They make a living breathing the style scene in their countries and abroad, as well as capturing fashion moments on their websites and social media.
Now these fashion and lifestyle social influencers from the world are hitting up Singapore for Digital Fashion Week 2015, where they’ll be holding fashion talks, meeting fans - and walking the runway in the Run After show on 30 October. (Scroll to the end for a chance to win tickets to see this!) Run After is a new Singapore label that’s a collaboration between popular blogger Melissa Koh and homegrown label Whole9Yards.
We spoke to them to get their fashion insights from around the globe.
1. Sarah Kate Watson-Baik
Hometown: South Korea
This California-bred, London-trained industrial designer is married to a Korean architect, which explains why she’s spent the past nine years working the fashion circuit in Seoul. In between hosting the TV show K-Style, she designs hats, styles K-pop idols and produces content for her new YouTube channel.
One thing about Korean fashion that not many people know
“In recent years, Korea has been noted for street style and trendy, affordable items. But I really want to share with the world that Korea has some amazing and talented fashion designers.
“Many have studied abroad in New York, London, Paris and Milan, and have returned to create fashion infused with a combination of their personal aesthetic and deep-rooted Korean culture and heritage – and that has great global appeal.
“Koreans, like many in other Asian countries, don’t buy as many local brands as international brands, so I think it’s super important to support our local talent and bring up the culture economy of Asia. On my YouTube channel I’m starting to show what goes on behind the scenes of the Korean fashion industry and introduce you to my designer friends!”
Follow her on Instagram @urbanwit
2. Varun Sood
Sood is used to a nomadic way of life because of his father, whose job as an officer with the Indian Army takes the family from place to place. No wonder he has a passion for travelling, fashion and adventure sports!
Best place in India to visit for fashion inspiration
“Rajasthan, which literally means “the land of the Rajas”. It has a glorious history with rich culture and traditions. It’s also famous for semi-precious stones, handicrafts and textiles with all kinds of prints like sanganeri (a hand-block technique) and tie-dye, as well as the most intricate and breathtaking zari embroidery done with gold and silver thread. All this gives Rajasthan a unique sense of style which sets it apart from other states.”
Follow him on Instagram @varunsood12
3. Andrea Chong
Being a model wasn’t enough for this fashion-loving chick, whose parents were from the fashion industry. She branched out into fashion and lifestyle blogging in 2012. Now she’s one of Singapore’s most popular bloggers and her reach is steadily expanding across the region.
Favourite online Singapore stores
“The Tinsel Rack for easy, effortless, everyday wearable pieces; By Invite Only for statement, one-of-a-kind handcrated jewellery; Beyond The Vines for minimalist effortless designs; and Soeurs.co for classic, contemporary pieces.”
Follow her on Instagram @dreachong
4. Hass Murad
Former PR person-turned-fashion blogger Murad started his SydneyMensStyle site in 2013 and hasn’t looked back since. He’s collaborated with brands like Hugo Boss, Christian Dior and Ralph Lauren on photography projects, and now spends much of his time travelling the world to live and breathe men’s fashion.
Three Sydney hotspots where you can never take a bad Instagram pic
“Potts Point, Darling Point and Surry Hills.”
Follow him on Instagram @sydneymensstyle
5. Diana Rikasari
This self-proclaimed “hyperactive shy wallflower” is all about seeing art in clothes, shoes, bags and accessories. She loves to break boundaries via her dressing, and her style blog has earned her several awards.
Three Indonesian labels that you feel make clothes that are wearable art
“Mel Ahyar, Stupkid and Sophie.”
Follow her on Instagram at @dianarikasari
6. Olivia Lazuardy
You know your personal style is a hit when even French bloggers compliment it. Considered one of Indonesia’s top fashion bloggers, Lazuardy is all about inspiring people through fashion, and her website channels this via beautiful photos.
Indonesian fashion inspirations
“Talented designers such as Stella Rissa, Sebastian Gunawan and Biyan.”
Follow her on Instagram @olivialazuardy
7. Venice Min
First a ballet teacher and then a model, Min is now the face of several major brands and a part-time actress. She was voted FHM’s second-most wanted woman in Malaysia in 2013 and 2014 – and from her social media posts, it’s easy to see why. (Exotic travel escapes, delicious feasts and photos of her doing splits, anyone?)
Best place in Malaysia to shop for unique fashion
“Pavilion KL has plenty of fashion stores and the best thing is that you get to shop for various styles at a wide range of prices. Having said that, I believe that fashion comes from your own identity and how creative you are, not from a particular shop or place. I personally love shopping at different places then mixing and matching!”
Follow her on Instagram @venicemin
8. MillyQ Chung
Flipping through MillyQ’s fashion edits on her website is always enough to make us want to jump on a plane (after buying a new, inspired wardrobe). Her blog is a collage of clothing, jewellery, bags, shoes and more, taken street-style in cities around the globe.
Personal take on the Taiwanese fashion scene
“I think the fashion trend in Taiwan is about kind of mixing everything together. People can choose the styles they like easily since we have so many individual shops and boutiques here. Therefore, you can see a mixture of Korean, Japanese, American and European styles.”
Follow her on Instagram @MillyQ
9. Alexa Losey
Hometown: United States
Hear those screams? That’s Losey’s swarm of fangirls. This Los Angeles-based “Internet socialite” has almost a million followers on Instagram and Twitter, and numerous brand collaborations. She’s also hosted several web series. Sample tweet: “Someone told me I had Miley boobs today and I cried I was so happy. That’s the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me.”
Three stores in LA where you’ve never walked out with nothing
“Reformation, Wasteland and Planet Blue.”
Follow her on Instagram @alexalosey
10. Vivian Vo-Farmer
Hometown: United States
This Seattle native, who’s a Teen Vogue Influencer and a Pantene Brand Ambassador, has a hugely successful YouTube channel that covers everything from fashion to beauty and lifestyle (we love the walk-through of her downtown apartment!). She shares her personal style through lookbook videos and is best known for her hair tutorials.
Best bit about Seattle when it comes to fashion and shopping
“Seattle fashion described in one word would have to be comfy. It’s sweater weather almost year-round, so the everyday style ranges from flannels and sweatshirts to leather jackets. We’re known as the Rainy City, which has challenged the fashion culture to revolve around a lot of layering. I’ve lived in Seattle all my life and I love how the weather has influenced my own wardrobe. I like to incorporate both comfy and chic vibes into my style – which is the perfect fashion combination, in my opinion.”
Follow her on Instagram @viviannn_v
Photo: Victoria Lemos Photography
11. Laureen Uy
Fashion-forward Laureen is the sister of the Philippines’ top stylist Liz Uy. She’s not doing too badly herself, with about 1.4 million followers on her social media accounts and a popular blog. She’s also acted and hosted on several TV programmes.
What sets Filipino style apart from that of the rest of the world
“We’re very open to adapting new styles and fashion, but what makes us really different is that Filipinos are creative, talented and very experimental when it comes to dressing up. We’re not afraid to express ourselves most of the time. Living in a tropical country means we’re quite limited in terms of how we can dress up, but we experiment with prints, colours and fabrics a lot.”
Follow her on Instagram @laureenmuy
Win tickets to the Run After show!
We’ve got five pairs up for grabs to the show that’s happening at Capitol Theatre on 30 October, 6.15pm! To win a pair, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, NRIC and contact number and state which influencer you’re a fan of and why. Contest closes at noon on 26 October.
For more on fashion, head here.
To read about Digital Fashion Week 2015, head here.