'I'm pretty proud I chased my dream' Courtney Smith tells all budding fashionistas how to do the same
Brought to you by Swarovski
How do we go about reaching our dreams and desires?
Well, we thought we'd ask a woman who knows a little something about chasing what brings her joy and fulfilment in her career.
Enter Courtney Smith.
The Irish fashion stylist and creative director has come a long way since piecing together bits of fabric from her mums wardrobe at the age of six. Today she says she's 'pretty proud that I chased my dream.'
It means, for the most part, she's waking up content and happy. It's that thing we all want certainly and so what kind of advice can Courtney give? Well...
For her it was all a very natural progression getting from where she was to where she wanted to be. She threw herself into the deep end, set up a website, called herself a fashion designer and began showing people her glistening talent. 'I pretty much set up my website and said, 'here I am, I'm a stylist, hire me.'
Eleven years ago, she moved back from London where she studied fashion media in London School of Fashion, recognised where her strengths lay and so the hustle began. To those wanting to break into fashion, she says;
"Go for it. There's nothing stopping you but just be prepared to work really hard and graft. I've been working in this industry for 11 years and I'm still grafting to this day.
"The industry has changed so much since I started as a stylist. I moved back from London, pretty much set up my website and said, 'here I am, I'm a stylist, hire me.'"
Although we see so much of Courtney's success and triumph in the fashion industry, both here at home and abroad, it doesn't mean it was all plain sailing — no, no. Setbacks are indeed a key part of progression.
"I think we all have setbacks, that's life, that's natural. I think I deal with those things a lot better now in my thirties than I did in my twenties.
"I would have taken setbacks a lot harder and taken them personally, getting very upset."
"I will sit back, I will breathe, I will talk to my friends, my boyfriend, my family and I think that really helps."
Knowing your worth is clearly an important factor of success to Courtney. It's this confidence and belief in ourselves that helps us to use the tools available and propel ourselves forward.
Courtney thinks that now more than ever, it's important to put yourself out there on social media, grow on social media and show people who you are.
"I never interned, and while that worked for me back then, it wouldn't work as well now.
"It's a much bigger industry and people are more aware of fashion styling as a career. A lot of people want to work in this field.
"So I do think interning and assisting is a really good way to start your career. There are different routes in — you could intern within a magazine, you could intern with a fashion stylist like myself — it's really a learning curve.
"You're understanding how the industry works, how to borrow clothing, how to create a mood board — it's invaluable. It's something you won't learn in college. Even though there are courses out there now for fashion styling, I think it's probably the best route in."
So, has she made it? It can be a tricky one, especially for someone who admits they're 'never satisfied.'
"I don't know what the future has for me. I'd like to travel the world a bit more.
"If I woke up tomorrow and I wasn't as passionate about my career in styling as I am now, I would just reinvent myself."
Embrace that self reinvention, ladies. Every. Single. Day.
Brought to you by Swarovski, #FollowYourDesire