Natalie Scicolone, Assistant to the Fashion Editor of Marie Claire

Name: Natalie Scicolone
Occupation: Assistant to Zanna Roberts Rassi, Marie Claire Senior Fashion Editor

B: How did you start working at Marie Claire?
Natalie: I actually interned at Marie Claire my senior year of college. I didn’t think I got the internship – I stressed myself out to the extreme, but they just told me keep an open mind, and I ended up interning here and absolutely falling in love with this industry and especially Marie Claire. When I graduated college I moved back to the city, and it took me a few weeks, but something opened up at Marie Claire and I interviewed, and I couldn’t be happier as Zanna’s assistant.

B: What did you go to school for?
Natalie: I originally went to school for journalism but then switched my major to retail and fashion and also minored in business and sales. It’s kinda the same realm.

B: Did you learn more in school or on the job?
Natalie: I definitely learned more on the job. Stuff that I do in this job you can’t learn in school. I mean, school gave me a great base for being professional, and I obviously learned a ton and I applied myself…I was constantly learning at school, but what I do here is completely different and things that no one can really teach you.

B: How long is a normal day for you?
Natalie: It is a lot of work – nothing like The Devil Wears Prada, though, because Zanna is an absolute angel. I’m the luckiest person alive to be working for her. But I enjoy working. There’ve been times where it’ll be late and Zanna will find out I’m working and she’ll be, like, “Go home!” So, it is a lot of work, but then again I love it so much that I don’t really think of it like that.

B: Have you ever cried on the job? (Or had to leave, cry, and come back. :))
Natalie: I probably shouldn’t admit this, but definitely. Anyone who tells you they haven’t cried is totally lying. We were packing for my first cover shoot with Zanna and it was during Fashion Week. There were so many things going on, and as soon as everyone left for the night, I was in the fashion closet by myself, and I just had this little breakdown. But sometimes it takes that breakdown and I snap out of it. Sometimes you just need to get it out of your system.

B: How do you get through your worst work day?
Natalie: Honestly, I just remind myself that this opportunity is such an amazing one and I feel so lucky and blessed to have it. Even on the worst day I remind myself that this is only something I could have dreamed of a year ago. Reminding myself of that really helps me snap out of whatever mood I’m in and makes me focus.

B: You work for a pretty bougie magazine, and I’m sure that requires dressing pretty classy everyday. Do you have a favorite wardrobe staple for always looking your best?
Natalie: I have this big obsession with denim shirts. I don’t know if people would consider it a staple but it’s definitely my staple. I have to remind myself that I don’t need a denim shirt in every shade of denim.

B: What’s the one piece in your wardrobe you couldn’t live without?
Natalie: It’s hard to name one piece! I can’t live without my shoes and my jewelery. Especially live-in jewelry – things that I get that are nice and I keep on all the time.

B: Do you have any tips for girls who want to look like a fashion editor but can’t afford designer pieces?
Natalie: It’s all about being really creative and open. There are so many pieces from runway that trickle down into mainstream that we see at our favorite stores like Zara, H&M, and Topshop. It’s about going out and looking. Guaranteed you are able to put a look together for under $100 if you take the time to really search. I think it’s definitely more available than people think!

B: Do you have any advice for other young women as they leave college and are looking for a job?
Natalie: I feel like I could write a book! I think interning is really important. But besides that, one of the most important things is that it just takes one person to give you that chance. And when you get that chance you have to prove to them that they made the right decision. It’s about that one person saying, “I believe in her. I see something in her. I think she can do this.” So, when you get that chance, you really have to own it and not let it go.

B: What’s the best part of this time in your life?
Natalie: Everything! I think the best thing is that this is a time in my life, or in anyone’s life, where we are so young that we can be or do or go wherever [we] want. This is the time when you get to make a name for yourself and it’s up to you how you do it. It’s refreshing to know that if you got an opportunity in London, there would be nothing stopping someone our age from doing it! Now’s the time when you can actually just go and not look back.

B: What are you struggling most with right now?
Natalie: I think that if I had to classify a struggle I think it would be being away from my family and closest friends. That gets hard. But then I remind myself I’m in New York
City, I’m 23 years old… you know? That helps me get past that. But sometimes you just want that home cooked meal.

B: Who’s your biggest cheerleader?
Natalie: My mom. She is the most supportive and inspiring woman known to mankind. I moved here without anything lined up and I feel like most mothers would be like, “Oh, no, you’re not doing that.” But she completely stood by me and I can’t thank her enough for being a cheerleader for me.

B: What’s your dream gig?
Natalie: To be honest, I’m still figuring it out. I don’t think I necessarily have a dream gig. At the moment, what I’m doing right now – being Zanna’s assistant – is my dream gig. I can’t even express how happy I am and how much I love working with her and for her. I’ll figure the rest out as I go.