Stella and Dot is a multi level marketing company which sells jewelry. They are known for their trunk shows and stylists who help customers with creating overall looks to go with the jewelry.
You can find vague information about Stella and Dot’s compensation and initial costs on their website. You can sign up on their site to become a stylist and they will assign you a sponsor if you don’t already have one. Anyone can also buy jewelry from the site directly.
It’s a lot harder to find details about exactly how everyone makes money and gets promoted, details about training, and a good idea about the costs of being a Stella and Dot stylist. Most of this information is given to new stylists after they purchase their starter pack.  
What does it cost to get started?
To begin selling Stella & Dot as a stylist you purchase a starter pack. Starter packs sell from between $199 and $699.
Personal sales website is free for 60 but after that is $129 for a year or $39 per quarter.
Additional samples may be purchased at 50% off and are suggested to improve trunk shows
You can also purchase things like lookbooks and emarketing
Do you need inventory? Can you just sell online?
The Stella & Dot FAQ don’t really give a straight answer here, but in order to become a stylist you must at least purchase an initial starter pack with samples. Most of their training materials appear to encourage selling at trunk shows (with samples and ordering) and supplementing with online trunk shows and ordering.
Stella & Dot does offer an online affiliate program which is not available to stylists and does not require inventory.
Encourages personally purchasing to meet quotas and get bonuses
Because commission structure requires stylists sell a certain amount each month, stylists may be encouraged to purchase that amount for month regardless of whether customers want to buy jewelry. It seems like a good idea because otherwise the stylist is letting down their sponsor and missing out on the opportunity to get commissions or other incentives (free stuff, etc).
This cycle of personal purchases to meet quotas can lead to debt, stress, and problems. Personally purchasing to meet qualified volume requirements is never a solution, ask sponsors for other solutions — introduce you to new leads, co-host an online trunk show, etc.
Who is getting paid and how? Details!
Stella & Dot is pretty clear with their compensation, however detailed information is generally shared after stylists join the company and receive their training materials.
Digging into this a bit more, it gets pretty complicated there are levels based on the number of stylists you’ve recruited onto your team, and quotas for personal sales in order to continue receiving the bonuses from building a team.
Stylists make commissions based on their personal qualified volumes (25-35% depending on how much they are selling. Once they’ve recruited leaders can make commissions on the sales of the stylists they’ve recruited.
4-9% on the first line’s or first level’s commissionable volume
During a new stylist’s Jump Start period (first 60 days) you can get an additional 3%
0-5% on the “second line’s” or second level’s commissionable volume
Where you fall in these ranges depend on your rank (higher ranks get higher percentages)
Other requirements and bonuses
Group Qualifying Volumes – that is the first three levels must sell a certain amount of qualified volume in order for everyone to maintain their levels.
There are promotion bonuses for reaching new pay rank. These range from $100 to many thousands of dollars.
‘Generations’ also affect compensation by allowing you to extend commisions beyond the first two levels.
Discounts and product credit awards are also awarded at various ranks
A qualified stylist is a stylist who has sold $500 PQV (PQV is personal qualified volume or personal retail sales). Weekly commissions of 25%-35% (higher amounts if more PQV during that month). A lead stylist has one qualified leg – a leg means that the stylist has started a tree of stylists or the stylist has sponsored one other stylist (who can then go on to sponsor sylists).
At this rank, there is the introduction of the Group Qualified Volume required to be promoted and hit the monthly pay rank. This is the amount of qualified volume sold by the stylists in the first three levels. For associate stylists the GQV is $3,000 but this goes up to $12,500 for Star Stylists. Personal qualified volumes go up at this level as well. Associate stylists are required to have $1,000 in personal qualified volume sales. Team leaders have to have multiple qualified legs.
Directors are required to have Star stylists in their legs. The number of stars and star legs determine what level of director. The total qualifying volume (whole organization not just the first three levels) must be balanced across legs, so no one leg can account for 50% of the TQV. $12,500 of the group qualifying volume must come from your non-star group.
Executive directors require everything that team directors do but they must have a newly promoted star stylist from their first level every rolling 12 month period.
Return policy has important exceptions
Samples and display jewelry are treated differently when it comes to returns. Given that you must purchase starter packs to become a stylist, be careful with the amount and kind of jewelry purchased at these prices because it may not be possible to return them.
“Returns or exchanges are accepted on unworn items in resalable condition (excludes sale items, Display Items and Business Supplies, which are Final Sale).”