By Audrey Frigon, CHS Fall Intern
Capitol Hill personal styling services and clothing store Sum is coming to E Pike.
The Sum Styled Box is a more personalized take on the growing delivered style box trend. Kim’s client base, urban working professionals, are very busy people. Because of this it is the goal of Sum Style to serve them in the best way possible and bring a bit of ease to their lives said Sam.
“Our boxes are unique in that our clothes are never mass produced. We are very personal. We don’t style by algorithm, we treat each client like a family member because they are each different and deserve that care.”
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Sum Style was first introduced to the Seattle area on E Madison as a personal styling service in September 2016 by founder and owner Susan Kim. The service helps clients get their desired look by hand-selecting clothes and accessories and aiding in styling those garments.
Today, Sum Style offers three styling services: The Sum Styled Box, VIP personalized styling sessions, and fittings. The new store will also feature retail clothing.
Through its services, Sum Style has become a one stop shop for fashion and styling. Sum Style is planning on expanding this even further with the opening of the new store.
“With this opening we are really celebrating customization,” Kim said. “We not only give style advice and provide the pieces, but we really dig into fitting our pieces to our clients’ lives rather than pushing mass produced and impersonal clothes. We know that if we listen things will always fall into place.”
When deciding where to take her career, Kim, a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles, saw Seattle as a new frontier.
“I wanted to be a fashion pioneer in Seattle,” she says. “The fashion market is not super saturated compared to LA and I knew that I could really bring something new and unique to the Seattle fashion scene.”
Kim herself was not always a fashionista. “I was a tomboy when I was younger, but I always knew I was very fun and flamboyant deep down. I hid behind my clothes because I was afraid to let that side of me shine,” she said.
As she began to experiment with different styles, patterns, and shapes, Kim discovered a love and fascination with fashion and knew it was something she wanted to pursue.
“That’s the beauty of fashion. We can find confidence within ourselves through our clothes.”
This was Kim’s main objective in creating Sum Style: helping customers find confidence through dressing better, just like she had.
In its E Madison location, Sum Style grew a client base and began experimenting with new services to fit its customers’ lifestyles even better. In fact, Kim said that listening and adapting to fit their clients is a cornerstone of Sum Style.
“We are always pivoting to find what works. If something isn’t working, we adapt to fit our customers’ needs. We are a retail company that truly listens.”
As the company grew in size and services, Kim knew it was time for a location change.
Kim said, “Madison was a good start location, but it was more of a showroom and we need a location that gives us options to grow.”
The E Pike storefront has been a recent home to Capitol Hill fashion. Visette Boutique called the address home until its move this summer into the Pike/Pine core.
Kim is most excited to introduce retail and offer new services to clients alongside the ones they already know and love.
“We are very excited about our new location because we will be able to grow and live in this new area with high foot traffic so it’s easier for customers to find us.”
The Sum store and Sum Style is open at 303 E Pike. You can learn more at shopsumstyle.com.
Audrey Frigon is the CHS fall/winter intern and a student at Seattle Preparatory School.