MARISSA SMITH

STYLIST, FASHION MARKET EDITOR, NEW JERSEY

Meet Marissa Smith. Fashion Market Editor at NYLON Magazine, sneaker extraordinaire and unapologetic Coca Cola enthusiast. Her fused tomboy-esque but girlish style is not only eye-catching, but it shows us that there’s nothing wrong with coloring outside of the lines a little bit. Let’s just say she’s one of the coolest fashion editor’s around. With such a rad job, I had get the run-down on her career, internship advice, her and everything in between.

As a market editor, what exactly does your job consist of?

A Market Editor basically means that I’m curating the trends that we choose to feature in every issue. With the rest of my fashion team we figure out the trends, and then once they are all picked for our Front of Book Trend pages I go through all the collections and accessories and pick out what brands I would like to feature. I then reach out to the brands and request the samples and eventually edit and layout the trend pages. I also sometimes help write for our fashion news section, and style small radar pieces. Along with that I also am the Digital Fashion Editor, so I help our digital team create all of their market and trend features. I do all the gallery trend posts, I style all digital photo shoots whether it’s beauty, talent or fashion.

Take us through a lively fashion department work day at the NYLON offices, what goes on?

Unfortunately every day is completely different – but on the busiest day: I start my day off with a few press appointments. I go and take pictures of every piece of clothing and accessories shown by the brand for the new season so that I can then catalog them later to keep for trend research. I usually wrap up those by 12PM and head to the office. After catching up on e-mails I work on my Front of Book Trend pages for the issue, requesting samples and sorting through racks to pick what I’d like to feature in the issue. I attend a few meetings on how the issue is progressing with the rest of the print team (editorial, art, photo) and then I end my day going back on press appointments!

What’s your favorite thing about working at NYLON?

I love that NYLON is privately owned, it gives us more room to be creative and do what we feel is cool. I get to work on and do a lot of projects that I wouldn’t get to do anywhere else because of how small our fashion team, and print team is. I’ve learned more at NYLON than I have anywhere else I’ve worked all because of how small and close the team is here.

To date, what has been the highlight of your career?

My first fashion week I worked at NYLON as an assistant I got to attend the Marc Jacobs show and sit second row! A bunch of our editors were on flights to London for London Fashion Week so I got to take their ticket. It was a big moment of the “I’ve made it” feeling. I’ve also got to style some amazing talent that I’m thrilled to call friends now.

Making your mark as an intern is super crucial. From your experience, how can a student do so?

The main things I always tell my former interns are to be friendly and willing to do anything and everything. You have to say yes, regardless of the time, weather, or what is expected of you. The more you do and the more you are willing to do the more your bosses will recognize you and trust you. The interns I always remember are the ones that I trusted to handle important tasks, because they were willing and super nice about it. If you have an attitude or let your bosses realize you aren’t happy or you aren’t willing because it’s late, or it’s cold or you’re tired you won’t get anywhere. I also always tell my interns that even though you become great friends with the other interns, you have to be professional at work, so the gossip, laughing and small talk needs to be quiet and not noticed by anyone else in the work place.

If someone is interested in your career path, what should they do to prepare themselves while in college?

You definitely do not need to study fashion to become a fashion editor, the major way to prepare yourself for a job in editorial fashion is to intern, intern in a closet, intern in editorial, intern in digital see the different sides of the editorial spectrum and what suits you best. You might think you want to be a stylist but after assisting on set realize that market work is better suited for your goals in life. The more experience in different parts of the industry the easier it will be to pick your career path when you graduate.

How did you transition from fashion intern to assistant to editor?

I interned three times, which is not even that much compared to students now! I interned at Glamour twice and ELLE once all in the fashion closet or for the Fashion Directors. Once I graduated and couldn’t find a full time job I freelanced in the fashion closet of GQ for about 6 months before Glamour hired me to do their Fashion Week scheduling. I was hired there for a month to only deal with fashion week and was lucky enough to move into a fashion closet freelance job there when my month was over. My connections I’ve made through interning ended up helping me land my fashion assistant position at NYLON about 3 years ago now! An old Glamour Editor moved over to NYLON and since I had great connections at Glamour I ended up getting the job at NYLON.

As I’ve said since the team is very small at NYLON. I was doing a lot of tasks that I would have never dealt with anywhere else, and worked my way up to becoming an Editor by showing that I could handle more than just Fashion Closet tasks.

It’s no secret that you’re obsessed with Coca Cola. So if you could design your own can of Coke, what would it look like?

Ha! Oh my god, I’ve never even thought about it. I’m right now really into pastel colors, so I think I would make the can either baby pink or baby blue, I would definitely have my name on it (obviously) and maybe I’d put the praying hands emoji on it–because of course I only pray to the Coca Cola gods out there.

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PHOTOGRAPHY: Andre Gray