What I Know Now: Kelsey Stiegman
career: fashion editor
hometown: Thawville, IL
career: I’m the Senior Style Editor for Seventeen.com. I’m in charge of the fashion and beauty verticals on the website, as well as fashion and beauty content on social media. On a regular day, I might do anything from writing up celeb fashion news stories and creating e-commerce shopping guides to calling in clothing samples or styling a video shoot. My ultimate goal is to be Fashion Director.
growing up: I don’t remember what I wanted to be as a child, but I’ve always loved fashion, so no one was surprised when I announced I was going to be an apparel merchandising major. In college, they always make you tell the class what your career goals are on the first day. I remember standing up and telling everyone that my dream was to move to New York and work for Seventeen. Four years later, that’s exactly what I did.
education: I attended Illinois State University as an apparel merchandising major and journalism minor. I first came to school as an English major— I didn’t even know you could major in fashion. On orientation day, I heard other girls say they were majoring in apparel merchandising and I immediately switched. I spent most of college trying to beef up my resume so I could one day get my foot in the door. I was Vice President of the school fashion club, Marketing Director of the annual student-run fashion show, and Features Editor of the school newspaper. I interned at a vintage clothing collection on campus, at a boutique in my college town, and then eventually at Seventeen.com and Cosmopolitan.com.
secret to success: I’ve always tried my best to make the most out of any opportunity. Even internships that don’t directly relate to what you want to do can give you great experience if you try hard enough. One more thing I’ve always tried to practice is asking for what you want. As an editorial intern for Seventeen.com, my job was mostly writing celeb stories. I was very vocal with my bosses and kept emphasizing that I would love any opportunities in fashion. At the end of the summer, they had a denim shoot and immediately asked me to help because I had made my career goals clear.
advice for teens: Don’t worry about “making money.” If you have a passion for that field, you will find a job that works for you –probably one you’ve never even heard of.
fun fact: I’ve read the Harry Potter series probably 30 times, and I have four Harry Potter tattoos.
can’t live without: