Saturday, March 21, 2015

Lets Talk About New York

I have a little green moleskin full of thoughts I wrote down in new york, some complete and other incomplete and frankly, confusing. Yet, that was the best decision I ever made and I’m going to go off of them as I’m writing this blog post. Let me just begin by saying that New York was amazing, but also confusing, and also frantic, and also... magic. Looking back, I had all sorts of expectations for the city, all sorts of fantastical, flawless ideas about how it was and what it should feel like, which was a bit of a mistake on my part, but also not. I wanted it to feel like it felt when I went to Nashville, like home, like a safe haven of sorts. The reality is that they’re right when they talk about its gritty nature, and to be honest, it’s larger than life, which is a bit intimidating at first. At the core of my fantasies, what I wanted the most out of New York, was a sense of purpose and self-worth. I wanted to go to Fashion U, I wanted to go to FIT, I wanted to roam the streets and affirm that being there is what I wanted above all, to just reassure myself that I could be someone if I just try hard enough. I wanted a reality check and not a glance inside a rose-tinted window. In the end, I got just that. The reality check, I mean.

The trip was very hot and cold, up and down to me. It wasn’t like my friends had told me, or like bloggers recalled in their posts. From the very moment I stepped inside that apartment, I knew it wasn’t going to be easy, it was going to be stressful and difficult and busy and crowded, but it was also going to be rewarding. I’ll always remember it as the trip that changed my perspective, as romantic as that sounds. I survived the busy streets, I survived the adventure. I got yelled at, badly. I laughed with these wonderful girls at midnight and all other times of the day. I got lost, multiple times. I got locked out, lost something very important, forgot things, waited in line in the pouring rain. Everything. My god, everything happened. I have stories of the wildest sorts, maybe just for me?? But one day, I’ll look back and remember what it felt like to think that I can’t ever belong, to feel so isolated, despite the hoards of people around me, and then compare it to the third day, to my next trip, to the rest of my life? Did you know, I cried twice on my first day there. Once when I arrived and I couldn’t convince myself to walk outside into the land of tall buildings and crowds upon crowds of people. I was scared and alone, literally. The second was at night, upon arriving at the apartment for the evening, my feet sore, my socks damp. I collapsed onto the floor, a mess of tears and confusion and loneliness. But I called my mom, I played the playlist, I talked to old friends. And you know, I lived. I learned. I went two days without getting lost after that.

And the buildings, they’re grandiose and beautiful. They terrified me and then they amazed me. The antique brick, the brightly-colored murals, the advertisements. All of it. It’s sloppy and messy and structured and full of history. And the museums, they’re something. Those are the safe havens within the city, at least for me. I remember when I finally chanced upon the MoMA, after wandering for three hours and I could have sat down, but never in the almost 4 hours I spent there, did I ever rest. And I forgot my feet hurt, because it was everything I had always wanted to know. There’s something about art that makes my heart stir, that makes me feel like I should be fantastic at something, that makes me want to embrace everyone who has ever even uttered a word to me. When I live in New York, I will get a membership there.

 And the Met, I went there with my old friend Hillary. I’ve known her on tumblr since I was 13 -- 6 years ago. And we finally met for the first time and we took a polaroid selfie, my first one ever. But the museum was beautiful. All these pieces that I remember learning about in my art history class were there and I felt... accomplished. I don’t know why. My favorite was the Lamasu. In fact, I went around showing everyone the pictures I took of the Lamasu after that because one of my favorite units in art history was the Assyrian unit and it’s just exciting, you know? And I fell in love with Soho that evening. I fell in love with Lexington avenue first and then Soho, because it felt like what I thought New York would be like and for a moment I felt sure because I knew that even if all of New York wasn’t how I imagined and I never quite figured out which direction I was walking in, I was right about something.

 And I’ll have you know, I’m not as forgetful as everyone decided. Which brings me to the last thing I wanted to talk about. Fashion U. If you were ever on the fence about applying to Fashion U or accepting, just go, I promise it’s a good idea. I swear it. I mean, I know a lot of the friends I met there were saying there was less swag this year, but I still feel like I learned. But more than that, it was inspiring to sit there and listen to these people who tentatively entered the industry only to come out these exemplary leaders. Nobody starts off perfectly, nobody goes in being flawless at everything, but with hard work and practice and years, they made it. I know I can too. i just have to make my way to New York, and I will. I’m working on it. I feel like I should go into detail, but I don’t want to be boring either, in case you don’t really care. I don’t know.

On Friday, there was an event at Express. It was so serendipitous how I ended up in line right before my friend Caitlin from the facebook group. Either way we would have met up at the event, but fatefully so we ended up meeting at the start. The event in itself was exciting. I made it a point to try every kind of food or drink they had even if I thought I would hate it, and I did. The weirdest thing was the creamed apple, which tasted like brie and had the consistency of pudding. The tiny hamburger was a close second. The best was the hibiscus mocktail and the fancy oreos. And we got these lovely little metallic tattoo bracelets, which took three showers to erase and even then, my wrist was still slightly sparkly. The music was the best though! Chelsea Leyland was the dj, which was something I was excited about. She really is that flawless at her job.

On Saturday, we had classes at the Conde Nast building, which is at One World Trade Center. It was also raining like mad when we woke up and it continued throughout the rain. Would it be weird if I tell you I think New York is more beautiful when it’s raining? When we got there, the line was huge and they gave us our credentials and the schedule sticker. We also got our swag bags in the first class. I loved that one of my roommates, Betty, and Caitlin were in Group B Fashion/Styling Major with me, cause things are always better with friends. And it felt easier to go back and grab that amazing Cinderella chocolate over and over again since I wasn’t alone haha. No really, I ate so much of that. And they had a gorgeous black gown by Zac Posen next to it and the glass slippers from the Cinderella movie as well.

As for my favorite speaker, it was Jens Grede from Frame Denim, and there’s no question about that. I feel like he offered the most advice and really went into detail. My second favorite would be Rebecca Minkoff and then the Editors panel. Oh and I got a tour of the Edit floor! That was amazing! It’s so brightly lit and you can just tell that everyone there is a creative genius. They let us go into the fashion closet as well, and you should just see the sea of shoes they have and racks upon racks of beautiful clothing. It’s unreal. And the other girls at the tour were such sweethearts. I loved getting to meet people at Fashion U, that was one of my favorite things. I love that nobody was pretentious or snobby. Everyone was just dedicated and trying to figure out how to get there, it’s nice to feel understood. Also, can I just say how much I love Andrew Bevan. I mean I love his articles in Teen Vogue, but he was so great at interviewing Rebecca Minkoff and Zac Posen and I feel like if it had been anyone else interviewing them it would have been less interesting. All of this took place is the 63rd, 64th, and 34th floors of the building by the way. On Saturday, we came in and listened to Zac Posen, which was so cool because we got to learn a little about dress construction. Then we were given our diplomas and sadly, Teen Vogue Fashion U was over.

I could go on and on about Teen Vogue and New York to be honest, but I feel like this post is a novel already. If you have any questions though, or if you want to know about my application, please email me and I’ll tell you more. Or text me. whatever works. And I’m sorry it took me so long to get back to blogging. I went from freezing New York to warm and sunny Utah and as a result, caught a really bad cold. It’s been a struggle! Thanks for your patience and thank you for reading.

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