We chat to Kerry’s Erika Fox, the beloved brains behind Retro-flame.com one of Ireland’s leading fashion blogs and a judge with this year’s IMAGE Blog Awards. What motivates the superstar blogger? How does she kick back? And what’s this about moving to New York?!
You describe retro-flame.com as a ‘compact diary’. Why do you blog? And did you have any inkling it would essentially become your career?
Retro Flame began three years ago, purely as a hobby. I’ve always loved dressing up and so when a friend suggested I start a blog, I just went for it. I was genuinely shocked at how supportive people were and I guess blogging just became a part of my life. I never in a million years thought that it would end up being my job!
Who or what have been your biggest influences?
I’ve always been very ambitious & hardworking, whether it be in school, sport, etc. so as it cringey as it sounds, I think my own competiveness and desire to do well has been a huge influence. Also, I think my Summers spent in New York really opened my eyes to all the amazing opportunities that are out there. It showed me that with hard work (and a little bit of luck)…anything is possible!
In an interview with our magazine late last year, you spoke about your internships in New York with the site Refinery29 and Whitney Port’s label. You said, “…sometimes I think it’s actually easier to do better over there.” What is it about New York that makes the industry thrive, and what difficulties do people in Ireland face when trying to start out in the fashion world?
I don’t know what it is about New York, it’s hard to explain, but there is honestly no place like it. The first Summer I spent there was just surreal. I was a 19-year old Irish girl, who nobody knew much about here in Ireland and somehow I managed to land myself three very exciting NYC internships in the space of three months. Americans LOVE to help you and give you a chance (If you’re hard-working). I just feel that it’s a little different here in Ireland. I’m definitely not saying that all Irish people aren’t helpful –I’ve worked with some wonderful people over the past few years who are now my close friends. But I just feel that it’s trickier here. It’s smaller and therefore more competitive. I always say that you almost have to ‘make it’ abroad before you can make it in Ireland. I guess it’s all about proving what you can do.
Image.ie hands you a credit card with no limit. What are you going to add to the shopping basket?
Oooh that could be dangerous! My first purchases would definitely be a Chanel ‘Boy’ Bag, several Victoria Beckham pieces and a few too many pairs of Sophia Webster heels!
Your ideal Saturday?
I’m a big breakfast/brunch person, so often I head off into Killarney to either The Agahdoe Heights or Noelle’s. A walk at my very favourite beach, Rossbeigh, usually follows this. Saturday night is usually a Girl’s night out – we always go for some (amazing) Strawberry Daiquiris at The Ross Hotel in Killarney.
What’s your fashion guilty pleasure?
When I’m working from home, I LIVE in jogging pants. I don’t know what it is about them, but they make me feel like I can conquer the world when I’m wearing them!
What are you plans for the future?
I move back to New York at the end of August for one full year (and hopefully longer) so everything is a little uncertain at the moment but I actually like it that way. I love a challenge! I’m hoping to do some digital marketing work and of course, I hope to continue to develop Retro Flame.
If you could give advice to a younger Erika Fox, what would it be?
Don’t sweat the little things – what’s for you will never pass you.
The Image.ie Quickfire Round
Favourite beauty product: Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation – Best coverage ever!
Favourite hair product: Aussie 3 minute miracle – It never leaves me down!
Favourite body product: Vaseline Spray & Go Cocoa Radiant – The best and easiest moisturiser I’ve ever used
Favourite perfume: Armani Si – Always reminds me of Summer
Last book you bought: The Fault in our Stars
Last item of clothing you bought: A striped pencil skirt from Zara
Check out retro-flame.com where Erika writes about her personal style and life. Trust us, it’s bound to become the tab you never close.
Have you entered the IMAGE Blog Awards yet? Click on over here for more details and the entry form…