Tuesday, December 15, 2015

S+S Week 10

This week a new luxury apparel collection called Figue, which is a brand Snap+Style partners with, has agreed to lend us sample clothing in order for us to photograph the pieces and post them on our social media.  The goal is to promote both brands as we are both very new to the fashion industry.  This is very similar the the Ann Taylor shoots I spoke about a few weeks ago. This time, I have been one of many chosen to model the apparel and was so excited to be given the opportunity.  First, I needed to choose merchandise that I would want to wear during the shoot, so I chose a pair of printed pants that I fell in love with.  The next step was to take items from my own closet as well as items from our other brands and create a total outfit that our users would find appealing but that also stayed true to my own personal style.  With help from our stylists, this look was complete and we were ready for the photoshoot.  We walked over to Madison Square Park and shot a few photos there and the end result was really great.  We are now just waiting on the photo edits and in no time you will be able to see my face and the beautiful Figue merchandise on the Snap+Style social media pages!

S+S Week 9

This week we were planning for an event with Theory, which was similar to the event we had a few months ago with Rebecca Minkoff. Only this time we invited around 400 people instead of 30 like last time. We provided champagne and snacks while our guests shopped all of Theory’s merchandise for 30% off the original price.  We were hoping to have a large turnout, and were very pleased to see the store packed with friends and coworkers from affiliate businesses.  The goal for this event was to connect with theory and show them what kind of a customer we can offer them in hopes that they would agree to partner with us. Many purchases were made during our event and Theory was very excited about the clientele we brought in.  We have scheduled a meeting with them in the New Year and are excited to see what 2016 has in store with our brand collaborations.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Week 12 @ Freedom Rains (Final Post)

For my last post this term, I thought I'd do something a little different! Instead of lamenting about how I had to go to Mood a million times this week or how we had to figure out every zipper that would be used for each coat, I'd recap some of things I've learned thus far on co-op: 

  1. A conscious designer is a good designer. Often times I think people overlook all the tiny details that go into making a piece of clothing - and I'm not just referring to things like color selection or shape. We have to consider so many things like zippers, fit, how durable a certain fabric is going to be, the list goes on and on... At the end of the day, we're not always making an art piece. The design element is the first step and any issues we cause will only trickle down. A real person needs a functional garment that can survive the real world and we should be able to give that to them. 
  2. A perfect pattern makes the perfect piece. I don't know how many times I've heard this from our lead designer (I'm not referring to prints here, know the difference!). When you're working with different factories, there can be numerous opportunities for miscommunication. When you're not in control of making your own patterns, the work you'll get back will never be up to  fit standard. Save time by making and perfecting your pattern early on so you'll save your company money later. 
  3. Fabrics come first. Oddly enough, we sourced most of our fabrics and determined our color story before we even began sketching and looking at different coat bodies. In my head it still seems weird; one would think that you would sketch first and then decide which fabrics to use. Everything works out in the end, however. Once all the sketches are complete and we know what we're putting into work, we can distribute color evenly across the line and make sure we're using a variety of different materials. Everything must be merchandised to create a consistent story for the line.
  4. Vogue is not your bible, tech packs and line sheets are. I mean, I'll still be a lifetime subscriber and WGSN will always be one of my favorite websites to browse. This is the real world though, and it's easy to get lost in the fantasy land that the rest of the world thinks our industry is. A lot of times, our design team is spending hours inputting measurements into Excel spreadsheets or recording every single trim that will be used in one of our coats. It's definitely not as glamorous as it seems from the outside, but these are things that are vital to our process. 
  5. Inspiration can come in unexpected places. One of things that I think will stick with me for the rest of my career in the fashion industry is my mentor telling me that "Any dress can become a coat if you just use your imagination." I just think that's absolutely genius and I think it'll influence the way I take inspiration from the rest of the world. 
I'm so excited to continue the rest of my journey on co-op! I'm really proud that I pushed myself to take a fashion design job instead of doing something like PR or marketing (I think I would have been really bad at packing gift bags anyway). Not only am I witnessing the growth of a company and brand, but I'm seeing the lifecycle of a product and the infinite amount of care that goes into planning a line. This whole experience has opened my eyes to things I would have never learned otherwise and I know I will only continue to learn over the next few months. I wish everyone the best of luck on the rest of their co-ops! 

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Rhinestone designs

My boss is finally back from Los Angeles, California and it's actually quite exciting to work with her again. I was held responsible for a lot of things by myself which taught my a lot of responsibility and I eventually got the hang of things. There was mistakes made on the way but it only inspired me to work harder and learn harder. This week I was assigned to pull together a collage board of accessories for the Chanel runway show in Rome. This was actually really interesting to notice that the accessories are all thoughtfully put on the models to compliment the runway outfit. A lot of these jewelry pieces also showed the current resemblance to the jewelry that was trending in the fashion world. As a jewelry company, it was important to gather this type of research so we could keep posted with the latest styles that could possibly inspire future designs. I was also assigned to create several ring pieces with rhinestones, which was a fun exercise to practice my creative side. I used Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop to create some designs on my computer. It was not only stimulating my mind but it also felt like an accomplishment for me to be able to use these programs. I'm looking forward to the other design tasks that I will be assigned! Already three months down, and only looking forward to the continuation of my co-op experience!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

S+S Week Eight

This week we were extremely happy to learn that Ann Taylor will be giving Snap+Style sample merchandise so we will be able to dress our stylists and shoot them for our social media advertisements. Ann Taylor is the first of many brands that have recently agreed to lend us their merchandise, and since they are trying to rebrand themselves, they were just as enthusiastic about this opportunity as we were.  We chose a few of our stylists to wear the Ann Taylor apparel but asked that they make the clothes look like their own personal style.  This was extremely fun as I was able to see the same article of clothing worn in many different ways, which reflect what Snap+Style does for our users.  Although the photoshoots were incredibly chaotic and physically draining, the end result was remarkable and I cannot wait for the photos to be posted.

S+S Week Seven

As the year-end quarter comes to an end, we felt is necessary to gather for a team meeting.  This entails all the in-house members of the New York office as well as the D.C. office where the company originally started. Due to the small size of our office, we needed to book a conference room big enough for the entire team and making sure it was a more corporate setting. As always, tasks like these are left up to the intern.  So I decided to book a conference room in the Pillsbury Law Firm found in the heart of Times Square.  This location was sure to wow the team and keep them comfortable and organized during their eight hour meeting.  I got to the office before anyone arrived so that I could make the necessary arrangements such as making sure the space was clean and orderly, checking to see the projector was working and ready, collecting the wifi information, and that the breakfast and beverages were hot and awaiting the team. As everyone filed in, I handed them a lunch menu and collected their orders so that their food would be waiting for them when their 11:30 call finished.  During their lunch break, I ran over to The Skylark where I made arrangements to have drinks and appetizers after the meeting.  I wanted to see the venue in person and make sure the team would be pleased with the menu and the scenery. Although I was running around the city most of the day, I learned so much about the company from what I did hear.  It was amazing to sit in a room with so many brilliant people who had so much experience in entrepreneurship. The biggest thing I learned however, was planning.  I normally play things by ear, but this situation required me to plan everything very strategically, and this will absolutely help me in the future.

S+S Week Six

As our social media has been growing, Snap+Style decided we needed a better way to track our growth more efficiently. This way happens to be manually, and this task was assigned to me to be completed on a weekly basis. We have five different forms of social accounts; Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Pinterest. It is my job to write down the information and track our growth.  I compare the number of likes received, the number of comments received, the amount of traction gained from week to week to be sure the company is making progress.  In order for our social media accounts to be successful, we really need to understand the demographic of each site.  For instance, Facebook and Pinterest advertisements attract women 40 years and older where Instagram, Twitter and Tumblr attract a younger crowd.  Each advertisement is designed for the specific viewer which tends to be a little difficult for a start-up to distinguish.  But so far this has been a great learning experience for me!