PowerSolve talks to Frances, a fashion blogger and writer from London
What do you love about your job?
I’ve LOVED FASHION for as long as I can remember. My earliest memories are of my mum getting dressed up for dinner parties – I would watch her put together an outfit so effortlessly. She always looked so elegant and poised, which is definitely not a trait I’ve inherited. Although I’m quite casual and almost grungy at heart, I certainly picked up mum’s eye for clothing. The little details or the quality of a fabric never fail to escape me. The minute I picked up a copy of Vogue and saw all the pretty things, I knew exactly what I wanted to do.
Although I live in London, I only spend about 25% of my time here. As a blogger and fashion writer I can work from almost anywhere as long as I have my laptop, iPhone 5s, digital camera and iPad mini nearby. My busiest times are during Fashion Week in LONDON, NEW YORK, PARIS or MILAN and I’m spending more and more time in Berlin these days.
I cut my teeth working for a well known magazine publisher in London and was seconded to the New York HQ as a features writer, which is when I started BLOGGING on the side. While I would never go back to working for a big publisher like that again, I learned so much about WRITING and FASHION when I was there. Eventually one of the digital fashion magazines liked my blog so much that they turned it into a regular feature, which is how my career has evolved.
30-years ago the way I live and work would not have been possible. Even If I’m at a show I’ll be busy updating images to my social media sites before heading back to my digs to write a blog or freelance commission. I have an international readership that relies on my ability to spot the NEXT BIG TREND. I love having that variety in my work life; however it doesn’t make relationships that easy. My fiancé is a director in New York and sometimes it feels like we only get to see each other on a tablet or smartphone screen!
Where is your office?
All over. Hotels, my flat in London, my boyfriend’s apartment in New York.
New York, London, Milan or Paris?
Although I love the charm of Europe, there really is something about New York. Everything is close at hand for die hard fashion lovers from Fifth Avenue stores to the boutiques of Soho and West Broadway. My perfect Sunday morning is in NYC…yoga at the Namaste studio in Brooklyn followed by brunch with friends.
For me London is synonymous with the fashion trade, fashion emporiums like Liberty and family of course. I love the traditional textile shops that can be found in abundance in the tiny side streets just off Oxford Circus. Places like The Cloth House, Silk Society, Misan Textiles, Biddle Sawyer Silks, Berwick Street Cloth Shop and Borovick. Even if you’re not buying they’re worth a browse as the stock is to die for.
Paris is magical but it can be particularly hard on the wallet if you don’t know where to go for a fashion bargain. My first stop when I’m in the city is the designer seconds outlet Mistigrif, where you can buy the best known names in men’s, women’s and children’s wear, discounted by up to 85%. The French don’t really do charity shops but Ding Fring and Guerrisol are something else. I bought an exquisite 1970s Dior evening gown at Ding Fring for only €40.
Milan is often misunderstood by first time visitors but I think it may be one of my favourite places. Beautiful glossy brand shop fronts are in abundance in Quadrilatero della Moda, the people really ARE incredibly stylish and the big names in Italian fashion have their headquarters. It takes a bit more effort to crack this city, but it is well worth effort. It’s teaming with talented artisans if you know where to look.
What are your tips for aspiring fashion bloggers?
Buy a good digital camera
Be confident in what you’re writing about
Be equally confident in your style
Like what you like
It’s not all about brands
Posting frequency is import BUT if you don’t have something to say, don’t say it.
Make sure your copy and images are balanced
Pay attention to layout
What Equipment do you carry?
Because I spend a lot of time travelling I like to keep it simple. I travel with one carry-on bag and my black Osprey work bag, which carries everything I require to do my job. My iPhone, laptop, iPad mini, digital camera, a small note book, a pen and my back up power.
Sometimes I arrive at a show straight from the airport. Although I try to sleep on the flight, I usually do some work, which means depleting the batteries of the technology I need most. To ensure my mobile, iPad mini and camera don’t die on me; I carry the PowerSolve SPB5000 Power Bank. I also have the PowerSolve Ultra Slim SPB8000 Power Bank, which is tiny enough to fit in a clutch bag if I’m attending an after party.