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Meet Liz Klebba of Closet Play Image in Augusta

Today we’d like to introduce you to Liz Klebba.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I’ve always loved fashion and style; my fascination started early… my mother was a city girl, and I remember window shopping with her in New York City when we would visit family on the East Coast. She taught me to sew, and I was amazed at how clothing is constructed inside out and backwards. Fast forward to working retail in high school and college… I loved helping customers and creating outfits that made them feel beautiful but hated the pressure to “make numbers.” (Especially when the buyer clearly didn’t understand the wants and needs of the clientele.) I didn’t have the words to explain at the time, but that “integrity disconnect” made retail untenable for me. I’ve lived an eventful life since: Naval Reservist, Navy wife, 6 international moves, homeschool mom, bookkeeper, tax preparer, and classroom teacher. After leaving the classroom, it was time to start a business I loved, so I combined my lifelong experience helping friends and family with their style with professional training to create a business helping people feel fabulous in their style and providing businesses with training to educate employees about the power of personal style.

Has it been a smooth road?
Smooth? That’s a funny question! Is any road smooth? I think every road has its smooth and bumpy patches. Technology and social media are definitely my bumpy spots. I have never been a computer person, so it’s amusing that I now spend hours a day working on the computer, and more time than I would like on social media.

People think “Oh, fun! You get to spend time on Facebook and Instagram.” But for me, it’s just part of the job. It’s like when I was teaching; I loved teaching, but not entering grades. I’m certainly not nearly as nervous about technology as I was when I first started blogging and posting, but I suppose (as they say) familiarity breeds contempt!

I’d say the biggest struggle is boundaries! I think most entrepreneurs can relate. It’s easy to spend every waking moment, 24/7/365 working your business. Not letting work take over your life can be quite a challenge. I’m okay now with saying “No, thank you.” when a project or request is just not going to work with my values and goals.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Closet Play Image story. Tell us more about it.
Closet Play Image is an Image Consulting company. As an Image, Wardrobe, and Color Consultant, Blogger, Presenter, and all-around style resource, I cover a lot of territories! No two days are the same. I usually say I’m a personal trainer for your style. My job is to get your style and wardrobe in the best shape of your life, with no judgment, no measurement, and a dose of fun. That’s why it’s Closet Play!

On the business side, I work with companies/HR departments to help them finesse the awkward “dress issue” conversation, leading workshops and training sessions about business dress, image, color, and other topics. Retail training for fashion associates is another piece of the business style puzzle. I’ve also trained for a jewelry company to help their jewelers better assist their customers. Style is just another tool that should be in everyone’s business toolbox!

My favorite part of my job is personal styling and wardrobing. I am a planning geek and budgeting nerd who loves style. People think an Image Consultant is just for celebrities, rich people, or politicians, but that couldn’t be further from the truth! Style isn’t about money; it’s about planning and intentionality. My goal is to help every client to a place where he or she feels both comfortable AND confident! I’m proud to be regularly credited with saving my clients far more money than they spend on my services.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
Ooooh! What a fun question!

Image is becoming more important than ever in our increasingly hypervisual world, so I expect image consulting to grow. I see rapid growth in coaching clients to maximize their virtual image. It’s not simply about how we look in a headshot or in our social media posts; appearing virtually in an interview or pitch meeting is very different than showing up in person. Businesspersons will need to be equipped with both skillsets to succeed.

Etiquette and cultural training will also grow as US companies strive to increase their global footprint. This niche of consulting is already exploding in Asia.

Last, but not least, I see real growth in the sustainable side of image consulting, focused on restyling and capsule wardrobes, and avoiding fast fashion. I’m a huge fan of all three!

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Liz Klebba, Closet Play Image

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