Saying Goodbye Isn't Easy

Hayley says "bye guys!"
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Hayley Phelan
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Hayley says "bye guys!"
Office homies. Miley & Kanye got nothing on us.

Office homies. Miley & Kanye got nothing on us.

You may not realize it, but I first came to Fashionista almost five years ago. I was in junior year of college and Britt and Natalie, the editors at the time, hired me as their intern. I still remember what I wore to that interview: a white tank top, ballet flats, and black and white plaid Zara pants, which at the time I thought were very Gucci Spring 2008. Britt asked me if I could name five models off the top of my head and my favorite designers. I got an email the next day offering me the internship. I was ecstatic. And so intimidated.

Back then, Fashionista was run by only two people. Britt and I would often share a sandwich from Café Gitane (the organic chicken sandwich with chipotle mayo; if you're in the area, get it—it's amazing.) Our office consisted of two desks pushed together in a big room shared by the rest of the Breaking Media staff. On slow news days, we'd walk around SoHo and take pictures of well-dressed people for "street style," which was a relatively new thing back then.

It's amazing how much can change in five years. Fashionista's staff has doubled and tripled, and our amazing team of contributors continues to grow exponentially. Interns are no longer de facto street style photogs; we now have awesome photographer Ashley Jahncke for that. We've moved offices too; Café Gitane's chicken sandwiches have been replaced by Souen's macro plate, and my lunch mates replaced by Leah, Dhani, Nora, Tyler, and Cheryl. I've gone from Fashionista intern to Teen Vogue assistant editor to Fashionista again, first as fashion news editor then senior editor. On Monday, I'll be the new features editor at Lucky, joining an insanely amazing team that I can't wait to work with.

I may no longer be intimidated, but I'm still ecstatic about having been a part of Fashionista. As Breaking Media's CEO often says, no Fashionista editor ever really leaves the fold. Once at a party two years ago, Faran Krentcil, Fashionista's first editor whom I never had the pleasure of working directly with, introduced me to someone as being "part of the same fashion family." And that's really how it feels. Britt, once my intimidating boss, is now a close friend. In the two years since bringing me on board, Leah has taught me more than I can say about editing, writing (and headlines, of course!) and become a close friend and confidante in the process. Lauren, too, has been both mentor and friend; I'll miss her random office pop-ins. Dhani, Nora, and Tyler: You guys are awesome; I'm going to miss hearing about Neely, Daisy, and Harry Styles, respectively. (Okay, maybe I won't miss hearing about Harry.) Cheryl, I'll miss bugging you for beauty tips and medical expertise (though something tells me you won't!). I feel so grateful to each and every one of these women for teaching me about writing, fashion, working together—and for making me laugh along the way.

These people, along with the editors and writers before them, are all part of the same Fashionista family—and so, dear reader, are you. Amid all the changes over the past five years, that's been the constant; Fashionista, at its heart, remains the same, a place for intelligent, funny, passionate men and women to read, write, and discuss all things fashion.

It's been an awesome ride. I can't wait to see what the next five years will hold.