A network for women by women

Let's Do Business

shutterstock_162947708

Career paths and life lessons

I’ve heard numerous life stories and read countless career interviews of people I admire which inspired me to choose the path I’ve chosen, work hard and never let go ofmy dreams. Trying to do the same, I want to share my story…

Whenever someone asks me what I do for a living, I always respond with “how much time do you have?” The short version of it could might as well be that I’m a multi-professional, like I once stated in one of my interviews. In this industry and time is more than desirable to have many talents, to work as a know-it-all. At the same time I’m a bit neurotic and like being involved in more than one thing at once – I’m a journalist, wardrobe stylist, photographer and every once in a while a model.

When I grow up I’ll be a journalist… or a stylist
I wrote since I can remember. Poetry, journals, got A’s for my school essays, later articles and stories. Then I got more seriously involved with it through my blog and after that my first paid job for one of the local magazines came along. At the same time something dragged me towards fashion. That I sewed my own clothes in primary school and redesigned most of my outfits doesn’t really have so much to do with what I do now, but still it pulled me towards it. I can’t really recall how I got the idea to start styling fashion, neither how I found myself at the office of a very popular women’s magazine. I guess I had to be very persuasive in my email that the editor decided to invite me for a meeting.

Without any prior knowledge, direction or anything sustainable whatsoever I found myself at my first photo shoot for a magazine. I had no clue what I was doing but at the same time I was thrilled about the opportunity they gave me. Unfortunately everyone at the shoot recognised my poker face which let me to a terrifying defeat. After that photo shoot I needed quite some time to recognise it as the best lesson this business could have ever gave me.

liza14

photo: Ana Gregoric

After that I started researching, learning and looking for another opportunity. That came in a form of a photo shoot for a diploma thesis of my dear friend, that resembled more of an experiment than a true fashion story. Three complete amateurs, each at their own field, came together with a vision to create an editorial full of emotions and contradictions. The irony was, we worked with the same model that so negatively influenced me on my first ever shoot. In spite the inexperienced team the atmosphere created a few magical moments caught in the lense of a camera that are still until this day some of my favorite shots ever.

Fashion is not a job, it’s a way of life
With uncontrollable speed my hobby turned into a job. As a stylist and a fashion editor I was working for one of the best selling women’s magazines in my country, which meant I was spending my days in shopping malls, between piles of clothes, photographers and skinny models. Fashion photo shoots were my creative outlet and although I had to keep my creativity on a short leash, beautiful stories were created, not just fashion, but friendship and business as well.

Eva Klinc (1)

photo: Ana Gregoric

When this story ended I quickly got back on my feet. Music videos were being filmed in abandoned warehouses and luxury hotels, artistic photos were made for world renowned musicians and djs, we launched many modeling careers. We were a true dream team. But still there was that desire of doing more, doing better. I packed my bags and moved to the fashion capital of the world together with my dream of Chanel and croissants.

Bonjour, Paris!
That looked way less glamorous than you would imagine. I did eat croissants for breakfast and woke up each day in an apartment with the cute french balcony, but my work experience was closer to assisting Cruella de Vile than a fashion stylist. Still to this day I’m fascinated by the fact that I was capable to communicate with mademoiselle from Prada and whole army of couriers without any knowledge of french.

In a few weeks living in Paris I soaked up more fashion knowledge than in years of working with self-proclaimed photographers, I shook hands with Amelie and gasped at all the publishings in prestigious magazines. 14 hour workday, dragging Marc Jacobs bags through not at all luxurious metro stations and getting lost in the labyrinth of parisian streets was way wort it. Finally my resume can bluster with some of the biggest names from the industry.

577068_273132596136751_478304703_n

photo: Noree Anne Celine

Simultaneously with the assistant diaries there was also the scenario of reporter from Fashion Week taking place that summer. And again I have to disappoint you – sitting in front row while nonchalantly fixing your Dior coat not really noticing what’s happening on the runway, that is merely a life of editors in chief. The help is elbowing its way towards the standing places and raising its necks trying to catch the glimpse of an outfit. Models could be walking down barefoot and none of us would ever know.

Whole world is my home
When I said goodbye to Mr. Eiffel with tears in my eyes I haven’t had a clue what was in store for me next. The desire of an adventure was ever more powerful and although my friends opinion was there’s no way I could top my life as a parisian, I showed them otherwise. Packing my suitcase might as well be my first writen manual.

My ship life adventure at the vast seas of the world enriched my life in areas I never even though about. At the same time I learned one more trade of the industry that comes really in handy – photography. Discovering Baltic cities and regular visits to Scandinavian fashion stores again elicited the desire to tell fashion stories. Everything lead me back to fashion no matter how hard I was trying to escape it.

IMG_6046

Each downfall is just an opportunity to pick up even stronger than before
Coming back to Slovenia was a cultural and sociological shock. Adaptation of old ways of life was a lengthy process in which one can easily get lost. If it’s true that coincidences don’t exist than I can say that all these experiences, from my first failed photo shoot to sorting out clothing with labels like Celine, Chanel and Hermes have brought me to where I am today – a multiprofessional. Because even when you apply to an editor position there’s only two doors down the hall that separate you from using all your styling knowledge.

A few weeks ago I again felt that excitement before the shoot, when I armed with racks of clothing create stylings in my mind and write a list of all the accessories I need to pull for that dress and those shoes. There’s no recipe for a good fashion story, each is its own chapter, with its own actors, scenes and leading role. The stylist is a magician that gives the leading hero an identity through her clothes. He tells who she is and where she’s going. And I just love giving her that purpose.

cosmopolitan promo editorial - renault - s.oliver - katja kozlevcar - helena milost (4)

photo: Helena Milost

Working as an intern for Cosmopolitan and Elle magazines is a whole new story but there’s one thing that I’ve realized and can’t be taken just as a funny coincidence. During my first task for the internship I meet my fatal model from my first shoot aka life learning lesson. The expression on her face when I explained what I’m working on and more importantly who I’m working for was beyond priceless. All her efforts to discard me were gone. How things can quickly change, if you’re just persistent enough and don’t allow for even the most capricious model to throw you off track.

Comments

Leave a Reply