We had the good fortune of connecting with Katie Cantrill and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Katie, what is the most important factor behind your success?
My energy and passion in helping others!
It took me a couple of years to realize that my business & brand was growing because of my energy, my excitement, and my belief that I could truly help others to look & feel their best!
I style amazing clothes that fit, but I now recognize that people work with me because I am a high energy optimist, who believes anything is possible. My life path has brought my problem solving energy to one’s wardrobe!
Often times entrepreneurs think they need the perfect product or some special gimmick. I believe that if you can effectively tell your story, whether in-person or on social media, than your audience – and ideal clients will find you.
There is a Japanese concept called “Ikigai”, which represents a pursuit of happiness and a reason for living. When I began styling in 2014, I was looking for a pursuit that would be fun & flexible, and still allow me time with my 2 young children. Little did I know it would take me on my path to Ikigai.
My sister-in-law was also a stylist with J.Hilburn and had left her corporate job and was loving it. She realized that it would be a good fit for me; encouraging me to start my business.
Ikigai is career GOLD – when you find a pursuit that you love, you are great at, the world needs – and you are paid to do!
Being a menswear stylist is MY Ikigai gold because I have a passion for style & color, and love working with people, solving their fit & style problems!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Becoming a stylist has been a bit of a circuitous journey, starting in high school studio art & psychology 101. Ever since high school I have thrown myself into art and photography, developing a love for symmetry & color.
In college I pursued this interest, by taking 3 semesters of Art History, and ultimately became the Photography Editor of the Cavalier Daily for the University of Virginia. During college, I also immersed myself in the study of people, becoming a psychology major. This study, led to my graduate studies in Occupational Therapy; my 1st career.
Being an OT (Occupational therapist) was an amazing pursuit- it was truly an extension of my personality. I found that I loved injecting my energy and optimism into the lives of others, often during some of the hardest times of their lives. I loved to help others be the best & most independent form of their selves.
When I began styling in 2014, I was looking for a pursuit that would be fun & flexible, and still allow me time with my 2 young children. Little did I know it would become such a perfect fit for my personality & lifestyle; I had become a therapist to one’s closet/wardrobe by helping busy men style clothes that fit – their body, their brand, and their lifestyle!
My journey thus far, has been fun & rewarding, but far from easy. Having built my network & my business from scratch, the biggest lesson I have learned is that you need to get out, share your story, and believe in yourself. The past 2 years have been challenging for many – and I believe that with the right dose of positive energy & optimism, anything is possible. Due to this belief & practice, in 2020, I was nominated by my peers for our annual “Spirit of J.Hilburn” award.
As a lifetime learner, I continue to learn & grow with my career. Just this year, my business has successfully expanded to include a body scanning app and online style consults for my out-of-town clients. My most recent development has been an expansion from an exclusively mobile model to opening a style studio of my own.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Sacramento is an amazing city – the capital city of California with a hometown feel. We are located an hour and a half from San Francisco, Napa-Sonoma Valley, and Lake Tahoe – we are truly in the center of it all.
We have amazing historical & culinary destinations in the Midtown grid, 2 amazing rivers and 2 lakes for outdoor pursuit, and vibrant music and restaurant scene in all 4 corners of our suburbs.
If you come to Sacramento, make sure you swing by Fair Oaks Village to see my new studio – there are fun shops, coffee shops, restaurants, a brew pub!,
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Thank you to my family, friends & networking crew. To Courtney for introducing me to J.Hilburn, to Jason for always saying “yes”, to Jade for being my wingwoman, to Trevor & Ben for telling me to get on Instagram, and to Staush & Leo for always showing up!
And finally, to Justin & Rob for generously sharing your connections with me
All photos taken by Brandon Miyasaki, @Shot Archives – except photo in white dress & white award picture