Happy Monday everyone! I hope you are all prepared for this upcoming week. I had the amazing opportunity to speak at Kent State University this past weekend at the Modista MODIvation conference and left feeling super inspired by the students and their career goals. I was one of seven panelists at the event and hosted three mini breakout sessions for the 65+ students that day. I shared my story, what I did in college up until now in my career. One of the main questions I am asked by students, is how I got from Arizona to New York City. I started with zero experience or connections at the beginning of college in AZ, and now in NYC and work for myself. My answer to these students, and the students I spoke with at Kent State this past weekend, was that it doesn’t matter if you’re in New York, LA or Prescott, Arizona—you can get involved in the fashion industry. Here are my seven tips for getting involved in fashion to help you start your career! xo
Find Local Opportunities
The first place to start is within your local community. Wherever you are, there is some type of local opportunity for you that can help build your portfolio. Working a job, finding an internship, or joining a club are great places to show leadership and skills. If you’re in a big enough city there might even be a local fashion show that you can help with. I helped at Phoenix Fashion Week when in college and networked with local designers and boutiques.
Create Your Own Opportunities
If you’re limited to outside resources and opportunities, create your own opportunities. Start a blog, team up with other local creatives, and start making your own experience.
Whether you’re in a fashion program, or not, you can find a way to incorporate fashion into your school work. Make your papers, marketing projects or research about the industry!
Go to industry, resume building, etc. workshops! They may be held at your local community center or even through a club on campus, but make sure you go to them! I learned a lot in workshops that were put on by ASU, and I still use the information that was presented to this day!
Something that I learned early in my career was to network, network, network! Network locally and nationally. You never know who your local network knows which can help you create a national network. Creating a personal and professional network can help you find opportunities in the future and gain insight into the industry. When networking make sure that both your resume and LinkedIn are up to date!
A branch of networking is informational interviews! Informational interviews may seem scary but they are key to building a valuable network (just ask my interns). Create a simple pitch to email to people who work at your favorite companies. Make sure to be direct and to the point, you have to remember that whoever you’re reaching out to is busy!
Apply for Jobs/Internships in NYC or LA
Once you’ve exhausted your local opportunities and created a solid network, apply for internships! Reach out to both your local and NYC/LA networks, and let them know that you are looking for an internship or job in that location. Once again you never know who knows who and who can help you get your big break. Your network will respond to you, and will try to help you as much as possible!
JACKET (C/O THE STYLE CLUB – BUY HERE) (PINS – VARIOUS) | SHIRT (VINTAGE) | SKIRT (C/O NA-KD – BUY HERE) | BOOTS (C/O TARYN ROSE) | SUNNIES (CRAP EYEWEAR – C/O LULU’S) | FANNY PACK (C/O HENRI BENDEL) | JEWELRY (VINTAGE / VARIOUS)
PHOTOGRAPHER: SAM KELLY PHOTOGRAPHER