Known for his rolodex of clients, if you can name any influencer or celebrity in Australia, chances are they have been dressed by Elliot Garnaut.
Whether he’s pioneering the latest and greatest fashion find alongside client and friend, Rozalia Russian, or being unapologetically honest and to the point with his 33k instagram followers, Garnaut never misses a beat.
Sporting a wardrobe to envy and a healthy obsession with all things pop-culture (Timothée Chalamet, Hi!) you’ll be wishing Elliot was your new best friend.
We spoke to Garnaut on Paris Hilton, #GarnautGirls and what hides inside his beauty bag.
How did you get your first ‘big break’ in the styling industry?
My career is certainly an amalgam of random adventures blended together spitting me out where I find myself today! I started out as a fashion buyer and then worked as a fashion publicist/ talent manager, based in Hong Kong and Sydney respectively. I moved home to Melbourne in 2016 to work for the family business in finance whilst my Dad was undergoing treatment for throat cancer. It was whilst in this role that I approached by Rozalia Russian. We had mutual friends and had heard of each other. Her opener was “I love your style and think you’re really funny” segueing into asking me to style her. 48hrs later, we were in our first meeting for her Derby Day look for 2017. I thought to myself I’ll give it a crack, and boom. Here we are three years later still playing dress ups.
What project were you most proud to work on, or is your most favourite, and why?
Every project I have worked on I take huge pride in. Working by myself, for myself I put an insane amount of pressure to deliver outstanding results and in doing so strive to be proud of everything I produce. I am extremely proud to represent both the Victoria Racing Club and Chadstone, The Fashion Capital as an Official Ambassador. On jobs… perhaps the SS18 campaign I did for BONDS? Three days, 5 models, a fully decked out ‘BONDS MOTEL’ on Queensland’s Miami Beach – one I’ll never forget. BONDS is such an iconic Aussie brand.
Where does your inspiration come from?
God. Literally everywhere. I get SUPER inspired when I travel which pre ‘rona, was super often. I adore spending time alone in an international city such as Hong Kong or Paris and watching the general public pass me by. I love seeing how people put themselves together. In addition, the bright young things of Los Angeles inspire me daily. Kendall Jenner, Harry Styles, Timothee Chalamet, Hailey Bieber. They each have distinct style that is intrinsically them yet malleable.
If you could dress anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and what would they wear?
Paris Hilton. MY FUCKING OGGGGGG. Honestly, think of someone more definitive of early 2000s pop culture. I’ll wait. I’d keep her TRUE Paris with Louis Vuitton x Murakami and a Von Dutch trucker.
What does beauty mean to you?
A ripping personality and the ability to take the piss out of yourself. A cracking tan on top of all of this is a real cherry on the cake.
What do you love most about the world of beauty?
I am totally and utterly obsessed by the world of beauty and cosmetics in general. I’ve worn makeup since as soon as I discovered it. I can distinctly remember buying my first beauty product from M.A.C, like aged 14 or something. I bought this deep blush, way too dark for me, and used it ALL OVER MY FACE. Thank god 15 years later I’ve refined my skills.
Makeup, much like clothing, is a distinct form of self-expression and for that reason it holds a very special place in my heart.
What are three things you can’t live without?
- Long, boozy lunches roasting in the sun with my best mates.
- Time with my immediate family, whether this be a quick coffee or a three week holiday.
Describe your personal style? How has this evolved over the years?
Jesus Christ we’ll be here all day. I get asked this question SO often and I’ve never been able to accurately devise a proper answer. My personal style is disjointed. There is no cohesion whatsoever. Super classic one day, punk the next. I’ve had every hair style and colour under the sun. I’ve got a piece in my wardrobe to adhere to any occasion. My looks depend on my mood.
Your go to beauty products are:
Ok if I had to take the BARE BONES from my beauty bag:
- Tom Ford Bronzing Gel
- Tom Ford Soleil Glow Bronzer in shade Gold Dust
- Charlotte Tilbury The Retoucher in shade 3, Medium
- KKW Beauty Blush Trio in Matte
- Rae Morris The Mattifier
- Elle Effect Tan
- 1000 Hour Eyebrow Tint, shade Medium Brown
What does you usual beauty routine look like?
Refer to literally the above, in that exact order!
You feel most empowered when:
I feel most empowered RIGHT before something big career wise. Whether it be live TV, hosting a significant launch or even just attending a red carpet. When I’m dressed up, feeling fancy as fuck and totally confident in who I am and what I’m doing.
How do you practice self care, especially during busy and stressful periods?
Self care to me is super simple. I’m not one to dwell on self care. Daily exercise, proper hardcore sweaty cardio. Follow this up with a long hot shower, giving the body and hair a really good scrub and slipping into a clean pair of PJs. That’s self care to me.
#GarnautGirls is a triple we all want to be part of! How did you ever so stylish posse begin?
#GarnautGirls was a hashtag I generated as a way for my work to be compiled on social media, a digital portfolio of sorts. I never knew it would gain the cult following it now has. #GarnautGirls is no longer about me dressing a client, but a fully encompassed mood and energy that I want every girl to be able to possess. Impowered, irreverent, no fucks given and dressed to run into her worst enemy. #GarnautGirls own the room they are in and they know it.
Lastly, what advice would you offer to any budding stylists?
Work. Hard. Styling isn’t all glamour. It’s a fucking shlep at times. Copious amounts of heavy lifting, long hours, working outdoors on wet, windy mornings, minimal breaks, the constant connect to email. Get over yourself and being a slave to fashion and work to produce the best outcome for your client. You’ll go a long way.
Words: Georgia Rose