Spring time ushers in uncertain weather conditions, music festival season, galas for the socialites, and the Cannes International Film Festival. Yet another reason for some of our favorite celebs to get dolled up and hit the red carpet. The “It Girl” of this spring has been Blake Lively. From the Met Gala to Cannes, Mrs. Ryan Reynolds has been a great asset to her husband as he promotes his new film Captive at the festival.
It seems so lame and cliche, but on rainy days when I don’t have any reason to leave the house, I start to feel really introspective. Maybe it’s the still of my room as I lay there and listen to the rain like I’m in a Boyz to Men video, but something about the mood of the day just lends itself to deep thought.
Today, instead of giving in to thoughts of fear and anxiety about the future I thought about the importance of challenges. In my 26 years I think I’ve finally learned to accept them, and welcome them as they usually lead to a better me. I can’t wait to see what’s on the other side of today’s challenges. Anyway I have a semi interview tomorrow so I should probably go to bed after I add some fashion news.
I know it’s been a while since I’ve updated the site, but I have spent the past couple of weeks wrapping up my internship at Oscar de la Renta, completing term projects, studying for finals, and job hunting. All of this in preparation for graduation next Thursday (insert series of excited emojis here). I have accepted a freelance writing position with a major fashion blog, details on that coming when everything is finalized; however, I still need to find full time work, which is a job in and of itself. I’m doing everything I can to stay positive about the job hunt, but it’s so terrifying to think that after all of my sacrificing and hard work, I’ll have to go back home to Atlanta. I’m definitely making strides towards my media career, but the things I’m doing aren’t generating revenue yet. Let’s be real here you can’t eat, pay bills, and keep a roof over your head using hopes, dreams, and aspirations as currency. So send up a prayer or two for me that a sustainable source of income comes along so that I can stay in New York!
It can be so discouraging to stay on your journey when you’re faced with money problems. I feel like everything right now comes down to money, and it’s like a dark cloud looming over my head not knowing where my next check is coming from. It seems like unless you cross over into the 1% those problems are always there. As you accumulate more money, you buy more things, and have more financial obligations. While my friends are literally buying houses, Beamers, and Benzes I’m trying to figure out how to catch upon my bills, pay my rent, and eat. My financial future looks so bleak right now, but I won’t be discouraged. I know there are other people that may came along after me that will need to know that I endured this part of my journey so that they will have the motivation to do so as well. There are so many things that I need to take care of and I have no idea how I’m going to do it, but I’m trusting that God will make a way for me. After all sometimes your struggles are not for you, but rather for you to be an example to someone else that needs to see how you overcame it.
Looking forward to graduation, seeing my family and friends, and an epic summer ahead of me. By the way the pictures are from a photo shoot that I did for my final project in my fashion journalism class. The idea was to show three different ways to wear a denim button down shirt. Hope you like.
The past couple of weeks at my internship have been really tough, which is what I expected when I signed on to be an intern for one of the biggest American fashion designers. When I told my friends and family that I would be interning with Osar de la Renta they immediately started with “The Devil Wears Prada” references, but I was so determined not to be a cliche of the fashion intern. I told myself before starting that no matter what I won’t allow anyone to get to me, and that it can’t possibly be that hard. Fast forward to my last couple of weeks there and I can honestly say that the biggest challenge for me has been on a personal not intellectual level.
Nothing that I have been asked to do as a fashion intern has been intellectually challenging. Sure there were some Excel spreadsheets that I had to consult with Google about, but the challenges that proposed the greatest opportunity for change were those of a personal nature. For a girl that has struggled with confidence issues for most of her life, going into a situation where emotions and egos run high would seem like a mental death sentence, but I looked at as an opportunity for growth in this area of my life. It is when we are at our lowest point that we are open to our greatest change. I learned that from Avatar the Last Airbender, one of my favorite cartoons, you should check it out, but I digress.
These past couple of weeks I have been yelled at, embarrassed, overlooked, and treated like an overall nuisance just for being around. My boss who initially treated me like a mentee all of a sudden couldn’t remember my name and refused to speak to me or even acknowledge my compliments on her work. Initially this marginalization made me feel inferior, until I remembered how important it is to have a strong sense of self in all situations. It’s so easy to fall into a place where you are allowing others to define you based on what’s going on in their lives.
We can only react to things and judge situations and people based on our experiences. You cannot react beyond your own scope of knowledge, which is why self worth is so important. A person may be treating you a certain way out of reaction to what’s going within them, and you can’t allow that to shake you. It’s not your business what others think of you or why they think that, so long as you are secure in what YOU think of you.
Sense of self and security in one’s self was pretty much the overriding theme of my life for the month of April, so I’m happy to carry these lessons learned with me as I embark on this professional and personal journey to break into fashion media. This industry is based on image, and emotions run high, so holding on to you is key. Otherwise you’ll be lost trying to please a bunch of people that in the grand scheme of things are miscellaneous.
I’m Jessica. I’m a 26 year old fashion writer from Atlanta, but I’ve made Brooklyn my home for now. I am a graduating senior at The Fashion Institute of Technology, an intern for a top American designer, a solicitor of fashion tea, purveyor of brows and edges, and a true to heart southern belle.
I came to New York for the second time this January in hopes of breaking into the fashion media industry. There have been many bumps along the way, and there are many more to come, and I want to share them with you. I hope that in addition to reading fashion news you are inspired to pursue your goals as well. Welcome and enjoy!
- Monica Rose for Lovers and Friends-I’ve been obsessed with this collection since it was first released in early April. It really captures her aesthetic, and is exactly what I was hoping designs by her would look like.
- Sza-I have been listening to her music while writing for the past couple of months, but I love her hair. The energy she gives through her music is so captivating.
- Zendaya and Fausto Puglisi -Her style has been so on point this year, and his Fall/Winter and Spring/Summer collections are amazing.
- Mangos-I could eat these everyday. There is a fruit cart on the corner in my neighborhood, that has the best mangos for cheap. I can veg out on Netflix, Nutella, and mangos all Sunday and be perfectly fine.
- Stuart Weitzman Nudist Sandal-I’m very into single soled shoes this season, and this is the perfect one for summer. Their versatility make them worth the price.
- Gold Grills-As a real Atlien I’ve always wanted 6 gold teeth at the bottom, but never got around to it. I love that they are so mainstream these days through fashion. Joan Smalls has the cutest one in the “Yonce” video.
- 30 Rock-I’m always looking for new shows to binge on, on Netflix and this is my latest one. Liz Lemon is everything!
Sicilian born women’s fashion designer and Creative Director for Emanuel Ungaro, Fausto Puglisi is a trending name in fashion these days. His fun, bright, ready for a night out aesthetic is being compared to another Italian designer you may have heard of: Gianni Versace. However, this burgeoning success began with a humbling start.
In one of the most bold moves a new designer can make, Puglisi came to America at 18 years old, dresses in hand and attempted to get he designs sold in Saks Fifth Avenue and Bergdorf Goodman by pitching to the sales associates on the floor. Those unsuccessful attempts at self promotion lead him to live between Istanbul, New York, Miami, and Milan all while working on his collection. Although he gained support from a few American stylists, success alluded him. After losing twice on Italy’s Who Is on Next? young designer competition, he was on the verge of permanently moving to New York, when his work caught the eye of two of Sicily’s most famous fashion designers, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana.
“Puglisi is a very Sicilian name,” he told the New York Times. “They saw in Elle magazine my pieces mixed with theirs, and Domenico said: ‘Who is this Puglisi? What the hell is this?’ ”
This stroke of luck lead him to create a collection for the Italian duo’s Spiga2 line, which was created to promote young designers in their Milanese store Via della Spiga. From this collection his signature A-line skirt was born.
He recalled to the Times: “The day of the opening, Domenico said: ‘Puglisi, you see that skirt? Everybody will keep on asking for that, and you will sell it like crazy. That skirt will be for you what our bra has meant for us.’ ”
Puglisi named his signature skirt the San Domenico, and it sold out in the store that day. On Tuesday he celebrated the release of his line at Bergdorf Goodman in New York accompanied by Zendaya and Chanel Iman just to name a few.
His love of life and America are evident in the exciting colors, patterns, and details of his Spring collection. Namely the San Domenico skirt adorned with Lady Liberty throughout. “I mean, I’m a dreamer and I’ve always been a dreamer, and for me the quintessential dream has always been America: American life, American lifestyle, American ideas,” he told Women’s Wear Daily.
Fasuto Puglisi is definitely one to keep an eye on, as his well earned success soars.
In the words of Bob Dylan, the times they are a changing. Long gone are the days where you go to college, get a good job, work there for forty years, retire, and put your kids through college to do the same. For much of the generation of college students that graduated during the economic recession entrepreneurship became the natural course of action where paying entry level jobs were a myth, and many were still living at home incapable of living on their own. My personal Instagram is filled with young black people who have started their own businesses in the form of social media marketing, premium hair weave, event planning and promotion, and especially t-shirt lines.
I’m all for entrepreneurship, especially in the black community, but I wonder why the owners of t-shirt companies label themselves fashion designers. I would call them more of a graphic designer, with the fashion designer being the person that designed the actual t-shirt the image is printed on. There is no shade here, but mostly I want to know why they don’t aim higher. Why don’t they aim to create more than just the image that goes on a Fruit of the Loom t- shirt?
Maybe Kanye West was on to something when he went on his rant about how African Americans limit themselves in fashion to making t-shirts and that things won’t change until someone comes in and shakes things up. I’m still not on board with his method of delivery or the means by which he chooses to gain that equality, but his message was on point.
My message to you is that you are capable of more. You had the wherewithal to start a brand, a company, a label, so don’t stop there. Venture to create more. Push the creative boundaries of your mind to develop more than a t-shirt concept. Push for your name to be on the inside tag of your shirt. Don’t just stop at what’s familiar and comfortable. In order to be successful you have to get uncomfortable with being comfortable. Nothing worth having was ever achieved easily. So how hard are you willing to work to have more? If you’ve already invested time and money into graphic design, why not go another step further, and then another step, and another?
I challenge you to take your brand, yourself, and your business further. You are capable.
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