What made you want to go into the fashion industry?
I have always been obsessed with fashion and my parents encouraged me to pick a career doing something I love.
How did you work your way up to buyer?
While I was in university I started as an assistant in the personal shopping suites at Holt Renfrew’s Bloor Street store. It was a great opportunity because I was exposed to all commodities from gourmet, to accessories, to men’s and women’s ready to wear. I also had the opportunity to work with a variety of customers and to really learn their needs. That experience was a huge asset when I moved to the buying office.
|Discussing product with Bloor Street team|
As with any job there are a number of perks. For me the best perk is definitely getting to see the product first whether in the showrooms or on the runways of Paris.
How big is your shoe and clothing collection and where do you store it all?
Not big enough. And neither is my closet.
What is your typical day like?
My days vary depending on whether I’m in market or not. But that is what keeps me interested. Just when I’m starting to get stir crazy in the office we start travelling again.
Where do you travel for work? I travel to New York most frequently and to Paris twice a year.
What's Fashion Week like in Paris?
It is very busy but still a lot of fun. As a buyer my schedule is jam packed with market appointments, fairs, business meetings, fashion shows and when I can stay awake long enough dinners and parties. The fashion is unbelievable. Everyone looks like they just walked out of a magazine. Often editors are wearing merchandise that just walked the runway the day before.
Sitting across from Anna Wintour at McQueen's Fall 2011 ShowDo you get starstruck?
More so by “fashion” celebrities. The first time I saw Carine Roitfeld I was over the moon. She has the most amazing style. Seeing Karl Lagerfeld in person was pretty amazing too.
|Valentino Garavani Shoes|
At the moment I really like Valentino Garavani. Everything is so feminine. As much as I also love forward collections such Givenchy and Balenciaga I am definitely a girly girl at heart. I am also a big fan of Canadian shoe designer Jerome C. Rousseau. He is so sweet and makes gorgeous shoes.
What did you study in University/College? Would you have done anything differently?
I studied Fashion Communications at Ryerson in Toronto. The four year bachelor degree exposed me to every area of fashion including design, graphics, event planning, marketing, and buying. I also had the opportunity to spend a semester studying in Amsterdam at AMFI Amsterdam Fashion Institute. I wouldn’t have changed a thing. I met my best friends at Ryerson.
Where are your favourite places to hang out in Toronto?
My friends and I usually go out on Queen West and Ossington. Personally my favourite nights are staying in and hosting a game night with all my favourite people.
Best places to shop in the city? Besides Holt's!
Besides Holt’s my favourite place to shop is my mom’s closet. Luckily for me I have two sisters and a stylish mom that are all around the same size.
Tell us about your neighbourhood and what you like best about it.
I live close to the St. Lawrence market. I love going there on Sundays looking for great vintage finds while my boyfriend rummages for records. I am also very excited about the addition of Sugar Beach. It is so nice to relax by the water on the weekend.
Where would you go on your dream vacation?
I am eager to book a vacation to Africa. My sister was there in February and I turn green with envy when she describes her trek up Mount Kilimanjaro. Since I get to travel to big cities with work I prefer to go off the beaten path on my personal vacations. It is also nice to take a breather from the fashion world once in a while.
What would you tell your 20 year-old self?
Keep working hard because it will definitely pay off.
|Miu Miu Shoes|
Intern. Interning is a great way to find out what really goes on behind the scenes. It will allow you to test out different career options especially as there are so many different paths you can take within the fashion industry. It will also expose you to people in the industry that can help you get ahead.
Meet some of our other Hip + Urban Girls of the Week here!