The industry’s most fashionable blogger twins, Desiree and Jennifer of desjen.com, spills on expressing creativity, personal style, Vienna fashion scene and collaborations with brands.
What does fashion mean to you?
Fashion has always been one of our favorite forms of creative expression, simply because it is a way to say something about ourselves without having to speak and a way to express a bit about our world throughout our appearance and style.
How did you decide to start your blog desjen.com?
Des: Ever since we were children, we have had a passion for beautiful and creative things, such as dancing ballet, playing a guitar and piano, singing in choirs, performing in the school theater etc. After we have finished high school in Vienna, we decided to move to Milan in order to continue our studies (Jen studied Fashion Marketing and I Fashion Design and International Business) as we had wanted to live in a fashion capital. At that time bloggers, such as Chiara Ferragni, started to emerge (this was in 2009). Jen later moved to Shanghai, Florence and Paris and I to Madrid to complete our studies. After that period, Jen has worked for Dior and I for Alexander McQueen. During this period, we also wanted to create something of our own, as we wanted to express our creativity and be independent. So, we decided to start our fashion & lifestyle blog “Des & Jen”.
Desiree and Jennifer
How would you describe your personal style?
Des: Sophisticated but classic and sporty.
Jen: Also sophisticated. I love unique and special pieces.
Can you name some of your most favorite fashion brands?
There are a lot of brands that we admire; Valentino, Balmain, Dior, Alexander McQueen, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, For Love and Lemons, Giambattista Valli, Dolce & Gabbana, Sandra Mansour, etc.
What is the most valuable thing in your closet?
Valentino bag, Diorissimo bag by Dior, Chanel shoes, Balmain leather jacket and the vintage clothes from our mother.
Who are your fashion icons? Tell us about the most fashionable people you know.
Lena Perminova, Coco Chanel, as she was a pioneer in the industry at that time, Olivia Palermo, Gigi and Bella Hadid, Kendall Jenner…
How did the companies and brands react at first to Des & Jen and how do they react now?
At the beginning we were still unknown and therefore had to work our way up and become recognized. Today, after 3 years, our network is much bigger. Still we are getting to know a lot of people with every event that we attend. Most of our experiences show that the brands usually love the concept of twins/girlfriends/best friends.
Desiree and Jennifer
Tell us something about Vienna fashion scene.
The Vienna fashion scene has developed a lot over the last couple of years. The city is becoming more and more international. Many international brands have opened their flagship stores here. Also, more and more events related to fashion are happening. One of the most famous events is definitely the life ball, where many influential people from the fashion industry participate each year. On the other side, Vienna can not be compared to Paris or NYC for example, as those cities are much bigger, more international and more fashion related. People there breathe fashion and are in general more open minded towards it.
What has been your favorite work so far?
One of our greatest projects has definitely been the one with L´Oréal in Vienna and Paris during fashion weeks.
Who would you like to collaborate with in the future?
We would love to work with our favorite brands like Dior, Louis Vuitton but also work more with lifestyle brands.
What is the most challenging part of your job?
The most challenging part of our job is to always produce content for your readers as you have to always be up-to-date and be creative in order to post on a daily-basis.
What’s the biggest misconception about the fashion industry? Is it as glamorous as it seems?
The fashion industry is on the one side very exciting and fun, but on the other one it’s also a lot of hard work and effort. You have to be very consistent and flexible if you want to work in this industry and be successful.
Do you have a favorite fashion week memory?
Yes. In fact, we have many! One of the best memories are definitely the ones we made in Paris. During the last fashion week in October, we were invited to a private party in a wonderful location and met Naomi Campbell and Rihanna. This was quite inspiring!
Is it possible to have friends in the fashion industry?
Definitely. Thanks to the industry we have met incredible people who have become our very good friends, who have also supported us in many ways. People in the fashion industry should rather support each other in order to grow together and not see one another as competition.
How do you balance your personal life and your career?
We try to set limits on a daily basis. We believe that it´s very crucial to dedicate time to ourselves, family and friends as this gives energy as well as balance for our career.
What do you like to do when you have time off?
We both love to do sports, listen to music, hang out with friends for lunch/dinner/drinks and have some good chats or sometimes just relax at home and watch a nice movie.
What do you do to stay in shape?
We try to eat as healthy as possible and work out on a regular basis. Also, a good sleep is a crucial factor in being fit.
What’s your favorite music at the moment?
Des: Lately I´ve been listening to songs like All Saints “Pure Shores”, Mazzy “Fade into you”, but also I love to listen to some good electro tunes (Deep House) and R´n´B.
Jen: Currently I love listening to the new albums of Alicia Keys “Here” and Solange “A sea at the table”, and S.A.R.S. (alternative rock band from Belgrade) – Lutka.
Can you tell us something about your future projects?
We are planning to move back to the fashion capital and also want to work on a new project, which we want to keep for ourselves for now.
You are present in the social media, on twitter, Instagram etc. What do you think about it and its influence? What deserves to go on your Instagram?
Social media platforms are great tools to reach our audience and establish great relationships. People today want to know who you are as a person, your lifestyle, etc. Spreading news and information has never been so transparent. Right now, platforms like Instagram are one of the most important ones, since the followers, who are passionate about fashion, are immediately being informed, whether about fashion show or a new product on the market. We believe that it´s very important to be authentic as digital influencers. We usually post pictures of looks and products that truly fit to us. We believe, that every digital influencer should have an own path.
Jennifer and Desiree
What websites do you visit on a regular basis?
Des: I regularly visit websites such as WMAG, Kayture…
Jen: Youtube (love watching documentaries), Vogue (British), BOF (Business of Fashion), WWD (Women’s Wear Daily) and several blogs.
Any advice you would like to give women about what to wear this season?
Des: I would definitely go for velvet this season; It´s an absolute must to wear. The 90s are also a big trend now. Love the style from that time.
Jen: There are so many trends that I am obsessed with: over-knee boots (preferably velvet), chokers, frilled leather pants, bodysuits (that replace t-shirts), turtlenecks under dress, flower prints, lurex…
As an online influencer what is the major advice you would like to give to people that are working in the same field? What do you wish someone had told you?
Important is that you are authentic while being an online influencer. You have to define the field you want to focus in. We decided to work mostly in the high-end sector. There are many amazing influencers out there. It is important to give something special to your audience. If you want to be successful you need to stand out from the rest.
Vesna Filipovic for Fashionela