It’s time for part two of my profile of Claire Haranda, styling coordinator for Nordstrom/the coolest person ever.
Claire strikes a serious pose in a photoshoot with a photographer friend.
In part one, I told you about Claire’s fashion career. Now I’ll tell you how she got there, other awesome things she does and her advice to people who are interested in working in fashion.
Claire’s island-y upbringing in Honolulu, Hawaii, drove her to wonder what else was out there, fashion-wise. Casual, comfortable beachwear and sandals just weren’t cutting it. So this savvy fashionista scoured the internet for any glimpse of fashion she could catch—a lot of which was on eBay (this was pre-Etsy). This was the first place she discovered creative clothes that people were making themselves and selling online.
When she went off to college on the mainland and needed a job, Claire was inspired by all the creative people she saw on eBay and decided to start her own eBay shop. She would go to crazy, big estate sales and the Goodwill bins and pick anything she thought was cool to sell online. Claire says she’s still addicted to “the adrenaline rush you have when you know you’re gonna find something”—like cute vintage slouch boots for $6, for example, which she could sell for $100 online.
Once her eBay shop took off, Claire started making little sets to photograph her merchandise. Soon she was working with photographer friends to put on full-blown photo shoots. She told me about their process:
- 1. Think of ideas.
- 2. Work together to cast models, scout locations and get props and clothing.
- 3. Plan your shoot.
- 4. Get out there and have fun!
When I asked Claire to name her number one tool for creative collaboration with other style mavens, she said, “An iPhone. It makes it so easy to share ideas and images, and to talk to each other on the fly.” She’s also a huge proponent of immersing yourself in a “local artistic community that supports your need to create.” She suggests looking everywhere for styling inspiration—but especially music videos (which makes sense, since she’s a part-time DJ with a deep passion for music).
It’s obvious that Claire Haranda loves what she does. There’s nothing better than that. Bravo, Claire!