Ever wonder how people get their foot in fashion’s door? Well, today is your lucky day! We’ll be profiling some awesome people with some highly covetable internships. First up: Stephanie Moscall-Varey, a ginger who loves cats, kiteboarding, and currently interns with Toronto designer Jeremy Laing.
Tell us about yourself! What you’re studying, where you’re interning, etc.
My name is Stephanie Moscall-Varey, I am a ginger and I love cats.
I’m a second year design student at Ryerson University.
I enjoy competing in fashion competitions. In first year I received the Creativity of Design award. That following summer I was a finalist in the designer style challenge and my garment was on display at the Toronto Metro Convention Centre.
I have been very fortunate to attend New York Fashion Week with my internship at Jeremy Laing. It was an amazing experience and I can’t wait to see what else is in store.
What is a typical day like at your internship?
9:15: Catch the dreaded TTC to the other side of town.
10:00: Arrive at the studio, begin turning on irons getting everything set up for the day ahead.
Every day at the studio is completely different depending on what needs to be done. It could be anything – applying beaded appliqué, sewing on buttons, adding snaps, organizing shipments and orders, mailings to companies, cutting muslins, quality control, and assisting clients. The whole shebang.
When it is runway season my jobs include; organizing looks, quality control, and creating model cards.
That basically takes up the entire day. Then I clean up, hop on the streetcar, fall asleep and… miss my stop.
What is the most memorable, interesting, or embarrassing experience you have encountered on the job?
I honestly think every day is memorable. The people that work at the studio are absolutely amazing! I look forward to interning all week because I know that I will be greeted with warm smiles and lots of laughter. However, I think the most embarrassing moment was when I first started. I’m a really quiet girl if I am not comfortable in my environment or not used to it yet. When I first met Jeremy I couldn’t form words for the life of me, every time he said “Hi” or “How are you today Stephanie?” I would get so tongue tied my response would come out as slurred words and absurd peeps of sound, followed by my chronic blushing problem.
What is the hardest part of your job?
SNAPPING! Oh my gosh, for the Spring/Summer 2013, basically all the garments have metal snaps on them. They need to be installed with a hand press and you have to do each side separately. I’m no Hulk Hogan so to clamp the press I have to jump a little and put all my weight on it… 4000 snaps were needed for this season, which is 8000 presses. Needless to say I have biceps of steel now, and am known in the studio as the “Snap Master”.
In general though, sometimes the hours are long, a little stressful when deadlines approach, and consistently being precise and accurate can be difficult. But I don’t really care, I love it!
Source: Getty Images/Alison Joyce (2013)
What are the perks of your job?
I truly think that the best perk is the knowledge I gain. Not only is it encouraging speed and practice but I also have a better understanding of how a company is owned and operated. Little things like taking me aside to explain proper shipping methods for different countries or how to adapt the styles to suite different religions. I learn something new every time I go in.
What things interest you outside of your work?
Everything! That is the beauty of design; you can be inspired and interested by any detail in life. I have so many interests it only makes sense to find an outlet where I can express all of them at once.
I guess the things that interest me right now is culture. I have found a love for exploring my own cultural heritage and applying it to my designs. I take family stories and personal experiences and create something material from that.
Above all else I am always interested in nature. Every aspect of it captivates me; the fragility is so beautiful. Working as a tour guide has been my biggest inspiration because of how much I have learnt regarding trees, animals, vegetation and insects. Nature never stops amazing me and will always interest me.
But if I wasn’t in fashion I would probably become a Genetic Scientist, I love science.
Where do you think/hope fashion and your internship will take you?
I hope it will help me to explore the world and life. Fashion opens so many doors to creativity and inspiration. I hope that I can travel and absorb as much as possible and go where the wind blows me. My internship has already taught me so many industry and life lessons to live by. I hope that I will continue to head down the path I am currently on. Who knows what’s in store, right?
What’s your dream job?
To be a part of Canada’s great distinguished designer industry, I would like to work under designers until I have perfected my skills. I would love to eventually do my own line. But ultimately establish myself as a Canadian designer, and represent my country.
Stick it out! You may be going through hell, but in the end it will always be worth it.
BE CAREFUL! I have had my fair share of blood drawing moments from pins, irons, needles, scissors, snapping machines, tracing wheels, you name it, it has probably inflicted pain on me.