(Topshop jacket, Joseph cashmere jumper)
The one question most people ask me (besides what I am wearing) is how to get a job in fashion. And the truth is, there are so many routes to working in fashion it’s impossible to give a definitive answer.
I left school at 16 to work on a local newspaper in Cornwall so my route was journalism; my fashion director started as an intern at ELLE. We have employed stylists who started by working in a high-street shop at weekends and I have employed someone whose career started running a pub, so I am constantly surprised by the different paths.
What I would say, though, is be focused, be dedicated to your passion and pursue it very thoroughly knowing that it is incredibly hard work. Think big and be patient, think about the ‘long game’ – the place you start is only the beginning, so it may not fulfill you every waking minute but it is the first step.
And be positive – negativity will drain you and slow the whole process down. Most importantly, don’t be confined by voices around you who may limit your ambition and purpose. ‘You can if you think you can’ should be your daily mantra.
As you know, ELLE’s October issue, edited by the interns, is out now. It’s a career-focused issue and, as such, I have tried to include inspiring voices from women who have made a success out of their passion. One such woman is Amanda de Cadenet.
Amanda de Cadenet with Diane Von Furstenberg
Amanda de Cadenet’s interview in October ELLE will help you work through some of your career dilemmas, emotional or professional. I wanted to include her because her website, The Conversation, is a forum for nourishing women’s ambitions and helping them move forward after setbacks.
Yesterday, I asked Amanda de Cadenet seven quick-fire questions about her working day because I think it’s good to know the smaller details that get us all through the next 24 hours:
Amanda with Gwyneth Paltrow
1. Do you have a mantra? I break my day into small chunks (thinking about the next 30 minutes) and repeat the words, ‘It’s all going to be fine.’
A mantra for me is what I use when I meditate, which I do twice a day for 20 minutes a session. My other mantra is, ‘I am going to be OK, I am going to be OK.’
2. Do you have a lucky charm you take to important meetings or interviews?
I carry a delicious-smelling bottle of geranium and rose oil; it makes me happy and puts me in a good headspace.
3. When you stop work at the end of the day what is the first ‘nourishing’ thing you do for yourself?
Drink a green juice.
4. What is the most uplifting song you play to refresh your mood at work?
It changes all the time, but at the moment it’s The Black Keys and Bon Iver, as well as rough mixes of the new Strokes album.
5. What have you learnt from the team below/around you? I learn so much from my interns and junior team.
I have learnt so much from the amazing people I get to work with – mostly about order, structure and that I really don’t know it all. Other ideas may differ from mine, but there is often something so valuable being suggested.
6. I am a strict two-cups-of-coffee-a-day girl. What is your favourite busy-day beverage?
7. Finish this sentence: Dear Atlanta (Amanda’s 20-year-old daughter) when you have success in your career remember…
…all the people who helped you get there. This success is a gift, an honour and not yours to own. Share it wisely and with those who will appreciate it.
This Stella McCartney clutch matches the October cover
I am considering a statement necklace. Thinking this Nocturne number
Erdem's Autumn/Winter blouse
These are so versatile and only £19.95
Today the Editor is:
Checking out Amanda's blog