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Fashion techie

By JUDITH STEININGER
Photos courtesy of Moses

May 2015

Big curls, black tops, skinny jeans and red lipstick (lots) ó Sara Jendusaís uniform allows her to get ready for work in a New York minute. The stylish computer wizard works at Vogue.com, the online division of Vogue magazine in Manhattan. Wearing high heels is de rigeur, so sheís always searching for a smashing, walkable pair.

At 20 years old, Jendusaís career makes most women salivate, but it comes with high pressure deadlines and colleagues. Her office is behind the doors of the tallest building in America, One World Trade Center. Vogue touts a 12.7 million print audience, 6 million monthly online audience and a large international presence. Fashion arbiter Anna Wintour is the editor-in-chief. Jendusa confirms the rumor: "At Vogue, everybodyís beautiful."

Her daily commute from Chinatown in lower Manhattan to the office is a mere 15 minute walk (depending on heel height), and, relatively speaking, her journey from Oconomowoc wasnít much longer. Homeschooled until ninth grade, she enrolled at Arrowhead High School for three years, then completed her senior year back at the kitchen table. At 17, she left for the bright lights and big city. "My parents have always trusted me. An advantage of home schooling is that I taught myself Photoshop when I was eight. Itís tedious work but pays well."

Her photo editing skills and keen sense of style paid the rent when she initially arrived in NYC. Please note: She never waited tables. When assisting a stylist, now so famous he currently goes by his first name Moses, she got her thrilling introduction to "pulling clothes in L.A., taking the red eye back to the East Coast and working straight through the day for perfectionists." Apparently, the first experience was a lasting one.

"I helped out shooting a Le Sport Sac campaign in Central Park. We prepped the job in L.A. and brought the clothes to NYC. Call time was 5 a.m., and it was freezing out. It was totally worth it. Thatís when I got hooked on the whole workaholic scene," Jendusa remembers. "I crave this kind of environment; itís my challenge to make the magic happen even if Iím exhausted. In New York, you work hard, but no other city gives you so much opportunity."

On a cold January day in 2014, serendipity created an encounter with an acquaintance already working at Vogue. She invited Jendusa to apply because the magazine needed extra help for February "Fashion Month," an industry term that refers to the consecuctive four weeks of shows that take place in New York, London, Paris and Milan. That was like putting Manolo Blahniks in front of Carrie Bradshaw. Jendusa interviewed and was hired part time. She performed so well for the perfectionists that sheís now full time.

What she likes most about her technical job is being creative. "Essentially, I do art and design for posts, photo editing, retouching and video editing presentations. On a daily basis, simultaneously I use software like Gif Maker, WEM, Photoshop, InDesign, After Effects, Bridge and Keynote. Vogue.com is time sensitive, and we work fast."

Speaking of sensitive, it turns out neither wild horses nor shameless begging will make a Vogue employee divulge information about the beautiful and famous who grace its pages or website. But, if youíve seen them in the magazine, Jendusa has probably encountered them in the hallways.

Labels this fashion techie likes include Helmut Lang, Cheap Monday, Alexander Wang and Rick Owens.

Is she ever intimidated by this scene? "No. If youíre afraid or nervous, you wonít work efficiently. Plus, everyone in New York is fashionable, but Iím really good at computers."

 

 

 


This story ran in the May 2015 issue of: