Category Archives: Off Campus

Train rides home…

Hi everyone! how was your first day back? I know mine was cut short and I had a very long commute home. On the way home though on the slow moving train I had a lot of down time.

Something about beginning your twenties and beginning a new chapter in your life becomes a little sentimental. You all know what I’m talking about everyone goes through the motions. You thought you had a plan and now you don’t know if your making the right decisions or your experiencing things that are incredibly more difficult then usual. You suddenly have ten years ahead of you that are jam packed with major life changing events. But its hard knowing what you want these next ten years to be like, but you often can’t settle with just simply not knowing. As you continue on through your next life stages you will start to realize things about life that will make your journey easier .

#1. You will Fail at something more than once, even the things you love.

At some point you will screw up your life like crazy, like really mess it up to a point you didn’t know was even possible. It will happen more then once in your lifetime too trust me. You are going to want to give up, you are going to want to be alone, or be with friends. But KEEP GOING I promise you it is worth it. This past semester I had one of those royal screw ups , not because I wanted to but because of life changing events that kept happening to me. I chose my emotions over the things I have worked so hard for, but I got through it and I am stronger then ever.

#2. How important is it to move away from home? Extremely

Lately I know a lot of friends that have been getting into it with there parents, whom all of which live at home and are in there twenties. Moving away will help this problem dissolve , it will make you realize what home actually means to you. You start to appreciate the little things and you the things that make you cringe go away. It helps you figure out who you are, how much you can take and how you will handle your life from this moment on.

#3. Debt? Your in college sweetie ( Haha)

Yes, everyone thinks they are in debt because they are in college. But are you making a mess of your credit score? do you have any money left in your account? If you have money to spare and your not in crazy debt take my advice. Travel, invest , learn something you always wanted to. I know for me I’d much rather live a life of debt if it was one I was proud of. If I did the things I always dreamed of, rather then be in debt and have no cool stories to tell. These experiences will change your life.

#5.What do you like? What don’t you like?

I know for me I landed my dream job , which I was working hard at everyday to realize it wasn’t what I wanted. Test things out before committing to it for life. You will try new food in your life, change your favorite drink or flowers a million and one times . This is what makes your twenties , you need to learn who you are , what you love and what you hate more then anything in this world. Let go of what others think and be you! You will realize nothing else matters if your not truly happy.

Lastly #6. Learn who is really there for you

Man did I have trouble over this past year with this. At this point in your life so much stuff changes you go to college, you graduate, move, different jobs, have kids (maybe) the normal things people do. Sometimes your friends from high school will not continue to follow you through the motions of life , and that is really hard to be ok with sometimes. But you will make so many new friends, join new circles and start networking. It’s kinda like that movie bridesmaids, yes we’ve all seen it , if you haven’t watch it you’ll love it. She gets all of her bridesmaids together some old and some new and they don’t clash. Her maid of honor feels like she’s changed because of the new people she’s around but that’s not the case she just found more things she enjoys. People will come and go through your life, just remember you can’t force anyone to stay nor would you want them to if you have to force them.

Being in college and a new stage of your life is difficult but don’t ever think your alone. Millions of people your age are feeling this way, most just don’t talk about it. Or they haven’t faced that one really bad screw up moment yet, once you do you’ll know what it feels like.

How is everyone feeling tonight on this snowy evening? Any new life changes?

Xoxo

Kailee

Notes From the 6 Train: Last Week Hustle

My besties & I.

My besties & I.

So I totally forgot to write about what I did while home! I just went straight to business! I think I’ve mentioned before how I like going home because you realize how much you’ve grow. This visit highlighted this so much for me! I welcomed back old friends into my life and realized that my parents don’t bother me like they did when I was younger (maturity much?). I also held my annual Ugly Christmas Sweater Queer Women Potluck. It’s always such a pleasure to reconnect with commune with people that you’ve established relationships with. As you can see, we know how to have a party (photo booth and all).

Just observe how merry we all look!

Just observe how merry we all look!

Going home fed my soul and now I feel replenished and energized to begin the semester and even begin thinking about plans for summer.

If you all didn’t know it, now is the time to apply for many summer internships/ scholarships. It’s the last week of break and is the last amount of idle time. For many, once the semester begins life becomes a worldwhind.

I’ve already applied for the Time Inc. summer internship (wish me luck guys!) which is 10 paid week internship with one of the various Time Inc. brands (ranging from Essence to InStyle to Fortune and a bunch of other well known brands.)

Now is the perfect time to begin scouring the FIT internship bank before you begin drowning in schoolwork and tests.I’ve begun looking up other opportunities I want to apply for and scribbling application deadlines into my calendar. You want your opportunity to pass you by! Gotta stay sharp!

All things Color, Love, & Fashion,
Ayanna L.

18 Reasons to Love NYC in the Winter

If there is one thing New Yorkers love to do, it’s complain. We complain about a lot of things – rent, traffic, construction – but the biggest offender by far? Weather. Especially cold weather. Every winter there is incessant whining about slushy sidewalks, freezing rain and wind tunnels created by the grid streets. But with all this Grinch-yness it can be easy to lose sight of why it is some awesome to live in this city all year round! So, even if you’re reading this holed up in your room with hot chocolate and an impending Netflix queue because it is too dang cold to leave the building, let me try to remind you of some awesome things you are experiencing!

18 Reasons to love nyc winter

Do you have any winter activities you look forward to doing each year?

–Emily–

A Thank You Goes A Long Way

I am a firm believer in the power of gratitude and a simple “Thank You.” Not only does it prove to bring good things into my personal life, but my professional life as well!

I’ve had family members who worked in administrative jobs tell me, they would hire one person over another due to a simple Thank You Note after interviewing. It may seem absurd, but the act of taking the time to personally thank the interviewers can change your career!

I’ve kept this advice close to heart while being in New York and have applied it wherever I can. When I finished at my first internship, I sent a personal, hand-written Thank You note to my boss for the wonderful experience I’d had.

I just recently finished a different internship and did the same thing. When I was interviewing for new internships the following week, I picked up some more thank you cards in preparation. Once I got home from those interviews, I wrote out the notes and sent them on their way.

The notes mean more than one may think. It shows a level of maturity, and respect that so many people unknowingly lack these days. It sets you apart from many others as a polite and gracious person, who could end up being the perfect fit into a company.

Don’t know where to find a companies address? Often times it will be located on their website. Or, if you’ve been communicating specifically with one person via email, they may have their office mailing address attached within their email signature. Last resort, speak to the doorman of the building! They may know where you can find more information on mailing addresses!

Thank you goes a long way!

Notes From the 6 Train: Just Call Me DJ Aya

So as I mentioned before, winter break is the perfect time to experimenting and trying new things. For me, music had been an outlet I’ve been in dabbling in. I’ve always been very connected to music (much like the music industry and the fashion industry, one is influenced by the other.) This holiday season I sent my closest friends a healing folder as a gift. As apart of this folder I created this mix (my very first mix guys.) And I am excited to share it with you all! Below is this precursor to the mix. The link is included below.

“I get to share something with you that’s super, very important. As some of you may or may not know, I have begun DJing, and I am thrilled to be sharing my very first mix with you! You were my inspiration, brilliant, talented, dynamic women. I wanted to create something that was drenched in this very essence of the ultimate, awesome, omnipotent feminine energy. Initially, I was going to make this mix composed of only women artists. But that idea didn’t last long as, as I know just how important it is honor the holy feminine AND masculine (I am so lucky to know a plethora of women who embody both energies in such a beautiful way it felt absurd for me to bar that type of musical love.) On the last note, I want to mention that this mix is about how you feel, how you should be love and loved upon. The songs in this mix represent all aspects in life (I hope), when you’re feeling sassy or soulful or even when you’re even feeling uncertain about who you are/your purpose, I wanted it to be just as multidimensional as you. I hope you enjoy listening to it (and turning up to it) as much as I loved making it for you. I present the first of many loved filled art and music projects to come!”

All things Color, Love, & Fashion,
Ayanna L.

Brendan’s Guide to Winter Break

As I sit here writing, it is currently “blizzard-ing” outside my window. Oh, January. You look so pretty…but then I’m forced to go outside and I remember how cold-hearted you are. The excitement and joy of December seems like a distant memory. The holidays never seem long enough. However, it is now a New Year. Another year to move forward with your goals and aspirations. Another year to check those boxes off on your bucket list. Another year to live your best life!

Winter break in college is like a double edged sword. You can use it to your advantage, or let it take advantage of you. This break is the perfect time to reboot after a hardworking semester. We all can’t wait to get home and not have projects, or finals to worry about! Its a great feeling.

My first year at FIT, I was new to the “6 weeks off at Christmas through January, instead of one week off like high school, to do whatever you want with no homework or responsibilities.” It was awesome to have that much time off from school, and to be home with my friends and family. That feeling never goes away, I just approach my winter break’s differently now than I did back then.

My first winter break I was basically a blob. My couch and I became even closer than we were before, molding to each others shapes. Netflix was a great friend for those few weeks. And yes, I have wonderful human friends as well. We would get together, get food, go to the local Target, because the options are quite limited in wintery upstate New York. By the time my break was over, I felt gross, out of shape, like I’d eaten two years worth of Christmas cookies. I hadn’t accomplished much on a small checklist I’d made at the beginning of break. I had done my fair share of relaxing, to the point of exhaustion, which lead to more relaxing! A never ending cycle!

But hey, it was my first time and I was learning. That is why I vowed then to make my winter breaks more productive and beneficial to ME. Maybe some people have no problem doing nothing, cozying up in their home and snacking on Xmas cookies. I have now learned that these few weeks are the perfect time to make a list, and get things done. Things you’ve been wanting to do all semester, but may have not had time for. 

SO, if you feel like your break could have been a bit better, I’ve come up with a short list of tips for you to follow. 

1. Indulge in the Holidays

By no means am I saying to not fully relax and soak up the holiday season. Please do!! By that point in our year, we need the family parties, delicious meals and holiday movies on ABC family. Embrace your time with your friends and family who you may not see throughout the year. Give them hugs and tell them you love them! Give back, do something kind, spread the holiday spirit! EAT LIKE YOU’VE NEVER EATEN BEFORE!

2. Set Realistic New Year’s Resolutions

Once the holidays are over, it’s easy to slip into “Post Holiday Depression,” as I like to call it. The hype is over, the Christmas tree is plopped at the end of your driveway. After New Years, write a list of some things you really hope to do within the upcoming year. Big picture resolutions like “WIN THE LOTTERY,” may be a little unrealistic. Think of personal goals you’d like to attain. Say something kind to someone every day, Read more books, Go to a concert. I find that smaller, positive goals are easier to check off my list! That way, when you look back next year you’ll see how much you’ve accomplished. The energy you enter into the New Year with is a great indicator of how your year could turn out. This year I want to take more Bikram Yoga classes and eat healthier foods! I can do that :)

3. Find Enjoyable Hobbies

If you live where it snows, you know some days seem longer and more mundane than others. Its too cold to be outside, or the roads are too icy to drive on. Looks like your spending the day at home! This is where hobbies come in handy! I re-learned how to knit this winter, and have been really enjoying doing that. I’m working on some belated Christmas gifts. I also have been pecking away at the “Books I want to Read” list. (Is it obvious that I like to create lists?) Find what passes your time without feeling like you’re just passing time. Make sense?

4. Get a Job

If you’re like me (or most kids my age I know) you’re a typical “broke college student.” I’ve had a job since I was 15, even throughout college. Personally, I enjoy to work for my money. It feels so much better spending it when you know how hard you worked ;) I understand some may not be home long enough to find, apply, and get a job. Luckily, I have a job that I can come back to whenever I’m home, at a local bistro. Since I’m home for a few weeks, it’s the perfect time to build my bank account back up before the next semester. I don’t have much time for a job in the city anymore, with school and interning. If you have the option to work a few shifts while you’re home, do it! It keeps you busy AND gives you some spending money!

5. Review Your Upcoming Semester

We’ve all had that nightmare where you walk into school (usually in your underwear) and don’t know where any of your classes are, you’re completely unprepared, and everyones pointing and laughing at you. Let’s not make that nightmare reality, shall we? MyFIT has many ways for you to learn about your classes before actually sitting down at your desk. I like to screenshot my schedule on my phone, so that when the first day comes, I have a visual. It’s a big help for locating room numbers, because I never remember! I also enjoy looking at who’s going to be in my class. It’s always comforting to know you have a friend in class on your first day. Log onto MyFIT, click the Student tab, scroll down to “My Courses,” click “Click here to enter,” click on your course title, then click “Members” under Personal Tools. It shows you a full class list! It helps to subdue any nerves and get you excited for the upcoming Spring semester!

Everyone is different. Everyone approaches things differently, even our college winter breaks. Long story LONG, do what makes you happy and makes you feel good during this time! For me,  enjoy feeling like I’ve accomplished things over break. I hope that some of these tips are helpful to you! Please enjoy the rest of your winter breaks, and HAPPY BELATED NEW YEAR!

xx,

Brendan

Final project

IMG_0197                                     ( That’s my professor Peter along with my classmates )

Hey everyone! Finals are finally over , along with final projects! This semester was my last semester as an interior design student. That’s right, I am switching majors! I couldn’t be more excited to join the international trade and marketing major. But before all the new fun begins I had to finish my final fourth semester interior design project.

Fourth semester one of your projects will be designing a light fixture which you will then have to use in a restaurant you design. The light fixture for my project was based off Julie and Julia the movie. ( which you can see along with directions on how to make it in my next blog post ”  How to engineer a light fixture” .

So for restaurant I was assigned Texas BBQ which includes sloppy ribs , cowboy boots and all things big and Texas haha. So I decided to put a little spin on it and design a higher end bbq restaurant.

IMG_0148 (1)This was a screen shot from when I was working on it. My best advice to all incoming interior design students learn Photoshop, lumion, sketchup, all rendering programs as soon as you can . it will make your life so much easier! For this project I used sketchup. I feel that it is very easy to learn, I taught myself with the book ” google sketchup the missing manual” and  by just playing around endlessly. FIT does teach you programs as autocad and revit but not until your bachelors will you learn how to render in these programs and you need to know how by atleast third semester. Also photoshop is offered but not required to take.  The more programs you learn and add to your skill set can only help you not only at FIT but in the real world. Most interior designers aren’t using Revit completely yet and that’s a great skill to have to bring to a company.

Overall my restaurant came out pretty good for my second attempt at using sketchup. I used a lot of dark woods and creative ceiling solutions with all sustainable elements. NEVER FORGET THE CEILING OR THE LIGHTING ! most students do and that’s critical to show you truly understand the floor plan and overall design of the space.

The interior design program was challenging but worth every second of hard work. It has taught me things I know people in other design programs have no idea about. Maybe after my bachelors in marketing I will go back to interior design , only time will tell.

Goodbye FIT interior designers, I will miss you all so much you became my family, along with my  amazing professors ! But its time to start the new chapter of my life!

Xoxo

Kailee

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Notes From the 6 Train: Watch Your Way to Inner Peace

The Cruise

This is about the life of a New York city tour guide, Timothy “Speed” Levitch, who gained a cult-like following during the stint of his time working at Apple and then Grey bus tours. He passion for life, New York and his heartfelt soliloquies captured the attention of so many bus riders that he was worthy enough of a documentary.

Listen to his eccentric philosophy that can challenge your perceptions of New York and the mundane daily life activities that we have all probably done at least once. He also talks about New York architecture and the lives/ homes of famous writers and artists.

Waking Life

This is an animation about unnamed character who moves through the movie in a lucid dream. The main character is essentially stuck in a dream and spends floating from one speaker to another, absorbing whatever knowledge that have to offer, most of it about life, interconnectivity of human life, metaphysics, various artists, etc.

There’s even a small cameo from Tim “Speed” Levitch from the The Cruise (that’s how incredibly pervasive this eccentric tour guide was.)

I hope these tools gets you started on your quest for inner serenity once the weather becomes absolutely crazy. If you can find peace during New York winters, you might be the next Dali Lama.

All things Color, Love, & Fashion,
Ayanna L.

Notes From The 6 Train: Read Your Way To Inner Peace

As a follow up to my most recent post I have a few exploratory works that may assist you in the your winter time of self discovery.

The following books are on the more metaphysical side, which is perfect since you will have the plenty of time to mull them over once the snow begins to pour down upon us. To align with the idea of looking back, we can use these creations to help us shape our future.

This is the version I purchased

This is the version I purchased

Tao Te Ching
I’ve read and caught glimpses of the Tao Te Ching but it wasn’t until this semester that I’ve read this holy text in it’s entirety. The Tao Te Ching is the primary text used by Taoists. I don’t use the Tao Te Ching for religious reasons, but as a guide and reminder as how to move through life. In the simplest terms, its simply to exist in the middle, displaying balance during the most ecstatic and the most challenging time times of life.

Here are a few chapters from the Tao Te Ching:

Chapter 9:

Fill your bowl to the brim
and it will spill.
Keep sharpening your knife
and it will blunt.
Chase after money and security
and your heart will never unclench.
Care about people’s approval
and you will be their prisoner.

Do your work, then step back.
The only path to serenity.

Chapter 19:
Throw away holiness and wisdom,
and people will be a hundred times happier.
Throw away morality and justice,
and people will do the right thing.
Throw away industry and profit,
and there won’t be any thieves.

If these three aren’t enough,
just stay at the center of the circle
and let all things take their course.

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The Untethered Soul

This is one of my cherished books. It was gifted to me from a really important mentor in my life, (which if you don’t know have a mentor, not just a career oriented one, but also people who support your growth in other ways, be open to getting one).
This book is about moving outside of your immediate self and living life as if “there were a knife suspended above your head.” Because essentially, there is. Reading this book has the same of impact of having a near death experience, without the melodramatics, you end up with the same feeling of wanting to live your life to its fullest capacity.

I hope these tools gets you started on your quest for inner serenity once the weather becomes absolutely crazy. If you can find peace during New York winters, you might be the next Dali Lama.

All things Color, Love, & Fashion,
Ayanna L.

Notes From the 6 Train: Holiday Trunk Show

Shop small!

I am all about it. I have never participated in Black Friday or Cyber Monday. I’m not a fan of being squished into large small areas with a bunch of rambunctious shoppers. I’d rather be in the house with my friends and family swimmingly in love, (and leftover food.)

unnamed

I am lucky enough to work with a company, A. Bernadette, that hold the same type of ideals as me. They don’t seek to be a huge, fashion monopoly, and instead value interpersonal connections with customers. These values were reflected in the holiday trunk show which was buy one, get one free for friends and family.

The trunk show was unlike any other I’ve ever been to. Since it was family oriented, (though it wasn’t my family, but my boss’s, it was super cute to see) we all cooked, ate together and shopped together. (Well, they shopped, I try not to spend allll my pay at the company I work for.)

unnamed-1

This holiday season has been much more family oriented for me than last year. This is a testament to several things; if you are new to the city and still feel alone, it’s OK. Community takes time to build, but if you are open, it comes. Secondly, I am confident in what type of work environment I thrive in and want to continue to work in after graduation. It’s important to honor what type of environment feels right to you and seek out that type of place. This sounds easy enough, but you’d be surprise what type of decisions are made once graduation starts drawing nearer. Once you learn what type of work culture suits you, pay attention.

Maybe then you’ll get invited to fun trunk shows and free food like me!

All things Color, Love, & Fashion,
Ayanna L.