LuckyFabb is like THE place for business-minded women in the fashion and beauty industry to come together. Twice a year, Lucky Magazine puts on this FABulous event with industry speakers and session where we can network, meet women who have smashed through the glass ceiling and hear inspirational stories.
This year, LuckyFabb west (the west coast one), was held at the SLS Beverly Hills. A cute and eclectic hipster-looking, museum type hotel. We heard from fashion industry big shots like Nichole Richie, from House of Harlow 1960, Sophia Amoruso, of Nasty Gal, Hillary Peterson, at LYST, and Coco Rocha supermodel extraordinaire. Usually, LuckyFabb East is separated into multiple sessions throughout the whole weekend. LuckyFabb West was packed all into one day.
10 Things I Learned From LuckyFabb West 2014:
It was great to hear humbling stories and success tips from industry professionals that have seen and done it all. We heard from bloggers and vloggers who still do all their own editing and content creation, fashion business owners whose visions were doubted and models that experienced discrimination and sexual harassment in the industry. It sounds to me like the industry really needs a fresh new perspective..
1. Be yourself
Do not be afraid to be you. People get caught up in the fantasy life created by social media. Post that photo with a funny face, have fun and be yourself. Your true fans and followers will be more willing to engage with you and join your community when you are being authentic and personable. You are your own niche. No one is quite like you. You are the fresh new angle on fashion. Coco Rocha’s favorite outfits include her patchwork denim bell bottoms that Eva Chen made sure to poke fun at. Nichole Richie loves fannypacks.
2. Be nice
Being nice is cool. Being the mean girl that acts like they are too cool for everyone isn’t. In fashion, it’s the nice people that are the easiest to collaborate with, the easiest to reach out to and have the best network. Eva Chen, Editor-in-Chief of Lucky Magazine, practices what she preaches. While most fashion industry leaders would disappear into their dressing rooms, she actually reached out to the LuckyFabb attendees mingled with us and took pictures. Definitely not something I was expecting from an Editor-in-Chief of a Conde Nast publication.
3. Take risks
If you are at a constant level of content, you are in trouble. Without risk there is no gain. If you aren’t experiencing extreme highs or extreme lows in your personal life or career, you aren’t taking enough risks. In fashion, try pieces you wouldn’t normally choose, pick up on trends that no one has discovered or blow the dust off of an old trend, embrace your likes and dislikes and don’t be afraid to be criticized.
4. Have relationships
In this day in age, we are obsessed with ourselves. We have 10 different profiles online to post selfies and photos of us with our friends, us being social, updates of where we are and who we have met. Relationships seem to have fallen by the wayside. We put so much effort into creating a life where people want to be a part of but don’t establish relationships. Take the effort to really remember names, and actually listen to what people have to say rather than just hearing them talk to respond. This is what helps build your network and make genuine friends in the fashion industry.
5. Stand by your brand
Sophia Amoruso, CEO and founder of the vintage online clothing store Nasty Gal, was approached about changing the name of her brand a few years into her success. She was strong enough to say no, and surrounded herself with workers that believe in her vision. In blogging and in personal style, you are the voice of your brand. When you present yourself to the public you are putting your brand on display, people will judge. Those people will try to have you consider other options. It is up to you to assess the moves that your brand will make and create the vision that inspires other.
6. Join networks before they’re cool
There is a time when every social media platform was unpopular and unknown. Join social networks and become THE person to follow. Coco Rocha recalls when she joined Twitter. She was one of the first supermodels on the platform so if someone on Twitter was looking to following models in the fashion industry there were only a few to choose from. Don’t wait for a social platform to pick up before you join it. Take risks (point #3!) and try out the social apps that aren’t the popular ones in the App store.
7. Define your own success
Everyone starts somewhere. In the world of fashion blogging and micro blogging, it seems like everyone has a fabulous life and everyone is being thrown products and clothes to try. Letting the success of other people’s accomplishments will discourage you from taking risks, joining networks and expressing yourself in your street style. Focus on yourself and define your own success.
8. Don’t forget your other interests
Work in your favorite shows, food, sports and books into your style and into your online presence. Peplums, pastels and crop tops are trendy, but work in your other interests. Always stand behind your brand, and be yourself and work that into your style and make use of the fashion trends. I like to add t-shirts with quirky quotes and Pokemon tops into my outfits. Not only are they conversation starters but they help build your brand by expressing yourself.
9. Know what you are worth
Know what you are worth and don’t let people take advantage of your or your work. Coco Rocha was the speaker for in-depth conversation about industry topics that actually matter. She works with The Model Alliance to advocate the equal and ethical treatment of models. Sounds like PETA huh? But really, child models are often reduced to work like animals waking up at the week hours of the morning and into the late evening to get “the shot.” Apparently, many child and adult models can go all day without getting a break or a lunch break. Often being told that they should be grateful to be in such an industry where people do their hair and makeup and get to wear fancy clothes. Adult models often experience sexual harassment and have no one to report it due to being independent contractors. You are human, and working with a company, if they treat you like crap, walk away.
10. We are all real women
This one resonated with me the most. Being a big girl in an industry that promotes fantasy-like body proportions and sells the epitome of beauty to the world you often see many fat inspiration and curvy girl motivation posts referring to us being “real women.” If you have to put other people down to bring yourself up, you are no better than the people who put you down. In fashion, we are all real women and we have to empower and support each other. Like Sophia Amoruso said, it’s about surrounding yourself with people who share your vision and support you.
And now, a photodump of all the loveliness I got out of LuckyFabb 2014 Day 1:
Nichole Ritchie talks how she got started with House of Harlow
Vbanks and I at the poshmark booth
Grabbed a picture with Ingrid Nilsen of MissGlamorazzi. She is really petite.
I had to capture the chaos in the gifting suite. Lots of pushing and shoving and very little room to breathe.
Swiped a selfie with Wend of Wendy’s Look Book, she’s such a doll.
We made a new friend, his name is Tony aka Fabio
Photo opp with Hillary Peterson of Lyst
La Bella Tanchi and I play with hair accessories at France Luxe hair
Eva Chen talks to Coco Rocha about the fashion industry from a model’s perspective. This was definitely THE best and most substantial talks we had the entire day.
My view when i walked through the doors of Luckyfabb
Making friendship bracelets with these lovely ladies
Working that Luckyfabb backdrop like a boss
It was a full house. Didn’t get a seat :(
Eva Chen, January Jones and Cassandra Grey talk about fashion in the digital age
La Bella Tanchi and I at the Poshmark booth
Ingrid Nilsen of Missglamorazzi uses a Canon dslr!