Hi! I'm: Andrea @AndreaH13
I'm the: Women's Marketing Director for RVCA
I'm a: Virgo
I live in: DTLA
My fav spot in LA is: El Matador Beach in Malibu, it was one of the first beaches I found when I moved here - it's very secluded and private.
A brand I'm really diggin right now is: Reformation. I like effortless style like black and basics.
I think the babe with the best style is: Caroline de Maigret @carolinedemaigret
Song I can't get out of my head today is: My Garden by Kat Dahlia
What inspired her to start:
I’m was born in British Columbia, Canada moved to San Francisco when I was in 8th grade. I always moved around, even in Canada, so I think I’m just used to change. I don’t think I really had a plan.. I just always wanted to do something artistic. My family was super-about education and college, and I never wanted to go but I’m glad my parents pushed me to go. I started in Communications because I was thinking I would pick something general. During my second year, my dad passed away, and it kind of just put everything into perspective. At first, I thought [college] was just one of those things I had to do, like a step in life, and I realized I was just going to school to go to school. So, I figured no, if I’m here, I should do what I want to do; if I’m getting my education, I should study what I want to study and not take a job that’s just a job. I thought back to what I used to like to do as a hobby, and it was to sew and make clothes. I thought it sounded fun, it didn’t sound like a job to me. Then, after a semester or two of design, I started thinking okay, this is gonna be it for the next three years, I’ve learned the basics, I already have an artistic side, what am I getting out of it, what’s gonna happen when I leave. If I’m really gonna make money from my hobby, I need to know more than just the craft. So, I switched majors again to fashion merchandising so I could learn the business side of it. With that I learned buying, selling, visual merchandising, marketing - pretty much everything that goes into creating your own brand. My graduation project was to build a business plan. I think being in art school and adding that whole business side kind of gave me an entrepreneurial bug. I always knew I wanted to start my own business, but I wasn’t thinking about it for the near future.
I always worked retail. Then I did an internship at Harper’s Bazaar in New York. I was thinking, “Oh I’ll be a stylist and work in magazines!” Then I got the internship and I was like, “I want nothing to do with this world.” It was straight out of the Devil Wears Prada movie. Everyone was stressed and crying, nobody was happy! I’m glad I did that though, I got it out of my system. I don’t want to break my back for 40 years to become miserable in a cubicle. After that [I went back to SF] and I got a job at the RVCA store in 2007. It was pretty small then, but I’d been a fan of the brand. The store was right by my house so I thought it was perfect. Everyone there was like way too cool, like beyond cool, you know, hipster, San Francisco art scene and I was in college, taking my job way too seriously, folding everything neatly, focusing on sales, doing my job (laughs). Nobody had any retail experience, so the manager kept giving me more responsibilities, helping run the store. I didn’t think anything about it being where I wanted to be forever, I just thought of it as a job during college. Then I graduated, and went to Argentina.
It was my first time in Argentina, I went to learn Spanish and just mess around. It was right when the economy crashed, none of my friends or I could find a job, everybody was unemployed. Having a degree was useless. My roommate in SF had just come back from there and was telling me, “Oh you have to go, everything’s like a penny. If you have no money, that’s where you should go. It’s like living the European lifestyle on a dime.” So I went for a few months, ran out of money, came back to SF, back to the RVCA store, saved up more money, went back to Argentina and thought that’s where I want to be. I even started applying to jobs there. I was convinced I was living there. Then I got an email asking me to call my old manager at RVCA, so I called her and she told me they’re opening a new store in LA and they need me to open it. I was thinking, "LA? I hate LA! Why would I go to LA? I’m in Argentina! That sounds terrible.” She said, “No, you’re the only one who can do this. You already know the brand.” So I said I would think about it. I called my mom and she was like, “What do you mean! You got a job! Full-time! With like, health insurance?!” So I thought, okay fine, I’ll take it, if I hate it I’ll just come back. I even left half of my clothes in Argentina. I really didn’t think I was going to stay. And that was 6-7 years ago, I’ve been here ever since.
I moved here before the store was open on Fairfax. I was doing the buying and everything, kind of running the SF and LA store simultaneously. I think that’s how I moved up the ladder - with how I take on more than I should. I just felt like it was my store so I took ownership in it. I hired a manager and just focused on buying. I was doing all the buying for the 2 stores and our eComm store, so I started just working from home.Then, at one of our sales meetings, the general manager of the company at the time asked me what I do and where my office is, and he was like, “What do you mean you work from home?” he suggested that I have an office. I was excited at the time because I thought, “Sick! I’m getting my own office?!" but I think he was just thinking, “Who is this random person that no one knows what she does all day and we’re paying her full-time and she’s off on her own.” (laughs) Then I started working in the OC doing retail marketing. They needed imagery, especially women’s imagery. It wasn’t my job, but I literally started doing the shoots - no budget, styling, art directing. I started the Twitter and Instagram…eventually I just asked to have nothing to do with the guys stuff and just do women’s and here I am.
Her advice to you:
1. Don't compare yourself to other women (negatively), but be stoked on their success. I don’t know, I’m in this whole babe power mindset where it’s like, stop looking at other womens’ successes as a threat and more of a “f-ck yea if she’s doing it, that means we can all do it.” Surround yourself with women who are similar to you, in the sense that they want more, they want to better themselves and support each other. Surround yourself with other women who are doing rad things, not only will it give you support, but it’ll inspire you and push you to do more…rather than hanging around with negative people, [especially] girls who talk shit about other girls. In our industry (action sports/streetwear) we’re so outnumbered (by men). We have so much potential though. I feel like there’s this hill, once we get over it, we’re really gonna run things. It doesn’t even matter if someone else is doing the same thing you are, there’s room for everybody.
2. For your career, do more than whatever’s just in your job description: To move your way up, find out what is missing, or what’s not being done, and do that. I think I do this subconsciously and it hasn't always benefited me, but I’ve always been that person that’s like, “Need help? I’ll do that” Then I think, “Shit, I’m like packing 50 boxes now.” People take notice when you think they’re not taking notice. When you’re expecting praise, you’re not gonna get it by doing what’s expected of you. It’s in the little things, the actions that show your character. That’s what people like to see. There’s been people I’ve worked with that say “That’s not my job.” I mean, I get it, if you’re really busy you have to draw the line, but if you’re not, it immediately makes me think A) You’re not a team player B) You put yourself on a pedestal.
3. I don’t want to say always be super confident in yourself, because that’s hard. I’m definitely a quiet, introverted, shy person; I’m very much in my head. So, it’s not like I’ve always had a “Yea! I’m gonna make it!” attitude, but sometimes you need to remind yourself, “You know what, I’m doing a good job, I’m doing good right now. I’m doing what I can do. Even if I’m not at the top right now, and I’m not the boss, I’m still doing good.” And you don’t have to be a "bitch" to become a boss, you don’t have to constantly try prove yourself. You can be humble and have humility, just be a team player.
P.S. Have you seen the Summer'15 RVCA Women's lookbook art directed by Andrea that just dropped?
Andrea's photoset was shot by me, makeup by @mermaidpuss, see the rest of the shots on my tumblr! For more from Andrea, go to www.RVCA.com/womens or follow them on Instagram