I’m really excited to introduce Amy Stone. You may recognize her from her blog and incredibly curated Instagram profile. Amy is a, “digital content creator, watercolor enthusiast, shoe collector, eternal aesthete.” She is also a “proponent of fresh flowers, gallery walls, and head-to-toe navy. california surf + east coast prep: in search of eternal summer.” When Amy isn’t crafting the perfect bio, blog post, and Instagram photo, she is hard at work as a Global Community Manager at Gap. I am thrilled to share her advice with you today!
You have what many people would consider to be a dream job. How did you end up at Gap? What was your career path?
Well thank you! In college, I majored in Advertising/Communications but always had a personal interest in the internet and fashion. Desperate for a creative outlet while at school, I started my own blog and would rent a Nikon DSLR camera every weekend to produce my own content. Upon graduation and unsure of what came next, I began interning in New York City in various roles: graphic design and website development at a small agency with fashion clients, launching designer Zac Posen’s social media channels during fashion week (yes, as an intern!), assisting the Council of Fashion Designers of America with PR initiatives, collaborating with photographers Scott Schuman and Garance Doré, and beyond. I didn’t follow a traditional career path but that resulted in developing a well-rounded set of skills that all crossed over: social media, styling, photography, fashion, marketing, digital. My first “real” job was a stint in traditional fashion PR (in-house) and I knew it wasn’t something I wanted to pursue long term. After a few years of dabbling within the industry, I knew my ultimate (short term) goal was to work in social media at a well-known and well-loved brand. I thought it was a long shot, but I did eventually find it thanks to persistence and timing.
You previously worked for the Council of Fashion Designers of America, Zac Posen, Plenty NYC, Garance Dore, and Burch Creative Capital. Did you always know you wanted to work in fashion and, specifically, digital media marketing?
Yes, I’ve always had an attraction to fashion and the internet. When I was in middle school, I loved designing my own graphics and even asked my parents to buy me a domain name (.com) so I could post my images somewhere. Crazy! The intersection of fashion and digital is still one of my biggest passions.
What are your roles and responsibilities at Gap?
My primary responsibilities at Gap are developing copy for our social channels, asset creation, engaging with our online social communities, and crafting seasonal digital strategy. I consider myself a business-minded creative so this role feels tailor-fit. Additionally, I only focus on GapKids and babyGap content — it’s hard to be stressed when you’re working with adorable toddlers and mini-me clothing!
What is a typical day work day like for you?
A typical work day involves monitoring our social feeds, scheduling content, emails, and meetings. An atypical day could include a visit to a campaign’s photoshoot set or speaking on a panel to educate our global marketing teams on the art of Instagram.
What is your favorite thing about working at Gap? What has been your favorite moment so far?
My favorite aspect of working at Gap is, without a doubt, my coworkers, colleagues, and bosses. The people that I get to work alongside, learn from, laugh with — they make it. The opportunity for me to create content and digital stories for an iconic heritage brand is the cherry on top.
You are so excellent at writing the Gap brand voice. What tips do you have for copy writing and digital media in general?
Thank you! It’s definitely a team effort. My advice for creating a social tone of voice, whether personal or professional, would be to truly know who you are (and who you’re not) and who you want to speak to. Perspective, point of view, consistency, and personality are all crucial.
You also take the most beautiful Instagram pictures for your personal account and Gap’s! What tips do you have? What is your favorite filter?
You’re too kind. I truly appreciate that! My goal is to create cohesive, visually pleasing photos that string together to tell a story, whether for Gap or for my own personal feed. My recommendation would be to develop a signature aesthetic, subject matter, even color theme. Be meticulous about lighting and editing. I use VSCOcam for editing and prefer the G3, N1, and S3 presets (filters). And lastly, if you’re going to replicate an idea or someone else’s photo — which I’m all for — do it better (or don’t do it at all).
Congratulations on your nomination for the Fashion Instagrammer of the Year at CFDA Awards! Do you plan your personal Instagram photos in advance or are they all spontaneous?
Many thanks. It truly depends. Sometimes, I’ll come across something absolutely incredible (like a beautiful doorway) that just happens to fit with my aesthetic. Other times, I’ll have a general idea of what I’d like to capture next. The color palette of my feed slowly transforms by chance and season. Although I’m extremely selective about what I post, I’m confident in what I’m attracted to.
You always find the best coffee shops, restaurants, and places in NYC. I’ve written down quite a few so that I remember to stop by when I’m in the neighborhood. If someone were in NYC for one day and went out for breakfast, coffee, lunch, dinner, drinks, and dessert where would you tell them to go?
I’m glad to hear that! This is a great question.
Breakfast: Jeffrey’s Grocery in the West Village. Order the avocado toast or blueberry corn muffin and berries.
Coffee: Bluestone Lane Coffee in the West Village for beachy decor and an excellent iced latte.
Lunch: Pearl Oyster Bar in the West Village. Order the lobster roll (best I’ve ever had).
Dinner: Saxon + Parole in NoHo. Order the salmon, brussel sprouts (all-time favorite), and french fries.
Drinks: Mermaid Inn Oyster Bar in Greenwich Village. Nautical and great gin cocktails (the fish tacos are top notch, too).
Dessert: Amorino in Greenwich Village for gelato or The City Bakery in Flatiron for their famous chocolate chip cookie.
Where do you want to travel to next?
Within the U.S., I’d love to travel to Palm Spring, Maine, Rhode Island, and Savannah. Globally, I am hoping for a trip to France, Italy, and Australia! I love traveling but don’t do it as much as I’d like.
What is one thing that you wish you had known when you were starting out your career?
That one will strike out more than they’ll land something (especially in New York). A hundred rejections, one “yes.” But the “yes” is always worth waiting for.
What is on your desk right now?
At my apartment desk, I have a Diptyque candle, hydrangeas in a vase, various coffee table books, a surfing magazine, shells I collected in Nantucket, a Design Darling stapler, a Laduree macaron box and other various ephemera like matchbooks and business cards for design inspiration!
What advice do you have for professional style? What is your go to look?
As it pertains to dress code, I work in a very casual office environment! In the summer, I’ll wear anything from seersucker shorts paired with an oxford and flat sandals to a shift dress with Jacks. In the winter and fall, my work uniform is skinny jeans, ballet flats, and an oversized cashmere sweater.
Where do you turn for inspiration?
I have various sources of inspiration. Time periods (I love the 60’s and 70’s) and travel destinations (Palm Beach and Nantucket) are major influences for my style. Additionally, books, museums, boutiques, restaurants, people watching, movies and television (think The Graduate and Mad Men), photography, art, classic Americana…I could go on!
Who is your mentor?
My professional mentor is my former boss at Gap. She hired me, believed in me, and encouraged my creativity and personal/professional development every single day. She is a brilliant, caring individual and I feel honored to have had the chance to learn from her.
What advice do you have for other young professional women? What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
Decide what you want and then do everything in your power to make it happen, no matter how long it takes or what obstacles stand in your way. My dad recently reminded me that successful people keep pushing forward through setbacks while others tend to give up or make excuses why they can’t move forward.
Thank you, Amy!
Images: First image by Mark K. All other photos by Amy Stone.