Her name is Maria Carmina or simply Ria. I love this young trendsetter who always manages to bring a smile to everyone she meets and greets.
When I first met Ria I remember thinking what gorgeous skin she has. She's like a beautiful porcelain China doll plus her winning personality is complimented by her spunk and can-do attitude.
Ria is now in her second year with Marc Jacobs in San Francisco, learning from one of the best in the fashion industry and getting to travel to coveted events like Fashion Week in New York City. Lucky girl! Recently I was able to chat with this amazing style and fashion pro about her most exciting fashion career.
Cheers, Ria! Here's to more fun and fabulous fashion adventures ahead. We love you and are so proud of you!
A Conversation with Ria Javier
What is your position at Marc Jacobs? What does a typical day look like?
I am a Retail Merchandise Coordinator. My day starts with checking/replying to emails, going into department stores and communicating with management, sales associates and specialists. In most stores, I merchandise the floor, change mannequins, and work on recaps about my visit.
What is Marc Jacobs like? What do you think sets him apart from other fashion designers?
I personally haven't met Marc Jacobs but I hear he is a very nice and humble guy. I think he involves himself with everyone around him as if he's just another regular person who's a part of the team.
I remember him when he was with Perry Ellis. He is so talented and has expanded his name brand extensively. Where do you see the company going?
I see the company evolving and continuing to be a trendsetter.
When will we begin to see the fall collection? What is trending?
Our fall collection will begin to deliver in August. You'll see a lot of amazing coats, leather fanny packs, and berets!
Which ones are your favorite pieces?
I love his selection of clothes, especially the dresses for spring. It's very easy to wear and very versatile. My all time favorite piece that I seem to wear every day is my jean jacket called Iconic Jacket -- it's ripped and torn and has holes and fits a bit over sized but I love it. I can pair it with anything. The distressed look gives it character.
What is one Marc Jacobs must have fashion piece every woman should have?
Our New Q Natasha handbags. That is, if they don't have it already. It's absolutely our best selling bag that is functional and easy to wear that can fit all the necessities in a bag. We have many color choice options depending on the season and it's only going to get better.
Describe Fashion Week. What is it like?
Fashion week was definitely an amazing experience. It was work -- but for someone who is in the industry and has the position that I have, it's fun work. My team and I attended several presentations that covered Women's Ready To Wear, Women's Handbags, Jewelry, Shoes, Sunglasses, and Watches to introduce the Fall Collection. The designers and buyers discussed in depth details about the entire collection. This was a great way for me to relay that information to associates that work in the department stores that I oversee. Overall, everyday was a very busy day. My team oversees many stores throughout the country so most of us met each other for the first time during that week, which was so great. We worked as much as possible as a team and visited stores in the vicinity. On the very last day, we made our way to the Marc By Marc Jacobs Fashion Show. It was incredible to see the whole show come together after week long presentations at the corporate office.
Describe your personal style.
My style is all about dressing simple with a unique touch. For example, a plain tee, jeans, and a leather jacket. In this case, my leather jacket is unique and stands out because of the quality, color and style. Right now, I live in white shoes but specifically Adidas Stan Smiths shoes. I wear them with dresses, jeans and culottes! I love feeling comfortable and confident with my outfit and I believe that dressing simple with a unique twist is the right style for me.
Why do you love fashion? Who has inspired you? Who are your fashion icons?
I love fashion because it is a form of expression. I love how people can get very creative and I find inspiration in other people that have their own sense of style. My Lola (grandma) Ising has inspired me. She was a a school teacher and was by no means aware of the gems she had in her closet. At the time, I was heavily into vintage, and her closet was where to go to get some good stuff. My style has changed since then but that was definitely what got me started and helped get my creative juices flowing! My fashion icons are Miroslav Duma, Pharrell Williams, Rashida Jones, and Alexa Chung.
What would you recommend to someone who is interested in a career in fashion?
Definitely build up your resume, whether it's working in retail, internships or volunteer work. Whatever you add to that resume will only be a good thing to have. NETWORKING!! It's how I got my job. It's important not to be shy but also not to try too hard.
If people want to shop for Marc Jacobs merchandise, what are the best stores?
If there is a retail store near you, I would recommend to go there. They have a lot more selection and cover everything from Men's, Women's, Little Marc, and Book Marc. In a Marc Jacobs shop, you get to experience the inspiration of the collection based on the windows installation, key looks on their mannequins and the set up of the merchandise. As far as department stores goes, it really depends on where you're comfortable shopping. There are several stores that sell our product but most are very limited to selections.
If you could do a makeover for your Tito (uncle) Martin, how would you dress him?
I wouldn't change him one bit.
...and here's my real answer, haha! I would like to see him in a different set of frames. A long sleeve button up, a tie, a light weight sports coat, jeans and some nice white sneakers (i.e. Adidas Stan Smith, converse). Or a striped shirt, light weight sports coat, rolled up khaki pants and vans. Or a chambray shirt, khakis and sneakers. Take your pick!
And what would you pick out for me?
I'd love to see you in an A-line floral skirt, a chambray button up or plaid button up and casual sneakers or plain cute pointy flats. Or a fit to flare dress in a pattern of your choice, a denim jacket and white converse shoes.