Germaine Hill got her style from her mother. Growing up in the birthplace of the Jackson 5, it was this female figure who let her see fashion and how it made eyes follow and mouths drop. After more than 20 years in the business, she still loves to make a scene. Working in the TV, film, editorial and personal styling sectors, Hill feels most at home with the one-on-one time she gets to spend with her clients.
Fun facts about Hill:
• Has dressed and traveled the world with Prince, Babyface and the Pointer Sisters.
• Bought her mother visiting from Gary, Indiana the home of the Jackson 5, to the Stylist Suite.
• Worked her first costume designer job on the set of Love Jones, written and directed by Chicago filmmaker Theodore Witcher.
What informs your style and drives your passion?
I get my style from my mother. When I was young, my mother would make all of my costumes for Halloween. She was always the most stylish person in the room. I didn’t even realize she was a role model. It wasn’t until years later when I became a stylist I was like “Wow, my mom was a huge influence on me and I didn’t even realize it was happening.” I’m originally from Gary Indiana; G-I, home of the Jackson 5.
What are some of the challenges that you face today in your career as a stylist?
The issue that I always run into is that the fact that this is a medium and a business that’s a collaborative business. So there’s a lot of different people in this process. A lot of people in the decision-making process and I feel like that’s my greatest challenge. You have to serve so many different gods sometimes. You’re trying to satisfy the client, the manager and production company. When I’m working with a client one on one, it’s always seamless. But when you bring more than two people into the mix, you’re going to have to “bump it up, move it through the chain of command.
At this stage of the game, what’s something that you just won’t do anymore?
I don’t miss out on opportunities. I don’t care if they are sweeping up the floor or if they are the president of the production company. I cannot ever under estimate or dismiss anyone that I have a chance to make contact with. This is a business about progression. Which means that you might meet someone that’s a production assistant one year and two years later, they’re running a business. I try to function in a way that everyone that I meet is potential client or a potential friend or a potential associate. I feel like that is the beauty of this business because you do meet people at every stage. When you meet them, they may be at the bottom but you never know where they are going to end up. At the end of the day, I just always want to be receptive.
What is the one thing that you just can’t live without?
I one thing that I can’t live without is double-sided tape. I feel like it is the fix-it for everything: your hair, your shoes, your butt, whatever. Anything you need to fix, you can fix with double-sided tape. I keep it in my wallet, in my purse, in my glue box. If you go to my house, there is double-sided tape strategically placed everywhere.
Describe your personal style.
I’m always trying to bring a color combination and a pattern combination. I love to bring bright colors and extreme patterns with an afro-centric yet worldly at the same time. It’s that kind of vibe.