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How She Got There: Liz Lange, Fashion Designer and Style Expert

Name: Liz Lange 
Job Title and Description: Fashion Designer and Style Expert
College/Major: Brown University, Comparative Literature
Website: www.lizlange.com / www.shopafrolic.com / www.target.com / www.hsn.com
Twitter Handle: @lizlange 
  
Her Campus: What does your current job entail? Is there such a thing as a typical day?  

Liz Lange: I have no typical days. On any given day I have TV appearances, design meetings, Internet meetings, fittings, business lunches, editor meetings, errands with my children, business travel, speeches, and panels. 
  
HC: What was your first entry-level job in your field and how did you get it? 
LL: I was an assistant at Vogue. I started as an in-house temp at Condé Nast. Back then they called us “rovers” as we would rove from magazine to magazine filling in for any assistant who wasn’t there. Eventually, I was placed as a permanent assistant at Vogue (but not before I passed a typing test that took me months to pass as this was pre-computers!) 

HC: What is one thing you wish you knew about your industry when you first started out that you know now? 
LL: [There are] lots of talented but high-strung people in the fashion industry and no mistake is that big of deal. Back then assistants could often be found sobbing in the bathrooms of Vogue.
 
HC: Who is one person who changed your professional life for the better? 
LL: Stephen DiGeronimo was the fashion designer whom I left Vogue to go apprentice for. It is what ultimately led to my own successful career as a fashion designer.
 
HC: What words of wisdom do you find most valuable? 
LL: Until someone does something new, no one thinks it’s a good idea. Or as Steve Jobs famously put it, “…people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.”
 
HC: What is one mistake you made along the way and what did you learn from it? 
LL: So many mistakes but mistakes are opportunities in disguise. The important thing is that you learn from them and you move on.
 
HC: What is the best part of your job? 
LL: I can’t believe that I paid for what I do. I love designing and I love working with my customers and interacting with them. I also love having the opportunity to address and teach would-be entrepreneurs.
 
HC: What do you look for when considering hiring someone? 

LL: I don’t care if my employees have direct experience in the job I’m hiring for. I care much more about general intelligence, a true desire for the job, a passion for my brand, and a “can get it done” attitude.
 
HC: What advice would you give to a 20-something with similar aspirations? 
LL: Don’t get caught up in what you think you do and don’t know. I can’t sew, drape or sketch and yet I have had a very successful career as a fashion designer.
 

Gennifer is the Branded Content Specialist for Her Campus Media. In her role, she manages all sponsored content across platforms including editorial, social, and newsletters. As one of HC's first-ever writers, she previously wrote about career, college life, and more as a national writer during her time at Hofstra University. She also helped launch the How She Got There section, where she interviewed inspiring women in various industries. She lives in New York City.
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