The People At Prestige

April 29, 2010 § Leave a comment

After catching up on a few weeks’ worth of Ugly Betty episodes, I realized that I’m basically living her life without bad hair and braces. I was more or less looking for any kind of work and landed under the fashion editor of a magazine, though I don’t have a particularly vested interest in the fashion industry. But now I work as an assistant to the editor’s assistant, which casts me below everyone. This position, however, is one of the best steps to becoming an actual editor, so I’m learning as much as I can before the end of July.

The fashion editor, Vivienne, is the first person I met here. She’s a very nice and competent older young adult [I’d guess 30] with an impossibly narrow waist and, of course, a very stylish wardrobe [and she is nothing like Daniel Meade]. It’s probably gauche for me to speculate on her ethnic origins, but she has a Chinese last name and doesn’t speak Cantonese, studied somewhere in Europe and has a faint and untraceable European accent.

Two weeks after I started working at Prestige, I was taking a stroll with Rosaline through the IFC mall while slurping on post-dinner McD ice cream cones, and saw someone who resembled Vivienne down the hall.
Hmm
, I thought, Vivienne was wearing a similar outfit today. Wouldn’t it be funny if she saw me stuffing my face with softserve?
I kept my eye on her as we walked closer, and suddenly she smiled and waved. Panicking, I waved back. Yeah, it was actually Vivienne. What are the chances?

Tess, the editor’s assistant, was gone the first week I started working, so we didn’t have much of a relationship in the first month but for the few times Vivienne didn’t have anything for me to do, thereby relegating me to her assistant. I figured that to be an assistant, Tess would have to be at least a year or so older than me, and since she’s taller and has a British accent, age is barely decipherable.

On one fateful cab ride to choose dresses for a photoshoot, I asked her what university she went to.
“I haven’t been to university yet,” Tess replied.
“…What???” I exclaimed, incredulous. “How old are you??”
“Take a guess.”
“Twenty…four?”
“Actually, I’m 19,” she laughed. I just about died.

Apparently this job is what Tess is doing for her gap year, commonly taken by students in the UK before progressing to college. Well, that definitely changed things between us, and now we’re pretty good friends, which is a fortunate pairing since we’re the two youngest people in the office anyhow.

The creative director, Paris, spends half his time in LA, so I didn’t meet him until after a month and a half of work. He’s intimidating like Wilhemina, but at least he’s not a bitch for the sake of being one [okay he is sometimes. And it makes everyone uncomfortable]. A long-haired Californian in his early forties, Paris doesn’t dress fabulously, but his appearance belies his creative drive and expertise in couture.

That last bit felt contrived, so I’ll stop here. Those are the people with whom I work the most; you’ll be reading more about them for sure!

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