The Fashion Finesse of The Ladysmith

By ISABELLA KOZ | Contributing Writer

With a background in film and design, Ellie Smith has gathered all of her talents into a holistic program that helps women, including Palisadians, change their relationship with style, spending and space.

Through a business she calls The Ladysmith, Smith works to transform the way that women see themselves. Smith’s services are meant to have a long-lasting effect on her customers, giving them the skills to ultimately be self-sufficient within the realm of their individual fashion.

Hard at work

Smith began with an interest in film, leading her to attend USC Film School in Downtown Los Angeles. There, she gained a better understanding of costume design, which she used to dress actors in many short films.

Around this time, Smith was inspired to create her own business. She started by selling vintage clothing, which ultimately led to the evolution of The Ladysmith.

“It was an evolution––understanding what my gifts were, what my talents were and how I could use them to benefit other people and not just myself,” Smith told the Palisadian-Post.

To begin the process of reforming one’s relationship with their style, Smith engages in a 90-minute session, which she calls a personal design consultation. Smith and her client go through a four-part agenda, which The Ladysmith crafts carefully and precisely, including finding out a client’s likes and dislikes, inquiring about favorite colors, and getting to know overall taste.

To top it off, Smith has her clients take a look in the mirror to better understand their facial complexities, color composition, bodily curves and more.

After taking a look through her client’s wardrobe, Smith then takes them through shopping support. In this part of her services, Smith helps women be “healthy” shoppers—picking out pieces that not only look good, but suit their character.

Throughout the process, Smith sees herself as a woman’s “cheerleader,” and explained that she is always advocating for what is in her client’s best interest.

Eventually, after sifting through the wardrobe of the woman she is working with, Smith “chips away” at what her client does not wear, while also altering other pieces to make them more wearable or fitting for that person’s needs.

“[It] gives you a defensible wardrobe,” she explained. “Every time you put something on, you know you have it for a reason. You chose it for a reason, you kept it for a reason––it shows you’re thinking of these reasons and it gives you a level of confidence when you’re choosing them. So when you walk out of the house, you know you like them.”

With a new version of an old wardrobe set into place, Smith then works to resell her client’s clothing, help them through systematic organization and budgeting. Smith is partnered with “Rebag” for support in reselling client’s handbags and fine jewelry.

To book Smith’s services, visit