AE Friends & Family: Allison M., Women’s Accessories Merchandise Manager

AE Friends & Family: Allison M., Women’s Accessories Merchandise Manager

Meet Allison M., Women’s Accessories Merchandise Manager. Allison spends her day looking for the next big thing in accessories. Read below to find out more about her!

How did you discover your passion for buying accessories?

It’s a pretty funny story that probably goes back to when I was five.  Apparently wherever we went, whether it was to the grocery store or to an amusement park, I always wanted to buy something.  My dad actually warned my now-husband when he first met him that I can’t go anywhere without finding something that I want to buy.  The more adult version of the story is that my father owned a restaurant and I worked there since I was 13, so I knew I wanted to do something related to business. I always loved fashion and had come across Fashion Merchandising as a major and the idea of it interested me… I guess the rest is history.

How did you get your start in merchandising?

I went to the University of Delaware and had a great networking group throughout my college experience.  When I came in to my senior year, I realized I had enough credits to finish up in one semester so I reached out to some former UD students who were already in the industry and landed an interview at Liz Claiborne.  There was an assistant position open in accessories for Lucky Brand and as “luck” would have it (no pun intended), I got the job and moved to NYC a week after I graduated.

Allison Mace American Eagle Outfitters Accessories Merchandising Manager New York City

Allison’s Instagram of New York City

What do you think are the biggest accessory trends for Spring?

With all of the color and print trending in apparel, I’m really feeling anything neutral in accessories.  I also think pastel makeup colors play well off of color.  My essentials for summer festivals are fun printed scarves, a pair of espadrille sneakers, a baseball cap, and a mini-backpack.  Bring on the sun!

Do you have any tips for accessorizing?

I always say less is more.  If I’m going for a “neck look” I usually wear a simple long necklace OR a scarf, but not both.  I don’t like to over do it with jewelry, so I’ll wear 2-3 bracelets for a slightly layered look and then go subtle with the ears.  I was so glad when studded earrings in mismatched pairs started to trend because I have a tendency to lose things and for years I’d been wearing mismatched earrings. Before this people would always look at me weird, but apparently my look is acceptable now!

Who or what has been the most important influence in your life?

My Dad.  He had me working at eight weighing hamburger patties in his restaurant. Needless to say, my work ethic can be attributed to him. Till this day he reminds me of my values and how I was brought up.  Before I moved to NYC he wrote me a letter, basically his words of wisdom, and I still pull it out and re-read it from time to time.

What is your dream job?

Owning my own boutique and stationary line.  It sounds completely crazy, but I grew up in an entrepreneurial environment and so did my husband, so I guess it makes sense!  I love making my own cards (I actually made all of my ‘save the dates’ for my wedding) and I am excited because next month I’m finally taking a letter pressing class at a shop in my neighborhood!

What is next on your ‘To Do In Life’ list?

My husband and I have been talking about going to Vietnam for over a year and we’re finally going next month!  I love to travel, so I have a bucket list of places that I want to go before we start a family.  Here’s to racking up frequent flyer miles!

How would you describe your style? 

Definitely downtown, boho with a little edge.  I tend to get bored with my look easily, so I feel like for months I’m all about color and then I go for weeks wearing only black.  I guess the same goes for my hair, I’ll spend a year growing it out and then one day chop it off.  I also love vintage or vintage inspired jewelry.  I’m constantly scrounging the stores in my neighborhood in Brooklyn for new things.

How does your work influence your style?

It does from every angle!  I’ve always said this is the best job – I get paid to shop! Well, it’s a little more complicated than that, but in all truth I’m constantly looking for “what’s next”, which is probably why I get bored with my own style so quickly.

Where do you find your inspiration?

I think it helps that both my husband and I work in fashion, because while at work I’m engrossing in product and at home and outside of work I’m influenced more form an artistic prospect thru print and digital media and the things that he is working on.  I’m a very visual person, so besides going to galleries or museums, I love to just walk for hours and take in inspiration from my natural surroundings.  I used to live in LA, and actually walked for miles there too, which is not so normal!

Allison Mace American Eagle Outfitters Accessories Merchandising Manager and her husband Tuan

Allison and her husband Tuan (who is also AE’s hairstylist!)

What is your favorite part of your job?

The product! It’s amazing to see product go from concept to the store.  And probably the most rewarding part is seeing the sales!  Nothing feels better than knowing that you got it right and your customer responds to your assortment.  

Have you traveled anywhere cool for your job?

When I first started out in the industry I had to travel to LA and Vegas a lot, at 22 it was pretty awesome having an entire suite to myself at places like the Venetian and having dinner at restaurants on Sunset Blvd.  Especially when I was broke and the company was paying for it!

Allison Mace American Eagle Outfitters Accessories Merchandising Manager Malibu

One of Allison’s favorite spots when she lived in LA – Malibu!

You are married to our hairstylist, Tuan. How did you meet?

It’s a funny thing how living in NYC can be so big yet so small at times… we met at a mutual friend’s birthday party that was actually taking place at my friend’s restaurant.  We had both known the friend pretty much the entire time we’ve lived in the city but had never met!

Allison Mace American Eagle Outfitters Accessories Merchandising Manager Maine

An Instagram from Allison & Tuan’s honeymoon in Maine.

AE X College Fashionista: 28 Days of Shorts Week Four

AE X College Fashionista: 28 Days of Shorts Week Four
Spring Break is just around the corner and we have partnered with College Fashionista to present 28 Days of Shorts. See how college style gurus from across the country take a different style of our shorts each day in February and make them their own! Check out the third week of styles below and let us know how you style your AE shorts in the comments.
college fashionista american eagle outfitters 28 days of shorts

Day 22: AE Trouser ShortieJessica Wu, Fashion Institute of Technology

college fashionista american eagle outfitters 28 days of shorts

Day 23: AE Twill Midi ShortClaire File, Purdue University

college fashionista american eagle outfitters 28 days of shorts

Day 24: AE Striped Favorite ShortieMaya Jimenez, Boston University

college fashionista american eagle outfitters 28 days of shorts

Day 25: AE Printed Midi ShortElaine Kuckertz, Brown University

college fashionista american eagle outfitters 28 days of shorts

Day 26: AE Military ShortieAlinnette Hernandez, University of Central Florida

college fashionista american eagle outfitters 28 days of shorts

Day 27: AE Twill Midi ShortLesley Stevenson, University of Notre Dame

college fashionista american eagle outfitters 28 days of shorts

Day 28: AE Destroyed Boyfit Midi ShortAja Edwards, Northwestern University

How to Pack It: Spring Break 101

How to Pack It: Spring Break 101

Wherever your Spring Break takes you, there are a few must-have items you won’t want to leave home without.  Take some tips from our stylists and stick to the essentials.

American Eagle Outfitters Spring Break Packing Guide Girls

Load up the AEO Printed Canvas Backpack with our favorite Spring Break accessories for girls.

It’s in the Bag

We love the beachy boho vibe of the AEO Printed Canvas Backpack. With zippered pockets and adjustable shoulder straps, this bag goes just as well with breezy dresses & metallic sandals as it does with a swimsuit and towel.

We’re always looking for the perfect combination of fun and function. The AEO Camo Backpack (available in stores, similar online) definitely delivers both. Lined and zippered compartments keep sand out and the print pops next to bright solids & graphics.

American Eagle Outfitters Spring Break Packing Guide Guys

Guys – Be the coolest guy on the beach with our Spring Break must-haves.

Suit Yourself

Board shorts and bikinis are any Spring Break’s MVPs. When you find the right swimsuit, you won’t want to change out of it.  AE has perfect bikini, tankini & one-piece silhouettes to fit every style and the brightest assortment of colors & prints we’ve ever had.  We are obsessed with the AE Fringed Bandeau Bikini. There are tons of patterns for guys, too, and we especially dig the AE Photo Graphic Board Short.

Do the Flip Flop

Classic. Effortless. What more could you want in a Spring Break shoe?  Special details and bold hues make the go-to flip flop the ultimate Spring Break shoe.

Take cover

The sunglasses are a given. But we also love a gauzy scarf like the AEO Printed Scarf to drape over sun-soaked shoulders or add extra warmth to a sleeveless dress on a breezy night. Slip on your favorite pair of AE Shorts to take your look from the beach to the streets. For guys, the AEO Straw Fedora adds a little extra shade.

AE Friends & Family: Aerie Model, Nina Agdal

AE Friends & Family: Aerie Model, Nina Agdal

Unless you’ve been living under a rock you may have noticed our number one Aerie girl, Nina Agdal, gracing our marketing campaigns the past few seasons (not to mention her illustrious return to the pages of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition and her leading role in the 2013 Carl’s Junior Super Bowl ad.)What you may not know is that Nina, a Denmark native, loves her dog Boo, enjoys playing basketball during her down time in New York, and has an extremely bubbly personality. Read on to get to know our Aerie girl a little bit better …

 

Nina Spring 2013

Nina posing for our Spring 2013 campaign.

How did your career in modeling begin?

I got scouted in Denmark for an Elite Model Look Competition.  I didn’t end up winning because I was too short, but I started modeling after that.

When you were little, did you know modeling was going to become your thing?

I honestly didn’t like it in the beginning. I wasn’t used to people always touching me and I felt like a product, but now I like it.

What would you be up to if you weren’t modeling all over the world?

I always wanted to be a journalist, dentist or auto mechanic when I was younger.

Nina Bollboard

Nina hanging out under her billboard in NYC. Source: @ninaagdal on Instagram

Any songs on your current playlist?

Everything Justin Bieber!

What’s the craziest modeling story you have?

I had to go to a tiny island off of Australia for a two day shoot. As I was getting a spray tan, I fainted in the makeup artist’s bathroom and cracked my chin on the floor. So basically I was half spray tanned, but fully naked on the bathroom floor. There were no doctors on the island so they just told me to put on my tennis shoes and have a Coke and I would be fine!

Boo

Nina’s dog Boo! Source: @ninaagdal on Instagram

What is the best part about your hometown of Denmark? 

Friends and family. I love that it’s so comfortable, nice and sweet.  It’s safe and great place to grow up. I miss it every day.

What is it really like to be an Aerie girl? 

It’s really fun to be an Aerie girl. I have great people to make me look pretty in the morning and the rest of the day I’m playing around in swimsuits or undies on the beach or on a bed.  The last shoot was in Harbor Island and it was so much fun.

You’ve got a killer beach body – do you have any tips on staying in shape?

I really work my butt off. I always try and work out at least 3 times a week with 20-30 min of cardio, running, spinning, cycling, or the elliptical. I love lifting weights and playing basketball – I even have an indoor basketball court in NY that I go to play.

Taking a break from the gym! Source: @ninaagdal on Instagram

Any Healthy Eating Tips? 

Try eating smaller portions five to six times a day. I really enjoy eating a mix of protein, veggies and carbs. Definitely allow yourself to sin sometimes. If you want a burger, have a burger and then tomorrow have a salad. Also, don’t think too much about your weight, it’s a waste of time and life!

Do you have a favorite indulgence? 

I love pizza, red meat, steak with A1 Sauce, chocolate – but one thing I can’t live without is a good burger. Give me lots of mayo and grease – the works!

Nina Holiday

Nina for Aerie Holiday 2012

AE X College Fashionista: 28 Days of Shorts Week Two

AE X College Fashionista: 28 Days of Shorts Week Two

Spring Break is just around the corner and we have partnered with College Fashionista to present 28 Days of Shorts. See how college style gurus from across the country take a different style of our shorts each day in February and make them their own! Check out the third week of styles below and let us know how you style your AE shorts in the comments.

american eagle outfitters college fashionista 28 days of shorts

Day 15: AE Destroyed Denim ShortieJoscelyne Felix, University of Arizona

american eagle outfitters college fashionista 28 days of shorts

Day 16: AE White Denim Midi ShortLiz McLean, University of Georgia

american eagle outfitters college fashionista 28 days of shorts

Day 17: AE Printed Midi ShortShelby Katz, Savannah College of Art & Design

american eagle outfitters college fashionista 28 days of shorts

Day 18: AE Trouser ShortieLisa Brahm, University of Iowa

american eagle outfitters college fashionista 28 days of shorts

Day 19: AE Destroyed Denim ShortieChelsea Tadros, University of San Francisco

american eagle outfitters college fashionista 28 days of shorts

Day 20: AE Military ShortieEllen Hoffman, Misericordia University

american eagle outfitters college fashionista 28 days of shorts

Day 21: AE Roll-Up Denim ShortieTere Cortes, University of Texas – Pan American

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