Above: I’m cutting, bending, organizing, and all-around preparing for the photo shoot with Styleta!
If you paid any attention to my facebook fanpage last week, I was updating constantly about my [short] time spent in Cambridge, Boston at Harvard University.
So why the heck did I drive more than four hours from New York City to hang out ivy league style in Beantown? Well, first, I wanted to see what Boston was like NOT in the cold months — I had only visited this northern urban destination two times previously, once in 2007 for a Harvard Women’s Business conference in the absolute dead of winter, and another in late fall of 2008 to visit a friend at Northeastern.
So it was due time for SDV to explore Boston, and most importantly, to partner with Styleta.org, a site where you can purchase high end consignment and designer pieces knowing that a portion of your investment will benefit the organization Dress for Success. Styleta was founded by a Harvard grad who [seriously!] just graduated in 2010.
Yifan Zhang founded Styleta because she wanted to create a shopping experience with social consciousness. Sound a lot like SDV’s platform of Style & Substance that you know all too well? ;-)
Yifan is an inspiration to me. As an economics major at Harvard, she turned down opportunities to rack in the big bucks working in NYC’s investment banking industry to continue to grow Styleta’s success. She’s moved her Styleta headquarters to the Innovation offices at Harvard, where other awesome startups like HerCampus are also based.
Yifan and I have the same mentality and positive drive to succeed for the benefit of YOU. We work our businesses so that you have opportunity to look good, feel great, and most importantly .. DO good.
The official announcement will be released this Friday through the SDV newsletter, but I might as well spill the beans now: On Sunday, October 24, Sammy Davis Vintage will be hosting a benefit sale for Styleta.org from 1PM to 6PM at the apartment of Selena Shen at 41st & 1st Avenue. Food and drink will be provided … along with fabulous fashion, fun, and lots o’ feel-good vibes.
To pump up the hype, I met with Yifan and her Styleta models Lisa, Felicia and Meredith to orchestrate a photo shoot showcasing the collegiate cool side of SDV. Scroll on down below to see some behind-the-scenes shots as captured by Yifan … and to read more about the 411 behind this photo shoot shot at Harvard University and Central Square!
Thankfully the models were a tall 5’9″ to 5’10”, and with height comes BIGGER feet, which I provided with tons of pairs of classic 80s stilettos as acquired from a friend’s mother who worked in modeling. And yes, the shoes were size 9 to 10! A vintage shoe miracle, I might add.
Models get hungry when working 6-hour-long photo shoots, and SDV does NOT let models starve. Nor does she let them go accessory free, as you can clearly see here!
Here, I talk to one of the models, Harvard sophomore Meredith about something nonsensical, most likely .. notice how she looks at me like, “What are you saying?”
Let the styling begin! For one of the looks, as you’ll see when I release the final pictures later this week, each of the 3 models wore a different pattern of silk/rayon blend wide leg, high-waisted pants. Here Meredith rocks polka dots like polka dot pants have never been rocked before. We added the pearls to give the look a touch of Harvard-collegiate-Up North-Yankee flair. I know, that was a lot of adverbs … but you get the point ;-)
Models Lisa [left] and Felicia [right] wait for makeup to begin. Lisa is a junior at Harvard and Felicia is a sophomore.
Because of my crazy-busy schedule, and the sheer speed at which this shoot had to happen in the course of 6 hours, I decided to become makeup artist for the day. Those awesome cheeks on Felicia? All me baby!
And here we go! After the fitting and makeup, we walked to campus from the Styleta offices to begin the shoot in the “yard” of Harvard. Check out the quintessential red bricks of Cambridge … and how we were tip toeing across them in our stiletto heels. Scroll down to see what we eventually did with those heels …
Photographer Sam [yes, we had two Sam’s on set!] directs the models to walk down the Harvard library stairs as he takes pictures. I learned that this library has four stories below it as a basement. FOUR STORIES! That’s an insane amount of books! Oh, those smart Ivy Leaguers …
Yup, we did it. We had to. Those stilettos hurt! We took off our heels and walked from Harvard back to the Styleta offices for our round #2 outfit change. I remember taking off my heels after partying in the clubs in London when I lived there for a few months … and I survived then. We survived this, too!
And that’s a wrap! Check back later this week for the final pictures!