HOW TO AVOID CLIENT THEFT AS A FASHION STYLIST

Updated: Aug 11, 2021


Scenario

According to thegrio.com


"Quavo and Takeoff — two-thirds of the cousins who form the rap trio Migos — are accused of making off with tens of thousands of dollars worth of high-end clothing provided by celebrity stylist Luka Lorena.


Both rappers have been ignoring bills and multiple requests for payment for $80,000 in clothing and accessories, Bossip reported, and stylist Lorena is suing them.Quavo owes $42,755 and Takeoff owes $24,425, the news organization reported. Neither rapper has responded to the lawsuit.Lorena’s styling company reportedly had a deal with the rappers to provide the clothing and collect reimbursement plus a 20 percent service fee. The clothing included luxury brands like Chanel and Louis Vuitton.Quavo initially paid on time for more than $14,000 worth of clothing, but failed to make payment for a subsequent $34,000 worth of clothing, and even sported one item during his performance at the 2019 Rolling Loud music festival in Los Angeles. That batch of clothing included five Chanel T-shirts valued at $14,000, a $2,000 Chanel basketball and a $990 pair of Fendi jeans.


The stylist says she hooked Takeoff up for his mother’s wedding, but he ghosted her when it came to the $2,000 service fee, Bossip reported. Later on, he ignored a bill for $26,000 worth of clothes plus styling services, she said. That batch of clothing included two pair of Louis Vuitton sneakers valued at $1,000 each, a $1,000 Virgil Abloh hat and a $700 pair of Louis Vuitton sunglasses, according to Gossip.


Lorena also accused the rapping cousins of using their representatives to “stonewall and intimidate” her company in their quest for payment. She said she has offered them payment plans, to no avail.Lorena’s contract accuses the two rappers of breach of contract and conspiracy to convert property. She is seeking full payment plus damages and legal fees.


CONTRACTS & AGREEMENTS

Establish boundaries, terms, and agreements from the very beginning. It is okay to love the art of fashion styling and not be obsessed over it's gain.. however, protect yourself from the beginning and you won't have a bigger mess to clean in the end.


TAKING INVENTORY

Having a solid inventory and/or tracking system is an effective way to prevent client and on-set theft.

Spreadsheets and image tracking at least 3 times during each project will guarantee success almost every time.


OBTAINING CREDENTIALS

Create a filing system for your clients and require them to submit a valid identification card or state-issued license. Also be sure that your clients credit/debit card matches their identification and no pre-paid cards.


No exceptions!


EDUCATING YOUR CLIENT

Although fashion styling is seemingly glamorous, it is still a job and it is okay to educate your clients about your process. This will give your client insight on timelines as well as increase their appreciation for you/your expertise.


GET INSURANCE

As fashion stylists, we are responsible for tons of expensive and valuable items. Obtaining insurance will help you recoup in the event of client or internal theft.


NO I.O.U'S

We have grown accustomed to offering clients the option to pay a deposit with remaining balance due at a later date. A sure way to prevent client theft is to require your client to pay your service fee and budget up front. If you utilize this method, upgrade your experience with amazing customer service and settlement options.


DISCERN

To simply put it..


If it doesn't feel right, don't do it.


DO NOT GIVE SPECIAL TREATMENT

It is important to have a system that is identical to all clients.

No client should receive special discounts or privileges based on status, popularity, or follower count.


KEEP A PAPER TRAIL

This goes back to creating a powerful filing system. Create a file for your client and keep track of credentials, payment history, preferences, emails,updates, images and more.


PAY ATTENTION

If you're on set with clothing, pay attention to your inventory. Keep an eye on things and do not allow anyone to persuade you otherwise. Clothing should be in the possession of the Lead Stylist at all times unless an assistant stylist is involved.


BALANCE THE RISKS

Just like "all money isn't good money"..all clients are not good clients.

When allowing a new client into your space, consider the pros and the cons and if the proposed project will be an asset or a liability to your company.


WHAT IF I PROVIDE ALL OF THESE THINGS & MY CLIENT STILL STEALS FROM ME?

If all thus fails.. take the Luka Lorena approach and retain an attorney.


HOW WOULD YOU HAVE HANDLED IT?

LET'S TALK ABOUT IT BELOW OR VIA:


Social Media


This PDF is also available for download, click here!




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