hemsworth – he is abundant in good looks – I’ll give him whatever and keep looking at him. He can make anything work – what a Guy! And also Gigi Hadid, that woman and that body, basically I want to steal all of Mimi Cutrell’s clients! According to you, which Hollywood celebrity has a superb fashion style? Gigi Hadid, Blake Lively, Zendaya and Beyonce, they are just killing it every time! How are you spending time at the present state of countrywide lockdown? I’m researching Vintage Fashion and style icons from every era. I’m also always talking about style icons on my Instagram handle. Which is your favourite hideout? At every given opportunity, I run to our farmhouse where my husband has about 40 horses. Being away from the city amidst nature and animals is like a detox! Any message that you want to convey to the women and your fans reading this I want to tell you something that my grandmother always told me – Believe in yourself, because there will be many to tell you what to do and what not to do, but eventually follow your heart, be authentic, be you and know, “There is no one like You!” There is only one life – live it to the fullest – Enjoy each day! And wake up each day with the confidence – as if you are the Queen of this World!