This week on Nobody Told Me… Stylist’s Billie Bhatia shares her experiences working in fashion and how she has helped the push towards wider representation in the industry.
If you’re reading this, you’ve probably read Billie’s work before. As Stylist’s fashion feature editor she is responsible for decoding trends, interviewing designer and industry insiders and writing about fashion’s biggest talking points. But this was not a career she ever imagined for herself after assuming there was not space for anyone that looked like her in the glossy magazines she adored.
Having deviated from pursuing law, Billie has spent the past six years shaking up the fashion industry from the inside. In this week’s episode, she shares first-hand experiences of career challenges and rejections. She tells one story of getting questioned by security when entering a fashion week event as she didn’t fit in with the regular fashion crowd, namely slim, white women. “It didn’t matter the work that I’d done or how good I was because, ultimately, I didn’t look like I belonged there and that was all that mattered to people”, she tells Nobody Told Me… listeners.
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Despite many disheartening experiences, her confidence grew and she came to the realisation that the rigid aesthetic ideals set by magazines were not necessary to succeed and that she could use her differences to set herself apart.
“Why don’t I use the fact that I’m different to propel myself forward”, she says, when looking back at how her attitudes changed. “If I’m not going to fit in, I’m going to stand out”.
In the episode, Billie considers how boundaries are being pushed to make fashion a more inclusive space with social media offering a more democratised platform to challenge traditional ideals. Listen to episode five now: Nobody Told Me… I Could Work In Fashion with Billie. Available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Acast. Don’t forget to rate and review to share your thoughts on the series.