Growing up, Megan Wilson embraced a bold sense of fashion, even if it made her stand out.
“I was always known as the one who dressed a little crazy, who made her own clothes, who started collecting sneakers in middle school and high school,” Wilson said. “I was always a little different.”
Those childhood fashion risks evolved into dreams of a career in fashion, but the Toronto native decided it was more realistic to pursue a career in the television industry.READ MORE: Rick Welts Talks NBA Business, Distribution and Mental Health
For three years, Wilson worked at Toronto-based digital media network theScore. Yet fashion was always in the back of her mind, so she started a blog on the side to get her fix. “She Got Game” covered everything from trends and endorsement deals to design, new products and branding. Wilson also styled photo shoots and collaborated with brands and PR companies on branded content for the blog.
“It was during the heyday of blogging, but no one really wrote about sports and fashion, like, ‘What is this guy wearing?’” she said. “Obviously, now, it’s a major talking point, but I was one of the first people to start doing that.”
As “She Got Game” and her social media platforms took off, Wilson decided to quit her job and pursue fashion full-time. She continued her fashion blogging and began covering events like NBA All-Star Weekend while taking design courses and forging connections in the sports industry. She even leveraged her blogging experience to earn freelance positions with Complex and ESPN.
Fast forward nearly a decade, and Wilson is a now self-employed stylist and designer with clients in the NBA, NFL and MLB, as well as retail companies like Nike and Reebok.
“I don’t think I’d trade it—I’m not sure I would know how to work for someone anymore,” she said. “Obviously, I work for clients, so it’s a little different, and I have a little control over my own destiny, and it can be more stressful and hectic, but at the end of the day, things are up to me and not a giant corporation.”Even though she’s transitioned out of her career in TV, Wilson has been able to tap into her years of experience in media to bolster her styling career. She has appeared as a featured expert on major outlets like GQ, High Snobiety, CNN, NBA TV and Bleacher Report, and she starred on “Lace Up: The Ultimate Sneaker Challenge” by YouTube Originals.
“[TV] gave me a lot of contacts and an idea of how stories are made and how things are created, and obviously it trained me on how to be on camera,” she said. “I learned, being in the media, it’s easier to book someone if they have TV experience than if they’re brand new. It’s a great way to build your network and reach people who might not know what I do and speak to them.”
According to Randy Osei, founder of Rozaay Management and Wilson’s close friend and colleague, Wilson’s influence stems from her ability to relate to others, both in person and on screen.
“She’s very bubbly,” Osei said. “She can walk in any room and mingle with anybody and connect with athletes because she can speak about sneakers and basketball. She can connect with women, connect with people in arts, and connect with people in fashion. She’s very diverse in her talents, almost like a chameleon.”
Constructing a network of close contacts in the fashion industry is crucial in Wilson’s line of work. Styling athletes with larger-than-normal sizing requirements isn’t a simple task.
“The biggest piece is building a relationship with talent and also with the people that work at Gucci and Balenciaga and Off-White and Supreme,” Osei said. “You can’t just call and say, ‘Put in a size 15 for this.’ No, you’ve got to know someone.”
Wilson also dedicates time and energy to building trust with her clients, many of whom are high-profile sports stars.
“She’s done a really amazing job of understanding the culture and teaching that to her clients,” Osei said. “She does a little educating as she’s working, which is great because, as a player, it’s great to have a stylist, but you don’t want to have a stylist until you die.”
Although now she works with some of the biggest names in sports and fashion, Wilson had to work her way up the food chain, and she credits her blogging and social media as the root of her success.“It’s still an important part of my life, and I started my career because of Twitter and connecting to athletes and building a brand for myself as a sports fashion girl,” she said.
In recent years, though, Wilson has become less dependent on social media and has focused more of her efforts on authentic, in-person connections with clients who share her values.
“I’m more choosy with it because I’ve been doing it for so long,” she said. “With Instagram, a lot of people are willing to work for free, whether it’s for clout or to look a certain way, but I’m a little choosier.”
That selectivity has been an important lesson, especially as a business owner in the high-paced world of fashion and sports.
“You have to learn discipline, and I definitely burned myself out and I’ve gotten sick because I’m the only person I’m responsible for,” she said. “I’ve always been a hard worker and energetic, and sometimes I take too much on, so prioritization is the hardest lesson but a good one, especially in a field where you’re expected to do a lot of things. You have to think, ‘What is going to help me in six months but also in five years?’”
Now, and looking ahead, Wilson is putting herself and her brand first.
And whether she’s designing a sneaker, sharing her expertise on TV, or styling a client, she stays true to her individuality—just like all those years ago, when she was just a teenager showing up to school in crazy clothes.