Travel back fifteen years and tell someone you’re a fashion blogger for a living. Responses would vary, ranging from “what’s a YouTube?” to “how is taking pictures of an outfit going to make you any money?” but they would all include the same element of incredulity and maybe a tiny bit of mockery. Maybe it’s the social need to keep up with the socialites and fashion’s powers that be. Maybe it’s the allure to look just like them or maybe it’s the innate nature to gossip that keeps us locked in. But whatever the reason, once fashion blogging began, it was a force that couldn’t be stopped. As with every new category, the rules are ever-changing.
First, bloggers got paid with advertisements, product placements and affiliate links; it was all kept under wraps and done ever-so subtly. But when the masses uncovered their secret, bloggers used it to their advantage. They would tell people the only products they advertise are ones they would actually use. This increased their credibility and boosted sales. Bloggers also used the opportunity to sell their business plans, thoughts and methods. They would put up courses on how to get where they are, push the lifestyle and watch as thousands of women tried their hand at photographing outfits of the day, collaborating with brands and instagramming food. But some bloggers needed more. Selling a lifestyle is fantastic but imagine if their following could have something concrete, something bloggers could use their influence to promote. So some bloggers became businesswomen and they entered the world of manufacturing, designing and retail.
As with anything, the ones who make it big are the ones who establish a strong presence early on. One of the first and most consistently amazing fashion bloggers is Rumi Neely of the Fashion Toast. She’s the quintessential American success story with nothing to propel her to the top other than faith, trust and a little pixie dust. And maybe a killer sense of style didn’t hurt.
In 2008, Rumi launched her blog, Fashion Toast as well as an eBay store called Treasure Chest Vintage (like Poshmark but y’know… 2008). Within a year, Rumi shot to the top of the totem pole and was a staple at every elite fashion event. Every time a new level of success appeared, Rumi was there. She partnered with huge brands and even went on to create her own, Are You Am I. The brand captures Rumi’s signature style of basic pieces in luxurious fabrics that can be dressed up, down and all around town.
The Bam Bam
A play on the romper, this one-piece wonder is perfect for those hot summer days when you’re feeling a little frisky. The shorts are attached to a silk scarf that you can tie any which way. The material is minimalistic in nature, so go wild with the style!
Are You Am I’s website says it best: “Overalls without any commitment to pants.” This lightweight white denim bralette top has a single strap that fastens with a gold overalls-type closure. It’s a subtle touch to a fierce style.
A super short dress with two slits. Its fitted silhouette and silky material does not make it fit for family dinners. But a night with your man? Go for it! He won’t be able to keep his eyes off of you, and neither will anyone else!
Rumi Neely is someone every guy wants to date and every girl wants to be. She’s a trendsetter with a specific style who has held steady in her position at the top. Her uber popular clothing line is designed with her trademark style: understated luxury.