Skills for Millennials

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Photo: Tonia Schmidt

Cooking, handicrafts, knitting and sewing – all of these are skills that most of us (millennials, sigh),  are not quite familiar with due to the fact that these skills do not get taught in school or at home anymore. We are all busy bees and everything that we could possibly need is available at our fingertips to be ordered and shipped to our front doors, which makes the crafts mentioned above, outdated or to be exact: basically dead. Now, you might be lucky and have a great dad, mom, grandma, grandpa or another skilled person in your life who is nice enough to share their wisdom with you, but if you don’t… Orange Coast College is the place to look for guidance.


 There are many classes offered that will focus on hands-on learning at OCC, which I love because you know, how in other classes, long lectures can be a drag, staring at screens and scribbling info in notepads, that we will not be able to make sense of later anyways. This past fall semester,  I was lucky enough to be part of an amazing class. The specific course I took was Fashion 180: Principals of Clothing Construction 1, taught by Donna Dickens. I was a little nervous signing up for this course, since I have never sewn before, and I knew that I would be walking out of this class with two fully constructed garments. It turns out all my worries were for nothing as Donna is quite amazing! She is extremely knowledgeable, always happy to help and just SO passionate about what she is doing, that it makes you want to become a little sponge that soaks everything up she is teaching you. 

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Photo: Tonia Schmidt

Donna herself went to OCC, became a costume designer for many Southern California productions and made her way back to OCC as an instructor. Over the semester she patiently introduced us to many different sewing techniques, she would explain and demonstrate, then provide us with materials to work on the techniques ourselves. Once we worked through the techniques, the class started to construct garments, with fabrics that we bought on an exciting field trip to LA’s fashion district. Everyone in the class worked really hard on their projects and the dynamics of the class were really great as everyone would help each other in order to make sure no one got left behind. From week to week you would see how you were getting closer to finishing an actual garment, which was extremely exciting, especially if you have never sewn before – like me. The first garment I made was a pair of denim pants and for the second project I constructed a full A-line skirt, both items came out really well and I was so proud that I texted pictures to my mother constantly, who was also really excited about my success.

 There really is something about creating with your bare hands, working on something for a long time, failing sometimes while doing it, only to feel extremely accomplished at the end, having the finished product in hand. If all my excitement does still not convince you of how awesome Fashion 180 is, I will let the pictures speak for themselves.

– Lea Heidgen

OCC Fashion Instructors, Making Dreams into Realities.

Erin Bianchi Hibbert
Photo: INC. Magazine

There are so many great instructors in the Fashion Department at Orange Coast College. Nearly all have either previously worked within the fashion industry or are currently working in the industry in amazing careers that students dream to be at one day!

Erin Bianchi Hibbert is one instructor who I personally aspire to be greatly. Not only is she a OCC Fashion instructor for Fashion 121: Street Style, but she has had a full and dynamic career in retail. Erin previously ran the public relations/ events team at Bloomingdale’s, South Coast Plaza and left to pursue her own dreams of opening her own fashion related business. Currently, Erin is running her own business called Fashion Camp – Create. Design. Sew. Fashion Camp, located in Tustin, CA, is a creative learning space that teaches kids, teens, and adults the principles behind fashion, design ,and sewing.

 After being with Bloomingdale’s for a substantial amount of time she decided to follow her dreams of being a business owner and began to pave the way for Fashion Camp. The company has been in business for over 6 years and has taught thousands of kids, teens and adults. There are so many class options they have to offer such as beginner sewing, advanced sewing, open sewing lab, sketching, summer camps, and many more workshop classes that are project specific. Luckily I had the pleasure of working with Erin at Fashion Camp for a few years and also was able to take her class at Orange Coast College, and I must say it was the best experience I could have ever asked for. 

 If you have the chance to be in her class at OCC or even stop by Fashion Camp, I promise Erin is someone you should really get to know!

– Amanda Tovar

Building A Future Career with Retail Buying

photo by Lauren Becker

It isn’t just classrooms and lectures that get you through the journey to your degree with the OCC fashion department. The inspiring, wise and experienced team at OCC bring together a lot of off campus experiences to give aspiring fashion students a peek at real life career options. For the best classes, field trips are a big factor to the equation of success.

     One of the fast-paced, fun, real life learning experiences presented by OCC Fashion is playing the role of a buyer with Marketing 220: Retail Buying at South Coast Plaza. South Coast Plaza is a premiere shopping destination minutes away from campus in Costa Mesa, CA. Based on lessons learned in class, the field trip consists of adventuring to different stores and calculating inventory with retail buying formulas. With this real world experience you can pick up on key trends, aesthetics, and intuit upcoming styles. Marketing 220: Retail Buying allows students to complete a fashion degree with excellent time management and forecasting skills. One of the greatest lessons you can take from Retail Buying at OCC  is the key skills all buyers must have: What are the  trends coming for next year, how can I purchase them for this season, and can I sell them at the right time to take full advantage of the style. This field trip sets you up for fast-paced fashion career which collaborates with all areas of the fashion industry. 

– Melisa Akcam

Caught Up in Fishnets

Photo: Reme Immegart


The fishnet trend is in full force this season on the Orange Coast College campus. 

When hearing the word “fishnets” the first thing that comes to mind is tights, but that isn’t the only way people are wearing this trend around Orange County, CA. Fishnets are being seen worn under t-shirts and as a fun, rather than functional sock. They are a great layering pieces that adds a little extra something to any outfit. 

Photo: Reme Immegart

One example of how this trend is being worn is seen on Gretchen, an OCC fashion student. She is wearing light washed ripped jeans with her fishnets underneath. She is wearing a crop top, so the fishnets are more visible. The contrast between her light wash jeans and black fishnets really make the fishnets stand out. This trend gives off a lot of 90’s grunge feels, which in recent years seems to be a popular era to take inspiration from.


Fishnets are here, will you get caught up wearing this trend on campus?

– Reme Immegart

Is Philz Coffee the new Starbucks?


“The best coffee is the coffee that comes to your own personal taste” – Phil Jaber, Owner


 I took the five-minute drive down to Pacific City in Huntington Beach, CA on  Sunday afternoon with my dad to finally show him what this outdoor shopping venue was all about. Since its opening last year, I feel like I’m stopping by this place once a week to pick something up at Sephora or to grab a delicious drink from Lemonade. It also doesn’t help that I work at Sandy’s across the street, so I feel like whenever my shift ends I can afford a quick stop into Sephora for a little beauty boost. In coming here so often I have noticed one thing that stands out, EVERYONE is holding a Philz Coffee cup. This brown cup can be spotted even from the second floor of the mall; it is just something that you can recognize from yards away. Every single person shopping in Pacific City was holding a little brown cup; you couldn’t even see a Starbucks cup in sight! It had me thinking, “Could Philz Coffee be the new Starbucks?” Even walking on downtown Main Street a few blocks away, you see more Philz Coffee cups then you do Starbucks.

photo: Nicolette Papile

Personally, I have never tried Philz but I have heard nothing but great things. All my coworkers love it, my friends on Instagram are constantly posting those trendy coffee photos with the ocean view in the back ground. My manager even said that there was so much caffeine in the coffee that she had the jitters from it…yikes. But, I guess that could be a good thing if you’re in need of a coffee buzz. From my days of drinking coffee every morning my first couple years of college, I feel like coffee doesn’t give me the energy it used to anymore. TNhe many times I impulsively walk into the Starbucks on campus, I usually have to get my drink with an extra couple shots of espresso to even wake myself up. So, maybe now I’ll have to give Philz Coffee a shot.

photo: Nicolette Papile

I went to their online site and I love what this company stands for. The owner, Phil Jaber, is all about this dream that he had for creating a really great cup of coffee that is personalized to each individual. He wanted the coffee-making process to be both personal and social, so he designed his coffee should be crafted one cup at a time. The company stands by five rules: customers always first, believing in being nice, keeping it real, delivering on quality, and making progress. They not only about the quality of their product, but their customers as well and making connections with them so that they have a returning friend. They call their menu a “full service-coffee bar,” where they take care of everything from grinding the beans to mixing in each customer preferred amount of cream and sugar. Philz lives buy a “green bean buying,” which means, they buy only the highest quality green beans and give generously to Food4Framers and World Coffee Research. Their menu items remind me of drinks you would find at a swanky-hip bar somewhere in LA. Some of their darker blends have names like “Jacob’s Wonderbar,” which as hints of dark chocolate, smoke, nuts; also, “Tantalizing Turkish,” which as hints of cardamom, herbs, tobacco. Each are both very different then your typical latte from Starbucks. They also have medium blends, lights blends, decaf, iced coffee, and teas. All their drinks are unique and have combinations that you would never think of putting into coffee.   

So, next time I’m at Pacific City I’ll have to stop into Philz to see what all the “buzz” is about!

– Nicolette Papile

Information about Philz Coffee can be found on their website:

Style All Bundled Up

Photo: Summer Wright

Walking down the halls at OCC you will see many different trends, people sleeping, studying, A LOT of Starbucks… but, if you venture over to the halls of the OCC Fashion building you’ll see a different kind of trend. One that stands out right now is  the multitude of scarves. With the unusually cold and rainy weather we’ve been having in sunny Southern California, scarves seem to be the go-to cold weather staple accessory. 

Photo: Summer Wright

Long scarves worn draped down low, long scarves wrapped up tight around the neck, and  the classic infinity scarf are all popular styles seen on students in the fashion building. They are a great way to draw attention to your face and mix with all of your other cold weather layers, plus they tell help to tell a story of each person’s individual style. They dress up any outfit that may feel a little plain, and they may possibly be the coziest accessory around. So the next time you just aren’t sure what your outfit is missing turn to your scarf collection to find your answer!

– Summer Wright

Golden Years Vintage Market


A few weeks ago, I was in Down Town Santa Ana, CA at the 4th Street Market, a shopping and entertainment venue, that resembles a mini packing district. While there, I saw a small poster announcing ‘Golden Years Vintage Market’ on February 11, 2017 and made a plan to check it out. For some reason the vintage part didn’t click and assumed I was going to your standard swap meet, but I was surprised when I got there because it was much cooler than I imagined. At the event there were around 15 booths and they all had unique one of a kind items.  The atmosphere was so mellow and welcoming and all small booth owners were very friendly too.

shopgirls There was a variety of price points, which was great because it could fit in anyone’s budget with items starting at $10. Not only did I end up finding some unique pieces for myself, I also had the pleasure of meeting some awesome shop owners who were very inspiring. Featured in the image above, from left to right is Mumzy Vintage, West of the Barbary Fig and Christian Elizabeth Vintage. If you want to find some cute pieces follow them on Instagram, they all have killer unique styles.


I also feel in love with Elizabeth’s outfit, it was giving me sassy diva vibes and her fur coat was gorgeous! It really tied her look together. Wether you are into vintage items or not I definitely thing everyone should check out market whenever it is next in your area.

-Perla Garcilazo

-Photos: Perla Garcilazo