Have you ever dreamt about sharing your wardrobe with the world? Anna James has done it! As the creator of the fashion blog, Fash Boulevard, Anna has a personal style that is admired by many. Her blog has recently received a lot of hype when she won a contest to become a guest blogger on Lauren Conrad’s website! We spoke with Anna and found out a bit about current fashion trends and how she got to where she is.
College Lifestyles: Can you tell College Lifestyles a little bit about your blog, Fash Boulevard?
Anna James: I always describe Fash Boulevard as a collision of Vogue meets Us Weekly. There are thousands of serious fashion blogs out there and tons of celebrity infused websites as well, but what I wanted to do is provide a destination that would combine and then break down each of those guilty pleasures in a way that makes it possible for real girls to relate to their favorite stars and hopefully learn something new. I’ve always seen Fash Boulevard as a platform to share my story, while illustrating seasonal trends and providing affordable pieces to help replicate popular celebrity ensembles. My goal is to help my readers find their unique style and achieve a truly fabulous wardrobe that will give them the confidence to chase their dreams, no matter how big they are.
CL: How did you get started with fashion blogging?
AJ: I first got the idea to start a blog while I was interning at BCBG Max Azria headquarters in LA. I had just graduated from Auburn University, and was thousands of miles away from my family, walking wide-eyed through this incredibly surreal opportunity. I felt like I was living in a movie and instantly started toying with the idea of documenting it through a blog. When the internship ended I landed a major visual merchandising job with a New York based company and the idea of starting a blog fell to the back burner. At 21 I found myself in charge of 7 brands throughout 26 Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s in Southern California. As hectic and demanding as the job was, I would find myself spending my free time thinking about what I really wanted out of life. I had these fabulous dreams that I knew I could reach, but I just didn’t know how. The blog was always in the back of my mind, but I knew there was no way I could put the time into it that it would need with such a crazy schedule. Then a week before Christmas, the company unexpectedly let the entire visual department go. Returning home wasn’t an option, so instead of feeling sorry for myself, I decided to create a brand that would someday allow me to fulfill all my goals. Fash Boulevard was the first step and I’ve been a full-time blogger ever since.
AJ: Bright, girlie and fun! Since I grew up on the east coast and now reside on the west, my style is a fusion of the places that I’ve been and styles I’ve been exposed to. My favorite outfits are classic pieces paired with dramatic accessories. I’m a total accessory junkie. Cocktail rings are my life.
CL: What would you say is a staple article of clothing for the summer season?
AJ: Denim shorts. Their extreme versatility always makes them a summer must. Throw them over your swimsuit when you’re beach bound or pair them with a silk blouse and a strappy sandal for a dinner date. A fabulous pair of denim shorts can be styled an endless number of ways, no matter where your summer travels may take you.
CL: Your blog posts showcase many bright colors and pastels! What is an easy way to incorporate these bright colors into your daily wardrobe?
AJ: A great way to incorporate bright colors and pastels into your wardrobe is through accessories such as mint flats, a florescent orange scarf or a fabulous neon clutch. These additions can add a trendy pop of color to even the most simple summer ensembles without breaking the bank.
CL: You’ve recently started writing weekly posts for Lauren Conrad’s website! Could you tell us a little about that experience?
AJ: I’ve always believed that everything happens for a reason. We dream the dreams we have for a reason and seven years ago, while I watched Laguna Beach in my small little town, my dream was to someday work with Lauren Conrad. I’ve followed her journey from college student to multi-branded designer, so having her be such a major part of my own personal journey is truly unfathomable. I‘m having an absolute blast blogging for her site and sharing my favorite style tips with girls around the world. It’s opened so many doors for me and I’ll be forever grateful for the opportunity.
CL: Where do you get the inspiration for your posts?
AJ: Shopping is my main source of fashion inspiration. I’m constantly finding pieces that I’m dying to style and feature. I also read a lot of fashion magazines as well to make sure I’m up to date on the rapidly changing trends each season.
CL: Which designers and celebrities inspire your own personal wardrobe?
AJ: I love Rachel Zoe and Nicole Richie’s eclectic bohemian ensembles. I’m also a huge fan of Rachel Bilson and Ashley Tisdale’s Cali-Chic outfits.
AJ: When I started my blog, I had never been on a fashion blog before, which is probably a good thing since there are an intimidating number of bloggers out there. It’s so important to find your niche and do what you love. If you’re blogging about things that you’re passionate about, people will embrace your content and want more from you. It’s also important not to get intimidated by bigger blogs. It takes a long time to build a following but with persistence and hard work it will pay off. I’d suggest planning out an entire month of posts before starting your blog. This will help you get a grasp on what your blog will be and help gain a better understanding of the amount of work you’ll need to put into it.
CL: What do you see yourself doing in ten years?
AJ: In ten years I’d like to be writing style guide-books, while running my own accessory line, which will include original jewelry, shoes, and handbag designs.
Anna has inspired me to think about starting my own blog…what about you? For more fashion tips and tidbits, check out Anna’s blog, Fash Boulevard or follow her on twitter, @FashBoulevard!
Rachel Crocetti is a Health and Fashion writer at College Lifestyles. She studies Journalism and Photography at Hofstra University and is currently obsessed with bright prints, fun accessories and cowgirl boots.