Mid-Gap Year Reflections: Who said anything in life came easy?

Posted on Tuesday, 3 March 2015

It's safe to say that taking a gap year was one of the best decisions I've ever made.

The things I've been able to do, the people I've been able to meet, the memories I've been able to make.

But no, it didn't come easy. It doesn't happen overnight.

I feel that all the experiences prior to now were preparation for this gap year.

Hard-work: I spent the last two years of school looking for a part-time job during my studies for a bit of extra cash. I wrote many cover letters, got a few interviews, but no job, despite searching on and off for two years.

Looking back on it now, balancing my studies with a part-time job on the side wouldn't have been possible, especially if I wanted to get into university! But all the cover-letter writing, the interview practice prepared me for the variety of internships/opportunities/and a part-time job (finally!) that I've been partaking in my gap year.

The common thread through all of this, is that I didn't give up. 

Despite not obtaining a part-time job during school, I continued to search, hustle and grind, and finally got what I wanted - when the time was right, and the time was now

Mom jeans: Topshop
Courage: In a way, you could say my gap year began back in February 2014. I mentioned briefly on the blog that I turned up to LFW in February 2014 (not September), uninvited, to do a street style shoot for my Photography studies in school. (Check out the photos here)

What kind of person turns up to LFW uninvited to ask random people to model for them for a school project? 

The ones who want the results.

It sounds crazy, and of course I was scared to go 'cause I didn't know what to expect! But I went anyway because the desire to gain the results was greater than the fear.

And I got more than what I wanted. I obviously did street style, but I also met a fashion blogger, now good friend, Edita Lozovska from Pret-A-Reporter, who got me into a show - in the photographers' pit in fact. And of course, we can't forget how I snuck into many shows because of Edita in September 2014 LFW, went to Berlin because of Edita in October and had amazing opportunities because of the one time in February 2014 where I defied logic.

Crazy, huh?

Top (it's actually a dress but I tucked it in): Missguided
Persistence: During my final year of school, I applied to some international universities (as well as UK ones). Despite my hardwork, I didn't get into a single international one (I only got into UK universities). Obviously, it was for a reason, considering the things that have happened on this gap year! I was in Starbucks 2 months ago, and a candidate was being interviewed for one of the international universities I applied to. I thought to myself, that's funny, that was me, last year!

And in that exact moment, I received an email from Teen Vogue. I'd been accepted to the Teen Vogue Fashion University (read more here) - a weekend of seminars from industry pros including Michelle Phan, Zac Posen, Rebecca Minkoff and Leandra Medine from The Man Repeller.

Belt: Vintage
That exact moment was proof that when one door closes, another one opens. 

Shoes: Reebok Classics
I thought I would reflect on my experiences (for which I'm incredibly grateful) and thus inspire, motivate and encourage anyone out there on a journey. I could go on and on but I don't want to bore you! So just to summarise:
  • Never give up
  • Work hard
  • Feel the fear but do it anyway
  • Everything happens for a reason
Until next time,

P.S. I will be documenting the Teen Vogue Fashion University, which takes place next week, on the blog/my social media (linked above). Stay tuned for more :-)

Photography/modelling/creative direction: Rebecca Cofie

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