Rachel Zoe On Fashion's Frontlines
By Noah Michelson
Since picking up his first copy of Vogue at the age of twelve, Brad Goreski has been obsessed with fashion. After interning at the famed publication -- as well as W magazine -- while attending the University of Southern California, Goreski was hired as the West Coast assistant at Vogue. It was there that he began to follow the career of stylist to the stars -- and star in her own right -- Rachel Zoe. After nearly a year of pitching himself to Zoe for a second assistant gig on her team, Goreski scored the job and has been working with the style maven since 2008.
As if working with some of fashion and Hollywood's biggest names wasn't nerve wracking enough, Goreski's new job came with an unexpected bonus (or nightmare -- depending on how you look at it): starring on Zoe's Bravo reality series, The Rachel Zoe Project. With the premiere of the second season of the show only days away, Goreski phoned us from L.A. to chat about the female fashion icons of his youth, career tips from Rachel Zoe, and why embellished jeans are the enemy.
Out: Were you stylish as a kid?
Brad Goreski: Actually, yes. I was obsessed with Ralph Lauren, penny loafers, cuffed jeans, ESPRIT, and Benetton.
Right from the beginning?
Yeah.I always kind of putting an outfit together. I also went through a gymnastic slipper stage, which wasn't very well received.
Do you have a specific memory of a birthday or a Christmas where you got one item that you were especially excited about?
We used to get our clothes for back to school. We did it up like really, really big. And my mom was very smart -- she said we could go either right at the beginning when everything came out and we could get a few things, or we could wait until like a month after school started and we would go take a day off school and go shopping at the sales.
Yeah. We could get more stuff. I still hold that -- I don't really buy retail anymore, I wait for the sales.
Who were your first fashion icons?
[Laughs] They were all ladies: Marilyn Monroe, Madonna. And then when the supermodels arrived it was Naomi, Linda, Christy, all of those.
That whole gang
A gang I so much wanted to be a part of -- a teenager bopping around with the supermodels.
It's like the George Michael video for 'Freedom 90' -- I wanted that to be my life.
Oh, totally. Absolutely. I wanted that to be my life, too.
Everything was so smoky and wet. I loved it.
Yep, flawless makeup -- no matter what the environment.
Even in the bathtub. So, when you were offered the chance to be on the show, were you weary of it? Or did you jump at the chance immediately?
I think I was more excited to be working for Rachel. The show was kind of a byproduct of having to work with her. So it wasn't that I jumped at the chance to be on the show, it was more that I jumped at the chance to work with Rachel. And whatever was part of the job description was something I was willing to do.
Could you put any restrictions on the cameras? Was there anything you could say was off-limits?
I just went with it. The show is about Rachel and her brand and what she does. My personal life is kind of something that I didn't really want involved with the show. Everything centers around Rachel and her world, so that was probably my biggest restriction but other than that you can clearly see from some of the things that were aired, there aren't that many restrictions.
Do you feel like you were accurately portrayed on the show?
Yeah, I do. I was very green. I was trying to assimilate myself into Rachel's world and Taylor's [Rachel's first assistant] world. It was a little difficult but that was the way Taylor acted, those were the things that I did, and those were things that happened to me.
Rachel ends up in the tabloids and on blogs all the time. Do you read press about yourself or about the show?
It depends what it is. My mom will send stuff to me but there's really no good in going into blog comments and stuff like that. So I don't really pay that much attention to it. I get so many emails a day as it is just for work so it's hard for me to kind of sit down and -- I don't really want to delve that deep into it. I just hope people like what they see on the air and are entertained by it. As long as there's a positive response when I'm out or whatever, that's all the good stuff. I don't really need to know the bad if there is any out there.