I Never Studied Fashion, But Here's How I Landed My Job

Kristen Nichols

When I was at my parents’ house last year, I discovered something interesting: a VHS tape of me at age 5. In it, I’m sitting on the porch of my family’s home in Arizona when my dad asks what I want to do when I grow up. As the question lands, I exclaim, “I want to be a fashion designer.” Now, this might not be too surprising as you’re reading this from a now fashion editor at Who What Wear, but let me tell you—watching this shocked me to my core. Upon seeing the previously unseen (to me) footage, I realised working in fashion was something I had always wanted to do. Here in front of me was evidence that my interest in fashion was buried somewhere inside from a young age.

This was a revelation because it goes against everything I grew up thinking about my future career. For most of my life, I remember wanting to become a doctor and actually started out on a pre-med track in college. It wasn’t until I changed course to study art history and business that I even allowed myself to dream about a different path. It took some time—and a trip across the world—to guide me in the right direction, toward that pivotal lightbulb moment when I realised I wanted to be a part of the fashion industry.

Once I arrived at that conclusion, it got me thinking about how I was going to break my way into the fashion world. How can I land a job in fashion? Can I do it with zero experience? Is it even possible from L.A.? Will I succeed? But I was determined and mapped out a plan.

My path to becoming a fashion editor wasn’t the most traditional or the easiest, but I feel proud of every move I made to get where I am today. If you’re curious to hear everything it took to land my job, ahead, I’m taking you behind the scenes—because Instagram only reveals so much.

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