A litte Foreword.
The blogger network constantly astounds me. In the ‘blog versus magazine’ debate, the arguments in favour of ‘the blog’ are generally concerned with the fact that a blog is constantly updated and, therefore, it is a more ‘immediate’ source of information.
But, if you ask me, it is the accessibility of the person behind the blog that makes it so unique, so exciting and more ‘real’. The fact that you can interact with your style icons through their blog, Twitter, Facebook and so on adds a whole new dimension. It’s like being able to leave a comment and ask questions on your favourite magazine editorial, or being able to Tweet at Anna Wintour, “Um, hey babe… Where do you get your hair done? Thinking about getting a #totes #amaze bob cut myself” and instantly getting a friendly reply.
For me, it’s always a ‘pinch yourself’ moment when one of my favourite bloggers so willingly agrees to having me bombard them with emails full of random questions about their past, what makes them tick and what advice they have for us, ahem, aspiring bloggers.
I hope you find these interviews to be insightful, inspiring and, of course, entertaining. _______________________________________________________________
Introducing Nicola Cook - Hong Kong based blogger and creator of http://www.knockyouforsix.com/, master of chic minimalism and reformed blue eye shadow enthusiast.
For this Hong Kong based beauty, sleek and chic is not simply a sense of style, it’s a way of life. There’s something about this little lady’s minimalist approach to dressing, blogging and home decorating that makes you want to clear out ¾ of your wardrobe and introduce the 'less is more' philosophy to your daily grind.
THE CHRONICLES OF HER (TCOH): It says on your blog that you’re a graphic designer, but where and who for?
NICOLA COOK (NC): I’m a freelance graphic designer, but I also operate a web design business in partnership with my brother called 'The Refinery' (therefinery.co.nz). We design and build websites and online stores for both NZ and international fashion brands.
TCOH: I read somewhere that you're originally from NZ. What initiated the move to HK?
NC: It was my boyfriend that landed the big job here and because of the nature and flexibility of what I do, it was an easy decision to make the move.
TCOH: Can you describe your style in 3 words?
NC: Minimal, tailored, understated.
TCOH: Were you fashion conscious from a young age?
NC: I was definitely very self-conscious about how I looked and what I wore when I was younger.
TCOH: How has your style changed or evolved over time?
NC: I think now that I’m 25 I know my body type and what suits me more than ever. I used to be very focussed on following trends and spending money on items that I’d only end up enjoying short-term, but now I’m only interested in spending more money on quality investment pieces that will last.
TCOH: Your biggest cringe-worthy fashion blunder ever?
NC: Wearing bright blue eye shadow through high school. It was much worse than it sounds.
TCOH: Who is your style idol?
NC: Elin Kling.
TCOH: Business or pleasure?
NC: A bit of both. I started KYF6 as a place to archive inspiration for myself, but I think once people take an interest in what you do, opportunities present themselves and you naturally begin to treat it like a business. I’m careful about how I choose brands to work with as it’s important to not lose integrity with your readers... But I think I’ve come full circle now and do it more for the love of sharing what inspires me.
TCOH: What was going through your head when you wrote your first blog post?
NC: What should I write?! Your first few blog entries are always funny because you know nobody’s reading so they can feel like diary entries. Dear Diary… why can’t I look like Anja Rubik?
TCOH: What motivates you to blog? What’s the driving force behind Knock You For Six?
NC: It’s the little moments of visual excitement; For example, when I see an image from an editorial and everything is perfect – the lighting, the composition, the model and styling – when everything aligns - that really excites me and I have to share it. Or when I get dressed to go out and I put together an outfit – the silhouette it creates or the way colours and textures combine excite me so I use KYF6 as a platform to document those moments.
TCOH: What’s one invaluable lesson you’ve learnt from blogging?
NC: Everyone loves original content.
TCOH: What has been your favourite collaboration to date?
NC: A long time ago, Kate Bartels (a good friend of mine who is hugely talented), asked me to help out with a shoot featuring her own designs which I could publish on my blog to gauge a bit of interest. It is always such an enjoyable experience working with someone you know and respect. Everything comes easy.
TCOH: What’s your advice to people who are just starting out in the blogging business?
NC: Don’t ever start blogging to make money or get famous. You need to have a genuine interest in what you’re blogging about. It’s also important to have a point of difference. People want something they can’t get anywhere else.
On other stuff...
TCOH: Listening to ATM?
NC: SBTRKT, Phoenix, Frou Frou & Little Dragon.
TCOH: Dream travel destination?
NC: New York. It’s the one place on my list that I haven’t been to yet. My friends tell me I won’t want to leave.
TCOH: What’s your defining feature?
NC: My smile.
TCOH: Predict your life in 10 years time.
NC: I’d like to find a way to create a business that is self-profitable with little effort so I can have time to enjoy life but still be part of something that I really love. That all sounds very cryptic doesn’t it?
KNOCK YOU FOR SIX