By: Kat Bein By: Kat Bein | October 11, 2021 | Style & Beauty
When you’re a fashion fanatic, you’ll do just about anything to get the latest must-have. Of course, that sometimes means waiting in line at Louis Vuitton for two hours, just to be told that gorgeous bag is no longer in stock. What do you do then? Search online for another two hours, pulling out your hair just to figure out where to start?
Smart shoppers like Italian influencer Chiara Ferragni and American model Victoria Barbara skip all that mess and head straight to online personal shopper Jaidi Finds.
“Time is money,” Jaidi says. “It’s the same concept when you go to Doordash, ‘I don't want to go out and buy food because it's raining, so can you do it for me, and I'll give you a fee.’”
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When you’ve got a rare pair of shoes you just have to have, Jaidi knows where to go. When you’re heading to a holiday party or a job interview and you don’t have anything to wear, Jaidi will curate the perfect look and ship it to your door. She can even source the right gift for your special occasion—and you can keep all the praise.
Jaidi always had a passion for fashion, but she only started her personal shopping business two-and-a-half years ago. She got her professional start in finance and business accounting at KPMG, then she moved to NYC and caught a lucky break, joining the finance team at her dream company: Chanel.
In another twist of fate, she moved from finance to a sourcing and procurement project, learning the ins and outs of how to get what people need. From there, she was recruited by Tiffany’s to manage store planning, then Gucci as Head of Facility for North America.
That’s the role she filled when COVID hit, and as stores shut their doors across the globe, Jaidi found a new calling.
“I have always loved shopping and had this aspiration of owning my own business, and then Covid hit,” she says. “I was toying with the idea to start something and then I'm like, ‘I'm just going to start an Instagram page, and start doing it,’—and it just blew up.”
Today, Jaidi Finds boasts nearly 50,000 followers on Instagram while servicing clients across the U.S., U.A.E., Asia, Europe and literally anywhere designer goods are desired. She runs her operation from NYC and manages sourcing teams in Asia, Paris and other major markets, leveraging her insider contacts and industry knowledge to find clients those rare Chanel Dad sandals or Amina Muaddi slingback heels
Most of her clients are women, though she helps men often enough, and customers range in age from 20 to 70.
“I think younger generations are more trusting of how this works,” she says. “The older generation is like ‘how does this thing work? Are you real?’ Those are fair questions! These are very pricey items, and you're also handing money to who? There are a lot of scams out there, but I think we have so many testimonies on what we've built, and we have people and influencers talking and giving us credit. The older generations are more reluctant, but after a while you get their trust, and then they're hooked.”
Most of Jaidi Finds’ customers reach out via Instagram DM or Whatsapp message. Clients send a picture of the item they want, their size and style preferences, and Jaidi gets to work.
Once customers have come to know and trust her services, they start to get adventurous, asking her to put together a look for a certain event or occasion, and that’s where Jaidi’s curative talent really shines.
“Learning the client is very important, learning his or her style,” she says. “Don't be afraid to ask your client questions. I would also look on their profile if they were public, look at their lifestyle … Then from there I would also ask, what is your budget?”
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With that in mind, Jaidi has compiled a sure-fire way to beat that “nothing to wear” feeling. There are a few handy tricks she employs to keep her clients and herself styled to the nines.
“Most people wear things without even intention, she says. “I like to dress not for how people are going to see you, but how you want to feel.”
Follow these steps, and you’ll always pull off the perfect intentional look:
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Follow the Four Categories
Jaidi breaks fashion down into four important puzzle pieces: Lifestyle, Seasonality, Occasion and ‘how do you want to feel?’ When you go shopping, consider your actual, everyday life. Buy pieces that will make you feel comfortable and confident, whether you’re a busy mother of three, a high-powered CEO or an athleisure-loving fitness fanatic—and remember, who you were last season doesn’t always mirror the your of today.
“Our Lifestyles change,” Jaidi says. “You have to go with that flow.”
Once you’ve locked in on a style that works, make sure you curate your closet with a series of basics for each season and for various casual to black-tie occasions. When picking your outfit, focus the ‘fit on how it makes you feel. Are you trying to be sexy? Professional? Active? Let your intention be your guide.
Cover the Basics
Of course, there are a few items every good dresser needs to have.
“For sure everybody should have a very good pair of denim jeans, blue or black,” Jaidi says. “It’s just a rule.”
From there, she suggests a comfortable, high-quality white tank or white t-shirt to be paired with literally everything, as well as a black blazer or leather jacket, depending on your lifestyle.
Every woman needs a pair of heels in nude or black, though the height of the heel depends on you. Jaidi suggests a solid trench coat in black or khaki, especially the trench from Burberry, and for winter, a good cashmere sweater or puffy coat, depending on your style.
Lastly but most importantly, a pair of “really chic sneakers.”
“Unless you're really [a character from] Sex and the City, you really can't walk in heels,” she laughs, “realistically.”
Add Pops of Color
Basics also include a good pair of gloves, hats and beanies, scarves, shoes and the like, but this is where Jaidi says you have room to get playful.
“Once you have the basic black, white, neutral, nude, brown; that's when you can really add the colors like a pop of pink,” she says. “I personally love neon pink, but it depends [on your taste]. That's when you can add purples and green, a red bag just to mix up your outfit.”
Invest in a Quality Handbag
Your handbag is another opportunity to add some color and character, but before you go collecting off-the-wall statement pieces, make sure you’ve got something that can keep you looking chic and fit all your on-the-go essentials.
“I personally would recommend something that's going to stand through your lifetime,” Jaidi says. “Maybe a Birkin or Chanel flap bag, something that's going to continue increasing in value. There are a lot of fashion items that are of-the-moment, but three seasons later, it's obsolete and you don't want to throw out $2,000.”
Clean Out Your Closet Twice a Year
Most people only wear about 20 percent of the clothing they already own. If you continue to shop without taking stock of what you have, you might end up repeating unnecessarily. Ironically, that overwhelming mess will only fuel the feeling that you’ve nothing to wear.
“After I don't wear something for two to three years, I start donating or giving stuff to my sister; something to create space, because that's when you can see what you have,” Jaidi says. “I recommend cleaning your closet twice a year when seasons change. Okay, if you live in California, it's all the same, but I still say do that twice a year, because you have to take inventory.”
If You Like It, Buy It
You don’t have to go all Marie Kondo, though. Jaidi says living a little is good for you.
“For these basic things, a black dress, a black heel; if you see something you like—even if you don't ‘need’ it—get it,” she says, “because the moment when you need it, you will not find anything that you do like. You've got to be quick!”
Follow Jaidi Finds on Instagram to learn more about looking good and for help finding the exact right piece to make your every look complete.
Photography by: Courtesy of Jaidi Finds