The Inspirationals - Jessica Sheppard

All photos belong and taken from Jessica's site.
 
I was really stoked when Jessica (above) agreed to answer our 'inspirations' questions. I have been a fan of hers for a long time (if you don't follow her, make sure you do, all links at the end of the post!) If you're new to the blog, we interview people with interesting careers/jobs/hobbies who we think others will find inspiring! Jessica not only runs a successful blog and youtube channel, but is also studying fashion design, but unlike many who take this path is going down the menswear route! Here Jessica tells us more about her chosen career path! 



Tell us about what you do.

I am doing a full time menswear design degree so that pretty much takes up all of my time. Around this though, I work I a supermarket and blog daily so my schedule is quite jam packed - its rare that I have time to stop. I'm also trying to branch out and become known as a designer as well as a secret project with a couple of friends - fashion never sleeps!


What does an average day at work look like for you?

Depending on which day of the week, it varies. I will either be at university all day, taking/editing blog pictures, filming/editing videos, sourcing fabrics and inspiration, making patterns and garments or working my bum off in the supermarket to afford it all.

Do you primarily work alone or with other people?

It depends on what it is that I am doing. As far as university, getting my name out there and my blog - I work alone. It wasn't necessarily a choice but that’s how it happens with things such as those. For the secret project, like I said it is with a couple of close friends. That works well though because we are really close and despite clashing with some ideas, we seem to always form a mutual opinion to go forward with.



Is this what you wanted to do as a child? Did you end up in this job by “accident” or was it a planned career choice?

As a child, I changed my mind pretty much once a week. I wanted to be a princess but realised quickly that it wasn't easy, and then I wanted to be a vet until I realised it involved blood. Without being the typical 'I've wanted to do fashion all my life', I do remember as a pre-teen having a desk in my bedroom which was covered in magazines and the wall in front was plastered with designs that I had come up with.  As far as accidents go, my falling into the fashion industry and blogging world wasn't an accident. I chose to study fashion and to progress upwards to a degree just like I chose to start a personal style blog - as I don't think there are many bloggers out there who dress like me as I don't like following fashion exactly.

How long ago did you start on this path?

Officially, three years ago when I enrolled onto my BTEC course in fashion and textiles. This was a two year course which guided me into my fashion degree that has helped me into internships and pursuing my dreams.


How long were you doing it before you made it into your career or primary form of income?

Unfortunately, it isn't yet my primary income. My blog does give me a little bit of pocket money here and there but it wouldn't pay the bills. As for my designer work - its all a work in progress and I still have a long way to go.


Did anything significant happen to get you to that point, or was it a series of small steps?

I was a bit of an undecided teen. My mum just thinks that I couldn't stick at anything but in honesty, I was testing the waters to find out what I loved doing. When I was doing my GCSE and A Levels, I realised that art and fashion were what is in my heart but I was too lazy to follow them (the coursework was so much!) and my parents told me that fashion wasn't a proper degree or career. After three different a level and  BTEC courses flopped - it was my time to try fashion and prove that it was my hearts choice.


What kind of education do you have?

I've got 10 GCSE's including Art and Graphics as my top two, a BTEC at distinction level in Fashion and Textiles and a degree in fashion design in progress.


Do you think official qualifications are important for someone entering your industry?

I'd say for the most part, yeah. If you want to work within Fashion then you need some sort of understanding about what you're getting into. For example, if I hadn't done these courses then I wouldn't have a clue about sewing techniques, trend forecasting, fashion history as in depth or how to pattern cut. With a lot of internship experience you could make it, but getting into those internships without the qualifications could be tricky. However, my blog has got me into a couple of internships before.



If you went to school, did you enjoy studying? Could you see where it might lead you at the time? What advice would you give to someone else who might be studying to get into your industry?

I did enjoy studying - but only creative subjects. I was a bit of a rascal and played up in most of my classes but this was mostly because I am really not academic and it frustrated me. The creative subjects like art were my favourite. I wish I could go back and thank my art teacher Mr Holmes for helping me to realise my potential - even though I didn't listen to him at the time, he was one of my biggest inspirations. As far as advice goes, I'd say follow your dreams. I wish more than anything that I didn't listen to my parents and just went straight into fashion from the get go. I regret not following my dreams sooner and I told my little brother the same thing. He was given a push towards studying Law even though Performing Arts is his dream - but thats his decision to make and realise for himself.

What do you think is the best thing about what you do?

I absolutely love having such a full life with blogging, designer stuff and working. I like that my days always vary and nothing is ever the same. I'm always blogging new things, designing and making different ideas, etc. I like the variety.

What’s the worst thing?

When a deadline is looming at university, I have to side track my life a little bit. Blogging takes the biggest back seat because my degree is my future and everything else follows suit. I basically have to dedicate my entire being to finishing my projects to a good enough standard so that I can get through university.


Would you call yourself a workaholic, & if so, are you alright with that? Do you think that’s normal for your industry?

Well, I'd say that I am but I am also the worst for being lazy. If I wake up and I'm in the mood for whatever I've chosen to do - then I'll go into it full force. I tend to set certain days of the week for certain things. Like I'll choose a day when I've got a spare 3-6 hours for planning outfits and photographing them and then in the evenings I'll edit it all and get to my designing. However, if I wake up in a lazy mood then I'll probably just be found emailing and watching Gossip Girl while updating my social media profiles.


What would your number one suggestion be for someone who wants to do what you do?

Be prepared for a lot of work. Getting into fashion design is hard, stressful and time consuming. Its completely worth it but it does drain the life out of you at times because its such a fast paced industry.


...How about number two?

Make sure its 100% what you want to do. If you're not in it with your whole heart then it won't be as fun and interesting to you. Fashion isn't a fall back career, it has to be something you're dedicated to spending your life doing.

 
What do you wish you had known when you first started out?

I'd say that I pretty much knew what to expect but I wish I had made myself a bit stronger before. I knew tutors and industry professionals would be very hard and cut throat, but at first I found it really hard to take and struggled with the harsh realisation that my designs weren't that good. From the three years experience that I've had, I'd say that I've developed more of a back bone but I still dread deadline day and being told that I'm not good enough.


Are there any major misconceptions about your job or industry?

Everyone thinks that Fashion is a fall back career if you fail everything else. They also think its always like 'Devil Wears Prada'. Or that its just drawing pretty dresses and sewing them together. It isn't. Fashion is a career choice, a dedication and hard work. It isn't something you just 'fall into' and sit back and relax in.


What is the best thing that’s happened to you as a consequence of the work you do?

I've met a fair few celebrities including Nick Grimshaw, David Ghandy, Tinie Tempah, etc. I've also had the chance of working with designers and other opportunities that I'd not of had otherwise.


What motivates you to keep doing what you’re doing?

There isn't necessarily a motivation, I just love what I do so I want to keep doing it. I don't wake up in the morning and dread going into university or sitting at my sewing machine - I stay up all night excited and jump out of bed.


Who do you look up to within your industry & why?

There are so many designers that I look up to. Christopher Shannon, Kit Neale, Henry Holland, Marc Jacobs, so many!


Rate how happy you are with what you do out of 100 (100 being the best, 0 being devastatingly awful) on an average day.

If I'm pottering along happily - 100. If its near deadline then I wouldn't even ask me that question, I'd be too close to exploding.

Is there much career progression available to you? What would you like to do next?

I'm only just starting out and I'm not even properly in the industry yet so I'd say there is definitely room to grow and progress in my career. I'd like to finish university and get into Graduate Fashion Week. After third year I am going travelling around the world for a year so we will see what happens from there - I want to explore the world before I settle.


Do you think you’ll continue doing this for the rest of your life?

Without a doubt.

Thank you so much to Jessica for taking the time out of her busy schedule to answer our questions! Find Jessica at the following places:


and make sure to check out her blog!







Fashion Friday 109

Summer really seems to be on the way out doesn't it? I am however loving comfy trousers such as these ones (we have some super cute ones coming to Wonderland soon, so watch this Space! Also off to buy Accessories on Monday which is the best part of owning a clothing company! 



ALL Asos!

Hope you have a fantastic weekend whatever you do!

Natural Anti Ageing Remedies For Eyes!

Not long ago I turned thirty, and on this milestone of a birthday I made a few decisions. One of them being to really start taking care of my body, I am currently spending six months dropping the extra pounds I have gained, detoxing my body of toxins, and putting only good wholesome items in my body. (Involving being t-total for the rest of 2014) I am pretty lucky that the signs of age haven't crept up on me too badly (I am lucky as I partied HARD in my twenties!) however I wanted to see what I could do naturally to stop the wrinkles from showing (primarily on my eyes) Here is what I found!

Reduce fine lines and crows feet.




What you need: Cotton Balls and Grapes

If anything is really changing I have noticed lately that my eyes are looking a little aged. Every time I look in the mirror I see small crow’s feet, faint dark circles, and sometimes they are a little puffy.  I’m not one to spend a lot of money on beauty products because you never know if they will actually work,  and when I read the ingredients most of them time, they’re full of nutrients that come from natural products. I decided I would try out some free and low cost remedies before I dive into the more expensive items.
Grapes contain antioxidants that act like a natural peel which help to diminish wrinkles over time.
  1. Mash a handful of grapes to obtain the juice.
  2. Use a cotton ball to apply the grape juice to fine lines around the eyes. Rinse after 5 minutes. Repeat 2-3 times a week for best results.

 Reduce puffiness 



What you need: Egg whites and a make up brush. 

To reduce puffy eyes, egg whites are not just a good food for your body, they are also great for your eyes, too.
  1. Beat the whites from an egg until stiff.
  2. Use a brush to apply the egg whites to puffy eyes. Let dry for 15 minutes then rinse.

Dark Circles Under Eyes


What you need: Mint Leaves

Mint, due to its flavonoids, is an antioxidant and great for diminishing dark circles .
  1. Chop and crush a sprig of mint leaves.
  2. Apply the mashed leaves to dark under eye circles, leave for 20 minutes then rinse.
Before you splurge on expensive beauty products, try these at-home natural remedies first and see if they work, I know I sure will.

Do you have any to share?





Blocking After A Breakup



Facebook, for most, is part of our daily lives and when it comes to creating relationships and connection it is a worthwhile platform to be part of. However, Facebook can also be very dangerous when a relationship breaks down as you may well be finding yourself spending hours on the platform stalking your ex. This is, of course, is a BIG no-no! Believe me, I have been there.

Here are five reasons why Facebook stalking your ex is a bad idea:

1) It will keep you hurting

You need time to heal and watching what he is up to is not giving you the space to do so. Instead de-friend him so you can heal. If you don't want to de-friend facebook allows you to hide, but if you find yourself continuing to then still look, then de-friend. Healing has to be done in your own space with no disturbances. Part of the healing process is to commit to letting go of the exact things you don't want to let go of and change. However if you do make that commitment, magic happens.


2) It's detrimental to your self-esteem.

When you are healing your heart, its important to focus on you and use your time to do this to build up your self-esteem again. Instead do things that build up your self-esteem by finding out what is important to you in your inner world.

3) Stop you from meeting someone else.

If you are focusing on your ex and putting all your energy into that, are you allowing the space for someone new to come in? Of course not. Instead, focus on allowing the space for someone new, so that you can move on with your life. 


4) Waste your time

There is only one resource that you will never get back and that is your time. It may sound cliché but oh so true. Why give them your time? Surely your time is better served doing something wonderful for you instead of giving up your power to someone that ultimately is no longer in your life?
Don't have your power taken from you and when you feel the urge to get on there, do something else to nurture yourself. 

5) You will believe what is not true.

Facebook, in my very humble opinion, is NOT real. It is extremely one-sided and for the most part, people don't ever seem to be sad. You only ever get the one sided happy perspective of how amazing our lives are. Nevertheless, how do we really know that this is the truth? We don't.
The problem with stalking your ex, is that you will start to believe that he is having an incredible time of it. You will start comparing your life to his and guaranteed you will feel that moving on for your ex was easy, when in fact you just don't know. Assumptions only ever bring suffering.
Instead, focus on your life and what you are doing and this will start to bring your self confidence back.


Gratituesday 114

Been a busy week over here at Wonderland HQ, next Monday me and Pixie are off to a huge trade fair (best bit of the job!) and for a nice girly lunch! Then it's September (where is this year going?) anyway here is what we are grateful for this week, do let us know what you are!


 Furby at a train station just where is he going?


I love these.



Photos like this are just wow.



Don't know about him, but I want to be immersed in those flowers.



You cannot beat having fresh flowers in your home/office



Do love some 'Sharkasm'



 Well it's never too early!


Love the sea side, and shells.
 

Little Things....

Reconnecting with old friends - Katie and Kelly I am looking at you! WHAT SHE ORDER? texts from Pixie (Kanye References) Big mugs of coffee (what’s new) Home made apple and cinnamon tarts new stock days plans researching health spas LA trips to see my darlings New crushes Finding perfect lip balms decoding boy behaviour  

Alright my darling. Your turn! If you were at a fabulous dinner party right now, what would you toast to?