Photo Courtesy Of Jill Demling
"I'm in Tribeca. I have lived in New York for 21 years. I moved here in 1998 and started working for "American Vogue" as Anna Wintour's assistant three days after I landed at JFK. I had previously lived in L.A., where I got my first job at Creative Artists Agency. But, having grown up in Boston I missed the East Coast.
I was born in San Francisco but moved around a lot until we landed in Boston (best sports city in the world) when I was nine years old, and that is where I call home.
The best thing about my present city? I like the energy! There is always something going - day or night. New York is truly the city that never sleeps.
Growing up I really wasn't sure what I wanted to do. I studied math at Colgate University but always loved art. I spent the first two years as a math major then decided to switch to studio art in my junior year. At this point I already had my minor, and because I knew I didn't want to be an accountant or an engineer, I felt it would serve me better and be more interesting to study art. I spent my college summers in NYC interning at various art galleries like Exit Art. I think I was hoping to become a curator. After applying year after year to the Met and Guggenheim internship programs and not getting in, I realized how competitive the field was. I never aspired to be in fashion or in magazines. It really just happened.
I have always loved fashion. Instead of having pictures of teen heartthrobs on my walls growing up, I had picture of Linda and Christy. I would take my mother's "Vogue" and cut pictures out of my favorite models and fashion and tape them to my walls. My mother was very fashion forward and we would love shopping
fo the newest Espirit looks for back to school. We bonded over shopping to my father's dismay.
After 20 years at "American Vogue", I decided I wanted more freedom and time with my three-year-old daughter. I had worked with Gap casting on a few of their campaigns and wanted to do more of that. I have not been outside the walls of the U.S. edition of "Vogue" for two decades. The world has changed so much and I want to diversify - not only with what I do but who I do it with. Because of my magazines I couldn't abandon them completely and was given an opportunity I could not refuse - to work with the trailblazer Edward Enninful at "British Vogue". I will be booking their celebrity features and covers. I've known Edward since he worked at "American Vogue" and we've always been close friends. I think what he is doing at "British Vogue" is so inspiring, and I can't wait to be a part of it.
Pivotal moments for me involve the celebrities I championed while at "Vogue" in the States. I have an instinct with talent and fight for who I know is going to break out. Getting Adele her first cover, is definitely a moment I'm very proud of. And the issue came out the day after she swept the Grammy's. Beyonce's recent September cover shot by Tyler Mitchell, is another highlight. I started working on trying to get Beyonce for the cover in December 2017 and finally received the yes from her team in June 2018! Perseverance pays off .
My creative process, I just keep my eyes and ears open and observe what is going on around me. Anna has definitely had the greatest influence on me. She hired me with no fashion or magazine experience as a 24-year-old, and I have learned everything from her. She's more than a mentor to me.
When it comes to my personal style, well, I dressed a certain way working for Anna for so many years that I honestly can't wait to just wear jeans. I love a colorful Prada flat and Proenza bag. I feel that comfort is the most important thing. When you feel comfortable you feel confident. I'm minimal in many ways - but love that pop of color - be it with design, art or fashion.
Dr Colbert's Illumino face oil has saved my skin. And monthly triad facials at his beautiful office on 19th and 5th. He just opened a wellness spa, too, where I do the light beds and cryotherapy.
When I'm not working, I definitely try and spend as much time as I can with my three-year-old daughter, Story Grey. She loves seeing all those live shows - "Bubble Guppies", Disney on Ice....We have "Paw Patrol" coming up this spring and I'm taking her to her first Broadway show - "The Lion King", next month.
I uwind with the gym, gym, gym. Spin and pilates are my go-to classes at Equinox Soho."
As told to MBF,
December 29, 2018