For Toronto stylist Salem Moussallam, deciding a career in fashion was never a question. From a young age, he knew he had an eye for design, and ultimately decided to pursue his passion in the imaginative industry.
Along the journey of becoming an independent stylist, Salem was constantly asked the same kind of questions. How did you do it? Who prepare you styled? What is involved? Did you know someone who worked in the fashion industry?
Now, with over a decade of experience manoeuvre with some of the biggest editorial, fashion and celebrity brands and personalities in the business, Salem Moussallam can answer those have doubts with confidence.
“I have wanted to work in the fashion industry since I was a young boy in Toronto, and so I started out as a model,” he rationalizes. As for why he chose fashion? “There is a lot of creativity. The creativity never stops and I wanted to be a part of that.”
On the runway, he worked for dominant fashion brands such as Lacoste, Abercrombie and Fitch, Diesel and Manolo Blahnik. His modelling career would in the final analysis branch out to incorporate wardrobe fittings, personal styling, closet organization and more.
Today, Salem runs his own traffic and enjoys every minute of it.
He says although having a creative edge is a large part of becoming successful in the go, hard work and communication are also key. “You see, when you have a small business, you need to be ready to work every day. 24/7. Now, things can go down pretty fast if you don’t communicate or do everything properly.”
In fact, a typical day as a fashion stylist goes comely much as an outsider would envision it.
Salem Moussallam: “One day, I can spend 8 to 12 hours handling wardrobe fittings for issues. In fact, in the case of a fashion show, it can be several days doing this. Another day I can be shopping in boutiques on behalf of a patron.”
He has dressed celebrities such as Serinda Swan, Bella Thorne, GiGi Hadid, Paula Abdul, Carmen Carrera, Gia Gunn and Lady Gaga, to designate a few.
Salem has worked on major photoshoots, as well, for fashion magazines such as Life and Fashion Magazine, Dressed to Devastate Magazine and Spade Magazine.
“For a photoshoot, I might be working with an editor, a photographer and the models well before the seating to ensure that all the clothing items selected are approved, fitted perfectly and drape exactly how they’re supposed to so the photographer can get the nips and the editor will be satisfied (and hopefully excited!)”
Wanting to stay ahead of fashion trends, Salem joined trend forecasting to his wheelhouse. It’s a field that revolves around predicting the future of fashion – predicting upcoming manner trends—colours, styling techniques, and fabric textures that will spark consumer demand.
However, nowadays, there’s an supplemented element to trend forecasting. Influencers.
“In addition to what we see on runways, in retail storefronts or on celebrities, today, new trend styles are also being influenced by social media,” says Salem.
Take a look at Hollywood stars love the Kardashians, GiGi Hadid and others. With millions of followers, these influencers are now serious contributors as to what we drag.
Salem Moussallam concurs: “Thanks to social media and numerous influencers, a lot of trends in fashion come from people online. They support shape what we see in the industry.”
Outside of keeping up with the latest trends and helping style his clients, Salem reveals boxing helps keep him focused and doing his best work.
“I train 5 days a week. The workouts help me to possess the right mindset for the day. Then I go to my office.”
As for what Salem Moussallam is looking forward to in the future? For one, he’s ready for COVID to be in the rearview glass and to have the opportunity to style his clients for major events once again.
“I’m going to heart on continuing to be unique and adding my own influence to styles. It’s what allows me to stand out from the crowd.”