10 November 2013

I get by with a little help from Michelle

Michelle Chai, of blog Daisybutter, has come a long way from reading fashion blogger articles in Teen Vogue during her A Levels. Now, she’s being nominated for blog awards, attending events and even covering fashion shows back stage. Blogging began for her after a news journalism lecture in her first year at university: “I was working to deadlines, briefs and felt like my 'own' writing was beginning to lose focus; I felt a little confused about my place in the fashion industry. I went home after a lecture, made an account, and wrote my very first post.” 

Throughout her time at university she managed to keep Daisybutter afloat amidst tight deadlines. It wasn’t until her third, and final year, that she realised blogging had become more than a hobby; “I guess it became 'more than a hobby' when my blog was recognised by Marie Claire and nominated in their Blog Awards! It felt good to be recognised by one of my favourite mainstream print publications.” Since then, her blog has grown in strength, and in followers. She now has over 3,000 “dedicated, intelligent, supportive and sociable readers” that love and trust Daisybutter as a place to read all things fashion, beauty and lifestyle. “I'm continually surprised by the things I experience through my blog. I went from doubting if I'd ever 'make' it in the competitive fashion industry, to being invited to fashion shows and to host collection launches in my own right.” Michelle has been lucky enough to provide backstage coverage of a Temperley London show at London Fashion week, host a party with 7 For All Mankind to celebrate the European launch of they're Black and White Collection, as well as design a mini bobble hat for the nationwide Innocent Drinks ‘Big Knit’. The list goes on and it’s fair to say she feels “very, very lucky”. After university her blog became a semi-portfolio to help her get a foot in the fashion industry door, and it did just that helping her secure a job with Arcadia. “Even now that I've graduated and am working within marketing and eCommerce, blogging is a huge part of my career. I work with bloggers and assist with brand blogs all the time. Digital media is very valuable at the moment with such a fast paced consumer environment.” Right now, blogging is a “prioritised hobby” for Michelle. She juggles Daisybutter while still maintaining her job and busy lifestyle. “I work on a freelance basis with several brands, and that has come about because of my blog: having an 'established' following shows that people care about what you have to say and it adds value to your voice.” 

Follow Michelle on Instagram at Winyeemichelle & Twitter too!

Michelle has been lucky enough to give herself the title of part-time blogger, but thanks to Daisybutter her career has sky rocketed. She confides that her readers increased mostly in her first year of blogging but reveals: “The scene has shifted considerably now, as media always will, but I always find that organic growth is more effective than advertising or trying to get your blog into print media.” She has come to learn this fast paced industry like the back of her hand and knows what her readers want to see. “Of course my outfit/personal posts are the most popular, but edits of collections and handpicking my favourites also do well - blog readers like to follow someone's life, tastes and style, not a churned-out press release.”

I so wanted to share Michelle's story because i interviewed her at a time i was feeling very down beat about my future job situation, about blogging, about interning and she gave me a little bit of hope. Michelle is a prime example of if you work hard, you can get somewhere. So, students of all kinds, if you're desperately searching for that internship, or work experience, or first job - you can do it!

Read Michelle's blog, Daisybutter, at Daisybutter.com


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