Passion for fashion takes one ASU alumna to New York

Audree Lopez traveled across the country to chase her dream after graduating from ASU.

She wakes up to the sound of a new email. Her inbox is flooded with show confirmations, event invitations and editors’ questions. She’d arrive at the office to confirm the seating and prioritize the editors by seniority when it came to ticketing.

In between emailing and phoning agents, she distributes the invitations to assistants and fills out the master schedule for all the shows the staff would be attending.

The atmosphere quickly became hectic for her when shows had to eliminate seats due to limited space. Despite the seating chaos, the fashion department would receive their master show schedule and the editor-in-chief had her tickets in a folder for the next day.

Audree Lopez, an ASU graduate, was a freelance fashion assistant for Glamour Magazine and says she worked on scheduling all the New York Fashion Week shows with their fashion team.

“That was always my next step in college—was go to New York,” Lopez says. “I’m taking my blogs and styling a lot more seriously too so I’m keeping busy with that.”

Lopez graduated from ASU in 2015 with degrees in marketing and journalism. Since graduating in May, the 22-year-old picked up her life and moved to New York to pursue a career in the fashion industry, where she got her start at Glamour.

“I’m kind of their liaison—building their schedules, organizing the shows that they go to, but my main job is to make sure New York Fashion Week goes smoothly for them,” she says.

Kelly Burleson has known Audree for four years and became friends with her through their sorority, Sigma Kappa.

“Ever since I’ve known her, she had talked about moving to New York and she was one of those people that I knew would actually do it instead of just talking about it,” Burleson says. “She’s worked so hard and everything that she worked for has just really fallen into place for her.”

In addition to assisting Glamour Magazine, Lopez says she is collaborating with a few companies to do an apartment makeover for her place in New York. She has also teamed up with Savers Thrift Store to do a fall lookbook, which she launched her blog.

With her résumé continually building with fashion industry experiences, Lopez says she contemplated taking a path other than the one she took at ASU.

“In high school, I thought about going to fashion design school and my parents weren’t really for that, so they encouraged me to get a business degree first,” Lopez says.

Despite them not being in favor fashion school, Lopez says her parents have been a huge support system for her.

“They’ve really seen how far I’ve gone and what I’ve been able to do within the industry, so they are so supportive,” she says. “Every time I leave work or I’m doing something new they’re the first people I call.”

Once Lopez started college, she realized that she was more interested in the magazine aspect of the industry. She says she added her journalism major and then started her blog ‘Simply Audree Kate” in 2012.

On her blog, Lopez says she covers local fashion events, which included Phoenix Fashion Week. Additionally, she says she collaborates with fashion and lifestyle companies for sponsored-content such as featuring their products in outfit posts.

“Once I started blogging and I became connected with Phoenix Fashion Week—that really just launched my career locally,” she says. “I think being exposed to it and meeting the right people made me realize that it was the right decision to go into the fashion industry.”

In an industry where it is increasingly difficult to get a foot in the door, Lopez has shown it is possible through an ample amount of effort and hard work. She says the more effort you put forth the easier it becomes.

“When I started my blog it was kind of a platform to get into the industry and meet people and then from there you just build that—so one internship leads to the next or one contact leads to the next,” she says.

In addition to creating her fashion blog, Lopez co-founded the Business of Fashion club at ASU. The club is the largest fashion organization on campus and is open to all those interested in the fashion industry. It educates students on fashion industry business fundamentals, which include networking and building a personal brand.

“It was a great opportunity to meet other ASU students who also felt like us, wanted more out of the local fashion industry, and it helped us create a small tight-knit community on campus,” Lopez says. “I never imagined it to gain such a following on campus, and I'm so proud of everything our members have been able to accomplish.”

Ariane Wilson, friend and former operations director for Business of Fashion, says she’s known Lopez for over a year and the two became friends through being business partners.

“She’s highly organized and very type A, so usually making a lot of lists and just slowly working her way through what needs to get done to reach the goal— and pull a lot of all-nighters to make sure everything is ready and prepared,” Wilson says.

Lopez says the biggest challenge she faced getting into the industry was her location.

“The main challenge I saw was being in Arizona because when I would reach out to companies for internships in L.A. or New York they didn’t take me seriously,” she says “It’s hard for them to picture someone like picking up their life and moving across the country to work for free.”

Marketing and Journalism sophomore Madison Morrow says Lopez mentored her last year through Business of Fashion and school. Morrow is the current president of Business of Fashion and is inspired by Lopez’s professionalism.

Morrow says last year the club had an issue securing the venue for the their annual spring fashion show. She says they thought the venue had fallen through just two weeks before the show and marketing materials were already printed. From there, she says Lopez took the lead and handled it with ease.

“She wasn’t even fazed—we started looking for a new venue and it turns out that venue worked out in the end anyway,” Morrow says. “She is on top of things. She’s very professional and completely handled it like a pro.”

“I look up to her so much and I’m so excited to see where she’s going and as business of fashion this year I’m so excited to keep in touch with her for the members because she has such a great group of contacts that she has in New York,” Morrow says.

Lopez says she feels honored for this club to have continued on after she graduated.

“It is a great feeling to see something that myself and the other co-founders worked so hard on and see it grow, be accepted by the university and it's surreal to see it continue now that I've graduated,” she says.

“Business of Fashion was such a major part of my college experience and I wouldn't be where I am today without the support of my club members and the local fashion community.”

Related Links:

Business and Fashion: The Dynamic Duo

Fashionistas style the business of the fashion industry


Get the best of State Press delivered straight to your inbox.