How did you get started at Kate Spade?
I moved to the city, got a night job as a maitre d', enrolled in Parsonsand interned for a year and a half. Do the math. If you want to be inthe industry, be prepared to work your ass off.
What's it like to work there?
I'm23 and have a dream gig at Kate Spade New York in the marketingdepartment. I love what I do because I get to talk to people, listento them and then think about how to reach them in a different way. It's a great time to be in marketing, there are so many new forms ofcommunication these days and I love figuring them all out. That beingsaid, I'm more than just my job...
What do you do outside of your job?
Itry to separate my work life and my personal life as best I can, but Ido spend a lot of my time shopping the city. No matter what part ofthe industry you work in, it's in your best interest to keep yourselfupdated on what's in stores. A lot of my time ends up spent indepartment stores, boutiques and the like. But, like I said, I like tokeep a non-fashion life as well and New York makes that very easy.You'll often find me at restaurants around the city, eating absurdamounts of food paired with absurd amounts of wine. Most days I can bespotted somewhere downtown, magazines or sketchbook in hand, wanderingaimlessly with no purpose or direction just enjoying the quirks of thecity play out. My art background keeps me sketching constantly andobviously, I hang out with my friends whenever I can. Can't forget them.
Yes, I have my blog, textbook.tumblr.com whic
How would you describe your personal style? What are a few of your favorite pieces?
I'mvery low-key when it comes to style. My life keeps me busy and I don'twant to have to worry about what I'm wearing. I always choose somethingthat's very comfortable. I'm a firm believer that you shouldn't takeyour fashion too seriously; you should remain approachable andunpretentious if you can. Some friends tell me I have that boy nextdoor look going on, and some think I look like a grown up lost boy. Ican live with either of those descriptions.
My favorite pieces? I have a pair of big brown boots that I live in when it gets a littlecooler outside, my brown leather jacket that is like a second skin atthis point and my Jack Spade backpack that I carry my whole life in.
And back to work... give us a little "day in the life"...
I'llrise and shine at around 5:45 and go for a quick run before I getmoving for the day. It's pretty incredible to see the sunrise in thecity and to experience when the town feels completely empty. Usually Iroll into the office, large Starbucks in hand at 8:30ish. Everymorning starts with a troll of Twitter and Facebook to see what peoplehave been saying about the brand. The amount I've learned about how weare perceived from these two outlets is out of control. We have anidea of what we were, who we are and where we're going and so doeseverybody else out there. It's kind of scary actually. Anyway, I'llusually powwow with Cecilia, my social media partner in crime, andwe'll come up with some crazy ideas to test. I'm a bit of ascatterbrain type and she helps me stay grounded... as best she can. Aside from that, I pitch in on marketing projects around the office,working out promos, dabbling in ad campaigns and just being anotherhand on deck. After work I'll either check out some stores, grabdinner with cronies or head back downtown for home.
What's new at Kate Spade New York?
Alot of my time is going towards our partnership with Women for WomenInternational. We're teaming up with them to have some of our cold weather accessories made. They're a pretty remarkable organization -- their team works with womenin war-torn countries and affords them the skills and training neededto sustain a small economy. The benefits of the education end upimproving their entire community and help them rebuild their lives. We've worked very closely with their team and their counterparts inBosnia have knitted gloves, scarves and hats for us. It's been reallyincredible to work with them and as the partnership continues, itwill only get better. Their Web site will explain it way better though: womenforwomen.org.
What's the best/ most frustratingaspect of just starting out?
The business in general is full offalse leads. It's so hard to go on interviews, follow opportunitiesand have that hope that you'll get some kind of break only to find outthat somebody with a better connection, or one more internship, getsthe gig. The best part is the people you bump into when you're tryingto get your start. They're endlessly entertaining and impossible toforget. I consider all the people who've helped me get to where I amnow to be great, great friends.
Do you think the industry is different for someone your age now than it was a few years back?
Yeah,definitely. The Internet has totally leveled the playing field infashion. Anybody has access to things that ten years ago, werereserved for the fashion elite. It's been an incredible change for theindustry and made it more accessible. Talent is coming from all overthe place now. I'm all for getting legs on fashion so everybody canexperience it. At the same time, TV and movies have a lot of peoplethinking of the fashion business as an uber-glamorous place that is allabout shopping, looking pretty, being mean and not really working. Television and movies paint it as some kind of lala land, but it'struly hard work and I challenge anybody who thinks differently to spenda day in an intern's shoes.
Leave us with some links to explore.
Fashion sites: Mister Mort, Wish Wish Wish, Refinery29, What I Wore, Style.com, GQ, The Sartorialist, Racked, Bunny Bisous.
Other sites: Ginny Branch, We Are The Digital Kids, Newser, PJ Eats A Lot, Eater.