Coco’s Tea Party was launched in 2006, by fashion journalism student Ella Gregory. Since then the blog has gone on to attract thousands of daily readers, and in 2010 was listed in The Online Fashion 100, receiving praise from Telegraph fashion critic Hilary Alexander.
In December 2010 Cision’s Top 50 blog ranking gives Coco’s Tea Party as the UK’s 31st top blog.
Cision: What influenced you to start writing Coco’s Tea Party?
Ella: I only thought to start a blog because I was bored one day, and I’ve always been a bit of a magazine addict, so I was getting through the monthly magazines so quickly I needed something to do in-between issues. When I started blogging it hadn’t yet become a ‘thing’, and I wasn’t really aware anything would ever come from it.
Which fashion blogs do you follow and have you developed any relationship with them? If so, what have you gained from this?
I read a lot of blogs daily, my favourites are probably The Cut, Fashionista, Just Jared, Red Carpet Fashion Awards and Fashionologie as they’re updated all the time. I started Coco’s Tea Party around the same time that Discotheque Confusion started, so we’ve always offered moral support. And Disney Rollergirl is always great to go to with a blogging question.
German Grazia commented that ‘Fashion bloggers nowadays are considered to be as influential, if not even more, than traditional fashion journalists’. What is your opinion on this statement?
I do agree that certain fashion bloggers have become incredibly influential, and the style of blogging seems to be influencing more and more publications. However, I don’t think that blogs have (or will ever, for that matter) replaced traditional forms of fashion journalism. There are some great bloggers and great writers out there, but I still want to read show reviews by Suzy Menkes, Hilary Alexander, Sarah Mower etc.
Who do you think is the most influential fashion blogger? And why?
Gosh, that’s such a tricky question to answer. You have Bryan Boy who has become a bit of a celebrity, and then there are people like Scott Schuman, Garance Dore and Tommy Ton who are all working for magazines and brands now. And, of course, there is Susie Bubble. I think they all have a great deal of influence, but they also all have their niche, so I don’t know who I would call the most influential.
In your opinion as a blogger, how has social media changed the fashion industry?
It’s definitely opened it up and made it more accessible for customers and fashion fans to interact with brands in a way they never could before. The focus on the internet has made it vital for every big brand to have a presence online, whether it’s streaming their shows as they happen or tweeting.
How do you interact with PR’s and what advice do you have for them when contacting fashion bloggers?
As a fashion blogger I think you can tell when a brand is emaling because they genuinely like your blog and feel it’s a good fit for what they’re promoting. There are occasions when it’s clear the person sending the email has no idea what your blog is about, so I’d advise them to always do a bit of research first.
How has blogging helped you in your professional career?
I’ve made some invaluable connections and it’s definitely opened a lot of doors for me.
Are there any shows or events during London Fashion Week you would like to attend?
The Burberry show is always the highlight of LFW, and I’d love to attend their show again, especially as their A/W collections are always my favourites. Christopher Kane and Erdem are also dream shows for me, as they produce exquisite collections every time.
Are there any up-and-coming designers to look out for in 2011?