It hasn’t been an easy road to the world of fashion for designer Kim Stylez. Bad decisions early on in life, led Kym to a life of crime but despite all of that, she was able to learn from her mistakes and turn her life around to become a positive and productive force. This story is for all of those out there, male or female, looking for a second chance. Kym is proof positive that you can overcome and start all over again by renewing your attitude and applying the skills that you have been given. AllHipHop.com caught up with the Southern California fashion designer to hear her great little story. Here’s to the overcomers!
You became a mother at 15 years old?
Yes and I also lost my mother that year, so I became a mom while losing one. By the time my son was a little over a year old, I wound up in Prison.
What did you do?
I was robbing people.
Was this like a straight thug “give-me-your-money” type of robbery?
Yes. People always tell me that they can’t believe I was like that. My father is a lawyer, after all.
What brought you to do that?
It was sheer ignorance, lots of it, and desperation for funds. Part of it was rebellion and proving a point that I didn’t need anyone. I knew what I was doing wasn’t right. It didn’t take long for me to realize that I needed to stop. I didn’t have to go through a bunch of bad experiences to finally learn. I took that one lesson and grew from it.
You took steps to start improving your life once you got out of jail?
I actually started doing that during my rehabilitation period. I began to read books, pursue my cosmetology license and obtain my GED. I already knew how to sketch since I was an artist so that made fashion my focal point when I was released from Prison. I went back to school and attended Long Beach City College to further pursue my fashion goals. As soon as I did what my father originally wanted me to do, which was get an education, things started to fall in place naturally.
So you are a natural artist?
I loved comics but I could never bring one to life but the idea of it pushed me in to the fashion world by being able to sketch. I just celebrated my 10th year in the fashion industry. I’ve presented for two years in a row at L.A. Fashion Week.
Angela Simmons recently wore one of your designs?
She wore my “Lovers” T-Shirt on 106 & Park for a whole hour and I almost died. She also wore one of my pants with my name on the back of it. That was amazing. I had to grab my phone and post pictures on Instagram of her wearing the Kym Couture Kollection. I’m getting ready to have a Grand Opening In February for my Boutique store in Beverly Hills, so I’m real excited about that too.
What’s your message for other young single mom’s out there?
Love your children enough to do better for yourself. The well-being of your children comes first and you should do everything in your power to make that happen.
And to those who have made wrong decisions that have landed them in jail?
Don’t allow yourself to be labeled by others. People will try to label you and put you in a statistical group- don’t fall for that. If you’re a good person, it will come through. I can’t say that everybody that has made mistakes is a good person but if you are a good person it will come through eventually.
Where can people find your work and learn more about you?
You can learn more about me and my designs at http://www.kymcouturekollection.com and you can follow me Instagram @kymquaintrelle – especially because I’m addicted to that!