Monday, 20 June 2011


So this has been a crazy week for me. This time last week I was sat on my sofa wondering what internships to apply for next when an email came through on my phone. I didn't recognise the name and sort of skimmed through, "wondered if  you would like to work on..." - I've had lots of emails like that. Obviously the last one I got turned out to be amazing but mainly they tend to be from other bloggers who seem to think they can arse-lick you into writing their blog for them as a contributor, for free, like it's a privilege. But this one was different, and I started to get excited "I can pay you £XX per day..." hang on... someone is offering me MONEY!!!
I know you shouldn't be motivated by money but try being high and mighty about it when you've been working full time, with no breaks, for 9 months, for FREE, watching all of your friends making holiday/festival plans and wanting to scream. This made me take the email very seriously indeed and I had to read through it several times before I could convince myself that this was a real job offer not some crazy person getting their kicks from pranking interns. It wasn't just the money that got me worrying I was the victim of a hoax, it was the amazing job on offer, fashion assistant on the inhouse magazine of an iconic London department store. Ummmmm.... where do I sign???
Then the icing on the cake, the editor was also looking for an assistant to help on separate commercial work and would I be interested, again for money.
I was so excited, I just wanted to phone everybody, message everyone but some how I remained calm, lets not get carried away now, I didn't even have a start date, so I kept it zipped determined not to become the fashion world's Cheryl Cole. I think maybe I was just so excited and so stunned that someone was offering me paid work I was terrified of having the rug pulled from under me.

Well, I start tomorrow!
It's a fantastic opportunity and I'm feeling a little bit 'circle of life' about it - I used to work on the shop floor of this department store in my second year at university. Again I have my stylist fairy godmother to thank for this. The same person who recommended me for the last internship put my name forward for this. I am so thankful and amazed, it just goes to show you never know who notices you or who you've made an impression on - naturally I plan to repay her kindness in massive quantities of wine.

It isn't a permanent position as the magazine only comes out twice a year but fingers crossed it will lead to other fantastic things - so long as I don't muck this up.
As I'm typing this I'm still trying to decide what the hell I'm going to wear tomorrow. All of my good fortune has taken it's toll on my fashion mojo and I've spent most of today standing dumbfounded in front of my wardrobe.
I feel really lucky to be working on this project, especially after meeting up with a friend in the week who is well into year two of his fashion industry interning. It seems so unfair that some people get jobs handed to them from family connections while others run themselves into the ground for so little reward, but I have faith that he will get there soon - as I've learnt it seems to all be down to luck.

Sunday, 5 June 2011


It's been rather a long time since I blogged. That hasn't been down to a lack of material, more a lack of time. I've finished my placement at the last place I told you all about, a major women's UK fashion weekly, which turned out to be the worst one I've done so far. Re-reading my last post I'm surprised at how diplomatic I was about the situation, or perhaps I was still in a 'think positive' frame of mind. By the end of my time there I was itching to leave. Like I said, no one there was openly nasty but the whiff of contempt that wafted in our direction really did start to grind us down after a couple of weeks - as did the ridiculous 'tasks' asked of us by some of the stylists which we were duped into doing on the grounds of them being 'magazine buisness'. Of course they never were, and involved us trailing around London collecting items lost on various drunken nights out. The stylists spent their days on Facebook and bitching about us not making them enough tea, and when the office manager invited us to look through a beauty sale they had already ransacked we were met with whispers of "What the fuck are they doing?", "So rude!" and "Ohmahgod!". Only two people in the whole office bothered to learn our names and when one girl only managed to come in for five days of the month no one noticed. Stylists would ask you questions and walk away from you while you were answering which is hardly inspiring or confidence boosting. When I start to get a little down about the fact I don't have a paid job I always tell myself that it's ok, because I'm still learning, the point of internships is to learn and develop but the fact is I don't think I learned a single thing while I was there.

Over Easter I decided to take a little break from interning. I still haven't come up with a career plan b so I thought maybe a break from the industry would help, I spent a few weeks temping in an office (the fact I earned my last wage in September 2010 also contributed to this). I didn't get much of a chance to sit and contemplate my future, after a week and a bit I was emailed by the style editor of a UK celeb/fashion magazine. A stylist I'd worked with at one of my past internships was freelancing there and when their current intern bailed she recommended me. That stunned me if I'm honest as I hardly knew her, I didn't spend too much time with her in the office, although I did assist her on a shoot, but I never expected her to remember me - let alone hold on to my contact details. I spent a few hours weighing up my options, I was supposed to be temping for another two weeks and in my head I'd already spent my as yet unearned money, but on the other hand it's not everyday that someone takes the trouble to contact you directly... So here I am - skint again! So far it's proved to be a very wise decision. Originally I was due to be here for four days, that became two weeks, two weeks became a month, and my security pass has just been extended for another month. I feel like I've been here forever. This magazine is owned by the same publisher as the last one but the difference in attitudes couldn't be greater. The respect given to interns here is amazing, beyond anything I ever expected or experienced in the past. The fact that they're so grateful makes me blush, and even if they aren't able to keep me on I won't resent it, they have undoubtedly restored my faith in the industry, and who knows who's going to think of you in the future. So maybe I did learn something after all, no matter how bleak and depressing it seems, never lose hope.