How a stylish Texas Pastor made over $30,000 from style coaching online
A new trend of online style coaching is taking over following Covid-19
Monetizing your hobbies, skills,or just plain getting paid to do what you love is a huge industry. Think YouTubers, content creators and Instagram influencers. It’s the most desirable job field, and it’s called passion economy. This is exactly what Jenilee Samuel did.
With over 4,000 Instagram followers, this Texas Pastor turned Style Coach, combined her online following with her fashion knowledge and experience into a side income.
Developing her fashion prowess
The mom-of-four boys began her style coaching journey at a young age. Jenilee explains, “I always loved the idea of fashion, but was teased by my sisters for being ‘vain’ because I liked looking put together. This caused me to feel like it was somehow wrong or that I needed to be secretive about loving style.” It wasn’t until she started her family that her love for fashion was once again pushed to the forefront. “Having kids back-to-back, my body changed shape in so many ways in just a few years, and I told myself , ‘Just because we’re on a tight budget, and just because I’m having kids, doesn’t mean I need to look like I don’t care . I’m going to learn to dress my shape and do it on a dime!’”
In the Fall of last year, the Texas native connected with Savvy.style, an app that gives users personalized makeovers at the click of a button.. It’s the go-to place for any style coach – budding or established.
To begin, clients are interviewed by Savvy, the AI bot (think a chic Alexa). Your stylist receives this process as a style-request and answers back on the platform. You’ll receive an illustrative response accompanied by a personalized video message from your style coach, lots of curated looks, and endless outfit inspiration. It’s iMessage and Fashion’s lovechild, and it leaves getting lost in a mountain of clothes, how-to-wear videos and posts as a thing of the past.
Between body shape analysis, putting looks together, filtering through your wardrobe and going shopping, all your fashion needs are met here.. Savvy offers the opportunity to forge an ongoing relationship with your stylist to support you and your fashion goals—but it’s much more than that. “I get so passionate about how clothing is really a reflection of people’s personalities, a sense of identity and personal value,” Jenilee shares .
The Beaumont native appreciates the uniqueness of Savvy’s approach, aiming to educate clients for long term change. “Our journey truly empowers our clients to have a total transformation and not just a closet full of clothes that they don’t know what to do with.” Jenilee illustrates the active approach the virtual resource offers. “Savvy leaves more control in the hands of the client by educating her as well as styling her. She can choose which items she wants to purchase that the stylist sends, as she is equipped with her new fashion knowledge. The client has the support of an expert stylist and fashion-bestie when she isn’t sure what to do or just doesn’t want to have to think about it.”
The lasting impact
Samuel’s impact goes beyond the wardrobe. “Many have expressed how it has boosted their confidence, their dating life, their performance at work or even helped them earn a promotion.” Her clients come from all walks of life. “I’ve styled actors for auditions, I’ve helped new moms trade resentment for self-love towards their new bodies, I’ve helped single people have more confidence in their dating life, and so many others .” Age isn’t a limitation, either. “Some of my older clients have experienced a renewal as they traded in their ‘outdated, aged’ clothing for more trend-relevant, age-appropriate clothing that made them feel like they were given fifteen years back!”
The die-hard fashionista reminisces about a client who needed an outfit for a special dinner. “Her husband had died recently, and this dinner would be their first wedding anniversary since his passing. Their whole family was going to be together, and she wanted a beautiful outfit to wear. She said, ‘Could you please choose something in hot pink? That was his favorite color on me.’ I CRIED.” Jenilee set out to craft an outfit to make her client feel “as though he were swooning over her from heaven.” Samuel wrote notes to explain the pieces she had selected, conveying what a privilege it was to style her. “I expressed how much I wished I could climb through the note and hear her favorite stories of his life over a cup of coffee.” Her client was thrilled with the choices and wore it all to her special dinner. . “She wrote back that she adored each piece and that they fit her perfectly. She said she felt like she was floating through the evening because of how perfect it all was. I CRIED AGAIN.”
As she reflects on the significance of her work, she shares with us that “Clothing embodies and expresses our emotional state and can make us feel in-sync with ourselves in a way that sets us at ease, helps us perform better for high-pressure situations, or can help us relax into moments of comfort and connection. I love how styling gives me access to people’s hearts in such a privileged, precious way.”
Style Coaching in years to come
This boy-mom-turned-stylist has high hopes for the future of Savvy. “I love that Savvy has created a virtual space for style enthusiasts to spread their passion and a bit of their own confidence with others. It’s a supportive way to help people reach their own style goal of having a virtual business. Personally, I love that it gives me access to virtual tools to transform clients’ lives online.” This foresight extends to potential clients as well . “I think it will be a platform that could help millions of women discover themselves and their style, while simultaneously helping style enthusiasts like me to make a living by spreading their style confidence to others.”