Industry

11 Things You Know To Be True If You Work In Fashion

1. It’s a complete myth that fashion girls don’t eat.

Krispy Kreme donuts, Lola’s cupcakes, cake-pops, you name it, we’ll eat it – especially if you send it to us to promote a new collection/film release/arbitrary national holiday… Oh, and we’re always the first ones to scout out where the canapés are coming from at a party.

2. It’s not fashion week… it’s fashion month.

The months of February and September are basically a complete right-off for anyone that works at a glossy women’s mag. Don’t expect to get any office-based work done - instead, those months will be spent tearing your hair out while trying to organise the logistics of either yourself or your boss navigating a foreign city; booking taxis and dinner reservations for Milan, Paris or New York from London with questionable language skills and complex time differences is something that you’ll be a consummate professional at by the end of your first season.

3. No one works in August.

By the same token, the office will be a barren wasteland at the height of summer, as everyone takes the opportunity for some much-needed breathing space before the madness of September’s fashion weeks starts up. It’s also traditional for Parisian fashion houses to close during this month, which is historically why it’s been such a popular time to have off. Plus, with the majority of people who work at magazines being women, it’s also prime school holiday time.

4. Strangers will always assume you’re a bimbo.

Telling someone that you work in fashion appears to be akin to saying you only care about shopping, clothes and make-up – people will rarely take you seriously and will more often than not be surprised if you’ve got a degree or even just more than two brain cells to rub together. This is the one thing that we find the most annoying – an appreciation for fashion trends and sartorial know-how does not make us stupid…

5. It’s not like The Devil Wears Prada (most of the time).

In a way, Lauren Weisberger has done a massive disservice to the fashion industry for branding us as difficult, over-dramatic, calorie-obsessed loons. Her fictionalised exposé of life as Anna Wintour’s put-upon assistant is the most well-known portrayal of our world, despite being far from our own experiences. Sure, some editors can be difficult to work with, but we don’t know any who would expect us to have the new Harry Potter book before it’s published, or find a plane that will fly in a hurricane… In fact, most are actually quite nice?

6. Within a few years, you will literally know everyone in the industry.

It’s more like 2 degrees of separation rather than 6, as you’re guaranteed to at least be ‘friend of a friend’ with someone at any given publication. It’s a small industry, and with so much moving around, you’ll probably end up working with all the same people by the time you’ve been in the biz for a decade. This means you absolutely cannot afford to burn any bridges – if you’re a terrible employee, word will soon get around… and it does.

7. Your friends will always think you have a silly job.

Trying to explain to your friends that you’ve had the day from hell because an intern lost a Chanel sample or you discovered a typo in a breaking fashion news Tweet will inevitably provoke a combination of an eye-roll and raised eyebrow – especially if they do something ‘worthy’ (avoid starting a rant like this with your doctor/charity worker/cancer research friends at all costs).

8. All of your friends will ask you for fashion advice.

Whether you want to be or not, you will become the go-to girl in your group for advice on everything from what jeans to buy to what to wear to a winter wedding. Even boys get in on it – we’ve lost count of the amount of shopping trips we’ve been guilt-tripped into going on to help a guy find a new suit/tie/pair of trainers.

9. Fashion becomes a second language.

Whether it’s the latest portmanteau (midriff, greige, shackett…), or the need for everything to be a superlative (is there anything that isn’t a ‘must-have’, ‘It buy’ or ‘to die for’?) speaking fashion becomes par for the course when you work at a magazine and it’s hard to forget that people on the outside world won’t know what you mean when you talk cold-shoulders or co-ords…

10. Models, designers and celebrities are always referred to on a first name basis, despite the fact you’ve probably never met them.

Karl, Cara, Anna, Kendall, Gigi... we name-drop major industry figures as if we actually know them. We're sorry.

11. You don’t need to wear head-to-toe designer clothes.

In fact, barely anyone does; leave that to the front row attendees and haute couture clientele. Instead, the fashion set actually care more about throwing together an outfit – mixing high street, high end and vintage – than dressing head-to-toe in the latest catwalk look.

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