Home

Photo via El Closet de mi Hermana

Published originally on March 23, 2011 11:41:05 in LivinginPeru.com/PeruthisWeek.com

Susana Aguirre

You’ll be hard pressed to find a girl who isn’t fascinated by a fashion blog or two. A girl who probably also has a blog of her own where she reviews the latest runway show and posts pictures of her daily outfits. I’ll confess, I’m that girl who checks her Google or Twitter feed every day to find new posts by this new breed of fashionistas. In recent years, much has been written about the revolutionizing and global impact of social media on the fashion industry. Fashion lovers and experts alike have come to embrace and strive with the popularity of Blogger, Facebook, Youtube, Twitter and Tumblr. The once anonymous fashion blogger from say, sunny California (Fashiontoast), an obscure town in Texas (Sea of Shoes), the Philippines (Bryanboy), or Sweden (Elin Kling), has made a name, influencing an industry previously known for its exclusivity.

The world of fashion has also taken a big stride on the local front as Peruvian fashionistas take the online blog scene by storm. What might have started out as a hobby, an exciting way to share with the world your personal style and advice, for many Peruvian fashion lovers it has uncovered a new world of possibilities.

I googled “Peru blogs de moda” (Peru fashion blogs) a year or so ago and wound up at one of the most read fashion blogs in the country, Fashionjolik. From there, I visited blog after blog fixated on the wealth and variety of material and on the diversity of its authors.

What’s captivating is seeing the networking and innovative projects carried out by bloggers and industry professionals. Take for example the drop-in wardrobe consulting service offered in Lima by the blog Monita de Seda and Veronica Batinic. Romina Maruyama, the fashion girl behind the blog, has garnered a readership posting photos and musings on her personal, Monita, style. Recognizing that Limeñas are maturing in their fashion choices and seek advice from experts, the pair developed a “styling pack” which includes personal guidance in organizing one’s wardrobe and creating fashionable outfits, just a couple among other items offered for S/. 150.

Along with styling tips, Romina offers her take on the latest collections and campaigns by national designers, many new and independent who are beginning to break into the business. As with fellow blogs, readers are inspired and indulge in conversation with posts that offer reviews on the latest pair of shoes, or the it bag ready to be snatched up at stores. This has reinforced a connection that has naturally grown between bloggers, designers and the public. Comments such as, “The skirt is beautiful! I have been looking for one just like it, do you know if they have more?” from readers are frequent. This one in particular was a reply to a post on Romina’s visit to the Wash and Wear showroom which included photos of her favorite pieces: “Simply put, I’m an average gal who seeks to share from a very personal point of view her relationship with fashion and style,” she writes in her blog profile. It’s the down-to-earth approach and candor that makes Romina relatable to her readers and her blog all the more welcoming.

Lorena Salmon, an established journalist and the passionate blogger behind Fashionjolik and Personal Shopper (the official blog of Jockey Plaza) has also captured a large following. One interesting aspect of her personal blog is how she’s become a bridge between various brands and her readers, styling for example the latest collection of Do It Accesorios and providing a personal take on how one would go about using such accessories. Seeking out partnerships with different players in the industry, Lorena has said she’s fortunate to work doing what she’s passionate about. In a section called Editoriales fashionjolik she shares with her readers the various projects she’s ventured in, collaborating with photographers and magazines to create fresh and creative fashion spreads.

As a larger trend, many fashion bloggers have been successful at turning their blogs into profitable enterprises. Brands and other businesses have shown they trust bloggers and their growing influence within an online audience by becoming website sponsors or providing contest opportunities for readers. The commercialization of their blogs as a brand has brought about a discussion on how bloggers balance their autonomy when undertaking certain projects or promoting products. (For an interesting article on this issue, see: “The Business of Blogging.”) What’s easy to see when visiting Fashionjolik or other popular blogs such as Style in Lima and La vida de serendipity is the energetic and enthusiastic approach the authors have when interacting with their readers while also participating in the many opportunities to help the fashion industry grow and thrive in our country.

Making money with fashion blogging

As a larger trend, many fashion bloggers have been successful at turning their blogs into profitable enterprises. Brands and other businesses have shown they trust bloggers and their growing influence within an online audience by becoming website sponsors or providing contest opportunities for readers. The commercialization of their blogs as a brand has brought about a discussion on how bloggers balance their autonomy when undertaking certain projects or promoting products. (For an interesting article on this issue, see: “The Business of Blogging.”) What’s easy to see when visiting Fashionjolik or other popular blogs such as Style in Lima and La vida de serendipity is the energetic and enthusiastic approach the authors have when interacting with their readers while also participating in the many opportunities to help the fashion industry grow and thrive in our country.

Vanessa Rodriguez, the fashionista behind La vida de serendipity, recently pointed out she understands that with their growing popularity, “there’s greater responsibility in informing [the reader] and informing well.”

Lima fashion showrooms

Parallel to the rise of fashion blogs has been the boom in showrooms that have popped up around the city. These retail spaces, either temporary or permanent, have taken the shopping experience for Limeñas to different heights. They provide a more intimate and engaging atmosphere for customers and designers to interact, an example being the ever popular Cha Cha Showroom. This project seems to be an all-encompassing embodiment of what the fashion movement in Lima — and, slowly but surely across the country — is all about: promoting Peruvian designers and artistic talent, cooperation between a close-knit fashion blogger community while also inviting the public to partake in a dialogue of creativity.

Another showroom hit within the blogosphere is El closet de mi hermana, a line of effortlessly chic clothes with a bohemian flare designed by Maria José and Ursula Bartello, fashionable sisters and entrepreneurs. Having fellow bloggers come into the cozy, vintage house where the store is stationed and later posting photographs or videos of their visit has proven to be a great way to spread the word and attract new visitors. Vintage shops such as Las Traperas and Antique Vintage have also become favorite destinations for bloggers such as Nadia Soto of La moda adicta whose outfit posts show how young women are daring to be fashion forward in a city that isn’t necessarily known to be fashionable. How things are changing!

On a related front, there’s good news for fashionistas across the country as it just become easier to shop for the latest trends right from the comfort of your own home. The launch of Peru’s first online clothing store, Tustor, is a major project that fashion bloggers have supported enthusiastically. An exciting endeavor that’s still in an inaugural stage, Tustor provides products by Peruvian designers and foreign brands for purchase online and are presently offering free delivery to all parts of the country.

As more Peruvians become internet and tech savvy, it’s no surprise businesses of all kinds have been keen to expand their commercial and marketing strategies online. And significantly, Peruvian women are capitalizing on the prospects the internet provides to flourish as independent businesswomen. The two founders of De moda en Peru — the first online magazine and site to group all things fashion in Peru, as they describe their business to be — is just one other example of women taking their passion to another, profitable, level.

Things will definitely be heating up in the online community as PeruModa, the event of the year in the Peruvian fashion industry, rolls around in April. There’s no doubt there’s the talent and commitment to amplify Peruvian fashion nationally, internationally and of course online.

3 thoughts on “Peru’s fashion blogs capture fans and profit

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s