By now, it’s no secret that behind every dolled up model or celebrity is a very persistent stylist. With this in mind, we raided Ria Casco’s closet, ever so curious of what we will find from someone whose everyday life consists of putting together styling decks and interesting pieces from designers’ ateliers. In this short interview, she openly talks about how she started in the industry, her favorite black-and-camel graphic skirt, and her most abused styling kit essential.
Tell us how you started as a stylist.
I actually started off aspiring to be a full-time writer, but during my internship at Rogue, I was taken under the wing of their then-Style Editor. A few shoots in and I thought, “styling is something I’ll be happy doing all the time.”
What influences your personal style?
The ‘60s and ‘70s, so I’m obviously into vintage. I’m not afraid of trends, but I only incorporate those that I feel are true to my style.
As I get older, I notice that the way I dress gets more and more polished and simplified. I don’t like anything too uncomfortable because I always want to look like I don’t try too hard.
What’s the hardest and most fulfilling part of being a stylist?
The hardest part is the physical work. Styling involves always being on your toes, organizing and carrying things. I’m pretty hands-on so even when I have an assistant, I keep myself very much involved in all the grunt work.
I gladly endure these because seeing the outcome—especially when you get to hold it in your hands—is the most exhilarating feeling ever.
What’s the most overused item in your styling kit?
Clamps! Second is packaging tape (which I use to protect the soles of shoes).
What are some unapologetic pieces of clothing do you own?
All my clothes that have a plunging neckline, side boob or an extremely low back—I know I raise a lot of (conservative) eyebrows by wearing them on any normal day.
Enumerate some of your favorite closet items.
Definitely a handful of vintage finds: my black-and-camel graphic skirt, printed silk neckerchief that I recently bought at a yard sale from fellow stylist Carla Villanueva, and custom pieces from young designer Esme Palaganas whose work I really love.
Any tricks of the trade you might want to share? Words to live by?
Be persistent. Talent can only get you so far, but to truly survive in this industry, you have to keep going no matter how many times you screw up because that is the only way you will learn and improve.