Did you ever cry in the bathroom at your first "real" job? Or any other job, for that matter
I sure did. I don’t know if this is a specific thing to the fashion industry or it happens in other fields, but at the time in the early to mid 2000’s when I was working for a fashion company in Toronto, I had heard of it happening to other colleagues at other similar companies. Maybe it’s gotten better now, I’m not sure I haven’t been in the corporate fashion world for a while now so I can’t say for sure. My boss would regularly walk in while I was on the phone and start screaming about something. He would sit slumped in a chair in the meeting room telling everyone how awful the collections were. Once when we were in a factory meeting in China he proceeded to scream how “I was the”big” designer” and how complicated and confusing this collection was. I kept thinking "why am I not better at this?" and, "what am I doing wrong" But looking back on it the odds against my success were pretty high...I was thrown into that job with no training, no experience and no guidance. To expect me to turn around a failing company with some new designs was an impossibly tall order. After the meeting we were driving through the country of mainland China I had the frightening thought that we could all disappear and no one would ever know where we were. This was right before everyone had a cell phone.
After the company went out of business I was out of a job. It was a huge relief to be honest. I vowed if I was ever going to have an employee I would never treat them that way. And now I do have an employee: myself. Negative self-talk can be just as damaging as coming from an abusive boss. For me it’s self-care not to internalize negative thoughts and think of myself as a friend. And I would never speak to a friend like that. It’s a constant work in progress.
So, what does this have to do with anything? Well, my employee (me) has been hard at work making some great new pieces for spring, some comfy caftans that will for sure elevate your grocery shopping trip and weekend brunch dates. I think you will like them, and they’ll make a great addition to your wardrobe capsule.
As always, feel free to reach out to me directly. I always love to hear from you!!
painting by Franz Van Holder