YMI & Teen Vogue Sweepstakes Winner at NYC Fashion Week!

Our YMI & TEEN VOGUE sweepstakes winner Sara J shares her once in a lifetime Fashion Week story with us, read on to find out where she goes, who she meets and her life changing discovery!


Oh. My. God. Was this really happening? Was I – a girl from a rural small town where you can’t even buy a proper fashion magazine on the news stand – really going to the most famous city in the world for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week? I had spent the week before the trip getting ahead on school work and frantically picking out clothes that might be appropriate for Fashion Week. Fashion has always intrigued me. I believe it is the most powerful art form, with a beauty that is magnified even more by the person who wears it. Due to unexpected traffic, my mom and I arrived at the airport for our trip to New York only 40 minutes before departure. Needless to say, we were in a panic as we sprinted through security and to our gate, which – of course – was at the very end of the terminal. Thankfully we made it with just enough time, red-faced and flustered. Giddy with relief, we boarded the plane. We arrived at the Hotel Belleclaire, finding a box filled with fashion goodies like jeans, pocket mirrors, and cute stationary from Teen Vogue and YMI. I had never worn YMI jeans before, but let me just say that they are awesome.

Day 1

On Saturday, we walked to Lincoln Center for events at the Teen Vogue Haute Spot. I got a makeover by Maybelline New York and then posed for the camera. Teen Vogue had all different looks on display throughout the Haute Spot; they were all adorable. I fell in love with a pair of glittery oxfords that I ended up buying at Aldo the next day! Jill Stuart stopped by the Haute Spot and we previewed her beautiful Spring 2012 collection. Mary Kate Steinmiller, Teen Vogue’s Associate Fashion Market Editor, interviewed Jill, who shared her own story and advice. She was so nice and was happy to take a picture with me. We then left the Haute Spot and took a taxi to the Plaza Hotel, where we had some yummy tea and chocolate treats. The remainder of the afternoon we spent walking 5th Avenue, where I got my picture taken with a gorgeous (and shirtless!) Abercrombie model. That evening, we saw the play “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.” It was excellent and really showed a different, funny side of Daniel Radcliffe. He is so talented!

Day 2

The next day was the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. It was a somber time to be in New York City, and it was particularly touching for me as paired with the excitement of Fashion Week. My mom and I took some time to watch the ceremony on television, then we headed out to the Haute Spot, where I immediately spotted Amy Astley, Editor in Chief of Teen Vogue. I introduced myself, and we talked for a while. My perception of a magazine editor was way off. You know how magazine editors are projected as being scary and pretentious – i.e. The Devil Wears Prada? Well, Amy was the complete opposite. She was friendly as could be and had so much invaluable advice for me. Inquiring about my interest in a career in fashion, she told me that even though Teen Vogue is a fashion magazine, she looks to hire people with well rounded liberal arts educations and majors like English or Art History. She recommended that I attend the best University I could get accepted into as long as it was the right school for me. Also, she said that not attending a fashion or design-related school would not be an obstacle in finding a job. She made it clear that the best way to learn about careers in fashion is to experience them as a motivated intern. I could see that she truly cares about her readers. It was such a pleasure to meet her. Then came the moment I had been so excited for – attending the fashion show! Teen Vogue provided my mom and I with amazing front row seats for the Declare Your Denim Fashion Show. On the way to my seat, I had to do a

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double take when I saw someone I recognized out of the corner of my eye. It was Shay Mitchell from Pretty Little Liars, my absolute favorite show. It was so awesome to actually be that close to and sit in the same row as a celebrity I admired so much! After sitting down, Victoria Justice and Omarion arrived as well. It was so amazing; I was completely star struck. The day was overcast and we were lucky it didn’t rain. It really accentuated the fashion show, however, because all of the bright color blocking outfits stood out against the gray background. I loved the show – the music was perfect and the pieces were so well put together. It’s hard to describe how I felt; I can only say that it was pure joy. After the show ended, I returned to the Haute Spot, where I met Eva Chen, Teen Vogue’s Beauty and Health Director. Eva gave me so much great advice about the industry and how she became a part of it. After I talked to Eva, I listened to her interview with beauty and fashion gurus Elle and Blaire Fowler. They talked about the hottest beauty trends seen on the runway and shared tons of little beauty tricks as well. I learned http://genericviagra100mg-quality.com/ that to reduce frizz in your hair, you should dry it with a cotton t-shirt and blow dry with the nozzle downwards along the flow of your hair. Also, to make a bold lipstick last longer, it helps to apply lip liner of the same color on your entire lips under the coat of lipstick. Our long day was not yet cialis daily insurance over. Who could pass up generic cialis for sale a sale at Bloomies? After a few hours of shopping, we grabbed a burger at the Burger Joint, the scrumptiously well-kept secret located in a corner of Le Parker Meridien hotel. Bellies full, we returned to our hotel and passed out.

Day 3

On Monday, I visited the YMI showroom by Times Square. Wearing my new jeans, I met the Executive Vice President of Marketing and Licensing at YMI, Deke Jamieson. The showroom was so beautiful with windows all around and a breathtaking view of the city. All of their brand new samples were on display throughout the light-filled room. Everything from their signature jeans, to shoes, to intimates were hanging all around us. Mr. Jamieson also had so much advice, not only about the industry, but also about life in general. We had a Skype conference with Evelyn Lugo, the wonderful person who made this whole trip a reality. YMI is in the process of expanding, so it was great to see how much potential the brand has. I left the showroom happy and ready to tell all of my friends about how great the brand is. Our next Haute Spot event was learning cheap viagra online canadian pharmacy how to strut our stuff with Mac Folkes, the industry expert himself. Even though I don’t have a big interest in modeling, Mac’s instruction was extremely entertaining; he has a great personality. After his session ended, Victoria Justice stopped by for a meet and greet. She has to be one of the nicest celebrities ever – she was so sweet! I was lucky enough to get a picture with her! At nightfall, we took the subway to Soho, where we did a little more shopping on Broadway.

Day 4

Tuesday came, and I was invited to visit the Teen Vogue offices. This visit was not initially planned – it was all thanks to my fabulous Teen Vogue contact, Jasmin Reate. Jasmin was absolutely terrific and set up a tour for my mom and I to see the Business and Editorial floors of Teen Vogue, despite the chaos of her job mid-fashion week. I instantly loved the vibe of the offices. The staff worked together like one big happy family, and I could sense their passion for what they do. I had the chance to meet with both an intern and ex-intern, each of whom highly praised their jobs at the magazine. It was fascinating to see all of the different jobs that are required to achieve the finished product. As I was leaving the offices, there was a lot of commotion. Everyone was trying to place orders online for Missoni for Target. It was hysterical because the website kept crashing mid-order. Everyone was frantic and asking each other if their orders had gone through. We came up with a back-up plan – My mom and I would pick up pharmacy today an order at Target on our way home that night and ship it to the office! Luckily, the orders went through so it wasn’t necessary. Just seeing their excitement over fashion made me appreciate the environment even more. Leaving the offices at Condé Nast, we rushed to our last event at Lincoln Center. Erin Fetherston showed us pictures of her Spring 2012 collection. The clothes were gorgeous and it was obvious how devoted she is to what she does. She is very intelligent and shared with us her inspiration and how she came to be a designer. Her interests had always been in fashion, but it was not until after graduating from UC Berkeley that she knew her calling was to be a designer. She enrolled at Parsons in Paris, and her career took off from there. Running late for our driver, we left the Haute Spot for the last time and set off for the airport.

I am so ecstatic that I actually won this amazing trip. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity that will stay with me forever. I made so many valuable connections during the trip that I otherwise wouldn’t have made. It was so incredible to meet people that are cialis 20 mg prospecto so knowledgeable and influential in the fashion industry. This trip made me realize that I belong in fashion. It is what makes me genuinely happy, and there are so many possibilities within it. I had such an extraordinary time with everything. Thank you YMI and Teen Vogue for making my dreams come true!

-Sara J


One Response to YMI & Teen Vogue Sweepstakes Winner at NYC Fashion Week!

  1. 09.21.11

    I lover her sweet look! She is adorable :)

    celebrity bags

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