You’re A Big Deal: Brittany Law of Style Republic Magazine.com
Name: Brittany Law
Occupation: Editor-in-Chief of Style Republic Magazine.com
Brittany: We got to spend the evening with the lovely Brittany Law of Style Republic Magazine.com Read on to find out what makes this creative, confident, True Blood loving, visionary tick…
WBD: Can we have some background on Style Republic.com?
Brittany: I started Style Republic Magazine three years ago. At that time, I was fresh out of high school; no fashion experience, and very little writing experience under my belt. I wrote for a smaller publication while I was in the 12th grade, but after high school, I couldn’t write for said magazine anymore. At that point, I decided that I wanted to write for a more established publication in Vancouver. Of course, I had no idea what the industry looked like; I was super green. I interviewed with a few editors at various newspapers/print outlets. Long story short, the last editor that I’d interviewed with read through my work, and said that I “wrote like a 40 year old,” accusing me of plagiarism. He then proceeded to call my then editor in front of me, and she tore a strip off of him for doubting that I had indeed written my articles. At the end of it all, the editor offered me the job. But by that point, I was so turned off by the entire experience that I just said, “Nope, I don’t want it.” I remember my dad picking me up, and asking “What are you going to do now?” And I said, “I’m going to start my own magazine, and show him what’s what.” It was totally out of spite at the time. However, the next day (with my mom’s encouragement), I decided that the idea wasn’t so crazy. I grew to love fashion. Initially I was a political science major, but it went in the direction of fashion because I found the iconic images so great; so powerful, online and off. Now? It’s taken on a life of its own.
WBD: What makes Style Republic.com stand out from other digital publications?
Brittany: Because I was so young when I started the magazine, I was coming from the perspective of the reader, and not of the editor. I would go into interviews with celebrities 100 times bigger than Style Republic at the time, and they would ask me, “By the way, how old are you?” Truth be told, I used to lie about my age. How does one say that they’re 18, and still come across as a hard-hitting professional coming from an established publication? One time, I decided to say that I was 27, and my subject responded with, “Are you sure?” As luck would have it, Subject X thought that my age was the coolest thing ever; he even took me backstage (where I got to meet the rest of the band). At this point, I thought, “This is what I want to do.” Even now when I’m conducting interviews, I still think to myself, “Wow… So we’re actually sitting here.” At the end of the day, it’s one thing to read about someone’s life on the newsstand; but to actually get the opportunity to ask legitimate questions that I WANTED the answers to was life changing for me. One of my favourite features on our site now (our Follow Friday feature) allows us to bring the celebrity to the reader on a much more personal level. I like the idea of our reader being involved. I like talking with our consumer as opposed to talking at our consumer.
WBD: What was your inspiration to start writing?
Brittany: I remember reading an interview with actor Eric Bana in ELLE (years ago), and the journalist had to fly to Australia to interview him at this hole in the wall pub. I thought to myself then, ‘I want to be that journalist.’ Another moment was in 2004, actress Kate Bosworth did a shoot for Teen Vogue, and her interview was super candid. I remember the writer mentioning that Bosworth had picked up her phone to answer Orlando Bloom on the other end. I never thought that I would want to watch other people live their lives for a living. That being said, there is so much excitement and adventure that comes with being on this side, especially when you own the company! I love that.
WBD: What advice to do you have for someone who wants to start a known online publication?
Brittany: Know what you want, and know what your goals are. At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself, “What do I want to accomplish with this?” Make sure that the answer is what you want, and not what someone else wants. I find that a lot of people go into fashion loving what other people have accomplished, and they want what those people have until they see how much work it is! I can’t count on two hands how many times I’ve heard, “Oh my gosh! This is not nearly as glamorous as it looked on that episode of The Hills.”
WBD: What is one of your coolest experiences so far?
Brittany: That’s a tough one. I love being on set for photo shoots. I went to Montreal with two Canadian fashion labels recently and met some great people. Brad Kroenig (who is currently modelling for Chanel) was incredibly nice. Loved meeting Coco Rocha as well (she’s as lovely as you’d imagine). There have been so many milestones digitally as well that stick out for me. See 8,000 people hit your website inside of 12 hours is always a rush. That’s the kind of stuff I get excited about.
Last year I went to the Donna Karan runway show. I’d been to countless shows prior to taking a seat at this one. But this one was different particularly because I had ‘that moment.’ That moment when I realized that someone in a New York City office took the time to hand write my name on a chair… I had to snap a picture of it.
WBD: What are you up to right now that you’re really excited about?
Brittany: Oh, so many things. I did a lot of work last year (and the year before) with Dallas Shaw. Dallas is the awesome artist that draws all of my Twitter backgrounds (and a lot of our editorial stuff). We’re working on a new project at the moment, so I’m super excited about that. More Follow Friday features to come as well. To this day, it is STILL our most popular feature on the site. There’s also a lot of travel on my agenda this year! I’m looking forward to it already…
WBD: How long ago did you start Follow Friday? Where did the idea come from?
Brittany: Follow Friday is less than a year old, and we’ve had about 25 people participate. I started Follow Friday by getting industry friends to fill it out. Our very first one was DKNY PR Girl (@dkny). I remember way back when she had 7,000 followers on Twitter; and now she’s at nearly half a million! It’s neat when we tweet about her Follow Friday feature (which uses the very first sketch of her), and people ask, “Wow, when was this?” I love going back to the older posts to see how much said person’s answers have changed.
That original idea was in collaboration with a friend of mine, Josh Langston. We came up with doing a Q&A for industry people. I then said that I wanted it to be more personal than your typical, “fill in the blank.” I wanted it to be more engaging. So I said to him, “What if we had everyone featured actually write out their answers?” I wanted it to look like our readers were peering into someone’s personal agenda/notebook.
WBD: Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
Brittany: I never want to answer that question
WBD: How about one year from now?
Brittany: That I can do. I want to travel Europe. I’ve wanted to go to Italy for so long, France for so long, and I still haven’t done Paris Fashion Week (which I’m dying to do). I have so many goals in terms of expansion for the magazine. I’m so lucky that I’m digitally inclined and so computer savvy. I love to make things happen really fast. Where will I be? Doing the same thing, but bigger and better.
WBD: Who are your biggest inspirations?
Brittany: My mom and dad!
I love Arianna Huffington. The whole thing she’s got going with the Huffington Post is great, but I like her because she’s a really good business woman with a great sense of humor. Did you know that she plays the voice of ‘Arianna the Bear’ on The Cleveland Show?
It’s hard for me to pick icons or inspirations from fashion because everybody does everything so differently. I love the designers who are very down to earth and don’t have an ego about them. I also love Tom Ford. Everything about him. He recently did the Oprah Winfrey Network’s “Visionaries” documentary. I loved him before that, and I love him even more after.
WBD’s FUN FIVE with Brittany Law
WBD: If you could live anywhere in the world, where and why?
Brittany Law: Lake Como, Italy. Don’t laugh, but after seeing it used as the backdrop for a scene in Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, I fell in love with it. As a side note: John Williams, I love you. ‘Across the Stars’ is monumental. George Clooney, I’ll be there shortly. I was so mad when Clooney bought a place there, because that was MY place! MY place, MY house, and now everyone knows about it.
WBD: If we handed you a $20 bill right now that you have to spend, what would it be on?
Brittany Law: I would go to Starbucks. Coffee rules.
WBD: Tell us something about yourself that would surprise your followers.
Brittany Law: I was gonna say, “I’m a super nerd,” but I don’t think that would surprise the people that follow me after that last question. Something that would surprise people… As much as I love fashion, there are some parts of fashion that I really hate. Fashion stands for a lot of beautiful, iconic things, but there are some parts of the business that just don’t sit well with me.
WBD: What advice would you give to your 15 year old self?
That boy you had a crush on in high school is going to end up bald and fat by the time you’re 22, so don’t worry about it.
WBD: What guilty pleasure are you not willing to give up?
Brittany Law: I have a couple. One: I would never give up watching True Blood. It’s the best show! I don’t care how creepy, dirty and/or raunchy it gets; I will always watch that show. Two: ABC Country Restaurant. I don’t know what it is… But getting THAT much food on one plate is hard not to love!
Thank you so much Brittany for taking the time to sit with us and give your readers an opportunity to learn more about you. You’re an inspiration to us at We’re a Big Deal and we can’t wait to see what you’re up to next!
Photos courtesy of Brittany Law
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