Amy MacThomas has witnessed first hand the evolution of fashion bloggers and Instagrammers. As a talent agent at Next, one of the first agencies to open up an influencer division, MacThomas is among a small number of talent agents that works with models, actors, and influencers to team them with brands.
“Influencers have opened up a completely different space,” she said. “Creative directors no longer decide what is cool, so as an agency, we’ve had to come on board with this.”
Below is a day in MacThomas’ diary. It’s been lightly edited and condensed for clarity.
7 a.m.: It’s London Fashion Week. I wake up earlier during fashion weeks, which are the busiest times of my year. I look at my emails first thing while lying in bed with a cup of tea just to make sure no dramas have occurred over night.
7.30 a.m.: When my emails are sorted into a list of priorities for the day, I shower and get dressed. As you can probably imagine, working in fashion – particularly during Fashion Weeks — getting dressed can be a lengthy process. During Fashion Week I tend to keep it very simple, classic pieces in black and navy and always flat shoes so I can run around. It didn’t take me long to realize that I wasn’t going to compete with the super stylists, editors and celebrities gracing the front row, so my motto is to keep it simple. Celine sunglasses, Stan Smiths, a black polo from Uniqlo and leather trousers from Zara.
8.00 a.m.: I am based in Notting Hill, London and I leave for my office in trendy Shoreditch. I take the subway to work and spend my time compiling a to do list for the day and put finishing touches to client pitches.
8.45 a.m.: It’s all go, go, go with lots of client and talent to catch up with. On the Special Bookings division at Next we represent a huge roster of incredible talents, from musicians, actors and bloggers to stylists and designers.
9 a.m.: A daily meeting to discuss talent schedules. Since it’s fashion week, our time is taken planning which shows our talents should attend, or potentially walk in or perform at. Everyone we represent is different and treated as their own “brand” of sorts and therefore they need a schedule tailored to them, often meaning that during fashion weeks they attend the shows of the brands they have existing relationships with.
10 a.m.: My first meeting of the day with a big casting agency looking for a new brand face. I generally prepare a specific document of talents for each project I work on, full of interesting social statistics, facts and updates on each of the talent that could be relevant for the job. I think one of the keys to being a good agent is understanding the brand’s aesthetic and aims, so I look back on their past campaigns to see the sort of talent they tend to cast and which creative teams they work with. If you can gain their trust and respect it means they’re more likely to look to your talent for future campaigns.
2.30 p.m.: With lots of shows and events to attend on a weekly basis, we are often out of the office for spells of time. Today it’s the seasonal Christopher Kane show. I tend to chaperone the girls as it can be a little overwhelming for the newer talent and it’s a good time to connect with clients for me. I’m taking a newer actress and much more established model to this show. The designer has dressed them both and sent cars for them; I call them on my way to check that they’re on route.
3 p.m.: It’s very hectic when I arrive at the show, tons of photographers, security and people looking on. I wait at the entrance until my talent arrive. They’re always relieved to see a familiar face in the madness and I whisk them through making sure they’re photographed and interviewed by the right people.
4 p.m.: After making sure the girls are safely back in their cars, it’s back to the office for me. We have our talent call where all agents from the Special Bookings division talk through interesting projects, new talents and jobs that could be of interest to our other markets.
5.30 p.m.: I check to ensure that everything is in hand for the following day and head home for a quick change before heading back to the agency, ahead of the Burberry show and an evening packed with events.
7 p.m.: Burberry starts. It’s a client I work closely with and their show is always a spectacle. We’re very excited to have a number of girls invited to the show and dressed by Burberry. Arriving at the Burberry show is always a little overwhelming so I walk my talent through the press tunnel making sure no difficult questions are being asked, wait while she’s photographed and take her through to their seat. The show is incredible as always, however I spend most of the time looking at incoming emails on my phone.
8 p.m.: Business of Fashion are toasting the BOF500 – a list of industry insiders the are commended as amongst the most influential in the fashion business. It’s crucial for an agency like Next to have a presence at the top fashion events; lots of models, talent and agents in the room is the goal. Faith Kates and Joel Wilkenfeld, owners of NEXT are on the list too.
9 p.m. We head over to the LOVE Magazine party, this season hosted in association with Marc Jacobs. It’s the most popular party of fashion week with a guest list to match!
Midnight: In a taxi. I Google our talent to see the press that they have picked up over the course of the day and prepare a email out to send to clients the next day.