There’s a New Wardrobe at Your Fingertips at Somerset’s Personal Stylist Suite

Finding the perfect outfit can feel impossible — and sometimes it is. But at the Somerset Collection, the Personal Stylist suite is available to help curate a personalized wardrobe selected from its large roster of stores.
Stylists Amanda Fabry (left) and Tamela Clarke review a mood board. Personal styling is a free service at the Somerset Collection. // Photograph by Sal Rodriguez

Walking into the Somerset Collection — home to over 180 stores — and gazing up at the three-story structure filled with retailers selling apparel, accessories, and shoes of various styles and price points can be an overwhelming experience for even the most avid shopper.

And if you’re trying to curate a new wardrobe or find an outfit for an event? The only thing you’ll likely find is yourself circling the building for hours.

So, in 2016, Somerset Collection launched the Personal Stylist program to help alleviate that stress and promote a smoother shopping experience for customers, creating a unique and collaborative service. Whereas “a stylist from Saks can shop throughout Saks, our stylists can shop throughout the entire center,” says Kate Millea, general manager at the Somerset Collection, adding that this personal styling service brings new clients to the stores while also providing clients with a wider range of options with fewer limitations.

The Personal Stylist suite initially opened in a temporary space in the mall’s south end, then moved to a permanent location on the north side of Big Beaver in 2022 — on the third floor — before having its grand opening in spring 2023. The contemporary suite has three private fitting rooms, each designed with a different theme to cater to the client’s personal style, whether that’s neutral and classic, fun and colorful, or warm and cozy.

Customers are making appointments regularly, with 20 to 30 a month during the peak spring/summer/fall seasons and about 15 to 20 a month during slower times of the year. There are currently six stylists available, but the program will soon bring on two more.

Here, Millea and Samantha Shina, who oversees the Personal Stylist suite, share what you need to know about the service.

The stylist pulls clothes for a client to try on at their appointment. // Photograph by Sal Rodriguez

How does someone get started?

Shina: When someone inquires, I email them our offerings of an appointment, how it works, and then I send them the questionnaire. After completing the questionnaire, I’ll go over it to see which stylist they’re best suited for. I’ll forward that to the appointed stylist and have them connect. We typically book about two weeks out, and that’s to allow both the client and stylist to prepare their schedules and research. They contact the client typically 24 to 48 hours before the appointment to see if they need anything else.

The stylist then pulls items for the client the night or morning before the appointment so that the client can try everything on once they arrive.

How much does it cost?

Millea: It’s complimentary. It’s no different than going into the store. You’re just having someone help you curate the look that you’re going for.

Will the stylist stay and offer input during the fitting?

Millea: It’s very much based on what the client wants, and that’s part of the questionnaire: How much involvement do you want?

Shina: It’s also part of the stylist’s job to know the client’s comfort level. They’ll know whether to back off or maybe put themselves in more.

How does a client purchase what they want?

Millea: We do go back to the stores so that all our merchants get credit for the sale. Some stores allow purchases to be done remotely through a pay link, but most require the client to be there in person.

This story originally appeared in the May 2024 issue of Hour Detroit magazine. To read more, pick up a copy of Hour Detroit at a local retail outlet. Our digital edition will be available on May 6.