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Why Social Media is so In Vogue



Running one of the most popular fashion blogs in the world, Anna Dello Russo is a fine and fabulously dressed example of how new media can establish your career, even in a field as fickle as fashion. Speaking at the Victoria and Albert museum’s Peroni Collaborazioni Talks, the Vogue Japan editor at large and creative director shared how she built a career as creditable as her style.

Throughout the talk Dello Russo referred to how changes in technology is reflected in fashion. This proved very true as the sold out event streamed live on Harpers Bazar.com  encouraging the audience to tweet their thoughts and questions throughout. In the crammed lecture theatre I turned around to see a mass of smart phones being used as either cameras or social media devices. Take a look at the London Fashion Week shows and you see the same ocean of flashing lights and dimly lit screens. Surely if people are furiously typing tweets with their heads down they are oblivious to what is actually going on? Apparently not. If anything this event proved the complete opposite.

If you’ve not yet crossed paths with Dello Russo’s style, prepare to be amazed. Think flamboyant glamour, multiply by ten and you just about get the picture. Street style bloggers such as Tommy Ton (Jak & Jill) and The Sartorialist regularly feature the Italian fashion ambassador wearing her catwalk looks out and about. ‘It is maximum style for me,’ said Dello Russo ‘Every thing in excess, like Tutankamum head to toe in gold. I collect fashion like people collect stamps’ It’s evident why this animated and colorful character is fascinating to the media and bloggers, who else do you know can claim to owning over 4000 shoes? (No, that isn’t a typo.)

The appropriately labelled fashion maniac started her blog two years ago, quite a short amount of time considering she has worked in the industry for almost two decades.The success of Anna’s blog is so great (20,000 hits a day) that it led to Anna herself starring in a Vogue Japan fashion editorial, not something most editors can claim to doing. Speaking sketchy English in her deep Italian accent she said ‘New media has created popularity.’ Asked what her biggest challenge to date has been, Dello Russo replied. ‘defying age in this business, that’s why I took up blogging.’ It seems embracing technology is far more beneficial than running scared.

What blogs does a fashionista blogger read? ‘There are so many, you can see them all on my blog roll. Jak and Jil of course, Style.com and Grazia UK are very good. I do my rounds every morning.’ Dello Russo has talked before about the power of blogs, ‘Bloggers are the new paparazzi, it’s a modern revolution and has opened a window to the fashion industry.’ Avid tweeting has also played its part in raising a celebrity profile. With just under 100 thousand followers her 2, 714 tweets link people to anything that is being said about her and anything she is saying, along with the odd Twitpic of what she is wearing of course.  A little self publicity certainly never did any harm.

This is not the first case study of the power of fashion blogging and tweeting. Style Rookie blogger Tavi Gevinson started blogging aged eleven in 2008, creating so much media attention she now enjoys front row seats at fashion week and appears on the front cover of magazines such as Pop. Perhaps a Vogue editor took direction from a self confessed teenage rookie?

At the end of the talk Dello Russo claimed ‘I never faux pas.’ Let the retweets commence the blog hits rise.

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