Blog to Watch: The Chicest
The Fashion Network: Where are you based and for how long have you been blogging?
Sandra Tang: I'm based in Newcastle, having originated in Sheffield, and previously living in Liverpool and Japan. I've been blogging for just under a year.
The Fashion Network: How did you decide on the title/theme of your blog?
Sandra Tang: I decided on the name 'Chicest' as I loved the word Chic and thought it helps create an image of style over fashion as well as help to encapsulate the style and contents of my blog.
The Fashion Network: To monetise or to not monetise - which do you prefer and why?
Sandra Tang: I'm on "not to monetise" personally. Too many blogs are looking straight away at 'How can I make money?' or 'How can I make this my full time job?'. Whilst I'm quite an ambitious person and would love to blog full time, for me, it's a passion. I love chatting to brands and designers that I feature, attending fashion events and all the joys that go hand in hand with being a blogger - rather than the financial benefits. I do think it's great when some bloggers have worked incredibly incredibly hard to get to where they are, where they can monetise their blog and it's of value to the advertiser/client. However, I'm not sure that people realise that for the majority of bloggers, that's not their full source of income, that they do work on styling, journalism etc.
The Fashion Network: What have been some of the advantages of having a fashion blog?
Sandra Tang: I've been privileged enough to been invited to some great events and meet such lovely people in the industry through my blog. The best thing about blogging for me, is it opens up so many opportunities.
The Fashion Network: What are some of your favourite blogs to read?
Sandra Tang: I'm a fan www.styleslicker.com. I met her up during NE1's Newcastle Fashion Week and gave her a shopping tour on behalf of Chamilia, our sponsor of Newcastle. She's absolutely lovely and takes such stunning photos on her blog.
I love keeping up to date with my fashion week girls too, my two PAs who I couldn't live without, actually do great blogs. Phoebe Dixon, also blogs for Superdrug: www.northoflondonblog.com and Jessica Robertson of Snapindex: www.snapindex.blogspot.co.uk/
I also enjoy checking out Leslie Creasey's blog, he's an archivist and has some stunning vintage fashion campaign images on his blog. Great for inspiration: www.lesliecreasey.blogspot.co.uk
Fashion blogs I love, http://stylebubble.typepad.com/ (the staple fashion blog bible and rightly so) and http://www.kryzuy.com/ and www.aclassofherown.com/search/label/London.
The Fashion Network: What are your top 5 stores to shop?
1) Thanx God I'm VIP, a lush vintage store in Paris. They have a secret basement where they stock a fantastic array of gorgeous clothes.
2) Libertys, London. It's such a beautiful store, quintessentially British. They're constantly innovating and working with some top brands and designers.
3) Fenwick, Newcastle. It has absolutely everything you need, from high street to designer womenswear and menswear through to incredible homeware and a brilliant toy department. I've worked with them every NE1's Newcastle Fashion Week and they're such lovely people too.
4) Kuji Shop, Sheffield to Online - It was a truly brilliant local independent boutique in Sheffield, it's now sadly closed down its doors but operates online. I love supporting local independents where I can and it's a perfect example of how good British independents can be.
5) Loft, Sendai - I could spend hours upon hours in this shop in Japan. It's a huge department store, think it had around 7 floors so had it had everything! Pretty much all things being Japanese, meant that there were so many cute, pretty and well made products from clothes, make up to stationery.
Sandra on Twitter
As told to Carol Huston
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Sat 31st December 2016