Book review – words by Alison Byrnes.
Impressive: How to have a stylish career by Kirstie Clements .
“… Working at magazines as prestigious as Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar gave me an entrée I would not have otherwise had into a fashionable and dazzling landscape – members’ pass into a very private club. But the glitter and the glamour were just one part of the job: a fun part, to be sure, but, in truth, the most superficial one.”
Successful and stylish, Kirstie Clements had everything she could have ever wanted and worked damn hard to get there. A dedicated worker, Clements managed to scale the employment ladder at the most prestigious Fashion magazine, Vogue Australia, only to be unceremoniously dumbed after thirteen devoted years at the editor’s helm. These series of events didn’t faze her much though. Bondi’s fashionable Icebergs were calling her name for a champagne filled afternoon with the constant buzzing of Clement’s phone distracting her from the main concern; where to next?
A deal with Melbourne University Press for a glorious memoir ensured Clement’s next pay cheque, and off she went on a deserving Parisian holiday to avoid the media storm. Her first book, The Vogue Factor was such a success, a second book deal was just around the corner. That is where Impressive: How to have a stylish career came into it’s own.
The book serves as an inspiration for all those boys and girls lusting over the embellishments of a wondrous career in fashion. Who better to get advice in the big, bad business of magazines combined with the brutal backlash of the fashion industry than a woman who’s rise and fall only turned into a blessing in disguise. Clements endeavours to teach you how to land your dream job, shine once you’ve landed it, ask for a pay rise, and equally importantly, what to wear to achieve all three. By recruiting many dazzling friends from her time at the top, Clements managed to gain expert advice on, “how to get the job you want, get noticed and get ahead,” and put it all into a perfectly crisp, 233-page book for the enjoyment of all.
This insider’s account of how to break into the fashion industry has made landing your dream career an easier, yet harder task if that could be so imaginable. The book will teach you to nail being on the lust list, but the competition stakes are clearly higher, with everyone else intrigued by the lure of a career in fashion having read it as well. With friends like Toni Maticevski, Helen Gurley Brown, Carla Zampatti, and numerous international fashion editors, this is certainly a read for the movers and shakers. A book filled to the brim of inspiration has made it clear that anything is possible if you avoid chipped nail polish, never leave the house with wet hair, and fake it till you make it as best as you possibly can. Clements was just a bored seventeen-year-old who thought she knew it all, but knew it wouldn’t be handed to her on a silver platter. This book has the notion ingrained into its very pages, that if you want something badly enough hard work will surely get you there.
Kirstie Clements. Impressive: How to have a stylish career. Melbourne University Press. 2015.