The Winding, Winding Road to New York, Fashion, and Parsons
For as long as I can remember, I've loved clothes. My mom says that I would tell her exactly what I wanted to wear and how I wanted to wear it at just 3-years-old. As I grew older, I began sketching designs and researching the industry in order to learn as much about the fashion world as I could. I wanted to have a great head start, and I knew that successful people started early. Despite my strong start, adolescence began to set in at around 13-years-old and I began to feel silly for answering "fashion designer" as my chosen career path. In high school, I eventually settled on the idea of becoming a fashion journalist. At this point, I'd recognized my affinity for writing and I figured the journalist title would grant me some respect in the career game. The only problem is that after my first journalism class in college, I quickly realized that journalism was not for me. I hated researching beats and writing stories in the proper format in class. I didn't feel that I was effectively expressing my creativity. During that time, I was also attending a school that I felt wasn't for me. With no fashion courses available on campus, I decided to minor in studio art. I eventually realized that my best option was to transfer schools. I was taking a Media and Body Image class at the time that enlightened me on the effects media can have on viewers. I think that this class influenced me to pursue a career in fashion branding instead of fashion journalism. Interestingly enough, fashion remained the constant factor in every career path I pursued.
I decided on transferring to The University of Georgia (UGA), and was excited to be able to minor in Fashion Merchandising there. Some people told me that I would be in college forever, and that UGA was such a huge school that it would be a hard adjustment for me. My reality though, was that it was an amazing, life-changing experience. Attending The University of Georgia was my first real life choice that I decided to do on my own that people showed opposition to. It ended up working out and I was accepted into Grady's School of Journalism and graduated just in time. Although I attended UGA for their Advertising program, I left with a minor in Fashion Merchandising that changed the trajectory of my future. I ended up participating in two UGA fashion shows, one of which, my design partner and I won the 1st place category for Best Female Look. This happened in perfect timing because at the time, a person in a leadership role made a discouraging comment to me about my ability to make it in the fashion industry. I'd driven home in tears that night, but her words have rung clear in my mind with each success I've experienced since. I have heard it said that it is always people like this who really push you forward into greater things and higher levels in life, and it is these comments that you will remember when you prove them wrong. The first place victory we received that night reassured me that I was heading in the right direction.
To be continued...
Nice Girl in Fashion