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Antwerp / THE INTERVIEW: TONI, THE FASHION CLOUD

One more good thing about being in Antwerp, Belgium (as if we needed a reason beyond the divine street waffles…) is that we’re getting the chance to meet some of the coolest bloggers in the area. First up on our docket of blogs to add to your must read list is the lovely Toni of TheFashionCloud.com. Word of warning- her red hair isn’t the only bright thing about her, this girl is a lightening bolt.

All above images courtesy of Toni, TheFashionCloud.com.

Tell us about yourself. My name is Toni, I was born in France, raised by British parents and lived most of my life in Brussels. I’m from everywhere and nowhere, and my accent confuses people– lots of people ask if I’m Australian (laughs). I started my blog, The Fashion Cloud, about 2 years ago as a place to share my discoveries. I hate changing rooms, but I love shopping online and uncovering new shops, and my boyfriend pushed me to start a blog as an outlet for that. I was gobsmacked by the online community I discovered.

Excuse me miss, do you have the time? One wild story that I have happened to me because of my blog. I wear two watches, both Swatch brand, and when I was living in Brugge, Belgium, someone emailed me. He said, You don’t know me, but I live in Brugge and I see you around, and I read your blog. I really like your watch. Can I take pictures of you in it? I just happened to moving away from that town the next day and was so relieved to tell him no, no you can not.

Early bird. I must have 400 blogs on my blogroll. There are blogs to get away from it all, blogs of people you’re curious of, street style blogs, personal style blogs, localized blogs that you read when you want to see what’s new in your area. I think people read blogs of other people who have interesting lives that you would like to live. My stacked RSS feed has taught me to get up early to have time to catch up on it all!

Isn’t it iconic? I don’t necessarily study the runways, but if I had to pick one iconic designer, it would have to be Chanel. I’m always excited for their runway shows and look books. I remember my mum wearing a beautiful black and white tweed suit… and I can probably trace back my love of fashion to my mum’s love of fashion. I don’t really spend much money on the stuff now because I’m a student and I shouldn’t spend my money on this now, but when I do have money, I will invest in beautiful things.

Is blogging the new magazine? Blogging is here to stay, but it’ll never replace print. I love technology, but there is something to be said for holding a paper in your hands. Blogging had a huge boom, and it’s now working hand in hand with the industry. Brands are depending on bloggers to refine what people are looking for, and blogging will continue to grow with people who want to pinpoint fashion, but that’s different that what magazines do.

The claws come out: Litas are my least favorite trend- they’ve got to go, they’re hideous! They are ultimate man repellers, A to Zed. The blogosphere has it’s own trends, there are high street trends  and catwalk trends and there are blogger trends. You see people wearing crazy things [like the Litas] and snake print that you just don’t see on the streets. You see things on blogs and you wonder, am I going to wear that out?

Tips for new bloggers: Do it because you want to do it, because you’re open to it. Don’t timeline it, telling yourself I have to be invited to this by this date, just see what happens. People forget that it’s not just a business, it’s a community, and it’s nice to interact with a community. Also, don’t be a snob.