We had the good fortune of connecting with KC Sullivan Curating Confidence and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi KC Sullivan, how did you come up with the idea for your business?
My business idea was born out of a chance opportunity to help a woman struggling with body image insecurities due to a double mastectomy find a formal dress for an event that was very important to her.
I am trained/have a degree in fashion design and wardrobe styling. I have a working background in styling for fashion photography, film productions, tv shows, music videos, commercials, runways shows you name it… but having that one random opportunity to help someone in their day-to-day life was a monumental mind shift for me.
Clothing became a tool I could use to help people build more confidence and self-worth and as I started having conversations about clothing with anyone and everyone I realized what a huge need we had to shift our cultural beliefs around beauty and our bodies.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m a Personal Fashion Stylist & Image consultant… what does that mean to me and why is it important to you?
I’m an expert wardrobe curator, style educator, shopping enthusiast, and genuine encourager committed to helping you love what you see in the mirror.
I help you achieve your most confident self by utilizing the one thing you have to have anyways… clothes!
I’m here to serve, guide, and encourage you on your own journey of personal style and confidence while we curate your perfect wardrobe together.
My journey to get to this point of my business has been anything but traditional, and quite bumpy along the way, but as my business mentor, Kate Taylor, has told me multiple times “what’s personal is universal.”
So if I have struggled with something, that means others have too – and if I have found an antidote to the struggle I can now lovingly offer that help to others in a similar plight.
A little deeper look into my journey to creating my business can be summed up in 3 parts. Two parts of my natural personality and a hidden accessory called “life struggle” to tie it all together with a messy bow.
Part 1: For as long as I can remember I’ve been crafting, creating anything artsy I could get my hands on with a tendency towards fashion. From cutting the fingertips out of my lace Easter gloves at age 6 to sewing “tomorrow’s outfit” in my dorm room (stories for another time). I was always pushing the boundaries of acceptable style and trends just for fun.
But letting my creative flag fly was never enough on its own.
Part 2: (the split personality) I’ve also always had the deepest need to make people feel valued, to understand them: and for connection with them. To befriend the oversharing stranger in the checkout line… anyone, at any given moment. A need to love on them in any way I could at that moment in time. I just can’t help myself. (For better or worse sometimes just ask those closest to me.)
Side 3: (The messy bow) My almost 20 year battle with weight, body image issues, and terrible self-confidence.
These seemingly opposing sides of me, coupled with body changes ranging from size 0 to 18, and off and on struggles with self-doubt and depression have taken me down many career paths and pitfalls. Each experience feeding one side of me, but leaving the other feeling empty.
My wavering confidence and multi-passionate skills seemed to always be opposing each other. And over a decade of this nonsense later, through countless career changes, jobs to make ends meet, several earned degrees (fashion design, wardrobe styling, non-profit business, and rehabilitation services), and many life lessons and mind shifts, I realized the variety of my experiences and seemingly eclectic skills were my biggest asset — not my flaw.
So, I left the angst of not feeling like myself and the safety net of a 9-5 to create this passionate service I now share with you.
Here’s the path I took to get here:
Fashion Design school
Styling specialty runway shows for events like the Oscars
Working freelance wardrobe on sets like The Disney Channel
Visual merchandising at Versace
Event planning for nonprofits
And a whole lot more randomness
I’m proof that life is ever-evolving and our bodies are ever-changing.
I wholeheartedly believe your body, no matter the stage you’re in, is always worthy of love and a great outfit that inspires confidence.
With the technical training I’ve had, the many job titles I’ve held, the darkest depths of my personal struggle with confidence, and the countless lessons learned with each of my precious clients, I continue to learn and expand my own skills. I transform my idea of what it means to be confident in my own skin and how to help you achieve it too!
Curating Confidence is built on a foundation of kindness and love to all, a passion for all things fashion and style, an obsession with building your self-confidence and love, and a commitment to teaching you how to conquer your insecurities through the power of your wardrobe and personal style.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
So this tricky… Atlanta and the surrounding area has no shortage of amazing food, incredible activities, and noteworthy things to see and do
I feel a little inadequate to answer this question because I haven’t lived here for quite 3 years and 18 months of it has now been through a pandemic where I didn’t go and do much.
I can say I would definitely take people to walk or scooter parts of the beltline, Piedmont Park, there’s an off-the-chain hamburger at The One Eared Stag called the meat-stick everyone needs to try at least once, and a speakeasy-inspired bar called Eleanor’s in the Smyrna area that I’m quite fond of. Also, we have some great local breweries like Orpheus and Reformation to name a couple that would make the itinerary.
Depending on festivals/shows I would want to find some great local art and/or music happening, And outdoor activities like hiking and kayaking are a must.
On the outskirts of the city, there are some great locally owned places I love to take people to, Bananas & Beehives is a scratch-made bakery that can’t be missed, and the Menagerie on Main, which is a really cool renovated historical house that is now an art gallery/store really showcases some flavor of the area.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I have been beyond blessed in my years with a support system & cheerleading squad always by my side…my list of people to acknowledge is quite lengthy… to keep it brief, I ultimately have to thank my Dad, Mom, and sister along with several dear friends and mentors that have always seen more in me than I could see in myself and have relentlessly stood by my side and fanned my flame when I couldn’t.
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Photographer: Cody Perez, Cody Perez Photography Hair: Hannah Deahl, hmdhair Make-up: Rhianon Whitney makeup artistry