Fashion Entrepreneur Podcast

Fashion Originators



Welcome to Fashion Originators, a podcast hosted by me, Stephanie Irwin. Every other week, I interview game-changing fashion entrepreneurs. Each episode, THEY share their wins, losses and wisdom – all to inspire your career and personal goals.

Find your fashion career role models #motivationmonday

Find your fashion career role models #motivationmonday

Photo: a fabulous Prada LEWK in Vogue Paris. *Looking for industry friends / mentors like*

Find your fashion career role models #motivationmonday

Whether you call them your role models, mentors, or idols, accomplished people have a far-off quality that’s hard to put into words. Day-to-day, I perceive their existence as effortlessly floating from one well-executed project to the next. Regardless of what stage you’re at, however, there’s always someone younger than you, wondering how your life became so ‘perfect.’

It’s a bit of a love/hate thing. On one hand, my role models motivate me to improve. On the other, my role models hold me accountable – am I living the way I truly want to live? For the latter aspect, it’s easy to fall into self-pity. “I’ll never have as many followers as XYZ” or “how can I be as fit as XYZ when I’m dealing with a back injury” (these are unfortunate thoughts that have plagued me in the past, and even now).

In having people to look to for inspiration (I dislike the term ‘look up to’, which implies superiority), what we want doesn’t seem completely alien. Instead, it appears to already exist in the form of kind people that have already obtained it. Within the fashion industry, I think the ‘kindness’ component is key. For me, I have found that admiring people who are successful, but fundamentally unkind, is a recipe for disempowerment.

So, you’re probably wondering – do all of these people have to Nathalie Massenet for them to be a role model? (I.E: totally legendary, but ultimately distant from your reality in most senses of the term). Personally, I look to a mix of my own peers and a few industry legends to inspire me. Through having these peers around me, and attending events with industry legends, my dreams feel exciting and incredibly close. If there aren’t any events with said idol in your area, following them on social media, reading their books etc also helps me. If I’m feeling lost, even just researching their history allows me to regain focus. 

To get you started, I’ve put together a list of incredible people (men and women), who I look to for life-inspo in our industry. A friend of mine suggested I collate this list a while ago (when things weren’t going so well), and it has helped me immensely: 

Fashion Career Role Models

-       Nathalie Massenet: For being a pioneer, building an empire, and being one of the best listeners I have had the pleasure of meeting.

-       Imran Ahmed: Canadian fashion outsider with a passion for fashion business (sound familiar)?

-       Leandra Medine: For being hilarious (and incredibly smart), for always doing what she wants, and for turning her blog into a little media empire. Her book is incredible.

-       Eva Chen: For having an incredibly adorable little family AND an epic job at Instagram.

-       Jenn Im: For being the only YouTuber with incredible lookbook content and videography within the fashion space (plus a fashion line Eggie that is the cutest). PLUS her and her husband Ben are so cute and positive together.

*Bonus, non-fashion industry people I admire:

-       Kirsty Godso: For being fit AF, intelligent and business-minded. I always look to her Instagram whenever I’m questioning whether to go to the gym.

-       Mark Leruste: For encouraging me to start my podcast, and for giving me so many tools that I no longer had an excuse not to start. His TED talk about entrepreneurship is so real, and I love how candidly he documents the process of creating it on his podcast.

-       Christine Hassler: Her self-help coaching podcast has taught me so much, and has made me a way better person. Couldn’t recommend it enough.

That's it for this week! I would love to know: 

Who do you look to for inspiration in our industry? Be sure to share your thoughts with me on Instagram @fashionoriginators podcast! Before the next episode is released, be sure to check out my most recent interview with the founder of Antibad below: 

How French immersion has helped my fashion career #motivationmonday (it’s not how you think)

How French immersion has helped my fashion career #motivationmonday (it’s not how you think)

#27: Make sustainable style covetable with Antibad founder Agatha Lintott

#27: Make sustainable style covetable with Antibad founder Agatha Lintott