“I want everyone reading my website to feel like they are the soul in their stilettos, too. Shoes will always fit, regardless of the weight you gain or lose or the day you are having. I am happiest and most confident in my favorite pair of shoes and I will forever be the soul in stilettos.” Emilie Sobel
Emilie Sobel is about to graduate from the Savannah College of Arts and Design (SCAD) in Georgia, majoring in Fashion Marketing and Merchandising. She is also the creator of a terrific blog, called Soul in Stilettos. You have the feeling after talking to Emilie that the sky is the limit for this city girl at heart and that she will find her way just fine. Here is my conversation with Emilie:
MKG: You are about to enter a huge transition in your life, graduating in March. How do you feel, ready? What is your passion, your dream position?
Emilie: I have always known exactly what I’ve wanted to do with my career – growing up was something I had been looking forward to basically my whole life. Everyone always said, “Don’t rush your childhood,” and I would brush it off, thinking I knew exactly what I wanted and I couldn’t wait to have a career and adult life of my own. Now that I am 21 and almost finished with school, I have never experienced so much anxiety or confusion. I was an artist in high school – I painted in the art magnet program and have always been creative – so New York City was a dream destination for me. When it was time to apply to college, fashion school was the path I chose. At SCAD, I’ve had the opportunity to seriously explore the fashion industry in its entirety, including business and design. As I finish my degree, I am reviewing and editing my resume and have been re-evaluating my potential career path. I see myself really loving a career in social media and marketing. I believe that the fashion industry is heading in a huge digital direction, and websites like Refinery29 and Stylecaster are capturing my attention. I want options and I will be applying to many jobs in both Miami and NYC. If I am lucky enough I will be able to choose the right company, designer or brand that I feel is best for me and begin my career in the professional world.
MKG: Are you from Georgia? The South?
Emilie: I grew up in Miami, Florida; however, my mom is from Atlanta, Georgia, so I have a bit of southern blood in me. My mom’s side of the family still lives in the South so I’ve spent a lot of time in Atlanta, which led me to choosing SCAD.
MKG: What drew you to this particular school? What have you learned about yourself in the four years at SCAD?
Emilie: I really wanted to go to fashion school in New York; SCAD was just another option. I ended up getting rejected from FIT, my “dream school”, and my parents pushed SCAD. To be honest, I was not happy at first. The idea of moving to a small town in Georgia to study fashion sounded like a bad idea and my attitude was very negative throughout my first year. What I noticed was that SCAD accepted many talented students; however, these students had a difficult time staying enrolled, due to the heavy workload and the expectations of the school. Our first year, every student was required to take foundation classes: English, Speech, Art History, Drawing and Design. I hated it, but now that I look back I understand and appreciate why SCAD requires those classes. As time went on, I matured as a person and I began to see what SCAD really was. My school is so amazing; we have a film festival, a fashion show and an incredible museum, where I work. After four years I have not only discovered who I am as an artist and a person, but I’ve found a love for the small town of Savannah and SCAD – a place I will always call home. Nowhere else can you find fashion majors helping other majors and collaborating, rather than competing with each other. Some of my best friends are photographers, illustrators and designers. We have helped build each others’ portfolios and that is rare. The professors have worked in the industry and are just as passionate as the students. I am so thankful, every day, that SCAD was my school.
MKG: Has it been easy to express your individuality at SCAD?
Emilie: Almost too easy. People only judge you if you are not being yourself. We are embraced for who we are as artists and individuals and it is awesome. I think most of my confidence comes from being at SCAD. I have amazing friendships with people who genuinely love me for who I am as a person. We all encourage each other to do what we want to do.
MKG: Have you always loved fashion or was there a specific moment when you were drawn to it?
Emilie: I have always loved art. I grew up painting. I think I loved fashion but never understood that you could actually have a career in fashion until I was older. I’ll never forget being in Kindergarten and getting gum on my favorite pink silk dress. I was obsessed with it and my mom made me throw it away. I remember crying in my room, not wanting to let it go. Fifteen years later that memory is still with me because I think that was the first time I realized how much I loved clothing and fashion. As a small child, I was attached to a dress the way I am attached to my shoes today.
MKG: Do you feel that our clothing reflects how we feel about ourselves and our self-esteem? Why?
Emilie: I definitely think that clothing reflects how people feel about themselves. I love fashion because it is always changing, it is creative and fun. I believe that it is important to be over-dressed rather than under-dressed because the first thing people will see is your outfit. The way people dress helps define who they are. I love following trends while staying true to my personal style. I think everyone, whether he/she is into fashion or not, should put effort into what he/she wants to wear – regardless of what the magazines or the fashion police are saying. If you wear a sweater and sweatpants everyday, that is totally fine, as long as you’re not hiding who you really are and you are truly comfortable.
MKG: Your blog is called Soul in Stilettos. Are you the soul?
Emilie: I first named my blog “Must Love Shoes,” but there were some legal complications; a woman had bought the rights to that name a little less than a year before I had launched my website. I was heartbroken and wasn’t sure that I would be able to find another name for my blog to which I could connect. My best friend, Sarah, sat down with me as I cried, and helped me make a list of things that related to me and my sense of style, and what I wanted to give my readers. I am for sure the soul in stilettos. However, I want everyone reading my website to feel like they are the soul in their stilettos, too. Shoes will always fit, regardless of the weight you gain or lose or the day you are having. I am happiest and most confident in my favorite pair of shoes and I will forever be the soul in stilettos!
Cedric Smith: www.yourewelcomesavannah.com
Nikki Krecicki: www.nikkikrecickiphotography.com