A Jersey girl, totally obsessed with fashion, with a style my peers say looked as if I took from out of a magazine (which I don’t). Some would say I am one of the many fashion hungry New Jersey girls who wish they could live the New York City lifestyle every day, but instead are confined to the small suburban neighborhoods, and are only lucky enough to visit the fashion capital of the world (which is debatable, but in my eyes there’s no other), on Saturday afternoons, at our parents’ discretion. But I like to break away from that stereotype.
As soon as I get off my 1:15 NJ Transit train, I take a deep breath and inhale the New York City air, all while avoiding the rush of the 7th Ave Saturday shopping crowd (they may look innocent but with the sales and display windows calling they can be quiet the pushy bunch). After my first breath of fresh air all week (there’s that nasty little rumor that New Jersey air isn’t so fresh), I become a completely different person. Clutching my freshly bought Vogue Magazine, which I only buy at New York City news stands, in one hand, and my bag, full of pens, a notebook, and my square geeky D&G eyeglasses, in the other hand; I look forward to my FIT Precollege class.
Ten minutes after my arrival, you will find me in room B303, in the HFM 064: The Ins and Out of Fashion Merchandising class. The Jersey girl who’s closest daily connection to the high fashion world was the Vogue faithfully carried in the halls of a high school-which Robert Verdi walked 26 years ago-is now getting a whole new fashion experience that could potentially change her life forever. The first week went by fast, but the independence of being on your own in the city made you wish the time would slow down, if only for just one day. But sadly life must go on and the 4:45 dismissal approaches, and the only thing I’m looking forward to as I walk out the door, is walking back in the next weekend. Because it was my first time taking a FIT Precollege Program class I did not know what to expect, all I knew was what the description from the website told me, and that alone was good enough for me. But who would have known the class turned out to be more than I could have ever hoped for.
With little experience and a somewhat shaky knowledge of the fashion industry due to my small suburban town connected by one small village where you can find 2 or 3 boutiques on the same block, the information I’ve been learning in class has helped a great deal with mapping out my future goals and setting some short terms goals that could eventually guide me to accomplishing my ultimate goal. I got the chance to visit the FIT museum, go over the spring trends, (anything and everything 70’s, 60’s paper bag shorts, color blocking, and much more) take photographs of store windows on 34th street with newly made friends, and got the chance to research a designer with my partner in the historical FIT library, where greats like Michael Kors and Carolina Herrera once studied. And the most important of the privileges the program has offered is the chance to be under the direction of a former fashion merchandiser who lived her life traveling to foreign countries while doing something she loved. My professor talks of her experiences in the industry using teaching methods that could not only excite a class full of aspiring fashionistas like myself-who we are all listening at the edge of our seats holding on to each and every word spoken-but to any individual even those who tend to shy away from the industry. I usually tend to idolize fashion greats like Anna Wintour, Shala Monroque, and Elisa Sednaoui, but I think I found a new since of respect and idolization in my teacher Professor Peggy Connolly.
That’s what I personally love about having a career in fashion; you don’t do it because it was a last option that happen to be handed to you-you do it because you love it! I love to write, I love fashion, and I love to blog, so as an inspiring editor I mixed my talents of a key eye for fashion and my somewhat creative writing style to start to really look start attempting to get my foot into the showrooms of greats like; Coco Chanel’s Karl Lagerfield and Rodarte designers Kate and Laura Mulleavy-and slowly but surely get out of the malls for good. Taking the Precollege courses at FIT and starting my own blog (www.bobbieaustinscloset.blogspot.com) are part of my plan to eventually become notable FIT alumni. I want to be a part of the world many are scared to even dare immolate or take a chance in entering, I want to leave my permanent and far from subtle size 8 Christian Louboutin shoe print in the all but too exclusive world of the fashion industry.