02 August 2011

In January, Grazia magazine introduced you four twenty-somethings – Allie, Cosar, Jo’el and Mary - who have been given a fashion opportunity of a life-time. All four had a difficult start in life and have been helped by the amazing Kids Company - the charity set up by Camilla Batmanghelidjh to help inner city kids written off by the system. Now, they have been handpicked to be part of a unique mentoring scheme launched by Grazia and Reiss and transported onto the fashion front-line to be trained in everything from fashion design to blogging. So, how has it been so far? Every week you can check in with them on Grazia Daily (right here!) and and follow their blogs charting their highs and lows over the next six months. Here, Cosar, who is working in the cutting department, reveals why she’s suddenly taking her future so seriously…

Now that I am coming towards the end of my internship at Reiss, I am looking back at the whole experience and thinking about what I have learned. Going into Visual Merchandising without a clear understanding of the department at the start of the programme gave me an insight into that area, and made me realise that it was not for me. Then moving around different Head Office departments had me biting my nails – I was nervous and felt it was a slow process to find out what I wanted to do and where I would fit in.
The area I have enjoyed the most has been the pattern cutting and tailoring departments. I am working on a skirt pattern at the moment, and hope to have it cut and a sample made by the end of my time here. I can picture myself having a career in this side of the industry. I have looked into various pattern cutting courses and am currently applying for a couple, so really hope I am able to enrol on one this September so I can carry on learning this skill.  I know I need to work on my sewing skills, so I have arranged to help out at a local small business which makes cushion covers – I am starting this Saturday and will do one day a week with them for as long as I can.
Looking into the future, it has always been difficult for me to imagine what I can do as a career. I felt stuck, and without the help from Kids Company and my Reiss mentors – who I would like to thank for all their help and support - I would still be in the same place.  To be honest, this has been the most positive experience I have encountered at this stage in my life.
And now, I have a vision of what I am aiming for – to design and make clothes aimed at younger Islamic women.  This internship has opened my eyes to the opportunity in the market, and I am determined to build up all the skills and experience I will need to succeed!


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