Style Summit Spotlight: Bridgette Cunningham

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Say hello to the loverly Bridgette Cunningham.

Her personal style is the perfect mix of playful, beautiful, sweet, classic, edgy, fashion-forward, chic, and feminine. Just like her.

Bridgette is involved in some of the coolest projects in Pittsburgh, writing for a fashion magazine, working on movie sets, and styling some of the most fabulous Pittsburgh locals.

But the coolest project she's currently involved in? The Style Summit, of course. (We may be a tad biased on that one.)

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Name: Bridgette Cunningham
Job Title: Professional Stylist

Introduce yourself and your business as if you were speaking from the cockpit.
Good morning, lovely passengers. This is Bridgette Cunningham, your style guide. I’d like to take you as you already are, gorgeous, and make you even more proud to show it. I know you’ve got some gems hiding in your closet that are just waiting to be revived. Afraid of the mall, I can show you the ropes. I’ve got thousands of designers and ideas of what to do with wardrobe stock-piled in my head, and if you’ll listen, I’m ready to talk. I write too, if you ever find yourself needing those services, but I prefer that to be about fashion also.

How do you show your personality through your style? How does your style relate to your business?
Well I dress based on my mood, so each day it’s changing and those who know me well, know my personality has many sides. I’m still learning so much about just where I am going to go with a career in both fashion and writing. Right now I’m editing a magazine, selling pre-loved designer goods for a non-profit on the web, trying to pick up fiction writing again, and taking freelance film and commercial wardrobe jobs when they’re available. Luckily for me, everything I’m doing, I’m able to stick to my uniform of skinny jeans and boots. I’m just not the corporate kind of girl. I’ve never had my hair blown out or worn nude stockings, and I don’t ever intend to.

If you could name a nail polish color after yourself or your business, what would it be?
Firecracker – This was an adjective used to describe me in the past, and I think it’s a good one. There are always a million ideas popping up in my head, and I’m always trying to get my hands on new projects. I have a tendency to be very blunt about what I like and don’t like, but I will also have you cracking up and I’m not afraid to make inappropriate jokes. Also, short, bright red nails are my favorite of the manicures. I just can’t get into the nail art trend.

Not all flights are smooth. Tell us about how you handle turbulence in your business.
Well, I quit my full-time job in June and it has put me, what I like to call, “back in the game”. This term was developed by my friends and me when working at Saks in Manhattan on a full- commission basis – yes that’s right, not even an hourly rate. There are ups and there are downs as far as money goes, but I have to work through the downs and keep a positive attitude, or else I stay there. I trust my vision and my talent and I know that the next opportunity just requires some reaching out and persistence. Also, I like to keep in mind that all jobs are still a job and that I’m getting paid to get things done, not to just like sit there and be some creative force, if that makes sense.

Who is the wind beneath your wings?
My mom is my best friend – She’s still writing me cards that she knows someday I’ll be dressing her in Chanel and whisking us off to Paris. If I’m ever down, she’s got a card and some kind words for that. She’s also my greatest style client. She’s about to hit sixty and I still dress her from my own closet for special occasions.

Advice to other women as they navigate the business world?
Oy, I’m not sure I’m really in any place to be giving people that kind of advice yet! Talk to me in a few years. I guess I’ll tell them what I tell myself every day: You are talented. You have skills to offer. Don’t sell yourself short, and don’t get discouraged. There are big things waiting for you. Be persistent and be nice.