Elizabeth Herring, Carolyn Murphy and me.
Five days into New York Fashion Week, I had the privilege of meeting Marlon Stoltzman – an industry veteran, manager to stars like Candice Swanepoel, and professional chaperone of travelling models. When girls are sent away for their first fashion week season, he's the person who accompanies them backstage, puts out fires and assists with the pressures of being young and on the rise. When major models book ad campaigns for blue chip clients, he travels with them and acts on their behalf. We were introduced by our mutual friend Bridget Malcolm, who met him on her first show season back in 2009. Marlon describes his job like this: Imagine a young kid going to the park to play by himself. He'd be shy and timid and probably wouldn't have too much fun. But if that same kid had his parents sitting on a bench within eyesight, he'd run around, climb the jungle gym and interact with the other kids. And that's what Marlon does for the models with whom he travels.
In the middle of my conversation with Marlon, he told me I had to meet his friend Anne. An email was sent, and a meeting was arranged. About a week later, I was at a birthday party and I met this girl called Elizabeth Herring. When I told her what I did for a job, she asked me if I had met her good friend Carolyn Murphy who just happens to be the face of Estee Lauder. I said I had not.
Two weeks after that, I went and met Anne. Anne is this amazing French woman who's worked with everybody, seen it all and now runs the world from her office in Flatiron. While I was talking to her, she said her friend Carolyn Murphy would be in town in a few days, and that I should meet her.
So on Wednesday last week, I sat down with Carolyn Murphy. She breezed into the room wearing a faded Helmut Lang denim jacket over a grey cashmere sweater tucked into an amazing cream pleated Chloe skirt with brown Manolo Blahnik ankle boots. Obviously she is very impressive looking. But what was immediately apparent was her superior intelligence (she used the word pedagogy in a sentence), her extremely good sense of humour (she laughed at all my jokes) and her unabashed honesty (her battle stories from 21 years on the job left me on the floor).
And to wrap up the myriad coincidences in this story, the day before I met Carolyn, I emailed Marlon to tell him I was seeing her the next day. He wrote straight back saying that she was a good friend and that he’d known her for 25 years (she later told me that he was the first person she met when she arrived in New York as a teenager). But wait, there’s more: 30 minutes into my conversation with Carolyn, who should walk in the door but Elizabeth Herring from the birthday party. Freaky man!
I LIKE YOU!