Simon Leesley was not a stylish dresser when he was growing up in San Francisco (and, yes, he lived through not just one but two modest earthquakes). He sported cowboy boots while a student at the University of Texas in Austin. Now he has 60-odd “stylists” advising him. I would describe his style as a slim, 40-year-old, laidback CEO look (jeans and jumper), which seems appropriate now that he is head honcho at Stitch Fix UK. The stylists aren’t there to act as his personal wardrobe consultants – they are there for you and me, potentially, to make us look good.
When I went to their HQ round the corner from Holborn station on a cold day in January, it was like walking into summer. They had rails of short-sleeved shirts and skimpy dresses. I found myself ogling a photograph of a gorgeous Dr Zhivago-style overcoat. “The problem,” says Leesley, “is how do you help consumers through all the choices? Most of us don’t have access to a personal stylist.”
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