Darris Rushing, or D. Rushing, is one of Atlanta’s hottest stylists in the game. Born in San Francisco and raised in Sacramento, the fashion trailblazer got his start in the industry some years back and since then, has made every moment worth it. He has an extraordinary talent for empowering those in their own skin that definitely doesn’t go unnoticed.
D. Rushing has worked with a large handful of today’s most beloved celebrities and ladies leaving a big imprint on fashion and music today. Understanding the importance of image in the current digital age, he puts a massive emphasis on making sure all his clients look good both on and off camera. Some of those who Darris has worked with include Yung Miami, Tokyo Jetz, Stacia Mac, Youn Thug, and a lot more. His outstanding personality has continued to help him elevate as a go-to wardrobe stylist for ladies alike, especially those with a good sense of fashion!
We had the opportunity to talk to D. Rushing in regards to his most memorable experience, working with the Capolot family, shifts in fashion, and much more! Read below.
You’ve quite literally worked with some of the biggest women in music, from Tokyo Jetz to Yung Miami and so on. What’s been one of your most memorable experiences so far?
My most memorable experience actually wasn’t with one of those big names, it was with one of my day one clients that I would go against the world for her. It was Sky from Black Ink Crew, she was the first to bring me to New York Fashion Week. She took me to the most private parties and then took me to BET Awards where I not only got to style her, but Young Thug and Karlae that year.
I actually got to go inside the awards with Sky and it was such a different experience. She introduced me to so many people and in this industry, sometimes the client is the only one who wants to shine. Sky was actually so genuine for the jump so that was probably, to this day, one of my most memorable moments.
What is it about these female personalities that drives you to work with them?
I think I’m the same way, just the male version of them. My clients love me just as much as I love them, it’s always our connection that brings us together. My fashion sense shows them something that they aren’t typically used to but want to see more of. I think it’s that we both have the same vision and we naturally gravitate towards each other. We all just have a ball when we work together; once it’s time, my goal is always to make sure the look is complete and the client is happy.
How important is it for you and your muses to trust one another and be comfortable stepping out of the box?
It’s very important! I’ll start off with styling somebody in something that they’re comfortable in because you can’t just go from… For instance, Lakeyah, she’s more like Aaliyah and has a cool tomboy look so in order for us to move into lingerie, I had to style her in this red dress suit that was still baggy and fly. You have to get to know the client and know their comfort levels.
Also as a stylist, you have a client profile sheet that really helps you know the client and without even asking them, you should know for a fact that they’re not going to wear something. You have to know them all around from how they want to look on TV, how they want to look off-camera, and so forth.
I particularly like the work that you do with the Capalot family, what’s that experience been like for you?
Honestly, that has been a blessing to my life. Stacia, the mother, reached out to me two months prior to when she moved to Atlanta. We tried to do a Mother’s Day or Christmas shoot and I didn’t get a chance to be there, so it didn’t work out. But when she got down here, she kept her word and the first time we met, we just talked all night. After that, we slowly just kept working and doing looks.
One day we were all going to Miami for Polo G’s [Hall of Fame] release party and she called me like “D, I need you to get some looks for him.” It was such a big of a deal to me and because it was her, I did it and it was really huge for me.
Sometimes, considering how non-inclusive the fashion industry can be, it’s hard for certain stylists to break through or work with certain people. What advice would you give younger stylists in regards to working their way up the ladder?
I would say just go for it. Know your target market because that plays a big role and I see some people going for just anyone. Sometimes they might not really know the way those certain people dress and just because they have a name, doesn’t mean you have to work with them. I kind of hate when people call me a celebrity stylist because I’ll style anyone. One of my main clients is surprisingly a doctor and I know that if all of my “celebrity” clients stopped working with me then I would still have someone to work with.
Those are the clients that you want to go for. Don’t just go for the “celebrity” clients because some of them can actually give you the hardest time ever.
Is there anything that you wish you would’ve known that maybe would’ve saved you a lot of time in your career?
I wish I would’ve known my actually money’s worth. Not to sound cocky, but I knew my talent but when I first started I wasn’t charging for what I was worth. I never wanted to scare a client away thinking if I say too much then I would scare them away. So in the first year and a half of styling, I would do stuff for free which helped in a way but in another, it didn’t. I wish I would’ve known that then but it helped me because I did get certain promotion and experience.
In your opinion, what impact do fashion and style have on people, whether it be casually leaving the house to attending a special event?
Fashion definitely plays a big role. It’s not being as overlooked anymore. I feel like stylists aren’t being overlooked as much, and now we’re being appreciated. Now, you can tell that we’re making these women and men feel way better about themselves from a single picture on Instagram. Fashion is slowly becoming a new thing, the trend changes every season. It’s good to see how people are adapting more to fashion and accepting it naturally.
What do you think would be the next step forward to making stylists feel more valued?
Honestly, I feel like should be able to be more vocal in situations. It’s also hard because our job is behind the scenes. I don’t want us to be the main star, but for us to be more respected and have the ability to be vocal. We’re a glam team, not the front line so it can be difficult.
If you enjoyed our chat with D. Rushing, check out our interview with London stylist Jaime Jarvis!