This week we have a special guest Annesia Allie, a Creative Leader & Visionary. She services a diverse range of clients addressing their needs both domestically and internationally. Originally working in design, textiles and sourcing, Annesia has been contributing her innovative talent to large fashion houses for over ten years and offers a dynamic range of aesthetic & skills. She is currently a full fashion service consultant as takes us through her success story.
What is a day in the life of Annesia like?
Since creating my consulting agency, my day has definitely been a bit more unpredictable. At my previous roles, my calendar would be fully booked up with design meetings, fabric mill appointments, Operational meetings. I would barely have time to eat on most days and if I did it would be at my desk. Now a day in the life of Annesia Allie has become a bit more sporadic. I start my day out with a morning routine, I believe morning routines are very important for me. I practise Yoga and Meditation, a quick workout before my day. My creative consulting firm gives me the chance to work on a project base, it is working with clients, photoshoots, design direction, production, sourcing. Usually if I am not running around the garment district in New York I am on an airplane to meet an existing or potential client.
You were also invited to Lecture at The Fashion Class New York, what topics did you cover?
It was amazing working with kids. I taught Fashion Branding for Teens and a jewelry design class from 8-12 years old. In the beginning, before teaching, I was brought in as a guest speaker. I spoke about my career and accomplishments. On some days I would be an amazed at the work, the excitement, the creativity and visions It blew my mind.
You have a long list of high profile clients, but who has been the most interesting to work with so far?
The most interesting client was Model Garrett Neff, Garrett launched his swimwear brand, Katama Swim. It was truly great working with Garrett because he had a very strong, focused vision. He was never afraid to push the envelope a bit while staying true to his brand. I was able to work with him on many aspects of the brand and I feel he is a strong role model and representation of a Millennial Designer. He believes in his vision follows it. He is also extremely humble!
Who would you love to collaborate with?
I would love to collaborate with Satya Jewellery, I love the brand and I love the message it sends out. Life is a Journey, pieces from Jewellery to clothing should represent that journey. My sisters just gave me a beautiful Lotus piece from them. I love that it represented new beginnings, I believe clothes should have the same representation.
The industry is incredibly tough to get into and it can be just as hard to get recognised, how do you deal with this?
I would say it is really important to be true to your passion and stay focused. The industry can be harsh, and you meet a lot of really amazing people and some not so amazing ones. I think it’s important to remain humble. The ego can cloud creativity, so remaining humble and treating each other with respect is pivotal in all aspects.
When did you decide to become a creative leader?
I was born in Guyana, Indian Background grew up in New York. When I was younger Fashion wasn’t really a career that you are encouraged to follow. You are told to be a doctor or a lawyer and as a creative visionary its hard to put that into a box. My first job was with Ralph Lauren in my early 20’s and It was truly a place where I was able to explore my passion. I was able to work with some extremely talented leaders including Ralph himself. I believe its really important who you surround yourself with, it is always important to be around leaders that inspire you.
What advice can you give to other young ambitious individuals out there embarking on this same journey?
My advice would be to believe in yourself. Stay true to your individual uniqueness and creative vision and believe in it even if it doesn’t fit the norm.
What are you currently working on right now and how do you plan your future?
Currently, I am working on a collection I’ve been conjuring up for some time. I’ve worked with amazing brands and talent like Zac Posen, Ralph, Tommy, these leaders inspired me. In the recent years, I’ve been teaching and I find that creative leaders need support and motivation. In the most recent years I have been paying very close attention to the environment and the affects the apparel industry has on it. I am working on my own collection ALLIE ETHEREAL.
It is a environmentally conscious based brand. The brand is men’s and women and consist of airy, whimsical, pieces. It is for the fashionable leader that enjoys unwinding at a retreat with ease and comfort. My vision is contributing a percentage into building schools and funding creative programs across the globe.
What obstacles do you face in this industry and how do you cross that barrier?
I have always thought outside of the box, my creative vision is limitless and it was hard at times to not take on projects that dim that vision, always being able to work in an environment where I am still able to bring my own personal creativity to the brand while increasing revenue.
What 3 pieces of advice would you give to others out there that are trying to get established and get credible work?
3.Build a strong online presence with a strong social media strategy.
Do you think the gateway entry is more about networking and your ability to put yourself out there on the front line or about education and degrees?
I believe its a combination of both. I think the true key is to get work experience, being hands-on is so important. School can only teach you so much but express yourself in a creative atmosphere interacting with others is important.