What’s On teams up with Hype to meet some leading male and female fashion bloggers in Dubai, and learn more about the Dubai fashion scene.

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The Blonde Salad blogger Chiara Ferragni was recently named as the only fashion blogger in Forbes 2015 ‘30 Under 30’ list in art and style. Her blog, which she started in 2009, has garnered millions of followers and led to fashion collaborations with major brands such as Steve Madden, with 27-year-old Italian Ferragni reported to have made $8 million last year.

Popularity is a commodity everyone wants to invest in with bloggers increasingly papped at red carpet events and even starring in TV commercials.

While they might not be in the same league as Ferragni just yet, Dubai has its own little army of fashion bloggers around town, posting about what’s hip on the high street to designer dresses, dapper togs and savvy streetwear. Here are a few worth checking out…

Blogger: Isaac Jon Ode
Age: 24
From: USA
Blogging since: 2012
Blogging at: levierconcepts.com

Hailing from Florida, the mysterious Mr Levier has a bit of a Tricky or Labyrinth thing going on. Without questions stylish himself, his blog is clean and minimal, with quite a lot of black and white imagery and spacious fonts, so the site itself has an aesthetic appeal that may attract design types in its own right.

If variety is your thing then this site is entertaining and worth a check-in, while Isaac’s Instagram is on-point, presenting his lifestyle as one big party with the gang.

“When I started blogging my goal was mainly to bridge the gap between western and Middle Eastern cultures,” says Isaac. “I wanted people here who were interested in urban culture to be able to have a source they could relate to.

“The key theme for my blog is visuals,” he adds. “I want people to feel they are part of each post, I want them to feel drawn especially to my outfits because visuals give them a prime view of how I see things.

“My ideal reader is anyone who’s interested in arts, lifestyle, music or fashion, and I try to make sure there is something for everyone to relate to no matter how old or how else they are.”

Fashion bloggers in Dubai - Mr Levier and Style Is Necessity

Blogger: Sam Francis
Age: 26
From: Holland
Blogging since: 2012
Blogging at: styleisnecessity.com

Slightly reminiscent of an Dutch version of fashion presenter Louise Roe (aka #FrontRoe), Sam’s blog is a fun read. When not blogging, Sam works as a stylist for Harvey Nichols.

“I started Style Is Necessity – or SIN – to make sure that my creative brain didn’t get filled with Dubai desert sand,” laughs Sam. “By starting my blog, which covers fashion, beauty and lifestyle, I forced myself to sit down and let creativity flow.

“Glitter and glamour, diamonds and dirhams, Gucci and Pucci… we’ve seen it all. But for me, it’s not about who you are wearing, it’s about how you wear it, and I’m hoping that SIN can inspire others to create their own style. I post about daily outfits, fashion news, design goodies, food hotspots or whatever inspires me. I have a wide range of interests and this comes across in the content. Foodies visit the site to read about my experience at a restaurant and some beauty lovers check out the blog must-haves for my daily beauty routine.

“What I love about blogging is that it has no borders; people read my blog from all over the world. A big part of my blog is my Instagram account (styleisnecessity) and I can see how different in style, nationality and age my followers are. It’s great to inspire people but, most importantly, it’s great to be inspired.”

Blogger: Olga Lobanova
Age: 30
From: Russia
Blogging since: 2012
Blogging at: sandinthecity.net

Sand In The City blogger Olga became interested in blogs while studying in Germany. “It all started when street style photography began to grow in popularity and such projects as The Sartorialist, Face Hunter and Street Peeper became as valuable for fashion lovers as Vogue or Harper’s Bazaar. In 2008 and 2009 every capital in Europe had at least a few popular street style blogs, but Dubai had none.

“Inspired by similar projects around the globe, I started sandinthecity.net as a tool to capture the zeitgeist from the streets, fashion shows and events. I like to photograph people who inspire me with their style. For me, style is only partly about clothes. It encompasses so many things, such as bags and accessories, or a haircut; even small things like socks of unusual colour. Those are the things that make a person unique, individual and stylish.”

Fashion bloggers in Dubai - Sand In The City and Lebrasse

Blogger: Kat Lebrasse
Age: 32
From: Australia
Blogging since: 2013
Blogging at: lebrasse.com

Kat trained in fashion styling and magazine business at Central St Martin’s College in London, an arts education establishment that the Daily Telegraph’s fashion correspondent Hilary Alexander describes as “the school that nurtures the free-thinkers, the mavericks, the people who think outside the box”.

Formerly a stylist and contributor for a well-known travel magazine, Kat explains: “After years out of the fashion industry, I missed the creativity and expression it allowed me, and I was eternally on the hunt for a way to re-immerse myself in it. I finally decided to start lebrasse.com as an outlet to chronicle my style and personal expression. But, eventually, it became evident that other people were interested and the blog grew.

“Nowadays, the blog covers fashion, travel and lifestyle, as they are three big areas that crossover in our lives. I have an audience predominantly of 18- to 35-year-olds who enjoy all aspects of life, and the blog has an international reach, predominantly in the UAE, USA, the UK and Australia.

“Ideally, I’d like lebrasse.com to become more global and reach more nationalities around the world with interests in fashion, travel and lifestyle.”

Blogger: Paul Ramos
Age: 26
From: The Philippines
Blogging since: 2013
Blogging at: thestylechoreo.blogspot.ae

When Paul Ramos posted a pic of DJ LouLou at the tallest building in the world, his Stylechoreo blog popped up on our radar. His out and about work ethic puts him up there with Dubai’s most interesting bloggers.

“I was working as a visual merchandiser for an American denim brand in Abu Dhabi, and I had a friend who I would always drag out during our break to take my daily outfit posts, which I always uploaded on lookbook.nu,” recalls Paul. “One of my ‘fans’ asked if I had a blog, which made me curious. I did some research and started following blogs like One Dapper Street, He Spoke Style and Looks Rich Shop Cheap. That is how I got inspiration to build my own identity.

“I’m a dancer at heart and stylist by profession, which is how I came up with the name. And as time has gone by, my style DNA has transitioned from street style to what I call Dubai dapper street style – something that has a bit more panache and is sophisticated and versatile.

“I really want to travel to different countries and explore more cultures so I can adopt and adapt the experiences through my style and the blog.”

Fashion bloggers in Dubai - Stylechoreo and Shoestova

Blogger: Natalia Shustova
Age: 36
From: Belarus
Blogging since: 2013
Blogging at: shoestova.com

Using a phonetic play of her surname to name her blog, Natalia is a beauty with brains. A lawyer by day and designer/blogger by night, Natalia uses her blog to champion local top fashion designers. She has walked the catwalk for Dubai-based fashion designer Essa, one of the coolest out there, and has collaborated with designer Reemami, amongst others. At last year’s Dubai World Cup, Natalia and her companion were named Best Dressed Couple – no mean feat – with the blogger’s clever outfit and headpiece, which resembled a giant rose in bloom, impressing the judges. Always impeccably turned out, Natalia cites Blue Marlin as one of her favourite music haunts.

Included in her posts are pieces on grungy chic, her adventures at November’s Sole DXB event with her signature cat’s eye-shaped sunglasses in different colours, and shots of her shoe closet.

Asked who she is targeting with her blog, Natalia responds: “I have no target person in my mind. I’m just sharing my experiences and everyone is welcome to follow and comment.”

Blogger: Jen and Kate Smith
Age: 23
From: UK
Blogging since: 2012
Blogging at: deserttwins.blogspot.co.uk

The Dubai Desert Twins blog is perfect for high street style on a budget, with the majority of shots taken beside signature landmarks in the UAE, such as the Burj Khalifa.

Some years back, Jen and Kate were invited to the launch of DJ Junior J’s brand, Bunker Clothing, at Amika at the H Hotel. Junior explained that Jen and Kate were on his invite list because he felt they’re where it’s at with the more urban and gritty hip-hop/street/skate fashion and understand the demographic of those kind of labels.

If you venture to their blog, be sure to also check out the food section, which lists trendy eateries around town.

“Our friends were always mentioning we should start blogging as they liked what we wore every time we met up with them,” the twins told Hype. “Also, we’d been constantly looking at international fashion bloggers and really liked the idea so we felt we could do the same. We want to be able to show our followers a range of trendy outfits at affordable prices, and we also hope to create our own brand – that would be an amazing accomplishment.”

Fashion bloggers in Dubai - Dubai Desert Twins

Our featured pick of Dubai-based bloggers is by no means exhaustive. Here are ten more well worth a look…

– myfashdiary.com: the gloss of Dubai
– styledrifter.com: haute meets sport and healthy lifestyle
– @clareandthecity: laugh out loud humour
– streetstylesavvy.com: fresh Dubai looks
– styledissection.com: a more international Sartorialist/Face Hunter
– heelsindubaisand.blogspot.ae: solid youthful reportage
– redlipsandlace.wordpress.com: a good all rounder
– facebook.com/Lvngit: eye candy with soon to be launching trend/interview vlog
– shoesanddrama.com: championing women and style from Saudi to Dubai
– @ascia_akf: a young Kuwaiti/American’s unique point of view

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