Buy Local And Outfit Repeat Often, Advises Blogger Chloe Hill

by: Lucy Jones | 2 years ago | Features

Chloe Hill wears the Paloma Sunglasses in Celery by Auor.

Chloe Hill's Instagram page is jam-packed with personality. She pets cockatoos and snacks on croissants in looks that your kookiest high school art teacher would absolutely approve of. Hill's tie-dye t-shirts, furry coats and fluro red shoes all make one thing very clear: the New Zealand-based blogger, stylist, photographer and fashion editor dresses for herself. In the world of blogging, that's a pretty rare thing.

Even though they might look "pretty crazy" (her words) all of Hill's outfits are incredibly considered. The blogger buys from local and emerging designers as often as she can and invests in pieces she knows she'll wear forever. Hill’s blogging journey started where so many of our internet journeys did: on Bebo. These days, she divides her time between running her personal blog (@chloechill) and styling and shooting models for her fashion website Cool Pretty Cool. Hill's willingness to share the more uncurated moments of her daily life on Instagram make her one of the most interesting and authentic bloggers in the game. We caught up with her to talk about the importance of supporting local designers and staying true to yourself. 

Lucy Jones: Who are you and what do you 'do'?
Chloe Hill:
I'm Chloe Hill and I do a weird mix of things. Predominately I'm a stylist, but I sometimes take photos. I also run a fashion site on the side called Cool Pretty Cool, which features a bunch of fresh faces and fun fashion. So a lot of my time is spent producing and compiling content too. 

How did you first get into blogging?
I did it as a joke. I was working in publishing at a time when bloggers were just gaining momentum and magazine editors hated it! So I told someone I worked with that I would start a blog and I did! I got a bit of flack but then it started to be seen as an actual career path so that shut people up.

Did you have any embarrassing blogs in high school? 
In New Zealand Bebo was where it was at (we weren't into Facebook or Myspace at all), so I definitely had a really cringe Bebo page with terrible photos of me and my bad fake tan plastered all over it. I hope there is no way of anyone ever digging that up!

I’m going to look that up right now! On a more serious note, what does 'ethical fashion' mean to you?
It means being way more aware of what goes into each garment we wear. Finding and supporting brands that are actually making a difference, not the ones that just clean up one aspect of their supply chain and then market themselves as "nice and green".

How do you incorporate those ideas into your work and life?
I try to ask way more questions! I know I can't be perfect but I can challenge myself and brands to do better, even a small improvement can make a big difference.

How would you describe your personal style?
Pretty crazy. I like lots of colour and print and finding unique pieces that I will love forever. 

I’ve noticed that you rewear your favourite pieces a lot, what is your stance on “outfit repeating”? Do you think it’s something more bloggers should do?
YES I'm all for it! I just posted the same jumper like four times in a row!! It's hard because you do want to keep things fresh and post things people can actually get their hands on, but it's important to show that you value what you wear and that you needn't endlessly consume new stuff. That's why it's important to educate people, even if they don't get it at first. Once you start showing how cool an amazing quality piece can be, and how versatile it is, they will start to cotton on! 

You’re always repping Australian and New Zealand brands, why is buying local important to you?
The best part for me is that it's often so much easier for small brands to be transparent. A lot of NZ brands produce such small quantities that they can't send their production offshore and they have to source materials locally. So that's why so many do end up being really ethically sound. And it's so easy to just message them directly if you have questions. Also, being friends with so many designers I really see the struggle of running a small brand. They put everything into it so I'd way rather my $$$ go to them instead of filling the pockets of some big corporation!

You also wear a lot of one-off vintage pieces, why do you gravitate towards these items?
I don't like to buy too much new stuff, there's already so much out there in the world so if I can get it second hand I will. Also the fact that I hate wearing what everyone else wears comes into play. I love that if I find a random vintage piece there's not much chance anyone else will own the same thing. 

How do you think branded content and the rise of the 'Instagram influencer' has affected blogging over the past few years?
It's definitely meant a lot of people have lost their genuineness. If you don't have strong sense of who you are and you're getting paid to wear full looks you're gonna lose any sense of authenticity. People can see right through it and there's suddenly been this desire to connect with people that actually give you more than just a pretty picture. Even brands are now engaging creatives — singers, photographers, DJs, artists — instead of straight up bloggers.

Your style is very personal and authentic. Do you that is something people are gravitating towards in a world of sponsored content?
I'm so glad to hear that! I will be honest, a lot of what I wear has been given to me, but regardless of whether I bought it or it was gifted I try to really stay true to what I love. I will never wear something random for the sake of it. I think that's starting to show through for a lot of Insta girls and it's definitely something people are gravitating towards.  

Do you think more bloggers should support local labels and buy vintage rather than following international trends?Definitely, that's a great way to set yourself apart and actually offer something to your followers. Introduce them to new brands, encourage them to support local and ethical businesses. People want to do good but often don't know where to start, so if you can break it down and make it digestible often they will follow suit.

You participated in Fashion Revolution Week this year, can you tell us a bit about the reasons behind that?
Right now a lot of people aren't super clued up about how what they wear is taking a toll on the world. So for me it's really important to get behind a movement like Fashion Revolution as it's a great way to get momentum; To push these issues to the forefront of brands and consumers minds.

If you could change one thing about the fashion industry what would it be?
The fast pace of consumption, I wish people would slow down and take time to find their style and then just buy pieces they will wear for decades. 

Do you have any advice for people who are keen to start their own blog?
Stick to what you love. Don't do it just for the sake of it and don't try to be something you're not. Also don't try to be everything to everyone, it's impossible. 

What is your life motto?
Be nice.

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