Sketched and Etched

Sketched and Etched

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I'm writing this without the ability to actually reference the magazines physically as I've left them at work so this will test how much of a permanent impression they've left on my less-than-efficient brain.  I will however have to come back and re-edit this post with names of photographers, stylists, writers and illustrators to give credit where credit is due so bear with me.  I am expanding on what I said before about Sketchbook magazine which landed on my desk this week because the sneak preview of content was quite sufficient but of course as with most magazines, holding it in your hand produces a different experience anyway.

In the case of Sketchbook, you're holding two parts to make one issue because of the way it's produced via the company MagCloud.  It's my first experience of print-on-demand mags which explains why each part of the first Sketchbook issue is $28 (printing in small quantities means a higher cost).  That said, I also happen to have the sentance "magazines are a snapshot in time" ringing in my ears and so I look upon these two issues, which are entirely dedicated to fashion bloggers in content and visual treatment, as exactly that; something that probably no other publication will ever do making them unique entities.  Without being able to see into the crystal ball of fashion blogging, perhaps the glass ceiling has been reached and the media attention will dim, thus rendering these two issues as something that marks a milestone in the fashion blogging timeline.

Reading Wafa Alobaidat's editor letter, I cowered in shame at my own initial dimissal of being on the cover: "Oh it's no biggie… the point of the cover is to showcase John Paul Thurlow's cool sketch art, not ME per se… they just picked me probably because I happen to be in London" or some such typical pessimistic statement.  Then I go and read the editor's letter yesterday and nearly wept a bit on the bus… Wafa writes about her experiences of reading the blog whilst being unhappy studying a course she didn't want to do and being inspried by it in variosu ways… it's difficult summarising such a letter without sounding like a twat and I'm not going to blatantly regurgitate it for ego-boosting purposes so I'll give a wee excerpt…

"Lastly, I know Susie has heard this a million times before but in case you want to hear it again, you have influenced my choice of career and opened my eyes to a whole new world. I really do believe I am doing what I love to do because of you and your blog. "

I'm of course incredibly touched by the letter but also completely shocked to hear confessions of how the blog has steered the professional course of someone else's life when most of the time, I'm thinking the blog is just another dot on an RSS feed.  What is incredible though is that, Wafa and her team laud fashion bloggers in their issue, but it is they who have taken the time and effort to assemble over 100 contributors to create a printed publication, which I think is a far grander task than logging into Typepad and typing a bit of text.  So Wafa, you may be praising me in your letter, but it's you who has taken it into your own hands to create your own magazine… nuff said…

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(To clear some facts that were misrepresented in the article about me though and are regular mistakes in ye olde Style Bubble facts… I did NOT attend a Chanel fashion SHOW in 2007… a group of bloggers were invited to go to Paris to preview the then-new Mademoiselle Coco advert and tour Coco Chanel's apartment, NOT to attend the show… likewise, the Gucci trip in New York was in aid of the UNICEF/Madonna event to celebrate the Fifth Avenue flagship opening, NOT to see the Gucci show which is in Milan anyway…)

Right, enough me me me… it IS the Fashion Bloggers issue and there's a lot of us in here… ranging from full on profiles/interviews and always accompanied by illustrations that interpret the mood of the blog as opposed to straight-off press shots…

Diane Pernet

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Lulu and Your Mom – Had no idea she was in the middle of writing a book! 

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Jennine Tamm of The Coveted and founder of IFB

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Abdul LagerfIeld aka Sonny Groo, founder of Mykromag

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Those not profiled are given a tribute anyway with an illustration… and of course the superstar quad Garance Dore, The Sartorialist, Tommy Ton of Jak and Jil and Rumi of Fashion Toast had to be there…

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Instead of full on words, other bloggers like Tommy of This is Naive creates a collage which sums up the aesthetic of her inspiring blog perfectly…

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Other subjects covered also include blogger friendly peeps like Fred Butler whose blogging is as  prolific as her accessories, sets and projects output…

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Or you can escape from bloggy blog blog altogether into David Benjamin Sherry's photographs…

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Or into the fashion editorials… there's four or five I counted…

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…or discover more about artist Alice Instone about her recent exhibition Interview with a Shoe

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My favourite non-fashion related feature was the Week in the Life of Working at Vogue House feature that Kristin Knox of The Clothes Whisperer wrote… fashion cupboard tales galore…

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But of course, at the end of the day it's still mostly fashion blog related and one article in particular attempts to uncover what it is that makes a successful blog, a question that makes me very uncomfortable when answering that very popular question as I'm thinking people are always expecting me to whip out some kind of blog recipe… the writer's conclusion isthat it's hard to say what secret ingredient you need, other than constant updating… I'm glad that question has been left aptly open-ended…

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…and on that note, I leave you with this…

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53 comments

Leave a comment
  1. STYLE SCANNER

    2009-11-13 at 12:47 AM

    Blog on indeed. Fun to see a print magazine devoted to bloggers – in a ‘pop will eat itself’ – sort of way (?) Exciting times indeed.

  2. violetville

    2009-11-13 at 2:01 AM

    oh i love this! so beautiful! the drawings, the photos, you can tell a lot of love and respect went into this. “snapshot in time” – so apropos!

  3. Fashion Minute

    2009-11-13 at 2:05 AM

    Excellent! It’s fun to observe another DIY loop back into the feedback of fashion.
    xx
    F.M.

  4. Steff

    2009-11-13 at 2:05 AM

    Oh I feel like an idiot for not knowing Jennine is the founder of IFB. Looks like a fantastic magazine.

  5. tara

    2009-11-13 at 2:11 AM

    wowwww i want this magz, where i can buy ???

  6. nicolethen

    2009-11-13 at 2:20 AM

    woah!!! it’s AMAZING. it’s so pretty like every page can be framed and become art on the wall…so cool

  7. KD

    2009-11-13 at 2:53 AM

    YES! It seems worth the steep price for such an awesome magazine! You totally deserve the cover. 🙂 And its so refreshing to read/see a magazine that takes this “Let’s work together and be super cool together” approach to fashion blogs as opposed to “Blogs are silly” or the more gimmicky (though understandable for the medium, but far from ideal) “Guest blogger this week! And I’ve forgotten who it is already”. I hope that made sense.

  8. Brigadeiro

    2009-11-13 at 2:57 AM

    BRILLIANT sketches! What an amazing mag!!! Wish I could get my hands on it…
    xx

  9. Isabel

    2009-11-13 at 4:31 AM

    Oh my gosh, the art is absolutely fantastic! Though I have to say, the subtitle of the article the wrote on you is kinda cheesy. I’m sure they could’ve come up with something better than “a bubble not to be popped”.

  10. Valerie

    2009-11-13 at 5:04 AM

    Love!I think I might need to buy this! All the pictures are amazing looking.

  11. Melissa

    2009-11-13 at 5:29 AM

    love the art. I really want to buy this.

  12. ed hardy

    2009-11-13 at 8:02 AM

    Oh my gosh, the art is absolutely fantastic! Though I have to say, the subtitle of the article the wrote on you is kinda cheesy

  13. Caroline

    2009-11-13 at 8:28 AM

    It looks like a really good magazine, though @28 is a bit too much for the student budget.
    But you are good Suzy, very good.

  14. Buy Prozac

    2009-11-13 at 8:28 AM

    Cool post. I’m very proud to be a blogger and what we do is featured in a magazine. What an honor it is. Cool Bloggers Rocks!!!!

  15. Kb

    2009-11-13 at 8:29 AM

    Looks like a great issue, I wonder if it can be bought online? That last article certainly looks interesting and I love to read any analysis of the blogging community. Speaking of blogs, would you be able to update your link to mine, it’s now http://www.iwantyoutoknow.co.uk
    Thanks

  16. ed hardy

    2009-11-13 at 9:21 AM

    Excellent! It’s fun to observe another DIY loop back into the feedback of fashion.

  17. ellio100

    2009-11-13 at 9:38 AM

    whoahhhh that’s very lovely. must be neat to have someone paint you. perhaps if mainstream magazines were as nice as this they wouldn’t be in such a pickle. (these are IDLE speculations, I really don’t have the faintest idea) kiss kiss

  18. Laura

    2009-11-13 at 11:29 AM

    im going to have to get this…
    im doing my dissertation on the emergence of the fashion blogger….
    i might need to speak to you susie…
    http://aforteforfashion.blogspot.com

  19. Marta

    2009-11-13 at 12:02 PM

    Well congratulations Susie! The magazine is really amazing as well. Love love love the illustrations.

  20. Eline

    2009-11-13 at 12:46 PM

    Oh sweeeet. There seem to be some really nice things in there. I wish I had the extra money right now.

  21. melissa

    2009-11-13 at 12:57 PM

    I really love your blog!
    Yesterday I sent ou an email inviting you to visit my new blog http://www.abitoffashion.com and, if you want, to leave some comments! Thanks

  22. Denise @ Swelle

    2009-11-13 at 2:04 PM

    Gorgeous cover. Bravo!

  23. Em

    2009-11-13 at 2:06 PM
  24. missmilki

    2009-11-13 at 2:40 PM

    Looks Fabulous! I’m sure its worth the price but I do wish it were more affordable.

  25. Rita

    2009-11-13 at 2:47 PM

    Oh thanx for sharing…… I’ve been wanting to see this for so long now…. it’s really beautiful the drawings and collage are just…. I like….. thanx…. I wanted both issues but around 30 $ each…… can’t afford it…..

  26. Fajr | Stylish Thought

    2009-11-13 at 3:01 PM

    I love how fashion bloggers are finally being recognized for the voices and influence they have, though at times I feel that even the fashion blogosphere has a velvel rope…anywho…
    I have to get this magazine, and congrats on being featured! (and on the cover)

  27. Wafa Alobaidat

    2009-11-13 at 3:33 PM

    Dear Susie!
    You are fantastical, thanks for taking a moment to show us appreciation. We have worked so hard to put the first issue together and are almost done with our second issue (Fashion/Film and Designers Issue)which will be out in December/January!
    You have inspired me and my team to create something we are all so proud of and for you to mention us on your blog is the greatest reward of all! Thank you so much !
    We appreciate everyone’s feedback – feel drop to drop us an email if you want to get involved with our Sketchbook Blog, Magazine, Sketchbook TV Show at sketchbookmagazine@live.com
    For those of you who are not in the US, UK, Canada you can now order the magazine as a digital download and on PDF http://www.e-junkie.com/90307
    Thanks!
    Wafa Alobaidat
    Editor In Chief
    Sketchbook Magazine
    http://www.sketchbookmagazine.com
    http://sketchbookblog.tumblr.com/
    http://twitter.com/sketchbookmag

  28. Fashionizta

    2009-11-13 at 4:40 PM

    What a great cover!

  29. misssunsh

    2009-11-13 at 4:56 PM

    congrats from paraguay! great blogs to follow and such incredible illustrators!

  30. winnie

    2009-11-13 at 5:21 PM

    This is amazing, congrats! I think bloggers have a huge influence nowadays and I can definitely see how reading blogs can influence your career! The magazine looks like a visual treat..the illustrations are stunning.

  31. Make Do Style

    2009-11-13 at 6:21 PM

    Great review!

  32. siramethyst

    2009-11-13 at 6:25 PM

    ooh, I really want the paper issues, but just bought the digital dl instead since I’m in another country, can’t wait to read on. Great review, susie :))

  33. June Illustration

    2009-11-13 at 7:17 PM

    Thank you so much Susie!! I’m really happy you liked the magazine and my illustrations of you! It was my pleasure to know you, reading your blog and drawing you.
    Thank you again!
    http://www.junesees.com

  34. Roz

    2009-11-13 at 8:04 PM

    That looks like a completely extraordinary magazine! The sketches, the thoughtful writing, everything.
    I’ll start with the actual art. The varying styles are truly beautiful, especially those sketches of you. Wow, I would so love to do something like that! (I’m really interested in fashion design and drawing at the moment.) I think they paid tribute to some amazing bloggers there, and I also think it’s amazing how we can now set up our own personal communication platform through blogging. And as you said, you have no idea how this maight influence people and what might happen because of it! Woah, long comment there.. I think I’ll stop rambling now.
    http://clothescamerasandcoffee.blogspot.com/

  35. English Rose

    2009-11-13 at 8:30 PM

    ohmygoodness this is so incredibly cool – the art is stunning
    blog on!
    http://iamanenglishrose.blogspot.com

  36. Shin

    2009-11-13 at 8:35 PM

    Wow!! Congratulations Susie!! That’s such an amazing accomplishment!! I really want to get my hands on a copy right now and read how to become like you 🙂 xxooxxoxo

  37. June Illustration

    2009-11-13 at 9:39 PM

    Sorry for reposting, Thank you again for liking the illustrations I made of you!
    http://www.junesees.com

  38. Nice_and_shiny

    2009-11-14 at 6:05 AM

    It’s true what you said about this sort of publication being a real milestone for fashion blogs/bloggers. Not that the blogs themselves arent credible enough, but the recognition that bloggers have been getting lately from the wider scope of the fashion world is just amazing. And that owning a magazine like this is truly a snapshot in time, and a collectors item for all of us who spend waaaaaaaaaaaaay too much time on the internet (woohoo, over here!). There’s NOBODY who would be better suited for this cover, as I still consider you THE fashion blogger (like Artistotle is considered THE philosopher… idk, these are the strange kind of things I think about…) Anyways, a congratulations are surely in order and I also just want to say that you make me personally proud at how far you’ve come and that you are getting the attention you deserve. Blogging may seem unrewarding and solitary at times, but I know that you have affected the way so many people feel about fashion… including myself. If I never found your blog 2 and a half years ago, I’d still be reading Teen Vogue as my only source of fashion input… and that’s a good thing.
    <3<3<3

  39. Gem Fatale

    2009-11-14 at 11:24 AM

    How absolutely fantastic!
    I need to get my mits on that. Congrats Susie, that must’ve been so lovely to read 🙂
    And, 2D or not, you’re still a cover star! Pretty effing cool.
    xx

  40. BamBam

    2009-11-14 at 10:34 PM

    Gorgeous! Is Sketchbook available in RD Franks? x x
    http://www.bambamchic.blogspot.com

  41. jetblackdye.blogspot

    2009-11-15 at 7:50 AM

    wow this is crrrrrrrrrrrrrazy!!!!!!!
    http://www.jetblackdye.blogspot.com

  42. Tomorrow

    2009-11-15 at 9:36 AM

    I really love this magazine, the pictures of you are amazing these artists are brilliamt!

  43. Liz Blair

    2009-11-16 at 4:09 PM

    What a BEAUTIFUL magazine!!!!

  44. Ondo Lady

    2009-11-17 at 9:25 PM

    Ok, you’ve sold it to me. I was not planning on buying a copy of this magazine due to the price but now I will because I see it as a collectors item.

  45. Fi Gandy

    2009-11-18 at 3:02 PM

    To purchase the Fashion Blogger Issue it is now available to buy at http://magcloud.com/browse/issue/38767
    We deliver to the UK US Canada
    If you can’t wait to receive your hard copy of the Fashion Blogger Issue you can now purchase it on PDF at http://www.e-junkie.com/90307/

  46. Kakô

    2009-11-18 at 3:47 PM

    YOU ARE SO AMAZING THAT I COULD MARRY WITH YOU…CONGRETS FOR EVERY PEACE OF YOURS FASHIONS CONTRIBUTIONS…LOVE AND KISS

  47. nicolas

    2009-11-18 at 10:35 PM

    the question however is not what makes a successfull blog these days, but what a “good” one is. commonly misinterpreted and often based just on the qualitiy of pictures… furthermore as bloggers post about the lack of creativity in designers creations eg they trouble to express their personal accounts in a way that justifies them sharing their thoughts…

  48. Kira Sherrine

    2009-11-23 at 6:30 PM

    “I’m of course incredibly touched by the letter but also completely shocked to hear confessions of how the blog has steered the professional course of someone else’s life when most of the time, I’m thinking the blog is just another dot on an RSS feed.”
    …I would have to ask you to focus on the fact that you said “think”, for a while.
    You may not be asked to exclusive shows, but you are given freebies the people that give it to you, asked to attend gatherings, have usually more than 20 comments a post, and hugely influence the thought pattern of people who love fashion (i’m sure you read your comments)
    Nuff Said…

  49. Kira Sherrine

    2009-11-23 at 6:33 PM

    my bad… I mean to say given freebies by people that give it to you to possibly be promoted

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