Karl Lagerfeld, Christian Dior, Marc Jacobs, Coco Chanel, Givenchy, Yes Saint Laurent, Diane Von Furstenberg, Donatella Versace, and Oscar De La Renta. All of these designers have made history in one way or another. Their timeless designs will forever be remembered and copied for mass consumption, the world’s trends and style are set by these people. They create the various schemes, textures and silhouettes that make up some of the most amazing creations! I have the utmost respect for designers, considering I want to be one. I have a long way to go before I am designing and potentially creating memorable pieces that could go down in history. Until that day I will only study, learn and observe. Knowing the past is the key to the future. A mistake is not failure but only another opportunity. My endless collection of fashion books have taught me a lot. I was also lucky enough to have a major where one of my classes was the history of fashion design…pause to remember how lucky I am. History is just as important to a new design as a sketch. Some of the best inspiration is sourced from vintage pieces. We learn from mistakes, this is true in fashion and life.
One of the great things that have come from these great designers is the timeless silhouettes. Diane Von Furstenberg invented a revolutionary dress that can look good on just about anyone, a dress so soft, sleek and coveted by all; the wrap dress was born. The unmistakable fit and texture of a Chanel jacket will always be known around the world for a look of timeless professionalism and elegance. And finally the high waisted full skirted design of the “New look” successfully created and marketed by Christian Dior, was a revolutionary look for the woman of the late 40’s. What goes around comes around and the high waisted full skirted look started by the “New Look” is coming back around to current runways and street fashion. Stick around long enough and history will repeat itself. While I am still trying to find my place in the crazy fashion world, the reminders of the greats that came before me keep me going. Sometimes you just need an old school red lip and classic pearls to get you through the day.
While you are in school, the possibilities seem endless, your dreams are as close as graduation day. The truth is though that graduation day is going to come but your dream job or any job may not be there waiting for you. Now that I am three months out of college still with no full time job, it has become very easy to doubt myself and my dreams.
It’s easy to think that I’m not cut out for this industry, that it’s too tough or that I won’t ever make it. Lately I have found myself in somewhat of a postpartum state, watching people on Instagram and Facebook move back to their college dorms and back to their college friends, I can’t help but wish I was going back too. It would just be easier to post pone the real world and go back to the fun college life. In college I wasn’t aware of how quickly the industry can put a dent in your plans and your dreams.
Today however I was surrounded by fashion and felt so inspired. I watched a documentary about Vogue and Anna Wintour called “The September issue” watching the fashion, the designers, creative directors and stylist work, I was so inspired! All I wanted to do was sketch! If that wasn’t enough I spent the rest of the afternoon flipping through the current issue of Vogue, soaking up all the fall trends and longing for a real job that could help my rationalize my shopping habit. On the other hand though, feeling so inspired today made my fashion dream come back to the forefront of my mind. I got a fortune cookie one day that said “old dreams never die, they just get filed away”the quote is hanging on my wall as a little reminder that no matter how discouraged I get or how long it might take, I am going to make my fashion dreams come true. My markers, my coffee and my creative soul will get me there. As my September Vogue arrived so has my confidence in myself. September is my January, the time to start fresh and get my life on track. The carefree days of summer are gone and moving forward after graduation is all I can think about. In the words of Tim Gunn I am going to “make it work.”
Anyone who has been around me lately has heard me gush about Pre-fall. For those who may not know what Pre-fall is, it’s a collection released by designers in between the fall and spring shows, a subcategory of high fashion. In basic retail, it’s the pieces that you see in late July that consist of items like light long sleeve shirts, cardigans, new denim trends and so on. Some people refer to this as back to school shopping. Here in Virginia the weather is so tricky that in my eyes there are about two prime weeks for pre-fall. Days where there is a fall breeze that with still that warm summer air, so maybe low 70’s or upper mid 60’s is just about perfect. The time of year when you can wear a cardigan as a jacket and not freeze your ass off or when you can sport boots and jeans and not melt into a puddle from the summer humidity. It’s simply a magical time of year but when this weather strikes you must be ready, armed with the latest and most fashionable pre-fall items!
This summer while shopping and gearing up for one of my favorite fashion seasons, I realized that I wouldn’t be going back to school to wear all my new things. It was one of my first realizations that I had graduated. Not going to lie, had a minor meltdown in the dressing room. There are two types of people when you graduate; the people who can’t wait to get out of this hell hole and move on to making money. Then there are the ones, like myself, who don’t like change and aren’t ready to be a grown up and leave behind so many memories and friends. Whether you are ready for it or not, you have to move on because change is a part of life that you have to embrace. And while I won’t get to showcase my favorite pre-fall outfits in a class room, the streets of Richmond will see and whether they notice or not I will feel amazing!
Here is a great example of an ideal pre-fall outfit. Props to MEL my mannequin for being my model for this style session. Anyway, this dress! A lined sheer, simple long sleeved deep purple dress. Layer with a long cream colored detailed cardigan, that is slightly longer then the dress. This look is great for transition not only from summer to fall but also casual to a night out. Add a long gold necklace to give it a more elegant look. Or for a more casual look throw a brown leather cross body messenger bag on and head off to seize the day! I literally love simple pieces because they go with so many things! This dress literally could be paired with so many other pieces to give it a totally different look. The key to pre-fall and making your money go a long way, don’t pick pieces that can literally only be worn in those two weeks, if you get a dress make sure it would look good with tights underneath or a coat over top. Being less financially stable then I’d like to be, getting the most for my money is beyond important. Not only that but buying pieces that make you feel good, confidence completes every outfit. I am more confident. Now as I begin to move on from my college days I am more inspired than ever to work harder, spend smarter and rock the best pre-fall trends that I can.
There is a long list of To Do’s in life, setting up goals that will help insure a better tomorrow. The saying “God laughs when you make plans” has never seemed truer. Never did I think that I would change my major half way through school from fashion design to design management, never did I expect to walk out of school with three minors on top of my already business oriented major. And certainly I didn’t think that I would be sitting in my parent’s house with no job three months after graduation. Post grad life is not what I expected or what I think many people expect, countless job applications, phone calls and endless trips to Indeed.com with very little to show for it. It’s a scary, tough and exciting time in your life. You have the tools to do what you set out to do and now it’s all just opportunities waiting to be grasped. Coffee and the little fancy things in life help keep me positive. My precious Tiffany’s mug and Kate Spade to do list spice up the job search, reminding me I am still fun and fabulous. Since graduation I have had the privilege to intern with one of the most fabulous women I’ve ever meet Caroline Birgmann! As a small business owner, blogger, stylist, party and event planner and all around amazing person, she has inspired me in so many ways and taught me so much already. Her style and brand is so distinct, it’s hard to miss her gorgeous photos scrolling through my . “Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak.”-Rachel Zoe (Another one of my idols). I used to think of this statement as only applied to clothes and getting dressed every day. But on the contrary, your style is all over your life. You deck your life in your personal style from the music that fuels your dance parties, to your home décor all the way to your personality. I have also come to understand you don’t have to have one distinct style especially since mine is currently a little all over the place right now, somewhere between chic rocker and boho cowgirl. I am so excited for all that is in front of me. As impatient as I can get from time to time I know it is all going to happen when it is meant to. That job, that house, that life. The long list of To Do’s will continue and my new blog and Instagram has been added to it. Day by day and outfit by outfit I will continue my journey down whatever path I am supposed to travel. No matter the path I’m sure my fabulous shoes will be leading the way.