Kate Lawson is Fashion & Lifestyle Editor for online magazine The Arbuturian and a freelance style and pop culture writer, whose work has appeared in/on HuffingtonPostUK, Metro Newspaper, Huh Magazine, Trendland.com, ELLE Poland, OMGYahoo.com, Futurespace Magazine and Spindle magazine, amongst others.
She is also Editor of kate-lawson.com, a daily blog which explores the worlds of art, photography, design, music and fashion; and she also created the Tumblr, ‘Feeling Is The New Black’, in which she collates a visual series of her interests and passions.
I would say that Social Media (SM) and bloggers have had the biggest and most positive impact on the fashion industry. With SM it has opened up a new PR/Marketing platform which has really helped to promote emerging designers/brands and in some cases re-launch and reignite brand passion along with building customer loyalty and communities. It has also enabled fashion institutions and magazines etc. to promote themselves instantly – that’s a brilliant opportunity to preview upcoming issues, announce events etc. not to mention driving traffic to their official websites. It’s also become a necessity for events such as Fashion Week, offering the equivalent of a front row seat to those not involved in fashion who want to follow the shows, designers, news etc.
There are so many trends which have been and gone and come back again in a new reinterpretation – but over the past couple of seasons, colours such as oxblood, cobalt blue and military greens have stood out, along with themes such as vintage americana, Eastern urban, metallics, mismatched florals and head to toe statement prints. While fabrics like leather continue to evolve with a rebellious, sexy and sometimes futuristic edge – brocade and broderie anglaise popped up to provide a delicate, feminine and whimsical look. Each season also brings new shapes of course, from oversize chunky knits and billowing trousers to tailored belted curves and at the moment, peplums!
In terms of articles I would imagine anything that covered the Alexander McQueen exhibition in New York and the Royal Wedding would have received a huge amount of online traffic. I have a very eclectic taste and I’m really passionate about art and photography – not just in relation to fashion, so I tend to surf the net and saturate my brain with as much information as possible. I’m also really into websites and Tumblrs which explore an avant-garde aesthetic, which maybe aren’t necessarily considered “mainstream” and therefore the articles might not be as popular as say, Stella McCartney designing TeamGB’s official Olympics gear.
I drink moderately during the week, mainly at industry-related events/launches/parties/dinner etc. as I often have deadlines and need a clear mind to think, research and write. I also work on the Social Media/PR for various UK and US fashion brands, so I need to be alert and across everything to keep their Twitter/Facebook feeds updated, relevant and engaging. I enjoy a tipple or two like everyone, but my career comes first, and as a writer, if I’m tired or hungover from a late night before, I know that it will affect my productivity and overall output. So when that little voice in my head says ‘go on, just have one more’, that’s when I know it’s time to go home!
My best advice to anyone interested in working in writing is research. Research what you want to do and then go for it! If it’s journalism, find your writing style, source unique stories and subjects and pitch ideas to magazines – don’t be upset if you don’t hear back or your ideas are rejected, it’s all part of the learning process. Start a blog, promote your passions and build an online community who follow you, say something different and be original and you’ll soon be noticed by the right people. If it’s PR you’re keen on, expect to start from the bottom and work your way up – making tea, organising the showroom and booking in/out samples is where lots of us started! Fashion is extremely competitive and you need confidence and a positive attitude to succeed, as well as being approachable, flexible and a good communicator – and most of all, be prepared to work long hours!
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