New Zealand is home to an abundance of fabulous up and coming fashion labels. One of our favs is Twenty-Seven Names, one of the brightest new stars in the fashion scene and the lovechild of nzgirls and best friends, Rachel Easting and Anjali.
If you’re a fashionista or interested in setting up your own business (a la Donald Trump) read on for Rachel and Anjali’s top tips for career success in the fabulous world of fashion…
Name: Rachel Easting and Anjali Stewart
Age: 24 and 25
Employer/company: Twenty-Seven Names
Position: Creative Director and Managing Director
Can you give us a brief job description?
Rachel: I’m in charge of pattern making, sampling, and production. I work with the product we produce.
Anjali: I work mainly on making sure the business is ticking over smoothly, which involves dealing with our accounts, managing our sales, keeping our stockists happy, producing our fashion shows and washing the dishes! Rachel and I also come together to design our winter and summer ranges every year.
How did you get this job?
Rachel: Anjali and I started our business during and after studying. I studied fine arts, majoring in sculpture. I guess I’m in charge of the practical side of the business because that’s where my strengths lie.
Rachel and I started this business after we finished at Polytechnic (I’m a fashion design graduate).
What inspired you to get into this field?
Rachel: Anjali studied Fashion Design and we just decided that that was what we wanted to do when we finished. It felt like a natural progression of what we’d both already been doing.
Anjali: Other young NZ designers, who were doing really well when I was studying made me want to get into the industry.
What is a typical week at work like for you?
Rachel: It varies over the year depending on what stage in the design, sampling, selling or production process we are at. I work at a really big cutting table most of the time. It’s a really hands on job which I do on average from 8.30am to 6pm everyday, and often through the weekends.
Anjali: It really depends on the time of year. At the moment I’m working on invoices for winter 2009, budgets for the next three months, making sure fabric is turning up for both winter production plus summer sampling, and we are working on our first basic ideas for summer 2009.
What do you enjoy about your job most of all?
Rachel: Being able to work for myself. Being in charge and responsible for what I’m doing. I love practical work and making things, so it’s ideal really.
Anjali: Working with Rachel; she is really hardworking and it’s awesome to have a sounding board. I also love photo-shoots, when the collection is brand new, and you’re trying to show it in its best light.
Best perks of the job?
Rachel: As I said not working for someone else, not having to answer to anyone but myself and Anjali. Also being able to work when and where I want.
Anjali: Being creative, managing your own time and working hard for yourselves.
What things do you think make your job different or fun?
Rachel: Working with really good friends rather than in an office. We get to talk and hang out all day and bounce ideas off each other. It’s a really motivating environment.
Anjali: Getting to travel for work and working with my best friend.
What personality traits/skills/attributes help a person get a job like yours?
Rachel: I think you have to be well organized, very committed and willing to work really hard even if you don’t feel like it. You should also be someone who gets satisfaction from getting jobs done. Being able to handle stress is really key because a lot of the year we’re under extreme pressure. And above all be excited about the product, design and the collections.
Anjali: Creativity, willingness to learn new things ability to think on your feet.
Most memorable moment of your job so far?
Rachel: Maybe our most recent show at Air New Zealand Fashion Week, it was our first solo show, so everyone there was there to support us. It was such an amazing feeling and I was so proud of what we’d achieved.
Anjali: Fashion week last year, just before the models were about to go out, Rachel, Karie and I were back stage and managed to sneak a look at the crowd, we were super pumped.
Any advice for nzgirls wanting to get into this field?
Rachel: Do work experience and get a feel for whether it really is for you. And study fashion, the best skills you can have are design and pattern making, and then get experience in the industry.
Anjali: Prepare yourself for some hard work, but if you’re good with money and prepared for a bit of heartbreak you should be sweet! And if you can, do work experience.
Where would you like to go from here?
Rachel: Continue nurturing and growing our brand.
Anjali: To keep working on world domination of Twenty-Seven Names.
Want a wicked job like Rachel and Anjali’s that you’d love to tell the world about? Check out the Open Polytechnic for business qualifications in a variety of sought after fields including accounting, HR, management and small business – even fashionistas need business nous to take on the world. All qualifications are NZQA accredited and give you the convenience of learning where and when you choose. Click here to find out more about getting your future on track.