FBI Student Monique Commins
Communications Stagiaire | Hermès
Have you always been interested in the Fashion Industry?
I have been interested in the Fashion Industry since I was a little girl. My Nana and my Mum taught me how to sew from a young age and I started studying Textiles as an elective in year 9 at school. I always knew that I had to work within that industry.
When you came to FBI Fashion College, what was your dream job?
I had gone from working in Fashion Design to work in Styling, since I finished studying Fashion Design a few years prior to starting at FBI. When I started at FBI, I thought that my dream job was to work as a Fashion Editor for a magazine. That changed quite quickly after interning for one, but I was still interested in pursuing Fashion Styling.
What companies have you interned with and what were your positions?
I interned for Vogue as a Fashion Assistant, Armani as a Wholesale Assistant and finally at Hermès as their Communications Assistant.
What other opportunities have you been a part of since starting at FBI?
I assisted on a Camilla photo shoot for their online boutique within my first week of starting at FBI, which was a great experience and a good insight into online styling.
What was the most valuable lesson you learnt through these experiences?
I think the most valuable thing I have learnt is that every experience is part of the process to get you where you ultimately want to be. You really have to trust the process, work hard and be patient. All of the unpaid internships, the long hours, the tasks that may not be the most favourable – all of these factors contribute to your journey and getting you to where you need to be.
How long had you been interning at Hermès for when you were approached about a contracted position in their Head Office?
I started my journey at Hermès with a 6-month contract as Communications Stagiaire and have since renewed this contract for a further 6 months, with the prospect of something more permanent after this.
What do you think made you stand out as an intern at Hermes and how were you approached to join their team?
I think having had experience previously as an intern for large companies and an understanding of the sort of tasks that were involved, gave me confidence in what I was doing. I have always been committed to my role at Hermès, despite it being an internship, demonstrating hard work and a genuine interest in the company. A large luxury brand like Hermès need an intern that shows initiative and potential to become a permanent team member, which I believe that I proved of myself.
What does an average day at Hermès look like for you?
I start my day by reading all of the newspapers, going through all of the publications online and any new print publications, to check if there are any Hermes features. It is my duty to share any of these features with all of the Hermes staff members within Australia via email, so that everyone is aware of what the public is seeing of the brand. I file and value all of the editorial for our archive. I am also responsible for responding to any requests from publications, when they require samples for upcoming shoots. I have to keep track of what samples are going out, coming back in and maintaining the Press Office.
What advice would you give to people who are aspiring to work for a luxury fashion brand?
It is important to get as much experience behind you as possible, interning and working for companies that will help you build upon your skillset. Interning for a luxury brand before applying for a role in a luxury brand will help you understand how luxury brands work. Do not discount internships, as the skills that you learn through every experience will give you a good insight into that area of the industry and will always look great on your CV. The more experience you can get before applying for a job with a luxury fashion brand, the more evidence you will have on your CV to support your application.
Where do you see your career going in the future?
I am hoping to gain a full-time position with Hermès when my current contract ends and continue working in the Communications Department. I have come to learn a lot about Communications and the luxury brand itself and I love contributing to its success and communicating the brand to Australia.
Interviewed by Kaiya Johnson | FBI Fashion College