There’s not much we can say about style blogs that you probably don’t already know: They’re cool, inspiring and staggeringly influential.
But what makes a personal style blog truly successful? Independence, for one — when certain bloggers have been tapped by large corporations to hawk products, it’s often been met with a resounding fail. Because really, it was their individual sense of style that led readers to them in the first place.
However, fashion companies would have be daft to not pay very close attention to these forces, since their effect is often more relatable and, in a way, more modern than that of a glossy magazine. Not to mention, free and easy-to-access.
As blog-obsessed readers (we scour hundreds each week!), we tapped six of our favorite gals and grilled them on who they like, what they want and, of course, why they blog.
Chantal van der Meijden, 32, the Netherlands and New York
Blogging since: April 2009
Favorite spots to shop: Vintage stores in Williamsburg, Tokio7 in the East Village, INA in Nolita, Topshop and LF in Soho and the H&M in midtown.
Style muses: Erin Wasson, Kate Moss, Jim Morrison and Jenny from “Forrest Gump.”
Favorite item of clothing in your closet: Right now, a pair of deep greenish-blue velvet legging from Topshop.
On your wish list: The YSL Iconic Arty Oval Ring in coral. I'm a little late with this trend but I'm still craving it.
Liken your personal style to a city: Paris meets New York, maybe.
Top designers: Miuccia Prada, Phoebe Philo and Vanessa Bruno.
Trend you wish would disappear: Botox.
When you're not blogging, what are you up to? Designing (I'm a fashion designer) I love reading, watching movies and good food.
Why you think style blogs are so important right now? [They] give instant gratification, they’re updated daily with new content and links. Also, style blogs offer new inspiration for real people on trends and how to style outfits.
Other blogs you're addicted to: The Cherry Blossom Girl, Le Blog de Sushi and The Clothes Horse.
Geri Hirsch, 27, Los Angeles
Blog: Because I'm Addicted
Blogging since: 2005
Why did you start blogging? Pure boredom coupled with the need for a creative outlet.
Favorite spots to shop: Opening Ceremony, Decades, La Garçonne, Zara and Goodwill.
Style muses: Victoria and Vanessa Traina, Julia Restoin Roitfeld, Chloë Sevigny, Jen Brill, Dree Hemingway, Dasha Zhukova, Alexandra Richards, Kate Moss, Kate Bosworth and the Olsens. Swoooooon.
Favorite item of clothing in your closet: Do over-the-knee Balenciaga boots count as clothing?
On your wish list, right now: A new bag, just not sure which one...
Liken your personal style to a city: L.A.
Favorite designers: Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez of Proenza Schouler, Phoebe Philo, Isabel Marant, Stella McCartney
Choose a Fashion Week: NYC, London, Paris or Milan: Paris
Biggest style splurge and/or deal: I found an INSANE pair of Proenza boots for 75 percent off at Confederacy. Holy sale!
Trend you wish would disappear: Spirit hoods
When you're not blogging, what are you up to? Playing in the kitchen or around L.A.
Why you think style blogs are so important right now? The downfall of print wasn't a result of skyrocketing paper costs — people consume their media on the web because it's instant, interactive, convenient and allows for dialogue. If you combine that with the obsession of consumption, fame, fashion and pop culture, then top it off with the compulsive need to follow everyone on Twitter, Facebook, FourSquare, etc. the power of blogging makes perfect sense.
Karen Blanchard, 30, Astoria
Blog: Where Did U Get That
Blogging since: February 2009
Favorite spots to shop: Thrift and vintage stores in the East Village and Brooklyn. I also love high-streets like Zara, H&M and Forever 21.
Style icons: Lenny Kravitz and Kate Moss, but the average girl and guy in London always inspire me, especially around Spitalsfield market.
Favorite item of clothing in your closet: A toss up between my All Saints black fringe ankle boots — they go with anything and get better with age — and my fedoras. I LOVE wearing brimmed hats. To me, they make anything casual look effortlessly cooler, plus they hide bad hair days.
On your wish list, right now: The perfect oversized leather clutch, an oversized wool poncho and sling-back kitten heels to wear with cropped jeans or leather pants.
Liken your personal style to a city: London, where I'm originally from. No one takes themselves too seriously and Brits take more style risks and are less concerned with designer labels.
Favorite designers: Christopher Bailey — what he's done for Burberry is brilliant — and Anna Sui. I've always loved how she updates the rock chic/boho feel every season.
Trend you wish would disappear: I don't despise trends per se, but more [people] who are slaves to them. Find your own style and add a trend to update it.
When you're not blogging, you're doing what? I have a 9 to 5 office job (not in the fashion industry but I wish it was). I'm always thinking about styling ideas, snapping random shots that catch my eye. Also, I'm really into reading books about spirituality and love walking my dog, Sir Oliver.
Why do you think style blogs are so important right now? Because it's showing that the average person can be just as inspiring as any big magazine. Often more so because people can relate to a blogger rather than a flawless model or a glossy photo. It's 10 times more personal.
Gemma Rowlands, 27, Williamsburg
Blog: Fade to Black
Blogging since: Oct. 2009
Favorite spots to shop: I love Beacon’s Closet, Salvation Army and cheap secondhand places.
Style icons: In love with Kate Moss and Erin Wasson.
Favorite item of clothing in your closet: My favorite right now is this sheer white shirt from Topshop. It has a great oversized shape and the back is cut out with lace inserts — I love it when designs pay attention to the back as well as the front. I also love this sheer velvet grey kimono from Spanish Moss Vintage.
On your wish list: Acne wedge boots, Charles Anastase and Linda Farrow sunglasses, nearly all of the Jeffrey Campbell collection and the list goes on.
Favorite designers: Cushnie et Ochs, Bora Aksu, Stella McCartney and I love a bit of Gareth Pugh, of course.
Trend you wish would disappear: Those Uggs!
When you're not blogging, you're doing what? I’ll probably be at work at my full-time gig or eating and drinking.
Why you think style blogs are so important right now? I think they’re a great source of instant inspiration. And it's also fab that it's so personal and you can contact the owner of any blog whenever you want. They’re just an e-mail away.
Aimee Jenny Song, 23, San Francisco and Los Angeles
Blog: Song of Style
Blogging since: Oct.2008
Why did you start blogging? I've always enjoyed taking pictures of myself and my friends and I’ve also always stored lots of fashion-related inspiration photos I found on the web. Before I had a blog, I'd just post them on Facebook. Once I discovered fashion blogs, I decided to share them with the rest of the world. Also, also I didn't want to forget anything when I become an old lady.
Favorite spots to shop: H&M, Anarchy Street, Zara, vintage and thrift stores
Style muse: Chloe Sevigny
Favorite item of clothing in your closet: A vintage Roberto Cavalli sheer leopard skirt that used to belong to my mom. It instantly puts me in a good mood and I just feel glamorous.
On your wish list: Hermes Baccara crocodile clutch
Liken your personal style to a city: Paris
Favorite designers: Miuccia Prada, Isabel Marant, Rag & Bone, Givenchy, Alexander Wang
Pick a Fashion Week: NYC, London, Milan or Paris: Milan
Trend you wish would disappear: The half-shaved hairdo. It was cool at one point.
When you're not blogging, what are you up to? Playing with my dog, Charcoal.
Why you think style blogs are so important right now? Because consumers are more likely to have a personal connection with a style blogger than with a magazine.
Jacqueline Rose, 25, Denver, Colorado
Blog: Fashion Snag
Blogging since: Aug. 2009
About your blog: It’s a personal style blog showcasing my designer “snags” in a photo-journal layout.
Style muse: I don't really have any style muses. I look at a lot of fashion blogs and get inspiration from editorials in magazines.
Favorite item of clothing in your closet: A Missoni knit playsuit because I love the colors and it fits my personality.
On your wish list, right now: An Isabel Marant fringed leather skirt
If your personal style was a city, it would be: Barcelona because sometimes I like a more classic feminine look and other times my outfits have more of a bohemian vibe. Barcelona is such a colorful city and I’m not afraid to wear color.
Designers that make you swoon: Givenchy, Balmain, Miu Miu, Fendi
Trend you wish would disappear: Harem pants — I don't like the drop-crotch look.
When you're not blogging, what are you up to? Taking care of my menagerie of animals.
Why you think style blogs are so important right now? They allow you to see into someone else's world and view how that person incorporates fashion into their everyday life. Style blogs are also where I usually see trends first, so they keep you on the pulse of fashion.