by Kareem Rashed
Surveying the front row at a show this past fashion week, photographers clamored, not for the executive Vogue editors sitting diminutively in their monotone ensembles, but for two eccentric characters¬¬––a young man in fluorescent pink pants and a massive shearling vest and a pint sized girl wearing a bow larger than the head atop which it stood. Among the array of fashion week’s chicest looks, buyers, editors, and celebutantes in all last season’s best, these two shone with their unique take on style. Bryan Grey-Yambao of Bryanboy.com and Tavi Gevinson of thestylerookie.com, the aforementioned fashion mavericks, are two of the most prolific and influential style bloggers currently changing the fashion industry’s nuts and bolts.
Bloggers, a product of the 21st century and Generation “Me,” have catapulted within the fashion industry. They bring a personal point of view to a world that has, for centuries, thrived on exclusivity. Yet, their fan base is not limited to the fashion obsessed from the world over, they received accolades from the pedestal of the old school, the conventional arbiters of taste. Along with the Internet, bloggers have carved a new spot within the fashion hierarchy.
“The magazines and catwalks aren’t the be-all, end-all of fashion,” writes Susie Lau, whose 5-year style blog susiebubble.com receives an average of 30,000 hits a day. “And people are finding out.”
Lau, or Bubble as her readers would refer to her, shares with Bryanboy and Tavi an irreverence and objectivity that are absent from traditional fashion outlets. Magazines push to satisfy their advertisers, designers produced what will sell and more and more “fashion icons” and celebrities wear what a stylist has put together as a PR move. But, these bloggers bring a fresh counterpoint to the industrialization of it all. They began as fashion addicts, like those who follow their often-daily posts, who toiled over saving up for that dream pair of shoes and scoured sales to procure their personal style. The only difference is, they documented it all with the fruits of 21st century technology.
Bryanboy’s blog is currently an encyclopedic record of all the shows he’s attended, roughly 2 minute videos of the final walkthroughs as seen from his seat in the front row. On his site, he recounts his first fashion show: after garnering attention for his outlandish looks (favoring oversized sunglasses, fur, and lots of sparkle), Dolce & Gabanna invited him to their fall 2009 show in Milan and equipped him with a laptop so he could tweet during the show. And like that, Bryanboy fulfilled a missing step in the fashion process that no one had even known existed. Fashion now moves from designer to editors to buyers to bloggers and, finally, to consumers.