Today marks the first of our new blog series, 5 THINGS, where we talk with female leaders doing cool things. The first in our series is Dechel Mckillian, a celebrity stylist originally from Los Angeles whose clients include Drake, Nicki Minaj, Fergie, and Lionel Richie. After traveling the world with music artists like the Black Eyed Peas and Lil Wayne, Dechel saw firsthand the negative impact fashion has on our people and planet. Dechel brings over a decade of fashion industry experience to GALERIE.LA and has worked with the world’s biggest retailers including GOOP, Clare V, Steven Alan and TopShop.
Realizing the gap between sustainable fashion and her experiences in lifestyle and entertainment, she launched GALERIE.LA to present a tightly curated selection of brands with a shared philosophy. Dechel founded GALERIE.LA with the mission to bring socially conscious fashion to the masses.
Dechel is passionate about linking cutting-edge movements in urban culture, entertainment and music with the possibilities of sustainable design and fashion.
GALERIE.LA at the ROW in DTLA
1. What did you have for breakfast today?
Oatmeal and toast
2. Who do you look to for inspiration and/or guidance?
I have turn to other female entrepreneurs I admire (and I've worked for them as well) including Clare Vivier (Clare V.) and Gwyneth Paltrow (GOOP). These ladies inspire me on a daily basis with the companies that they've built from the ground up and the amazing group of women they employ. Seeing the behind the scenes of their businesses has challenged me to expand my vision for GALERIE.LA while showing me it's important to achieve success in business and life.
3. When did you have that aha moment that led you to where you are now?
Back in 2014, my friend Stephanie and I began dreaming up what would be the store concept that is now GALERIE.LA. It was a combination of Sustainability, Curation and Visual Merchandising. We did months of research on sustainable brands, concept stores and technology trends. It was so much fun because we were freely creating the company that we wanted to work at.
I had the big aha moment in 2015 while meditating on the beach. After that I set out to carry this business venture on my own, I realized that not only is GALERIE.LA my dream job and company, it's also my purpose to create a positive change within the fashion industry. Having a purpose centered business definitely helps center you through the daily challenges of having a start-up.
GALERIE.LA at the ROW in DTLA
4. Where do you see yourself next?
I'm in it for the long run with GALERIE.LA! We're only now at the beginning of a big vision for this company. I do see GALERIE.LA and myself in other major cities for pop-ups as we continue to grow.
Other projects that I want to work on in addition to GALERIE.LA (in the future) include women entrepreneur retreats in tropical locations and writing a book about my celebrity styling experiences called the Invisible Stylist.
Inside GALERIE.LA's new concept shop at the ROW DTLA
5. Why? (open to interpretation)
For the women entrepreneur retreats, I have such a great experience with other women when we're removed from the daily grind. New ideas and inspiration start to flow from being around other entrepreneurs that might be restricted on inhibited in normal surroundings. Also I really love to travel! So win win!
For the book, so many people want to know what the celebrities that I've styled are like. I want to give insight to the personalities, fun stories and a styling advice to those interested in pursuing a career in the field. It could be a fun next chapter in my life :)
If you're in L.A., be sure to check out her new ethical concept shop GALERIE.LA at the ROW in downtown.