Teen Vogue Fashion U

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

I spent this past weekend at Fashion U, a design seminar held in New York for students interested in working in the fashion industry. Despite having a super cheesy name, it actually was really cool and provided a lot of insight into the design industry.

The first night they had a kick-off party at H&M. My favorite part was the 25% off but the live band and red carpet was fun too.  
They had the cutest mini appetizers everywhere, (think miniature macarons and bite-sized spaghetti things) along with mocktails in fancy glasses and cute waiters serving them. I certainly didn't complain about that.

Saturday was the first day of classes. First, Grace Coddington, creative director for Vogue and in my humble opinion, one of the most innovative people in the fashion industry. She was amazing, as I expected she would be.  

   Following Grace, I toured the Teen Vogue floor.

    Lots of pretty pictures and clothing everywhere. I loved seeing how simple it was. Well, maybe simple isn't the right word, but it just amazed me how such a high fashion, editorial magazine could be made from a bunch of cubicles and clothing racks. It really made me appreciate the astounding talent of those working there. Speaking of which, during the tour I made a complete fool of myself by asking the assistants how long they had been interning for. Fail. Oh well, they were really cool about it and didn't act offended but I felt realllly dumb.
Nicole Richie was up next, complete with papparazzi and the whole shebang.  

It was cool to see her in real life, kind of surreal. I got the chance to ask her a question and I was literally shaking. ha, it's kind of ridiculous when you think about it, she's just another human being, but it's just really weird to see someone you've seen on TV all of the time right in front of your face.
Next up was Christian Siriano and yes, I died. This was definitely my favorite seminar out of them all. He is every bit as funny and "fierce" as he is on TV, but nicer in real life, I would say. The show portrayed him as kind of intense and tactless at some points but he didn't seem like that. He was really cool and of course, completely genius and innovative. His new line is very feminine and soft and I love it. I can appreciate his darker things, because of the work and creativity that goes into them, but it's his more subdued items that make me love him so much. By the way, for those in the dark, Christian Siriano was the winner of Project Runway season 2.  

We were able to ask him questions too and again, I died. For those who are curious, I asked who he would dress if he could dress anyone and he said either Kate Blanchett or Drew Barrymore. (But he clearly meant me).
After Christian, I went to an internship seminar that I wasn't expecting to learn much from but I seriously think I learned most from that class. I won't bore you with too many details but some of my favorite tips were that you should always bring a pen and paper with you when your boss/internship manager asks you to come into their office. This is probably common knowledge to most of you but I had never thought of that before. Another one was that you should ideally apply to 10 internships each semester in order to give you options. Ya I think that's kind of overkill, if not I am desperately behind. I do think it's a good idea to have options though. You should also ideally graduate college with 2-3 solid internships under your belt. 
Last session for the day, Q&aA with the Teen Vogue editors. 

Amy Astley is really good at responding to criticism, I learned this after someone asked her why Teen Vogue didn't feature more plus-size girls in their magazine. I loved how Amy responded. I won't try and recap what she had to say because she said it much more eloquently than I could, but it made me really impressed with her. (Well, I should say more impressed with her). I also learned that Sheena Smith (Accessories director, second to right) is from Utah (who knew!), and Andrew Bevan is hilarious and I want him to be my best friend. I have a feeling he would make such a killer shopping partner. I also learned that you don't necessarily have to major in journalism, or marketing in order to work in the fashion industry. This brought music to my Science loving ears. 
Sunday morning, we went to a seminar held by the authors of The Nanny Diaries. I just read that book so I really enjoyed this one. They gave us a free copy of their new book and signed it for us.  

Then closing session with Rebecca Minkoff and some others representing Shopbop, Polyvore, and Lookbook. They talked about "Fashion in the Digital Age" and I learned some valuable advice about the importance of staying humble online, reciprocating the love, and never posting anything that you'd be embarrassed to have your parents see. Some of that is common knowledge but I'm amazed at how many people don't follow it these days, especially the last one.  

I can't decide if my favorite part of this weekend was going to the actual seminars, the free bag of goodies, meeting the 3 coolest girls ever (2 of which are from Utah, and one who has a blog that is literally in my top 5 favorite blogs of all time.) Or maybe my favorite part was just being with my momma. Spending time with her and watching a movie and eating Fro Yo with her at 3 AM. I guess I loved it all. New York, you've been good to me. 


  1. Oohh what a fun and awesome opportunity! Very cool. :)

  2. Wow, what an amazing opportunity! I hope they really recognized your awesome talent!!!

  3. what an incredible event Haylee and so perfect for you to take part in!!! even me, as a moldy oldy, would have been in total 7th heaven walking the hallowed halls of Teen Vogue, spectacular news you got to live out this dream. overjoyed for you sweetheart!!!! girl, please don't bang your head for not knowing. every question is relevant and leads to some kind of learning for both parties, you did good! if they were offended (they sure shouldn't be) then this gave them a chance to gracefully accept their own personal reasons why that question felt that way to them and should allow them to appreciate where they are in the work world even more :)

    getting to see NR must have been rockers, i adore her and how she's changed her life for the better. mighty fine style plus she's just so pretty to peep right! um, i'm sure Christian meant you too, how could he not okay!!!! coolness prevails around every turn, i could comment on and on, just over the moon you got to do this and meet so many wonderfully influential and relevant to your passion kinda people. it's def the road that leads to Rome, you will be there someday soon too, keep following your obvious skills to talent trail bliss. this road is YOURS!

    hey, i replied to your q on my blog but wasn't sure if you had a chance to read it so here's what i said "and Haylee, man how cool it would have been to meet up with you, especially in ess eff!!! we were there in Sept though, i'm slowly getting through the 5 day spread in posts :) it's cool to think we missed each other by only a few weeks, wish it had been more synchronous though. i use Photoshop for any edits and a variety of fonts. this one features Bodoni & Helvetica. thanks so much for the sweet compliment, you're great for my circulation!! *blush*"

    much loves, xo ♥

  4. It was very fun and a great experience to be there with you. Thanks for inviting me as your guest!!!

  5. You're gonna do great things Haylee! :)

  6. I think your bag is nice this.


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