“I’ve survived three Chapter 11s, I’ve had paychecks bounce, I’ve cried more than once. I’ve seen it all in this industry," says Black Halo designer and founder Laurel Berman. Now in her 10th year with the line, Berman has a job description that's a design school grad’s dream. She leads creative for a contemporary fashion house that she owns outright—with teams of pattern-makers, drapers, fitters, and now sales all under her wing. Still, the Spokane-bred L.A. native will be the first to tell you it’s no smooth sailing.
Women and men from across the world (some as far as Bombay) were sitting on the edge of their seats at our first ever "How to Make it in Fashion" conference a few weeks ago. The topic? How to network (the right way) in this competitive industry. Trust us, the advice was good--and that's because it came from industry pros like Melanie Bender, co-founder & partner of communications firm Post+Beam, Alisa Gould-Simon, co-founder of style sharing app Pose, Amber Venz, president & co-founder of affiliate link program rewardStyle, John Jannuzzi, a contributing editor at Lucky, and Ruthie Friedlander, the senior digital manager for The Row. They may be young, but they still have years of experience and had much knowledge to share. Read on to see what we learned.