If you haven’t read Jan and I’s goodbye posts – here they are …
But now it’s time to reflect and look back into The Style Spy archives at the best memories.
1. Girl of the Week
I know a lot of you miss this column. Girl of the Week ran from 2008 to 2014. The concept was simple, spot a girl with great style and snap their photo to share with you and learn more about them. Of course, this was inspired by the big trend of street style photography by the originals like The Sartorialist. We had a few photographers on the ground in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal and most of the interviews were conducted after the fact, just to give our Girl of the Week more time to reflect on their answers. Thanks to all the Girl of the Weeks that let us ambush them and kindly said yes to being photographed.
Girl of the Week photo by Patrick Leung
2. Gossip Girl Round-Ups
Another old school favourite, if you were reading in 2007, you too were obsessed with Gossip Girl. Each and every week, we’d watch the show and provide our two cents on the episode, from the plot to the fashion (hello, Blair’s endless headband collection) and our love of Chuck Bass.
3. That Time I Met David Beckham
I was the only Canadian blogger attending this event in LA, it was some rooftop at a hotel in Beverly Hills. David’s fourth child Harper was just born and he was there to promote his new cologne “Homme by David Beckham”. It wasn’t a one-on-one interview, but I’d get to ask him some questions during a press photo op. At first we were told “no photos with him”, but when he came out, they ask if anyone wanted a photo with him. Guess who raised their hand first?
4. The Queen of Wedding Gowns, Vera Wang
It was in New York for the launch of her fragrance Lovestruck. Trust me, I was so nervous, but as soon as Vera greeted me warmly and complimented me on my outfit, I knew the interview would be easy. She was so lovely and kind. I also interviewed Leighton Meester, who was the face of the fragrance, she was actually running late on the set of Gossip Girl, so the 5pm interview became at 10pm one!
5. Interviewing Joe Mimran from Joe Fresh
This one was a group effort, Jan, and Nicole S. It was at the first store opening in Vancouver and he’s just as charming as you’d expect him to be. He was also wearing his signature smoking slippers. It’s safe to say he made a few lifelong fans that day.
6. Our Time With Gaga
I just watched her documentary “Gaga: Five Foot Two” on Netflix – it’s good, incredibly personal. When Gaga had just released her first album and “Just Dance” – Ishra S interviewed her at the St. Regis Hotel in Vancouver. It was a private one-on-one and at the time, we were doing segments with Novus TV. Maybe it was the faux British accent she was using, but the interview was picked up by a bunch of US-based gossip shows and blogs, including one of my personal faves DList.com. The interview also became the second most viewed video on YouTube that day in Canada. You can see the video here.
7. The Vancouver Sun Column
Remember that newspaper I copied movie reviews from when I was in second grade? (read my goodbye note here). Well, it was The Vancouver Sun. It came full circle, when I started to write for The Vancouver Sun’s Tuesday Style section in 2009 – 2011. It was pretty awesome to see my name in print. This is where my interviews with Vera Wang and David Beckham ran, thanks to editor at the time, Juanita!
8. Morning TV Shows
I started appearing regularly on local Vancouver morning TV to share shopping recommendations – Valentine’s Day gifts, back to school, holiday gift lists. I actually get super nervous speaking in big rooms of people, but I always acted like there was no one there except the camera man and the hosts. Behind-the-scenes, it’s quite a lot of work to get ready for one of these appearances, cause you have to pull all the merchandise, and if you have models, you’ve got to prep the outfits and tape the shoes so you don’t damage them!
The morning show on Global TV. I also made lots of appearances on Breakfast TV. Shout-out to Angela for always booking me.
9. The Countless Shopping Parties
I use to host a lot of shopping parties. One of the reasons was I wanted to give women in Vancouver a special event where they could have a fun night out with their friends and do something special. I hosted A LOT of these over a few years, and I still have memories of stuffing 300 swag bags in a small studio apartment. There were so much work, but I really enjoyed organizing these, I remember the swag bags were quite legendary too (hello, full-sized beauty products). There’s one time where we popped J Brand jeans into random swag bags, I think about 700 people RSVP’d for that event.
10. The Canadian Publishing Awards
In 2011, I launched a new Style Spy – it was countless months of working alongside some of my friends at the digital creative agency Pound & Grain. True story, I saw maybe 10-15 iterations of new Style Spy logo and I ended up going back to the very first one shown to me (sorry Graham). The labour of love would be worth it though – we ended up being nominated and winning awards at The Canadian Online Publishing Awards in Toronto for web design and content. It was nice to be recognized!
11. Are You The Next Style Spy Girl?
The idea to host a style contest was inspired by all the hours spent watching America’s Next Top Model during its peak! I would pick ten girls with great style in a style contest. Ten winners, not just one, cause I knew that style was subjective, so it made sense to not just pick one person! I ran this for two years with my shopping centre partners Richmond Centre and Metropolis at Metrotown. I’m forever grateful as these were two of my first clients, who believed and supported a relatively new business and blog, before influencers were ever a thing.