I decided to interview Mari a recent fashion design graduate. I thought her point of views were really interesting and she had some great advice that I thought could help a lot of future/current students at FIT.
Why did you pick fashion design? I took classes and worked at a fashion design studio in Seattle for about 6 years. I always knew I wanted to do something artistic, and I really loved how hands on fashion design was. Which made it really easy when picking out schools.
How did you pick FIT? The teacher at my studio went to FIT. When I visited different schools, the students and teachers at FIT really inspired me and strengthened my decision to pick FIT. Being that FIT was in New York was a huge bonus too.
Did FIT meet your expectations? For the most part it did. In the technical aspect of making clothes, I found it challenging and my skills improved tremendously. Coming from a fine arts background, I hoped that the classes would of been more creative. But for an overall education, FIT gave me great knowledge about the industry and also great connections.
What’s next for you now? I decided that costume design is something I really enjoy and want to pursue in. So now I’m looking for jobs in costume. I’m also keeping my options open, because I love activewear, so maybe something in that direction too is something I’m considering.
Has FIT helped you choose this new direction? Yes, I would of never thought of costume design as an industry. FIT showed me that costume design is a possible career option. It also gave me a good base to get me there in terms of skills, connections and the ability to create a concept from start to finish.
What did you think of the Art Concentration? It was a really intense program, but something I really wanted to do. There was a lot of drawing and coming up with concepts, which I feel are really important skills to have in this industry. I loved that at the end of the program, I came out with a great portfolio, that I am really proud of and feel confident showing at interviews.
Do you have any advice for future/current fashion design students? Take advantage of the teachers and the advice and knowledge they have. They know what they’re talking about and have great connections in the industry. Don’t take yourself too seriously, enjoy the freedom to be creative. And most importantly be confident in your ideas!
If you want to check out Mari’s work maristudio.us
In my previous post, I mentioned that I am leaving Manhattan. Not only is finding an apartment incredibly stressful, but the moving process is no joke either. I’m here to help you out to make the process run as smoothly as possible!
Pack early – The earlier you begin to pack, the sooner you know an estimate of how many boxes to tell the moving company and you feel more prepared going into the move.
Buy boxes – Unless you’re really, really busy, you should be able to find time to pack everything up yourself and not pay an arm and leg to have a moving company pack up all of your things. I recommend purchasing boxes from Home Depot to get the best price.
Yelp everything – From moving companies to special deals, Yelp knows best when getting the best bang for your buck. Most people that go out of their way to write reviews on Yelp are pretty passionate about the service that they received. Look out for overall positive ratings and the most recent reviews.
Pick a day – If you know that you have to be out of your apartment by a certain day, plan in advance to move out as close to that day as possible to get the best bang for your buck. Alternatively, move out a week from that last day so you can gradually transfer your belongings over from one apartment to the other, and potentially save money on a moving company.
Make a to-do list – I am the queen of making lists. Nothing is more satisfying than completing a task and checking it off the list. Making lists also help you remember what you need to still complete, pack up, or set aside.
Breathe – This is a tough one, but the more you plan, the more relaxed you will be, the smoother the move will go, the sooner you’ll be in your new home!
Now that the semester is officially over, most students have moved out of the dorms, gone home for the summer, or got an apartment in the city to take on some city dreams for the summer! For me, I’m leaving Manhattan. I currently have an apartment In Manhattan but with my lease being up, I decided to look elsewhere. Manhattan is an incredible and beautiful place. With great accessibility to school and everything at my fingertips, you’re probably wondering why I’d leave. Not only is it less expensive to live outside of Manhattan, I’m able to live two separate lives; social and school/work. When I come into the city, I’m often overwhelmed by the tourists, constant whirlwind, and pressure. Don’t get me wrong, I love all of those things as well, but being constantly surrounded by it from the moment you walk out of your door, when do you get the chance to clear your head? I will miss the accessibility and convenience of living in the city, but I’m looking forward to beginning a new chapter of my life where I can finally feel like an adult. This is a big step and a big move for me as I enter my senior year. I don’t know what the future holds and I’m going to be out of my comfort zone, but these are the times in your life where you find yourself, become truly independent, and start anew!
This is for all the international students, who are freaking out, because they don’t know what to do next! When I first got accepted to FIT, it was such a stressful process, because since I was an international student it meant I had so many extra steps to take into consideration. It made me so nervous. I was so scared of misunderstanding something, that I would call the school 3 times a day (I had a lovely phone bill at the end of the month). Here are a few helpful steps to make it easier for you, when you have to go through that process:
Pay your tuition deposit You want to make sure you secure your spot!
Start your visa application Once you got accepted you will have to fill out the ISFS (International Student Financial Statement) and send it to the school. They will then send you a confirmation with your I-20, which will then allow you to apply for an F-1 visa at the US consulate in your country.
Get all the vaccines required That was a really long and tough process, because they wouldn’t accept my translation of the vaccines, they needed my doctor to translate everything in english and then sign it (he didn’t speak english).
Book your flight ticket Once my visa was accepted, I bought my flight ticket straight away. It’s cheaper to buy your plan ticket earlier, so I didn’t waist a second, since I knew I was going to that school.
Decide where to live Do you want to have your own apartment or dorm? I would dorm, if it’s your very first time in New York. It helps you settle down with less stress and you have time to get used to the city. If you are considering dorming don’t wait to apply, because the spots get taken really quickly.
Hope you all had a great start to the week. I know when I first arrived here in New York, I literally wanted to buy everything I saw. It was so hard not to spend money, because there were so many temptations… Coming from such a tiny village, where there is only a grocery store and nothing else, the big city was a frightening place for my wallet. But eventually I managed to control myself and came up with a few tricks to keep me on the right path, when it came to saving and not spending every cent I had.
Start a Budget spreadsheet That’s how I started to keep track of my spendings. I would write down how much I earned and how much I was spending, with details of what it was exactly. At the end of each month I had an overview of what I was spending, where I was spending the most and it helped me cut out on unnecessary thing. For example I used to drink two lattes every day (which is ridiculous) and making that spreadsheet made me realize how much I was spending on coffee. Now I make coffee at home and my lattes are a special occasion.
Walk instead of taking the Taxi/Uber Even if it’s just once a week, it adds up at the end of the month. If you live in the city, it’s really not that bad too walk for 30 minutes (I do it twice everyday and it gives me an excuse to wake up earlier). Considering you’re at school or work for most of the day, it’s really good for your head and body to take a walk and have some fresh air. But if you’re really not into walking take the subway instead.
Don’t eat out! Obviously I’m not saying you can’t go out at all. But make it a special occasion, like once a month. It really makes a big difference, if you start cooking for yourself. Start planning meals and shopping ahead. You’re wallet will thank you! I know eating out is really convenient, but we’re still students and we can’t really afford to go out all the time.
And lastly spend less than what you have/make! The best feeling is when you look into your savings account and you have money saved up. Start making it a thing to put aside every month half of your income, you never know when you will need it. And it’s really good to have some kind of financial security once you get out of school.
Hope these tips were helpful! If you have any tips you want to share leave them in the comments below.