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There’s some people who like fashion, and there’s some who live and breathe it, understand it, research it, and share their passion and knowledge with others. Those folk who understand proportion, why Emerald is the hot color of the year, how that Forever 21 dress was made and what designer inspired the print and silhouette, the history behind the styles we all love. A person who knows and loves all this and has fabulous personal style? That’s the epitome of a True Fashionista, and that’s a great description for Angie Cox of YouLookFab.
I’ve been blogging for many years, and through that time I have encountered many bloggers who have inspired me. But Angie has been one who has inspired me since the first time I found YouLookFab and still today. Without her knowing, Angie has been a mentor to me as a blogger, reminding me to be true to what I believe and not the trends, that not every blog reader desires the same type of blog, and that in the words of Coco Chanel, fashion fades and only style remains the same.
I can remember when YouLookFab was a traditional blog; I came across it soon after I started my own blog and felt as though I met a virtual kindred spirit who read the same style books, liked the same retailers, had the same thoughts about fashion and style. When Angie started sharing her personal style, it was awesome to see a woman with a completely different figure, different personal style, different lifestyle, but translate our similar thoughts in such a clear manner. Yes, I visited the Internet Archive Wayback Machine to revisit older versions of YLF when writing this, and many of her posts I can remember as though I read them yesterday, and still are good advice in 2013.
When the blogosphere gets a bit too crazy and trendy and competitive, I look to Angie and YouLookFab to remind me that you can achieve success and still be authentic and connected to your readers. Over the years, Angie (and her fab husband Greg) have taken YLF from a basic WordPress blog to an entire community. Not just blog posts of Angie’s clothes and style advice, YLF has shopping resources and one of the most interactive and helpful forums I have found online. YLF readers can create their own blogs, they have very active threads where members can even link series of photos and links and request advice. The YLF newsletter is one I don’t delete before reading as it breaks down the posts of the week into topic and Angie summarizes the themes that connect the posts. I could go on, but I know many of you readers are YLF readers and members and could better explain the YLF community!
Angie is a True Fashionista because she knows her personal style so well, yet is able to assist others in finding their own distinct style. She can wear things I would never dream of but make them look clean, crisp, and easy. As her community has grown, she has stayed true to her vision about style and truly cares about her readers and community members. I was so excited when Angie agreed to be a part of the True Fashionista series, here are her answers to the same five questions I ask:
How would you describe your personal style?
I've just coined the descriptor “Urban Prince”. With very short hair, I am a Ladylike Prince – not a Princess :). Lots of Refinement. Lots of Inner Punk. Minimal. Modern Classic. Graphic. Crisp. Strict. My look is equal parts Boyish and Ladylike, with a little Romance and Preppy thrown into the mix. No jewelry. Low heels or flats. I sometimes wear distressed items but I'm not a Rugged Warrior. I am Polished even when I scrunch my sleeves, faux tuck oversized tops or wear Dr. Martens.
Where did you get your passion for fashion?
From home. I grew up with a very stylish Mum. I'm 42 and have been in the Rag Trade for twenty years, predominantly as a fashion buyer, but as a fashion stylist for the past seven years. Fashion and style is officially part of my soul.
Where do you find sartorial inspiration?
First and foremost, on the street. Nothing inspires my own style more than street style and blogs on street style. Also runway shows, retailers, and all the over 50 year olds on our forum.
What is the difference between fashion and style?
Fashion is what you buy – style is *how* you wear the fashion that you buy. In other words, fashion inspires us, but style sets us apart. We are finally living in a fashion era that is accepting and encouraging of all sorts of outfit juxtapositions and silhouettes. That means that style plays a larger role than fashion ever has. Long may it last.
Any advice for a woman who is starting to find her personal style?
You'll find helpful guidelines on how to get started all over the show. From books, blogs and other great resources. The point I want to drive home is that you must have fun on each leg of your style journey because that's the only rule you aren't allowed to break. I am also continuously asking my clients how they feel when they wear certain outfits because the happiness-factor is as important as its fit, colour and proportions. Sometimes it takes a while to pinpoint what it is about an outfit that makes us happy, but it’s worth pondering this question for future reference. After all, a big part of life is about reaching a state of happiness.
The purpose of the Friday True Fashionista series is to show women who use clothing to express their personal style. Each woman has a different, unique look and opinion on clothing and fashion. These women inspire me in my clothing choices, and possibly their bold sartorial statements will inspire you. Stay tuned, there will be a featured True Fashionista every Friday. And if you know of a True Fashionista in your life, tell us about her in the comments… you never know she may end up being featured!