Big Apple Dreaming

"New York Is The Only Real City" – Truman Capote

Category: Internships

“Every Year The Women Of New York Leave The Past Behind & Look Forward To The Future… This Is Known As Fashion Week…” – Carrie Bradshaw

New York Fashion Week, NYFW to those in the know and the hashtag that never gets old, is where the New York fashion crowd come to mingle, not touch carbs and enjoy the latest collections. For fashion PRs, its 7 days of hell, for productions companies sleep becomes something for the week and for the socialites, well, it just doesn’t get any better.

So why is it that this week, despite all the hardships it involves, it still one of the most amazing, unworldly and favorite calendar weeks of the year? Simply put, because it’s FASHION week. Designers worldwide flood the fashion capital to show their latest collections, debut the latest trends and to simplify it more, show us what they got!

NYFW

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“I Think It’s Healthy For A Person To Be Nervous. It Means You Care – That You Work Hard & Want To Give A Great Performance” – Beyonce Knowles

Having now done the hardest hurdle and actually gotten myself a full time, salaried job, I find myself absolutely terrified about starting said job tomorrow morning. However, so many people have told me that nerves are a good thing; it would be more worrying if in fact I wasn’t nervous and felt overly-confident about what I’m doing.

I don’t want it to sound like I am completely clueless and blagged myself a job, it isn’t like that. Instead, it’s more like ‘sure, my internships have prepared me for this’, but now instead of someone else being accountable for me making a mistake it’s all on me.

Nervous

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“Choose A Job You Love, And You Will Never Have To Work A Day In Your Life” – Confucius

This Confucius quote was in a fortune cookie I got when I was about 14 years old. Oddly, it has always stayed in my mind and I think this is partly why I kept going after a career in PR despite the ups and downs.

It’s my opinion that here in New York City, the message of this statement should resound even higher. In a city with a dog-eat-dog nature, it is SO important to do something you love so when those phone calls come in asking you to work all hours and you don’t have time to eat let alone have a social life, you don’t mind because you love what you do.

It isn’t to say that doing something you love will never be challenging but the difference is that you will enjoy the challenge.

Job

“There Are Roughly 3 New Yorks… Third There Is New York Of The Person Who Was Born Somewhere Else & Came To New York In Quest Of Something.” – E B White

Since moving to New York just over 14 months ago I have experienced so much; I have worked part time in well known coffee bars and retail stores and interned all over the city in order to support my overall goal of achieving success on the NY PR scene.

Internships have been won, battling out hundreds of more highly strung self-named ‘fashionistas’, little money has been earned, but the belief has always remained strong – I didn’t want to be chewed up and spat out by this city. Today, everything became a little more positive, I was offered my first full time, salaried position.  So this post is my proof that if you want it bad enough and don’t give up (a cliche I know) things can really happen.

I came to New York in quest of a new life with a focused goal of getting where I wanted to be in terms of my PR objectives; it certainly hasn’t been easy but as E. B. White says, it is the people that come to New York in search of something that truly ‘give it passion’.

hazy-manhattan

“A Lot Of Students Say They Want To Get Into Fashion PR But Have The Perception That It Is All Wild Parties During Fashion Week” – Alison Lowe

I think it is SO necessary to highlight that a career in PR, whether fashion or whatever else, means dedicating your life to someone else or something else. It is no longer just about you, it is about managing and promoting a brand; you have to put all your energy into getting the best results for your client above yourself. This is what PR is, this is what it means; we do not all hang out gossiping in our cubicles, going to fashion shows and hanging out at the best nightclubs.

PR has some of the best perks, and it has a glamorous side to the outside world, but most PR works occurs behind the scenes and I want to put this across, the perks come at the cost of hard work and that shouldn’t be overlooked.

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“Slavery Has Evolved, It’s Called Unpaid Internships..” – Anonymous

New York is the city of great internships – whatever field of interest you may have, there is an internship you can do for college credit or to build your resume. However, no one quite tells you about the entrapment quality to these internship ‘programs’ especially in the fashion world.

Internships

There comes a point in every fashion intern’s life where you want to progress into the ever elusive full time job, but the problem is when you’ve been interning for so long, people come to believe you should intern for life. This leads into my current dilemma, I have interned at 2 major fashion houses, an events website, 2 major fashion/lifestyle PR agencies and people seem to still suggest I should intern…

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“In Interviews You Learn More About Yourself Than The Person Learns About You” – William Shatner

Interviewing on the New York fashion scene is a funny thing, it can go one of two ways. You can be met with the harsh fashion executive who is straight down to business whilst giving you a glacial glare implying that you bore them; or you can be met with the overly peppy fashionista who thinks you are ‘just great’ and says how great it is that you could come in and hopes you have a great day.

More often than not I have been met with the first half of these interviewers, the ones that makes you want to run away screaming. However, in order to get a job, I am obviously going to have to be interviewed. So, I pull it together, rehearse my perfected personal statement and brace myself…

Interview

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“Now Joblessness Isn’t Just For Philosophy Majors” – Kent Brockman

On the New York employment scene, I have one pet peeve – the recruitment company. When one makes numerous online applications (I have made approx. 600 since the middle of last year) one’s resume is of course, likely to be picked up by recruitment coordinators surfing the internet for fresh meat…

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I have been picked up by 2 of these companies, the first a few months ago held high hopes. I was called in by the fashion department and I went in feeling positive about the outcome; I had hoped that they would assist me in getting my dream job, but that isn’t quite how it all went down…

My arrival 15 minutes prior to my appointment time certainly wasn’t long enough to fill out the 5 pages of paperwork which required 3 forms of ID and knowledge of my blood type. I was kept waiting for about 45 minutes only to be seen by a slew of people all not quite knowing what to do with me. Business cards were thrown at me like I was collecting a deck but no one could quite give me anything concrete to go on. I was complimented on my resume, reprimanded for only have 2 forms of ID and then sent on my merry way…

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“Success Is Often Achieved By Those Who Don’t Know That Failure Is Inevitable” – Coco Chanel

After being in New York for over a year now, it would seem as though many people would judge my success on whether or not I have a job and a stable life. I however, disagree with this view and measure my success by what I have achieved to date and what this gives me the opportunity to do in the next few years.

Wanting a career in PR, namely fashion PR, has it’s difficulties. Everyone seems to want you and adore you but nobody seems to want to pay you or make you permanent. I have been lucky enough to have internships with some of the most amazing fashion houses and PR agencies and am still, like a lot of people at the moment, struggling to convert that into a salaried position.

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