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Haute Influence: Bloggers making their mark on the fashion world

April 3, 2012

Print is going extinct.  The newspaper can’t catch a break.  Magazines are becoming irrelevant.  Where does the poor young writer turn to bring their meaningful words to the people?  Blogging.  Fashion blogging is just an offshoot of the Internet world becoming more and more influential to daily life.  The most famous fashion bloggers are now icons themselves, and people like Anna Wintour and Andre Leon Talley are turning to them for inspiration.  For us fashion-obsessed 90s babies who grew up with the Internet, the chance of grabbing style inspiration off the web is  a lot higher than from a highly styled editorial spread.

One London based trendspotter, used her blog as a platform for her trendspotting work.

“I literally woke up one morning feeling creatively restricted and I thought, what better way to get it out then start a blog,” she said.  “I just did it, originally no one was looking at it, then it just kind of took off and opened lots of doors.”

Her blog brought her to a career in trendspotting, and it also made her realize how big of an influence fashion blogs can leave on the fashion world.  One particular way is through “street-style” blogging, or showing pictures of everyday people’s outfits.

“Seeing people really wearing things is gonna sell more than Jessica Stam with a Mohawk,” she said.

Jessica Stam

Fashion followers turn to the bloggers for style advice, shopping tips and just about anything related to the fashion world.  One of the most famous bloggers, Leandra Medine aka The Man Repeller, started a trend based purely on her pseudonym.  Being a “man repeller” is now a fashion fad based on dressing in a sartorially pleasing way, but ultimately quite un-sexy.  Wearing big, nerdy and not really prescription glasses, now called “birth control glasses,” is just one of Medine’s influences.

Birth Control Glasses, courtesy Man Repeller

Dessert blogger Allison Norton said that bloggers like Medine are so popular and prominent because they provide fashion advice more quickly than magazines can.

“The world is moving way too fast to be able to sit around for a month and wait,” she said.

Magazines have begun using blogging techniques, like street style photos, to be able to relate to the online-obsessed readers.  In the February edition of UK Vogue, photographer Raymond Meier did a photoshoot entitled “I am a Camera,” documenting a bloggers trip through fashion week.  But is that enough to keep up?  Ellie Benuska, writer for Wild, Young and Free blog, agreed with Norton.

“Fashion blogging will become more important than fashion magazines in the next few years because they are so much more accessible and global,” she said.  “The more that brands and magazines come to embrace blogging, the more successful they will be, and the more fashion will largely come to exist in the blogging and Internet sphere.”

“It’s an amazing democratization of fashion as an industry as a whole,” Hasseck explained.  “More people have a voice, there’s not just one way to view things anymore.”

The evolving online shopping world proves just how influential fashion blogs are.  In order to keep up with the instant access to fashion news and ideas, online designer retailers, like Net-A-Porter, have added videos alongside their garments to tech-ify the shoppers experience.  Designers have to be well aware of what the popular bloggers are highlighting every week to know how to keep their buyers on the hook.

Net-a-porter runway video

It’s pretty obvious that the world is heading in a digital direction, and while fashion will always be around, the means of accessing it will be constantly changing.  Just like the Kate Moss’ and Cindy Crawford’s before us, someone, like today’s bloggers, will be there to guide the way.

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