4/12/10

Curiouser and Curiouser

After work this morning I came home to discover that some of my favourite Toronto Tweeters (Twitterers?) were discussing interning. Naturally I reviewed the tweets I'd missed to find that it all began with Lisa Tant's latest blog post. I'm always curious to hear from current/former interns at magazines. What are they up to? Where have they been? My curiosity knows no bounds when it comes to interns, some of the most ambitious and creative of the bunch. Plus, I figure, we should stick together! We're all struggling to work our way up the masthead and may become colleagues soon enough. On that note, meet Alannah, an intern and blogger at http://www.swaggerandgrace.com/.

I'm a bright young thing named: Alannah O'Neill


Current Employer/Position: ELLE Canada Editorial Intern, Editor in Chief of Swagger and Grace

Dream Job: Editor in Chief of a major fashion magazine

Education: Ryerson, Arts and Contemporary Studies

How would you describe your personal style? Downtown girl

What do you think is the most stylish city? Why?
I think Toronto could give other city's a run for it's money. I love sitting on this patio at the corner of Richmond and Spadina to people watch-- I'm constantly inspired by other Torontonians. Paris is very chic as well.

What are your favourite magazines? ELLE Canada, V Magazine, W, Vogue

Other than magazines, what inspires you?
I'm constantly inspired by runway shows. I'm starting to gain a greater appreciation for different aesthetics, and am learning how to translate them into wearable looks. I try and interview as many people as possible for my blog, in different areas of the industry. I always want to be trying new things, learning from new people.

Do you have any favourite blogs or websites? WhoWhatWear is awesome, and I love "The Cut" (New York Magazine's Fashion Blog).

When and why did you decide to start your blog, Swagger and Grace?
I decided to start Swagger in July of last year, to try and get a job at a fashion magazine. I had no experience, and no one would even look at my resume. I thought, "This is a way to create a body of written work and show my love of fashion."

What inspired your blog's name?
The name just kind of came to me one day, but I feel like it is a representation of runway fashion. You need to be graceful, but no one is going to pay any attention to you unless you own the catwalk.

How did you land your internship at ELLE Canada?
I met an ELLE Canada editor by chance on the streetcar on my way to the Joe Fresh/Pink Tartan shows for SS 2010. We talked for a little while, I got her contact information and kept in touch via email. In order to get hired at ELLE Canada you have to complete a big written test: pitch story ideas, do some fact checks, stuff like that. There was an interview component, which was very nerve-wracking, but all worth it in the end.

What’s the best advice you’ve received as an intern thus far?
Never stop moving. Be everywhere, meet everyone.

What do you think every intern must have?
A thick skin and nerves of steel. The ability to function under pressure is essential.

What’s the most exciting experience you’ve had as an intern?
I got to sit front row at VAWK with Lara [Ceroni], the web editor. I also got to interview celebrity hairstylist Harry Josh (Gisele's bff). Hands down though, the most exciting experience has been getting to see my name in print and working with the editors to improve my writing.


What surprised you the most about working for a fashion magazine?
Magazines work on issues months in advance. We just closed the June issue and it's only April.

If you could have tea with anyone in publishing who would it be? Why?
I'd like to sit down with Anna Wintour because I'm fascinated by her reputation. I want her job.

Keep your eyes on ELLE Canada for glimpses of this bright young thing. She has two articles being published in their June issue. Congratulations Alannah!

4/7/10

Love/Leave May 2010


ELLE Canada's May 2010 cover girl is supermodel spawn Elettra Wiedemann. Isabella Rossellini's daughter is casually styled on this cover. Though I like the fresh look of the blazer, I wish there was an aspirational element to the outfit. I mean, the accompanying cover line says she's on top. Clothing aside, I'd love to read what she's up to. Wiedemann's mane is a warm, auburn tone. Luckily that means my eye is immediately drawn to her face. Orange and pink cover lines would pop, if there weren't so many of them. The majority of the cover lines appear like small paragraphs. However I'm intrigued by stories about buzz-worthy it girls like Dree Hemingway, and Heather Marks' beautiful life.

FASHION's back with its Age Issue this month. One thing's for sure, and that's Cindy Crawford's beauty defies the clock. Last year, I couldn't tear myself away from the personal essays in the Age Issue. Though 'style at every age' has been recycled over and over on covers, the "LOVE YOUR STYLE" section is one I won't skip over. I've said it before, I'm very into personal style stories. Tell me it's just right for me, and I'm hooked. Though there are quite a few stories advertised on this cover, I like the way that the groupings frame Crawford. It doesn't appear cluttered because the beauty special, style story and Crawford profile are the only things that really jump out. I prefer this cover this month because it doesn't look quite so overwhelming. According to the video preview online, David Livingstone's written the McQueen tribute, making it a must-read for me. 

So, love it or leave it? What are you planning to pick up this month? As always, share below!

4/2/10

LGFW F/W 2010: Even the Cab Driver Needs Directions

Thursday after work I checked my email to find an online editor asking me to cover some shows. LGFW was nearly over, so I jumped at the chance to get involved in any way that I could. I packed my bag with flats, a bag of almonds, a bottle of water, my camera, notebook and pen and was on my way. I rushed to the subway and got off at Union station, searching for a cab. Oddly enough after all of the negative reactions to LGFW's move to the Allstream Centre, even my cab driver was unsure on how to get there. He handed me a map, and together we easily found our way. When I spotted groups clad in fashionable and fashionably over the top outfits, I knew we'd arrived.
It may have been the cavernous space, or the afternoon time slot, but the event seemed to be sparsely attended. Looking around, I couldn't help but notice that the Toronto scene is a small world. My seat (labelled for the website, not me) was a prime spot for people watching. Maybe they don't know me, but I spotted some of the city's best known writers and editors immediately. Everyone seemed to have fallen into their own LGFW routine, including my friend Justine, of http://www.whatevereurotrash.com/. Show pass, take seat, take notes, file out and repeat.
Mapping Out the Front Row - There's the ET Canada crew, The Star's Derick Chetty, Zoomer's Suzanne Boyd, David Livingstone, National Post's Nathalie Atkinson, Globe and Mail's Amy Verner and the FLARE team (Lisa Tant, Liz Cabral, Mosha Lundstrom Halbert and interns-turned-editors Erin O'Brien and Dane Tredway)

The runway is long and so are the rows, but sitting up front is still special. It was nice to see former bosses from my internships. I had the pleasure of seeing BASCH by Brandon Dwyer, Lucian Matis, Rudsak and Comrags. Sitting in the Dwyer and Matis shows was extra special, since I watched their collections last season as well. When the after work crowds came bustling in for David Dixon, I decided to begin the trek back home. It's a shame I missed the complementary prosecco that was passed out!