Browsing Tag

Fashion Bloggers

Date with Kate

DATE WITH KATE: SARA DONALDSON

9th October, 2016
7537616f324d9037e5ca179b3b6f8d93

Sara Donaldson and I having lunch at Four in Hand, Paddington

Sara Donaldson is the blogger behind fashion and beauty blog Harper & Harley and has a combined reach of more than 800,000 followers across her social media channels. She was among the main cast on the reality TV show Fashion Bloggers and recently launched an online fashion store, The Undone, with business partner Georgia Martina. Donaldson, 27, chats to me about blogging fame, why finding balance can be a struggle, and her biggest surprise at having an online shop.

How did you first get into blogging? 

I was at university and I was reading really old school blogs. Growing up in Brisbane, there was nothing really going on there, so I just started blogging while I was at university and working part-time as a sales assistant … Then I moved to Sydney and I had a full-time [marketing] role but I was still blogging … And then I finally gave it all up and just did my blog.

What was the defining moment when you decided to take on blogging as a full-time career? 

Five years into Harper and Harley, it was at a point where the industry had changed [so] I could monetise my blog in such a way that I was earning more from my blog than I was with my full-time job … I was quite reserved in stepping away from having another job because I felt like it was a safety net. I didn’t want to launch into it because I wasn’t quite sure where it was going to go.

What are the main ways you monetised your blog? 

Affiliate networks like RewardStyle or ShopStyle, and then also doing sponsored posts for the brands.

What opportunities and doors has blogging opened for you? 

Well, being part of Fashion Bloggers was incredible… [and] it’s just wonderful that I can call amazing brands and designers my friends.

What is the secret to your blogging success?

I’m was an early adopter. It’s also about having consistent content and making sure that content is really premium. You can’t just throw up a bunch of stuff in the air and hope that does well. You have to make sure it’s all done professionally … You have to give your readers advice or give them something that’s a bit special.

With so many blogs out there, what sets you and your blog apart?

I think it’s the black, white and grey [colour scheme].

What is the best thing about what you do? 

Being able to travel, just being independent, not having to work for anyone else but yourself. It’s wonderful. Everyone should have a chance to do that, if it works for them.

What’s the worst part about what you do?

I think it’s just not being able to stop. Even if you want to, you can’t stop.

What is it like to have a career that many young girls dreams about? 

I receive emails all the time from girls in high school that want to be a blogger and they want advice on how to do that.

What is your advice to an upcoming blogger?

Create great content … [But] don’t think you’re going to get instant readers or instant followers. It’s not about getting the highest number of followers on social media … The industry is very fast and, just like a model, your lifespan is quite short. So make sure you have the education. I feel like I’m really successful because I had my marketing background and my experience in the workplace.

What’s your plan for life after blogging? 

I feel like there will be a time in the next few years [when] the industry will change or maybe I [will] have moved on to something else. Running The Undone is so important, and making sure the business doesn’t have my face all over it, so that I can step away, because I do struggle with the fact that I can’t step away from blogging. I can’t take a holiday… It is a 24/7, 365-day job.

You launched The Undone in July. How did you transition from fashion blogger to online store owner? 

I built [Harper and Harley] with an online shopping angle and it was about building a wardrobe that was really diverse and everything paired up with each other. I was able to divert sales on Harper and Harley for other online stores, up to a point where I’m like, “Well, why am I sending it to someone else when I could have it myself?”

Was it always your career goal to open a fashion store?

No. I’ve been [a blogger] for 7½ years and I needed the “phase two” to happen … It’s a big deal for anyone in their 20s – or anyone really, these days – sticking to something that long. So I just needed something else to re-energise me.

How is The Undone performing as a business so far? 

We’re really happy with our first few months of trade. The Undone has such an advantage compared with other new retail outlets, with a ready-made audience due to the Harper and Harley platforms, and we’ve definitely seen that come through via our sales for the store.

What have you found most surprising in terms of having your own online store?

I thought I knew how fast the fashion industry operated, but now that I’m part of the retail-buying process, it’s becoming much more apparent to me. It’s a never-ending cycle, you’re constantly working on two or three seasons at a time: the one you physically have on hand for your customers, the one that’s about to arrive and the one you’re buying for.

Will you still concentrate on your blog now you’ve got The Undone?

It definitely is a struggle because The Undone is so exciting and I want to be doing that full-time and give that all of my attention, but I can’t forget about Harper and Harley. It’s still such a big part of what I do. I have to definitely balance between the two for a while.

What do you do for fun when you’re not working?

Hanging out with my dogs and my boyfriend … We go to the dog park in Manly with a coffee and just chill there for a little bit until we’re exhausted … We’re not big party people.

BITE SIZE

WE WENT TO Four in Hand Hotel, Paddington

WE ATE Spanish Mackarel, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Anchovy Butter; Pumpkin, Chessnuts, Endive, Kombu Butter; Iceberg Lettuce, Egg, Radish, Chives

WE DRANK Sparkling Water

SARA WORE Natan and an Iro leather jacket

Fashion

12 Insta-outfit ideas to steal

3rd October, 2016

Scrolling through Instagram and checking out #ootd posts is one of my favourite ways to get outfit ideas. If you’re looking for a little wardrobe inspiration for the week look no further than some of the world’s top fashion bloggers…

A photo posted by Aimee Song (@songofstyle) on

A tonal look makes a stylish impact. Team it with minimal accessories to keep it looking chic.

You can never go wrong with a bright pop of colour, especially when it comes in the form of a statement shoe.

Accessories are front and centre again so don’t be afraid to experiment with some bold ear candy to give your look a modern update.

Pyjama dressing is one trend that’s been an unexpected hit. Try a pyjama-inspired dress for an easy to wear take on this trend.

Wearing bold prints from head to toe is not for the faint hearted but when you keep it in the same family like this chevron print it instantly becomes all the more wearable.

A photo posted by Nicole Warne (@garypeppergirl) on

Pair unexpected colours like this rust and terracotta combination for a look that is on trend.

A photo posted by Emily Weiss (@emilywweiss) on

Mix and match textures such as satin and denim to give an outfit an added level of interest.

The classic white shirt is always a wardrobe staple but why not experiment with how you wear it? You could try buttoning it all the way through, simply rolling up the sleeves or tying it in a knot a la Camille Charrière.

A photo posted by Elin Kling (@elinkling) on

Wide leg pants are definitely one trend to watch out for this season. Incorporate it into your wardrobe with a pair of simple black slacks or alternatively embrace this silhouette in a printed pattern or vibrant colour.

Sunglasses are one of my fave ways to give an outfit a different spin. Mirrored lenses, a cat-eye or round frame, or embellishment or just some of the ways in which you can make your sunnies a talking point.

A photo posted by Jane Aldridge (@seaofshoes) on

Slides are going to have quite a presence during spring/summer so add a pair to your wardrobe now. You could opt for something simple or have some fun and embrace a pair with a unique finish like this pair with gilded buckles.

A photo posted by by Danielle (@weworewhat) on

Don’t forget the denim skirt this season. A simple A-line silhouette will definitely get a workout during the warmer months.

 

Fashion

6 Women to turn to in a wardrobe rut

26th September, 2016

It’s a familiar scenario: it’s the start of the week and you’ve already hit a styling block. It can be hard to get your fashion styling juices flowing at times so it pays to have a few guaranteed sources of inspiration to turn to in those dire times when you look into the depths of your wardrobe and think you’ve got absolutely nothing to wear. The truth is you do. It’s just a matter of seeing what you currently own in a new way. That’s when it pays to hit up some stylish women’s social media accounts to help you reframe the way you think.

The style icon: Olivia Palermo

Frankly the woman could wear a paper bag and it would considered the height of fashion! However Palermo is the perfect person to turn to if you want a little nudge in the fashion experimentation department. She mixes prints, textures and colours and makes it look oh-so easy.

olivia

The fashion blogger: Nicole Warne

She’s perfectly put together all the time and her ensembles always have a unique touch whether it be a pair of statement heels or a bold dress. If you’re after a little polish in your look, then Warne is your ideal wardrobe icon.

nicole-warne

The fashion stylist: Christine Centenera

She’s the fashion director of Vogue Australia and her outfits are always next-level. Centenera always pushes fashion boundaries whilst always maintaining her signature look and demonstrates how you can take a designer piece and make it totally your own.
christine-centenera

The editor-in-chief: Emmanuelle Alt

The editor-in-chief of French Vogue is known for her slightly androgynous looks. Her penchant for wearing slacks with collared silk blouses has always been one of her staple looks and just goes to show that once you have a winning formula it doesn’t hurt to stick with it.

emanuelle-alt

The digital entrepreneur: Miroslava Duma

The diminutive founder of Buro 24/7 and The Tot is a constant on my style radar simply because of her ability to flit from boho chic one minute to sharp tailoring the next. Whether she’s in jeans and a tee or a floaty summer dress, Duma can always be relied upon for an outfit idea or two.

mira-duma

The fashion retailer: Lauren Santo Domingo

Santo Domingo is a contributing editor to Vogue and the founder of luxury e-commerce site Moda Operandi. The statuesque Santo Domingo is like a modern day incarnation of an old Hollywood star, her looks are always elegant and always classic and would stand the test of time.

lauren-santo-domingo

Fashion, Shop

Instagram outfits to give you wardrobe inspo this week

4th July, 2016

Oh, Instagram. So many great outfits, so little time. One of the great things about Instagram is having small bite-sized pieces of fashion inspo at your fingertips at all hours of the day. If you’re ever having one of those days where you’re scratching your head about what to wear Instagram can often be a great place to spark an outfit idea or two. This week, let these ladies inspire you…

Jessica Stein

The endless snaps of her jetsetting lifestyle will inspire some major wanderlust but follow Stein and you’ll also be guaranteed a steady stream of great looks to inspire you. The below look – double denim done oh-so well will inspire you to invest in some flares and snap up a chambray shirt immediately. You could also try the look with your favourite skinny jeans if flares aren’t your thing.

 

Jesinta Campbell

Let Campbell inspire you to adopt some great neckwear this week. Try a black skinny scarf or a great choker to give your wardrobe some instant on-trend cred.

Taylor Tomasi Hill

If the former accessories director of Marie Claire and artistic director of Moda Operandi has taught us anything it’s that a pop of colour or a pattern can instantly liven up an all-black ensemble. The striped shirt and pop of blue give this outfit a bit of personality. So this week, if you’re usually one for wearing black from head to toe why not branch out and add a print or a vibrant hue to your outfit to give it a point of difference.

 

Miroslava Duma

The diminuitive digital mogul and founder of Buro 24/7 rarely ever puts a fashion foot wrong so she’s always guaranteed to provide an outfit idea or two. So why not try an unexpected pairing this week by teaming a midi skirt with a white cotton top or even a simple white tee? It’s a winning high-low mix.

A photo posted by Miroslava Duma (@miraduma) on

 

Aimee Song

A button down shirt can be one of the most versatile things you’ll ever own but sometimes it can err on the side of conservative. So why not mix it up this week by layering it with a vest – bonus brownie points if you can find a leather one with loads of attitude a la Song.

A photo posted by Aimee Song (@songofstyle) on

Fashion

Fashion Bloggers is nominated for a Logie!

24th November, 2015

383_logies_fashionbloggers

I have some very exciting news to share with you all… Fashion Bloggers has been nominated in the best reality TV category at the TV Week Logie Awards! If you loved the show don’t forget to cast your vote here. Keep your fingers crossed for the girls and I!

Date with Kate

Date with Kate: Torah Bright

9th July, 2015
Breakfast with Torah Bright at Flat White cafe in Woollahra. Photo: Mimi Liu

Breakfast with Torah Bright at Flat White cafe in Woollahra. Photo: Mimi Liu

Australian snowboarder Torah Bright won gold at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics and silver in Sochi in 2014. Bright is currently back in Australia and is the ambassador for Thredbo Resort. Kate Waterhouse caught up with the 28-year-old to chat about how her love of snowboarding began, winning gold and plans for the future.

When did your love of snowboarding start?

I grew up in Cooma, so being in the mountains this was just what we did as a family. I learnt how to ski first when I was about two years old. And then, I was one of those little kids who made fun of snowboarders! There is a little bit of a divide [between skiers and snowboarders]. I used to call [snowboarders] all sorts of names, names I won’t repeat right now! [Laughs]

What is it like to be an Olympic gold medallist?

Sometimes I think, “It’s nothing.” But, then when I think about it, I’m like, “No. It is something I will really hold it dear because the Olympics is the Mecca of any sport and I’ve won a gold medal.” It’s going to be a great story to tell the grandkids one day!

What was that moment like when you won gold?

I remember being so relieved. Coming into Vancouver I had a few concussions and I didn’t know if I was going to compete or not. I arrived in Vancouver and I was getting checked out by the doctors and I thought I’d just go out to training and see how it felt. I took it really easy and conditions were terrible. I thought, “They [conditions] are so bad. But, I’m just going to have a laugh and it doesn’t matter what happens.” But then, on the day, the one day that counted every four years, I was able to put a run together that won me gold. It was a relief to actually have done a run, landed a run and the run I wanted to do. And then, I remember my parents told me they weren’t coming because I didn’t want them to come and there they were in the stands.

Why didn’t you want your parents there?

I didn’t want more pressure on myself. Just not knowing if I was going to be well enough to even compete. So I asked them not to come and they told me they weren’t. But they were there. It made the gold medal more special.

Are you training for the next Winter Olympics?

Yes. That’s the plan. Post-Olympic year, I always take off. I slow down on the competition. Last year I just did X Games and that was it. I just re-connect with snowboarding the way that best makes me happy. I call it my stoking. So, I just get stoked on snowboarding to then give me the energy and will to want to keep going because I don’t love competing.

What do you mean? Are you not competitive?

Well, everybody would say I would be because that’s what I do for a living. But, I’m competitive only with myself. I love to push myself. I love to better myself. But I don’t care to be the “best”.

Is it hard to find that competitive spirit if it doesn’t come naturally?

No. Because I grew up competing in every sport I did. So it was just naturally what I’ve been doing my whole life. I guess the competitive spirit is just, for me, putting on a great show because there’s an artistic side to it. So, when I can get to an event and feel prepared and comfortable and be able to put on a great show, I’m pumped, no matter whether I win, lose or draw.

What’s your role with Thredbo?

My main job is to spark interest in people to just experience snow for the first time and the magic of snow. There is such as special beauty in the snowy mountains. A lot of the international snowboarding community now comes to Australia because it is so good.

What do you do for fun when you’re not on the snowfields?

I’m always outdoors and active. I surf, I mountain bike, I participate in any sport under the sun pretty much. I’ll try anything once.

You are a role model for so many, is that a lot of pressure?

No. I definitely never think or say or do anything that I think I need to act that way because that’s the right way to do.  I live to the beat of my own heart and I live by the dictates of my own conscious and I do what I think is right for me. I think that’s a pretty healthy way to live. So if young girls or anybody see that and want to live their lives like that too it’s power to them.

You’ve won a gold medal, what’s next on your bucket list?

I still want to better myself as a snowboarder. Outside of the competitive ground, snowboarding has so many facets of snowboarding that I haven’t had the chance to experience yet. The plan is going to the next Olympics, but in the meantime, I want to go and ride the mountain powder.

Do you hope to win more Olympic gold medals?

I don’t go to the Olympics to win a medal… actually, I did when I went to Vancouver. I wanted to win for sure. But it almost killed me. So I thought, “I’m dropping that.” I love snowboarding. I’m good at it and I’m going to just work hard at it and whatever would be will be. So, I’ve never gone back to another Olympics or any event to win because it just doesn’t matter to me.

Do you have a mantra that you live by?

What comes to mind is the quote: “Live your life with honour, humility, passion, love and laughter, always within you.” I don’t know. I just feel we’re here to find and seek happiness and no matter what we do that should always be our goal.

Where do you see yourself in five years time?

I’ll be 33. I think the competitive side of snowboarding will definitely be done for me. It’s so hard on the body and there’s more to life than snowboarding. I want to have a family. There’s just so much more to life that I care more about than competing. For sure, I’d always snowboard. I’d always want to give back to the sport that has given me so much and be involved in the legacy.

BITE SIZE

WE WENT TO Flat White cafe, Woollahra

WE ATE Free-range scrambled eggs with avocado, haloumi and sourdough toast.

WE DRANK Herbal tea.

TORAH WORE Roxy jeans and shirt and leather jacket.

I WORE a Kookai vest and white top.

 

See behind the scenes from this interview on Fashion Bloggers tonight at 9:30pm on Foxtel’s E! channel.

Date with Kate, Fashion

Date with Kate: Dion Lee

25th June, 2015
Lunch with Dion Lee

Lunch with Dion Lee

Dion Lee is one of the most exciting and sought after designers in Australian fashion and is releasing a one-off women’s collection for Target on July 2. I caught up with Lee to chat about the Dion Lee for Target range, his design process and aspirations to pursue film or sculpture.

How did your collaboration with Target come about? 

Target approached me about doing collaboration about a year ago … I was considering how I would approach something like this and I was quite drawn to a performance-wear range, something that was quite athletic and incorporated a lot of the technical fabrications that I have within the collection, but doing it in a way that felt accessible and easy to the Target customer.

What is your design process? 

It’s quite different for each collection. I suppose you are designing all the time and you are constantly seeing things when you travel. I try to explain to people that it’s kind of the collage that is going on in your head. You’re always inspired by new films, art, culture, and you are responding to what people around you are wearing and I suppose it’s the ideas that come from that.

Does the process differ when you are designing a collection for Target, compared to your own main line? 

It’s very different compared to when designing for our main-line runway collection because [my main line] is a very specific product and is really about exploring each idea as beautifully and as elevated as we can, and this was about designing a product that is as inclusive as possible and speaking to a much broader audience. So there was a lot more consideration about the fabric, body shape and other things that all had to be taken into account.

Do you still get nervous when launching a new collection?

I do, definitely! And I think for this, it was a new capsule and something that I hadn’t done before so it did still feel that nervous process.

Is it just a capsule collection or will it continue?

It is just a capsule collection; it’s only in store for four weeks. But I’ve really enjoyed this category so I am open to what might happen.

You’re joined a long list of esteemed designers who have collaborated with Target, including Missoni, Roberto Cavalli and Stella McCartney. Do you expect a stampede when it hits stores?

[Laughs] I’m not sure, I suppose I hope so but I don’t think I’ll be going into store to watch!

What is a woman’s ultimate wardrobe essential?

A tailored black blazer is the most important element to a woman’s wardrobe. It’s a classic piece that works back with everything.

When you were younger did you always envisage your life the way it is today? 

Definitely not. I think that the past few years have been pretty crazy and the brand is continuing to grow. I think the next thing for me is to continue to build the international business and spending more time overseas. I’m really excited about what’s next.

What are your plans internationally?

We are continuing to show in New York, which is really strong market for us, so it’s important to spend more time there and support the growth there.

Do you have plans to expand into other lines within your business? 

Yes, definitely. We are working on accessories at the moment: eyewear, a shoe collection and also some other projects that I can’t talk about just yet. And I would love to work on men’s wear eventually. I’m just waiting on the right time to do that. It’s almost like a new business and I would need a whole team to manage that.

If you could dress anyone in your designs, who would it be?

I’d love to one day dress Cate Blanchett in the collection.

Your designs have been seen in the pages of American Vogue. What’s it like when you have to show your collection to Anna Wintour – is that daunting? 

Yes, it’s very daunting [laughs]. I still get very nervous in those situations. I think that I am becoming more comfortable in those scenarios but it definitely takes some practice. It’s never not scary [laughs]!

What is she like? 

She has a very intelligent perspective view on fashion and was very interested in speaking about my business and where my clothes were made and getting a real understanding to what kind of designer I was. She comes at it from a business perspective, which is great. You can see that from all the American designers she has supported; she’s very good at foresting them as really strong businesses.

Where do you see yourself in five years’ time? 

Hopefully working between Australia and New York and continuing to work with new and exciting people and continuing to be really inspired by what I’m doing.

What do you do in your spare time?

I always try and do something that takes me away from my work. I try and go away a bit and make the most of my weekends. I went to Tasmania a couple of weekends ago and New Zealand a few weeks before that. I just try to explore and go to new places and do some hiking.

If you didn’t become a designer, what would you have done? 

I would have explored film and potentially explored directing. I really love the creative-direction elements of my role … and trying to convey a strong feeling, and would love to explore that in film.

Will you ever pursue directing? 

Yes, I would definitely love to do that. Film or sculpture, I would definitely love another creative profession that allowed me to explore the ideas [that I have] in a different way.

What are some of your favourite films?

I love  Michel Gondry films. He’s a French director, his films are often very abstract and, I suppose, surreal in ways, and I love things that mix an element of things that are quite realistic with techniques that are quite abstract and surreal.

 

BITE SIZE

WE WENT TO La Porte Space, Waterloo.

WE ATE a selection of cakes and pastries.

WE DRANK coffee and tea

DION WORE Nike shoes, Acne jeans and Cos sweater.

I WORE Christopher Esber skirt and top.

See behind the scenes from this interview on Fashion Bloggers on tonight at 9:30pm on Foxtel’s E! channel.

Date with Kate, Fashion

Date with Kate: Fashion Bloggers

31st May, 2015
Lunch with Nadia Fairfax, (left)  Sara Donaldson and Zanita Whittington at Woollahra's Hotel Centennial, Photo: Mimi Liu

Lunch with Nadia Fairfax, (left) Sara Donaldson and Zanita Whittington at Woollahra’s Hotel Centennial, Photo: Mimi Liu

Bloggers Zanita Whittington, Sara Donaldson and Nadia Fairfax are carving out a career in blogging and rank among the most influential online voices in Australian fashion, with a combined reach of over a million followers across their social-media platforms. They are also my co-stars in the coming season of reality TV show Fashion Bloggers, which goes behind the scenes of their lives. I caught up with the girls to chat about the life as a super blogger, the hurdles they have faced in the industry and starring in their own reality show.

Tell me a day in the life of you?

Zanita: I usually struggle to get out of bed – but always set my alarm around 6.30am. I spend about an hour on social media and emails in the morning and then I’ll probably dress up in my gym gear and mean to do some exercise but really just try to touch my toes for two minutes and get some coffee. From there I’ll start working on posts and major correspondence. If I’m not working from home I’ll be out shooting on working on projects and If I’m not doing that, I’m likely on a plane.

Sara: It usually starts with answering emails and posting the first social media post of the day. Every day is different but mostly it’s spent in front of the computer, otherwise it’s on the phone with my managers, attending meeting with PR’s and brands and coordinating my content.

How did you get into a blogging? 

Sara: I started Harper and Harley over six years ago while I was completing my marketing degree up in Brisbane where I grew up. I knew I wanted to work in fashion but had no idea how to go about it, so the blog was a pure hobby and blogging wasn’t what it is now.

When did you realise you could make blogging a career? 

Sara: I had a few years behind me when the industry changed and blogging in itself had developed into its own industry and brands were looking to work with bloggers to tap into their audience. Because I was once of the few fashion bloggers that had been around for some time I had gained the followers that these brands wanted to speak to.

Nadia: Before I even started my blog! I was lucky enough to have a growing social media following before Fairfax Journal began.I was being approached to work with brands on a regular basis. It was a very organic process. Having a blog was the only next step.

What is the best part about what you do?

Zanita: The best part about what I do is really just being the master of my own destiny. My blogging career has been a slow burn, building up from a hobby and I never became fully aware of how great it is to have you’re own business until more recently. You get to reap the whole rewards of your own hard work.

Sara: The best part is that I’m able to run my own business and have the freedom that comes with that. It really is quite remarkable that this industry has evolved and young women have the ability to be their own bosses.

What is the worst?

Zanita: Personally the absolute worst thing is when you hear about the distain that’s held for fashion bloggers within the industry, particular when it’s like ‘X’ brand or magazine won’t work with bloggers. We all got into this business because of how much we love fashion and this industry, it’s a bit of a stab to get that kind of feedback.

Sara: The worst part is that you can never switch off. There is always something to upload or post. Say goodbye to weekends, evenings and no holiday goes by without posting.

Nadia: Our world is filled with social media platforms so there will always be some negativity and a couple of trolls. I unfortunately get a little criticism about my size, I am very petite (and proud!) so is my mother and my mothers mother. It’s unfortunate that there is a stigma that comes with working in the fashion industry – that all l girls are starving themselves to look a certain way. There are also a lot of girls / women who are just genetically thin who are made to feel like they need curves like Kim Kardashion to feel attractive. Body shaming works both ways, people need to be aware that it is extremely rude to write “Eat a steak” on ones social media platforms, especially when it was what I ate for lunch today – With a side of fries!

So many people are bloggers today, what do you think is the secret to your success?

Zanita: It’s tough for me to share the method to my success because it was really just about feeling it out. You need to be both genuine and original.

Sara: Being consistent is key. Not just with the quantity of posts but the quality as well. you need both, not one or the other.

Nadia: Not being afraid. I am not adhering to any pre-conceptions about blogging, or following the “norm” in our industry. I make my own rules! I feel a lot of aspiring bloggers are mimicking some of the big names. Find your own aesthetic, there is a giant gap in the market for emerging bloggers, someone step up to the plate please!

Being such a successful blogger, what is the most exciting opportunity it has opened up for you?

Zanita: Two things, being part of Fashion Bloggers and being on the cover of Conde Nast’s Lucky Magazine alongside Nicole Warne and Chiara Ferragni.

Sara: Being on a reality TV show that is viewed in over 100 countries around the world is hard to beat to be quite honest. However, being about to design my own range of shoes with Tony Bianco last year was quite amazing.

Nadia: Why thank you Kate, Most certainly being invited to join the Fashion Bloggers team, being able to share our story with people all over the world is wild! The show is aired in over 100 countries now! I am also the Australian Fashion Ambassador for Samsung, I am very fortunate to work with one of the worlds largest and best technology brands, what we do is highly focused around technology and its very special to “be in bed” with the best. I have creative input on the projects we work on together and the content we create, It’s quite surreal.

What is the biggest misconception about what you do?

Zanita: That we’re in it for free stuff!

Sara: I think the media and peers in general find fashion bloggers an easy target because we’re mostly young women, and the notion of being sent product and flown around the world and be paid for it is actually quite hard to digest, even I think it’s incredible. What they don’t see though is the work that goes into creating a brand that is able to generate the following to be considered influential. At the end of the day bloggers have something brands want, and thats why they work with them.

If you hadn’t gone into a career in fashion, what would you be doing?

Zanita: Probably a personal trainer or nutritionist, its a pretty common segue for former models.

Sara: My family owns and runs a kitchenware wholesaling business, so there is a high chance I would be selling spatulas and apple peelers if I wasn’t as determined to be in fashion.

Nadia: This one is easy! I’d be an Olympic gymnast or a Sports Journalist. I was an elite athlete at the Australian institute of sport for many years and my father was a wallaby. Although sport isn’t present on my blog, it is still such a big part of my life. GO the TAHS!

What has been your biggest pinch-me moment?

Zanita: Being flown to Paris to be part of the Lucky Magazine cover shoot… I may have ugly cried with excitement and happiness. It was beyond surreal.

Sara: Every time someone comes up to me and says they follow my blog I honestly am blown away. It’s a very strange situation to have online relationships with hundreds of thousands of people but see them as a number. It’s when they break that down and I can put a face to them that it all becomes real.

Nadia: When my wonderful parents realised that blogging was an actual career![laughs]. I think they thought I had just been taking selfies in bed for the last year! I love that the generation above us have started to use Instagram and follow blogs etc, it’s fantastic! I think it is always a “pinch yourself” moment when you have been found credible by those ahead of you.

You have readers all around the world, where is the strangers place you have been recognised?

Zanita: It’s always bizarre being recognised in another city outside of Australia… strangely enough it happens for me alot more in New York than it does in Sydney! Maybe its because Americans are more forward about approaching you.

Sara: I was crossing the street in London and had some girls come say hi. That was really nice. But also when I’m in my neighbourhood doing my normal non Harper and Harley stuff like picking up some fish and chips for dinner and get recognised I get taken aback. I’ve learnt that you should always make an effort… just in case!

Did you ever think when you first started your blog, you would be starring in a TV show?

Zanita: When I was seven years old, I decide my three options for  career were model, actress or singer. I feel like I ended up in some kind of middle ground. Can’t say I would have predicted this when I started my blog!

Sara: If I could tell my 19 year old self that this was going to happen I’m not sure I would have gone ahead with it!

Nadia: Never in a million years, but in saying that I never been one to shy away the lens of a camera. It’s no surprise to me that I have moved in this direction. I am thoroughly enjoying the process of making the show and feel strongly about the messages we are conveying to the world. GIRL POWER!

Have you enjoyed being on the show?

Zanita: Enormously – I had no idea what being part of it was going to be like but between the other girls in the cast and the production team, we are like a little family.

What is it like to watch yourself on TV?

Zanita: Half the time it’s really fun and half the time I hate it with a passion. With my blog and even my youtube channel,  I can filter anything about myself that makes me uncomfortable, but with the show I have no control over that. Even some of my mannerisms make me cringe.

Sara: Watching yourself on TV is the worst part, you pick apart everything you’re doing from the way your face moves, what your hair looks like to the sound of your voice. I just love watching all the other girls. In particular I can’t wait to see Nadia on the show, she is hilarious in person so I hope that she’s really welcomed and loved by the viewers.

Nadia: I only made a few cameo appearances last season and I was left wanting more. I can only imagine I won’t mind it! Gosh, How vain do I sound? It is mostly because we have a very talented production team working behind the scenes and as a cast we are very natural. There is not much to be afraid of.

What should viewers expect to see you do on Fashion Bloggers this season?

Zanita: I can’t even remember. I’ve had the biggest whirlwind few months – all I can say is it’s just pure craziness.

What is the secret to a good Instagram shot?

Zanita: Good editing! It needs to be bright and punchy. You only have a second to make an impression on Instagram so your pictures need to be really striking. No pictures of friends out partying! Those pics never get the likes.

Do you have any tips or tricks for taking a great selfie?

Zanita: Stand in the window, looking into the light. Works everytime.

Sara: It’s all about finding good light, it’s make or break. Face a window is your best bet!

Nadia: Just keep snapping…. The more you take the higher the chance is you’ve captured a great one, and of course, just like your teacher told you about handwriting – Practice makes perfect!

Who is your favourite person to follow on Instagram and why?

Zanita: @snoopybabe – it’s my favourite inst-cat. Instagram is amazing for people with pet envy.

Nadia: Lena Perminova, she is a Russian socialite / model / Mother / theralantropist etc, She has divine style and she is surrounded by many interesting people.

What do you do for fun in your spare time?

Zanita: Spare time? What is this concept?

Nadia:  I “Date with Kate” – in real life! I am a very social being, I love to lunch. Sydney is sprawling with incredible eateries and I try my best dine at them all.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

Zanita: My dream is to have my own photo studio, so hopefully I’ll have that.

Sara: The great thing about blogging is that your blog and readers grow with you, so If I was still contributing content to Harper and Harley in 10 years time and still enjoying it then I would be quite happy with that.

Nadia: Married with children! Of course continuing working on my site and all things fashion, but creating a family is certainly number one for me.

Fashion

Fashion Bloggers at MBFWA

15th April, 2015

IMG_6055_2

One of the great parts about this year’s Fashion Week is that I’ve been able to spend a lot of time with the Fashion Bloggers ladies. We’ve been busy capturing the craziness of Fashion Week for the show and I’m looking forward to all of you seeing it! Nadia and I spent some time shooting with Becky Yorston and Bridget Cooper aka Bec and Bridge at their show and also managed to get backstage to check out the behind the scenes action. As you might expect it’s manic! Can’t wait for you all to check out the finished product very, very soon…

IMG_5794

IMG_5860

IMG_5879

IMG_5917_2

Photos: Sophia Athas

Fashion, Lifestyle

Escaping with Michael Kors

20th November, 2014

kate-resized

It’s not often you get to take a life time-out mid-week, but I did just that last week when I flew to Byron Bay as part of Michael Kors Jet Set Day with a few of my fellow fashion bloggers.

Our luxurious day out started at the Michael Kors boutique in Sydney where we picked out a few pieces from the collection to wear on our trip. After that it was straight to the airport where we prepared to board our private jet. (As this was probably the first and only time I will ever fly by private jet this was a major highlight for me!) We flew to Byron and enjoyed a leisurely lunch at Rae’s on Wategos at Wategos Beach. The food was just amazing. And what better way to cap off a lovely day than being pampered with a pedicure and a spa treatment after lunch. Pure bliss.

store-resized

group-resized

interior-plane-2-resized

lunch-at-raes

raes-meal-resized

kate-plane-interior-resized

Do you want to win your very own Michael Kors escape complete with private jet, gourmet lunch and five-star pampering? All you have to do is purchase a Michael Kors watch to enter and visit www.michaelkorsescape.com.au for more details.

 

*Advertorial post brought to you by Michael Kors