There’s an extremely fine line between, “I bet a million girls would kill for that job” and “She (boss) is not happy unless everyone around her is panicked, nauseous or suicidal.” This line, my friend, is what you call a horrifying internship story.
Some of us have not just watched but actually lived The Devil Wears Prada storyline. Believe me, it’s not always pretty. Hear it from these 6 women about their not-so-fashionable days as a fashion intern but before that…
WARNING: This article is based on real stories. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events, is not entirely coincidental. Our sympathies in case it matches you.
1. The Coffee Girl
“I'd started working with one of the top leading fashion magazines in India and I was super excited to be a part of the process! I was so disappointed with the errands I was asked to run. From organising a cupboard full of hangers to becoming the company's personal runner - the tasks got lamer by the day. It hit a nerve when the senior stylist loudly announced that she was in the mood for some chaat from Haldiram’s. She laughed and said that I could just run and get them the order. I had to ask every member of the team for the order and organise their mid-day snack.
No, I don't work for a fashion magazine today!”
- Vidya Bhandari, 27
2. The ‘Yes, Sir. Yes, Ma’am!’
“I joined as a fashion intern but was made to do random work for my bosses (I had 3, yes!) My initial reaction was, “Oh wow! I’ll get to learn so much from them,” but it all turned into a nightmare. My first boss wanted me to take charge of work and do things as per my instincts. The second wanted me to get things approved by him first. The third would give me extra work at the last minute. Because of their lack of coordination and personal grudges, I was scolded in front of the entire office daily, until I chose to give up and quit. P.S: I still haven’t got my certificate of work.”
- Mansi Kashyup, 24
3. The ‘I’ll Do Anything For This Internship!’
My old office would assign ID cards to all interns. I lost mine and had to pay a fine of Rs 500 to get a new one. I was really upset because it was an unpaid internship; so, basically, I had to literally pay the company to keep my internship going.
- Sarah George, 21
4. The Intern In Disguise
I was hired in the fashion team of a renowned e-commerce company as a content intern. I joined them thinking I’ll be writing stories about fashion, my favourite styles, the latest trends etc. Little did I know that I would be handed piles and piles of clothes every morning and a measuring tape to check the dimensions of each item and update the size charts on the website. They gave me the job of a tailor’s assistant. I did this for a year! I’m knocking my head against the nearest wall right now, just remembering this.
- Asmita Verma, 22
5. The Errand Girl
“Probably the most horrible experience of my intern life was when my boss asked me to alphabetically arrange over 1,000 books for her new office. This task had me going crazy because for letter ‘A’, if I arranged the books vertically, they stacked taller than me (and I’m 5’8.) It took me three days to arrange her brand new library, and at the end of all that hard work I got two words, "Thank you.”
- Sherry Sharma, 21
6. The ‘Where Am I?” Girl
“It was my first internship in the line I was extremely passionate about but little did I know that my excitement would last only a couple of hours. Around midday it was announced that a bag of Jimmy Choos (sourced for a photoshoot) had been misplaced. After being called ‘irresponsible morons,’ everyone was asked to stay back till they were found. I had nothing to do with the shoot, and yet, I stayed till 11 pm cleaning all the shelves, looking through all the bags. They were finally found under my boss’s desk.”