9 Must-Haves For Starting Your Fall Internship, Aside From A #GirlBoss Attitude
I am what you would call a serial intern. Half of the reason I moved to New York for college was to have a resume so stacked with big names it looked like the magazine rack at your local Barnes & Noble. Luckily for me, I got the chance to do that — or at least intern for a few amazing publications I loved, with the hopes of landing a position after graduation. Needless to say, I feel like a seasoned expert at the intern game at this point. I might be a newbie in fashion years, but I've learned a thing or two about what an intern needs to get byand look fab doing it.
One of the key skills an intern needs to have, regardless of the industry they're working in, is anticipating their boss' needs. Being a great intern means learning how your bosses work, how they like things to be done, and how you can make everything run as smoothly as possible. Whether that be knowing your boss' coffee order or whose phone calls they want to screen, in order to seriously impress your boss you need to be ahead of the game.
When you're first starting out, it's beyond important to make a great impression and prove how pulled-together you are, so start by anticipating your own needs first. You want to be as prepared as possible on your first day. Find out some of my (hard-learned) must-haves when starting a brand new internship, and set the fall semester off to a good start.
1. Office-Appropriate Denim
If you're working in a more liberal office, like that of a graphic design firm, denim is usually fair game if it's done right. Opt for darker washes when you can and more unique pieces like denim dresses and mid-calf skirts can give off some office appropriate retro vibes. 'Boyfriend' and distressed jeans can work if the rest of your outfit is dressed up, so consider adding a pair of nude heels and a colorful button-up for the ultimate casual-classy combo. Just to be safe, always check and see what your superiors sport during their workday and follow suit — with your own flair, of course.
ASOS Denim Culottes, $63, asos.com
2. Foldable Flats
This is possibly the most valuable advice I could ever give you (especially if you are a fashion intern): Heels In The Office, Flats On The Street. Or just really chic flats all the time. When you're in an office surrounded by impossibly glamorous people a few days a week, you probably want to dress the part. But when your boss asks if you'll go trek halfway across town to pick up some fashion show invites, wearing stilettos might just kill you. So avoid the bandaids, be ahead of the game (and the other interns wobbling around trying to carry dozens of shoe boxes) and pack a pair of foldable flats in your bag. Yosi Samra Singapore has a whole line of foldable flats in simple, sleek designs that transition with every outfit!
3. An Agenda With A To-Do List And Room For Notes
It's a no-brainer that you'll need an agenda to keep all of your school, internship, and social obligations in check. On top of putting reminds in your phone of important deadlines, meetings, after-work events, it helps to have a visual of what your week looks like. A section for a to-do list makes it easy to keep track of all the tasks your boss sends your way. Make sure there is also a room for you to take notes, so you can write down any instructions (and avoid re-asking your superior a hundred times) or need-to-know info.
Daily Planner Notepad, $9, etsy.com
4. A Statement Blazer
Of course you want to acclimate to the office fashion culture, but you still want to make an impression! With something as simple as a well-fitted, patterned or uniquely-tailored blazer, you can look equally as professional as you do fashionable. Not only is it a conversation starter, but styling it in different ways proves you've got style chops.
Printed Silk Blazer, $112, cosstores.com
5. A Water Bottle
Despite what you saw on The Hills, there usually isn't much down time to hang out and chat at your internship. There's way more multi-tasking than anything, with a handful of deadlines looming and your bosses throwing all kinds of strange tasks at you (I've been asked to buy oysters for a photo shoot, walk nearly every editors' dog, and stand in for a model who was too hungover). You're going to need a little hydration. Luckily, there's usually plenty of free coffee and tea to go around so your caffeine fix will be taken care of, but make sure you keep your own water bottle with you!
Zing Anything Citrus Water Bottle, $18, urbanoutfitters.com
6. A Beauty Bag For Touch-Ups
With your laptop already in tow, you hardly want to schlep your entire makeup bag with you during your morning commute. Stock up on a few of your favorite products in travel-size, and break them out when you feel your lip color fading or complexion getting a little too shiny for comfort. I always make sure I have a good lip balm, concealer, and mascara on hand so I can freshen up whenever I have a free second.
7. A Stylish Watch
For the sake of looking professional, you can't always have your phone on hand at work. You don't want your bosses to slyly think that you're Instagramming when you're really keeping tabs on the hour. The smartest way to avoid any office faux pas is to sport a simple wrist watch — both pretty and practical.
8. Cute Business Cards
Just because you're in college, doesn't mean you're too young to be a #GirlBoss. You'd be surprised how many people you'll meet in and out of the office at your internship, and exchanging business cards is a huge factor in networking! Before you start for the semester, order some simple (but aesthetically delicious) business cards with your basic contact info, and you'll be ready to make all those super important connections.
Square Business Cards, moo.com, Prices Vary
9. A Bag Big Enough To Fit Everything
Packing for your internship is like packing for a weekend trip to the countryside — it requires way more preparation than you'd think. To make sure you've got everything you need, and it can actually fit in your bag, you first have to buy the right bag! It might be a large cross-body bag or even a backpack, but regardless make sure it's sturdy and has thick enough straps with withstand the weight. You wouldn't believe the damage a laptop, two textbooks, and a makeup bag can do.
Rift Tab Bag, $395, needsupply.com