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State of Play: Blogging v.s Fashion Heavy Weights

Tavi the 13-year-old blogging sensation seems to be the line in the sand for fashion editors and bloggers alike at the moment.
Is she a teenage savant, or team Tavi as Anne Slowey from US Elle put it so eloquently?
And why are fashion editors sitting up and taking fashion advice from 13-year-old girls?

The issue has raised questions on children in the media, exploitation and the fashion packs obsession with eternal youth. Bloggers all over the world have thrown their hat in the ring, because Tavi who started her blog when she was 12 has managed to attract the attention of some very serious fashion heavy weights.

Last night I sat down with Scott Schuman to talk blogging while he is in town to spruik his latest book, ‘The Sartorialist.’

"The thing with teenage fashion bloggers, is that they’re little girls trying to be 30 year old fashion editors. You can’t grow a blog without original content or by pulling images. It’s just not enough."

Schuman meets me with a blank look when I mention his children in relation to his thoughts on young people gaining so much media attention. Perhaps the topic is ‘off limits,’ but it’s an interesting notion to consider the opinion of one of the worlds biggest and most recognised fashion bloggers.

"It would be more interesting to consider the dynamic of who her friends are. I mean, what do they think of this girl who dresses all crazy?" he tells me when I quiz him on just why fashion editors seem obsessed with the likes of teen blogger Tavi or 8 year old The Littlest Dandy.

"I have the freedom to shoot what ever I want. I can provide original content and have complete editorial control over the images I create. These kids don’t, I think that editors are just finding something to write about with an interesting angle. Children blogging!"

Considering the state of flux that mainstream media is facing at the moment with advertisers moving dollars online, and readers changing their viewing habits, it’s a question worth posing to the man behind what Time magazine selected as one of it’s top 100 design influences.

"I get requests for people to use my images, and I’ll let them use one or two, but you’ll never be able to grow a blog or make it a real business if you can’t inspire people. Tavi will never be able to grow without original content."

For those not in the sartorial know, Schuman started his blog 4 years ago on the streets of New York to showcase what he saw as every day people with great style.

"When I worked in the fashion industry, I always felt that there was a disconnect between what I was selling in the showroom and what I was seeing real people (really cool people) wearing in real life," his biography tells us.

Fast forward to 2009 and the launch of ‘The Sartorialist,’ a compilation of Schuman’s most memorable photos from his travels over the last 4 years.

"What still inspires me? Colour, posture, attitude or the light can inspire me. For me it’s more about the photographs and the feeling I’m trying to create, most people wouldn’t believe that it’s not always about the fashion."



Fashion Hayley said...

Hey hey lovely.
Henry said I was very rude to you last night, I didn't mean to be. Estelle and I had been shopping all day at the new DFO in South Wharf and I was exhausted, that place is huge! Anyway it was lovely to see you and I actually like that photo, I actually look good. Please do come down to Swensk tomorrow from 1-3. Hayley xxx

Lost in Laneways said...

Oh so you did go! Like the interview!

selena said...

oh that's so interesting, so glad you got to ask him those questions!


Wikifashion said...

That was a great article. In regard to what Scott said, I think that Tavi does have original content, due to the way she interprets trends and the opinions she expresses on her blog. She doesn't simply regurgitate photos like other blogs do, she adds commentary along with the photos and how she would wear the trends.

Rosie Unknown said...

I may be a bit biased on this subject, since I know that I fully count as a teenage fashion blogger, but personally I think that it helps to read people of all ages. And while some teen bloggers just repost other people's pictures, not all of us do, and there are adult bloggers who regurgitate pictures.

amelia said...

Lady M, amazing interview! Well done. So proud :) xxx

Style Seduction said...

I dont know much about this teenage blogger so i am going to look into it, but do believe that he raises some good points!

MannequinMe said...

I love your bag ..and the blazer is incredible!
Interesting questions, Lady M- job well done! I'll get into trouble, but I dislike him.

PS Speaking of which...I may have erased a message I left on your blog. Apologies!

Anonymous said...

My god, that man has a beautiful chin.

Nice interview. Lady Melbourne you are gorgeous AND smart.

Also because of your circle skirt pattern I finally got my first sewing machine! Hazaar!

Miss Emmi said...

Oh my. I never realized that the Satorialist was so... ruggedly handsome. *fans*

doreenmon said...

i think the reason why such huge labels and editors are starting to pay attention to these young bloggers is because the young bloggers are opening the market to a younger crowd.

there are 17 year old bloggers who dress in high end labels such as prada, ysl and chanel everyday and their daily wears are inspiring young girls world wide to obtain these luxurious looks!

p.s. i actually enjoy reading tavi's blog - i think wikifashion's comment totally sum up my opinion on tavi.

Blogarella said...

Great post LM! And verrrrry interesting answers...although what does he mean by the fact that Tavi doesn't have original content? Surely her outfit posts/trend opinions are original content?

Aa always, you look super chic.


Moni said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Moni said...

Very interesting interview, to be honest their does seem to be a fashion for adults to look to children for inspiration in the fashion industry. It seems the world is starting to revolve around teenagers, afterall they seem to get more and more pocket money then ever before, and I have heard stories were parents buy their clothes from the budget stores so the children can have designer.

Keith said...

Great post. I hope you had a wonderful time there. It sounds fascinating.

Style On Track said...

Awww... I think Tavi is adorable and her beautiful blog should not be put down by some fashion bigwig, I think we should be supporting people of all ages, sexes and race :)

Fashion Tidbits said...

gosh i love what Mr. Schuman is wearing...swoon!