The Women’s Web ‘Love Your Leisure’ series will consist of interviews with a few female bloggers with fascinating hobbies, who’ve enthusiastically developed and fine-tuned them – and what’s more, write about them for the benefit of the rest of us! We hope you enjoy reading more about these bloggers and their passions. Presented in a Q&A format, this one is with Fashion Enthusiast, Samidha Sharma, who blogs about her passion at Street Style.
Intro: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a business journalist with The Times of India. I have been a writer/reporter for more than 6 years having had stints with The Economic Times, CNBC and ET Now. I returned to writing after having spent a couple of years doing business television.
Well, I have always loved to dress up and add a bit of my own style to everything that I wear. In college it was more boho, thrifted stuff (I was in Delhi then) and as I grew older my style became more inclusive. Travelling around also helped me pick up a lot of interesting stuff as people have such varied styles around the world. I feel being stylish is not about wearing expensive clothes; it’s about how to put things together. There is this one thing you need to have to create a statement- you need to choose that one thing carefully and you are set for the day/night.
Q2. What do you find most satisfying about this passion?
Oh, it’s really satisfying if you can help someone feel good about the way they look by offering your two cents. When my readers ask me for suggestions and I can direct them the right way it feels like I have given them back something – it’s a precious feeling.
Q3. Most women like shopping and getting dressed up – but few would write about it! What propelled you to start a blog on your fashion escapades?
Street Style started while I was on a break from work last year. What inspired me to start something of my own were the numerous global street fashion blogs which I used to visit every day looking for inspiration, like Still In Berlin, Street Peeper and all those Scandinavian street style blogs. I thought why not start something on these lines here in India since there was nothing much happening on that front. I discussed this idea with my friend Aastha and created a Facebook page called Street Style in January last year.
Q4. How has the response been?
In the beginning the response was primarily from close friends. The idea was to start a website but a friend who owns a digital agency suggested we start a Facebook page instead. The reason being we wanted to get a sense of how people will react to something like this. The idea was basically to capture individual styles which we saw around us. It was tough to get people to share their individual styles, pictures, their finds but thanks to a lot of coaxing few friends started participating. Soon the Facebook page started gaining popularity and the blog followed thereafter. Then we added a second hand shopping section to Street Style which has been a great success amongst the followers.
Q5. What are your favourite places to shop for fashion goods?
All your main street brands like American Apparel, Zara, Topshop, H&M and a lot of vintage and retro stuff which I pick up while travelling abroad. I love those hidden stores tucked away in some obscure corners but you don’t find a lot of them in India. Brooklyn is my all time favourite place for vintage, retro and very, very experimental shopping.
Q6. How easy/comfortable do you find it to experiment with fashion in India?
I think India is getting very global but yes, we have still a long way to go when it comes to indie and alternative stuff being very accessible for everyone. I guess we need a culture of second hand shops. A lot of small designers are doing great work but I feel some of them are over-priced because they are few. We will take a few years before people start experimenting here; we still need to get the basics right before we hit the experimental stage.
Q7. I notice that your blog concentrates more on western wear. Do you have any plans for expanding to ethnic wear too?
A lot of people say that! But it’s just that I am sort of restricted in wearing Indian, traditional wear to weddings and other such occasions. But I love the FabIndia cottons and Anokhis of the world. I guess I will look to include some of that in the future.
Q8. Which are some of your favourite fashion blog posts? Also, what other related blogs/ sites do you enjoy or find useful?
Oh there are many, so I really would not be able to point them out here but as far as other blogs go I love Denni Elias from Chicmuse; she is such a style icon. I also regularly check Flashes-of-Style and Style Scrapbook.
Q9. Any fashion tips for us? What are the current trends that you have noticed?
Oh, no tips really! Just stay stylish in your own way and never ever blindly imitate anyone. Dress according to your size and build and you will always look good. Always bring out the best in you, always accentuate the most striking thing about your body be it your legs, your waist or your eyes. Before you start to dress up everyday just wait for a moment and think about what you will wear instead of blindly wearing whatever comes your way; it’s not being vain, it’s being smart. Try and single out one thing that will be your statement piece and work everything around it. Never over accessorize. When in doubt always stay minimal because you won’t go wrong with basics. Experiment only if you think you can do justice to things, else you will only be committing a fashion faux pas.
This season I am swearing by a lot of gold, sequins and also looking out for some pastels shades.
Previous Interviews With Hobby Bloggers:
Music Enthusiast: Meera Manohar
Art & Craft Enthusiast: Shruti Bhat
Movie Enthusiast: Amodini Sharma
Crossword Enthusiast: Shuchismita Upadhyay
Poetry Enthusiast: Saru Singhal
Baking Enthusiast: Monika Manchanda
Gardening Enthusiast: Priyanka Goel
Needlecraft Enthusiast: Nima Titus
Wildlife Enthusiast: Radha Rangarajan