At 25, Phillip Lim Had the Toughest Job of His Life

Phillip Lim founded Phillip Lim 3.1 in 2005. In 2012, he launched footwear to accompany his ready-to-wear label. But before he rose up the ranks in the fashion industry, here’s what the designer was doing.

“When I was 25, I was at my first job in fashion, as a studio assistant. It was the toughest job of my life, but I also felt that this was the beginning of my life,” he said.

Phillip Lim New York Fashion Week
Phillip Lim.
CREDIT: Rex Shutterstock.

“It made me want to leave the industry and stay in the industry at the same time. It was the toughest training. You got into the fashion business not to be a designer, [but to gain experience.] You were juggling, you were multi-tasking, you were getting things done,” said Lim.

phillip lim spring 2017
3.1 Phillip Lim spring ’17 collection.
CREDIT: REX Shutterstock.

Lim has some tips for those just getting their started in the biz.

3.1 Phillip Lim Spring 2017 Collection
3.1 Phillip Lim spring ’17 collection.
CREDIT: Giovanni Giannoni/Fairchild.

“[My] advice is to get into the business and [learn] while getting things done. You’ll become what you need to become, whether it’s a designer, merchandiser, buyer, retailer. Don’t put yourself in a box and say, ‘this is all I want to do.’ In this industry, there are so many opportunities.”

3.1 Phillip Lim Spring 2017 Collection
3.1 Phillip Lim spring ’17 collection.
CREDIT: Giovanni Giannoni/Fairchild.

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