Styled By Me: Beoncia Dunn
Amongst a long list of accomplishments, stylist Beoncia Dunn has continuously found innovative ways to create art and tell unique stories through different mediums in fashion. Born and raised in Atlanta, a cultural hub for music, fashion, and entertainment, BDUNN has been honing her craft for a bit over a decade now. She’s worked on a handful of projects that shaped or are highly praised by Black culture and arts by doing what she knows best. Now, based in Los Angeles, she serves as an amazing role model for young wardrobe stylists and creative directors alike.
One of her most recent efforts to date, BDUNN was able to work with track and field star ShaCarri Richardson on a campaign for Beats By Dre and Kanye West. As she describes it, “I would have unwavering faith about it so it was very interesting to see everything come full circle.” Elsewhere, Beoncia has had the opportunity to work with Leslie Grace, Chloe x Halle, NYFW, and much more. Although her journey was filled with many spiritual bumps and learning moments, the beloved stylist exemplifies how resilience and love are unmatched in this industry.
We had the pleasure of chatting with Beoncia Dunn in regards to styling, working on Beyoncé’s Black Is King and ShaCarri Richardson’s Beats By Dre commercial, and much more! Read below.
You’re originally from Atlanta, but moved to Los Angeles not too long ago—what have you noticed is different about the two in regards to the scenery?
I’m enjoying the scenery adventures, I like that some of my New York friends are out here. It’s been a challenge for some of the people that aren’t from here, LA is a bit passive-aggressive. Being from Atlanta, we get straight to the point but not in a mean way. Sometimes you people to say what they have to say but instead, they’ll beat around the bush. It’s interesting because for some projects, there haven’t been a lot of people of color and when you do find an inclusive team, a stylist doesn’t typically stay with the same team all the time.
Where do you draw inspiration from? What sources of inspiration do you look for when it comes to creative direction?
Everything inspires me. I could look at a tree and see nothing but art, I can look at the windows and see art. I’m such a daydreamer so when I see something or run into people, I see past the shell. I can look at something and it’ll be art to me, I’ll wonder why they chose certain colors and see how I can incorporate it. Nature stimulates my spiritual energy and I feel like the Earth really does talk to us, we just have to listen.
You got a chance to work on ShaCarri Richardson and Kanye West, tell me a bit about that experience.
It was such a full circle process! We didn’t know the commercial was coming out so fast, we did it the week before. Usually they take two weeks, sometimes two months but when it came out, we were like “wait, what?” The team was small, and all of us were getting to know ShaCarri and it was her very first commercial. She would chime in every now and then but for the most part, it was very interesting because three different parties were coming together. I used to run track so it was interesting shopping for looks that are training versus performance.
It was very beautiful, the wording in the song because people who know me before LA and New York know that life has been very hard. I would have unwavering faith about it so it was very interesting to see everything come full circle.
Beyoncé’s Black Is King anniversary recently passed, what led to you being able to be a part of that project?
I had got a DM from this established stylist, Zarina, and she messaged and say “hey, you want to collaborate with me on a project for B?” I was nervous for a few seconds and all the things that could’ve clouded my head did; it was so many things happening. It was very thoughtful of her to be patient with me when it came to communicating so it was really interesting how that all happened. Once we got started, we got started and I was so nervous!
All of it was really beautiful to see come to life. All my friends were able to be a part of it and most of the extras were also my homies from New York. Everything was coming full circle and I was the only stylist that was an assistant for that entire year from beginning to end. So it was really cool because most of my time were spent flying back and forth between New York, LA, and South Africa. Being able to bond with Steven and Beyoncé’s energy is just… she has a very powerful aura! They were telling this beautiful story and there were a lot of sleepless nights.
In 2019, you also got to do the cover art for Chloe x Halle’s album as well—what was that styling moment like?
We actually did that in 2019 along with “Do It” and “Forgive Me.” It had to be a smaller production and Zarina could only let two of us on because we were still filming Black Is King. That was very interesting to see how it works and how creative everyone can get. We had been doing it back to back for Beyoncé so by the time we got to Chloe x Halle, it was a bit easier.
It wasn’t that hectic but Chloe x Halle are so sweet, like genuinely. They are like Earth angels so it wasn’t difficult to work with, and their parents are really cool. It was really dope to see because they always have their family with them and it’s just beautiful to see that especially being where I’m from. They really ate the choreography too so it was so nice seeing their creative director Andrew work.
What has been the most important lesson you’ve learned while being a stylist?
The most important thing is really listening to your clients. Be present when you’re having conversations because you’ll start hearing exactly what they want. When you’re wanting them to get to try new things, you want to make sure you’re connecting with them so that they feel comfortable trying it now that they trust you. Being a stylist, we work so hard to the point where we’re getting consistent and it takes years! I’ve been a personal stylist since 2012 but when you finally get there, you understand that your work is not going to be for everyone. We have to keep reinventing our portfolios!
If you enjoyed our interview with Beoncia Dunn, check out our chat with Tamala Clarice!