Photo by Matthieu Da Cruz
Danielle Meder is a Canadian living in London as a fashion freelancer on a variety of projects worldwide. Her blog, Final Fashion, is about “fashion trend theory and independent creative career realization.” As an illustrator, her specialties are designer paper dolls. CF had the chance to catch up with Danielle on how she has been able to utilize blogging as a medium for sharing her illustrations.
CF: Tell us about your blog, and your offline life.
Final Fashion is about fashion trend theory and independent creative career realization. Because I’m a professional fashion illustrator, it also features my drawings. As for an offline life, I think I have one? It’s mostly made up of eating, sleeping, exploring my city (London) and hanging out with friends.
CF: What inspired you to start a blog?
As soon as I found the medium in 2005 I just knew that I had been waiting my entire life for this. I have always been compelled to express myself in pictures and words and I loved the immediacy and porosity of the format.
CF: What mistakes do you see fashion blogs making?
It’s hard to say what a mistake is – like, what’s the worst that could happen? No one’s going to lose an eye if you mess up on a fashion blog. The great thing about blogging as a creative endeavor is that it’s low-barrier to entry and that it can be as unique as the individual creating it. There is no right or wrong way to blog – your mileage will always vary.
CF: Have you ever made a mistake with your blog?
So many! But every mistake has been a useful learning experience. I remember in the early days when flamewars were more common I was sometimes insensitive to other people. I wrote some ignorant things and hurt people’s feelings. Experiences like this made me aware of how important empathy is, online and off.
More recently, I tried to professionalize the blog using a sponsorship program with completely took the blog off course from everything I loved about it and turned it into a chore. I discovered that in order to blog the way I want, I need to keep a certain level of economic separation between blogging and my business endeavors.
The thing is, making mistakes is necessary, being wrong sometimes is inevitable, offending people is the price of being interesting, and everyone has a chance to redeem themselves. This is what blogging has taught me.
CF: What is your favorite blog post you’ve ever written?
These are some of my favorites posts on Final Fashion. I think one of the best ones that is specific to being a blogger is here.
CF: How did you build a community around your blog?
I just focus on creating the blog that I want to read. People who find the same things interesting I do will find me by google or social networks. My interests are so specific and niche that my “community” will never be a large one. So I’m content to let it build itself.
CF: Which plug-in is best for blogs, or does it depend on the blog?
Like a wordpress plugin? Depends on what you need it to do, right? I use one called Sociable, it does what it says on the tin.
CF: What is your favorite social network?
Twitter is the best, it allows a lot of peripheral signals to get through which brings you into contact with people and links you might not normally see if you’re limiting your feed to people and websites you already know.
CF: What are your favorites Blogs?
CF: What would you say to someone who is interested in starting a blog?
If you’re not constantly full of ideas for posts and the idea of regularly updating it fills you with dread, don’t bother, blogging is not a necessity and not everyone is cut out for it.
If you are full of blog-lust, just start it. Be aware a blog is never “ready”, it’s always a work in progress, and making mistakes is part of the process. Be patient and very persistent. It takes ages to find out what type of blogger you are and develop a confident voice. Have fun! It’s not a route to riches, so it’s only worthwhile if you enjoy it.