Stylist Ashley Crawford does not take her passion for fashion lightly. Once stomping the Chicago streets in her favorite labels’ digs, Crawford took her talents for editorial styling to the glamorous hills of Los Angeles just last year.
Her path was an unexpected one. Crawford, who is originally from Detroit, moved to Chicago in 2010 to attend school at Columbia College. Her five-year stay in the city was met with many opportunities.
“I started off doing editorial work, modeling for Factor and working with other modeling agencies,” Crawford said.
Though she’s been freelance styling professionally now for four years, and she credits her initial success to a chance meeting with a big name photographer who pushed her to pursue her current gig.
“I had no intention of being a stylist. I knew I wanted to work in fashion, but I didn’t know I would become a stylist,” Crawford said. “I ended up working with this photographer who pointed out, like, ‘hey, you need to be a stylist.’”
After much debate and a visit with the Southern California lifestyle a year ago, Crawford decided to move to Los Angeles in 2015.
“I was debating between New York and L.A. but something drew me here,” Crawford said of her new home. “I always listen to the signs. I felt like it was time to take L.A. and see everything it had to offer.”
Ever the opportunist, Crawford took advantage of her new life to evolve her look. Fashion is one thing, she says, but if someone has personal style, it can transition into any environment.
While Chicago and Los Angeles maintain similar glamour, Crawford had to mold her work to a more natural aesthetic.
“Natural beauty is the look here. It’s very carefree styling,” she said.
From hats to scarves to shoes, she says she’s always innovating to maintain an effortless but tied together look. With a shrug and a smile, she said, “That’s my signature.”
When asked about her future, Crawford said she doesn’t expect to stay put for long.
“My answer is always the same. I want to travel the world and make people look good. That’s my thing,” she said. “If someone on the street gives me compliment, I try to remind them they can try this too.”
“Find your niche, your lane, and your signature,” she advises to those aspiring to the fashion industry. “If you have that one thing that sets you apart, no one can compete with you because you have your thing that nobody can fuck with,” she laughed.
Crawford’s independence, creativity, and energy shined through her geometric sunglasses, big enough for even California’s sunniest days.