A New Yorker in London, Kristin Knox is the Clothes Whisperer – Fashion blogging phenomenon, author and proud owner of Pomeranian, Butters. StyleTails caught up with Kristin and Butters to talk McQueen, drop-crotches (no, no) and barking at film premieres.
Born and bred in New York, Kristin grew up on the Upper West Side, later making the leap across the pond to study at Oxford University in the U.K. With an academic father, she was always destined to write. “Reading and writing constitutes the backbone of who I am” she says. Since then, she has gone on to create hugely successful fashion blog The Clothes Whisperer with an army of loyal followers who tune in for her take on the latest catwalks, trends and general musings, as well as authoring Alexander McQueen: Genius of a Generation’ (2010), a stunning tribute to the late designer’s body of work. Kristin now lives in West London with her five year old Pomeranian, Butters (she’s a Taurus BTW…….Butters that is).
Since you launched The Clothes Whisperer in 2009, it has become phenomenally successful. What is it about the blog and your writing that you think attracts followers?
I think it’s a level of professionalism in terms of how material is presented, especially in the beginning. Nowadays I’m a bit more casual in my style and I play with words and expression, which I think people enjoy reading.
What excites you most about what you do?
I love going to new places and meeting new people, I just wish I got to stay in each place a bit longer!
As well as being a successful blogger, you have authored two books – one of which is – Alexander McQueen: Genius of a Generation (2010), a stunning tribute and chronicle of the designers’ immense body of work. How did you become involved with that project and what does it mean to you?
It was on the suggestion of the publishers to do something ‘on McQueen,’ so I decided to stick with a tribute more than a biography. It focuses on his work, not his life and this is important. It was a wonderful opportunity to write my first book, and it will always have that special first-born place in my heart. That the topic was McQueen made it even better, we took a really special journey together.
You’re a native New Yorker – what attracted you to London and what inspires you most about this city? (Don’t say the weather…….)
I came to the UK to study at Oxford and lived there for two years before moving down to London. So I guess the fact that it was just the big city on the other end of graduation. The weather actually does inspire me, in the winter, it’s great for writing. I love all the second hand bookstores and the museums, there is a literary and intellectual energy about the city that is different from that of any other.
Describe your own style in three words.
Bohemian, comfortable, chic.
Which shows are you most excited about seeing this season?
Always Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton and Chanel.
What is on your lust list for AW12/13?
I haven’t got there yet, too busy enjoying the summer to even think about what I want for fall…but there is this one cerulean Celine coat…
What’s been your biggest fashion faux pas?
Dabbling with harem pants, crotches I am now convinced, are not made to be dropped.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given, that you would give to aspiring writers?
The age old: “Write what you know.” It applies to fiction, it applies to fashion. Fashion needs a point of view, the encyclopedic variety is not engaging to read.
Where do you see the future of blogging?
I see bloggers evolving into full-blown celebrities (already happening) or diversifying their sites into e-zines (also already happening). Think: Bryan and Tavi. I also think newcomers need to pull out some serious creative stops if they want to ascend to those heights, the market is so saturated!
Butters has been to Fashion Week’s with you before. Any tips for travelling with dogs?
It’s really difficult so long as the UK is in the picture. So the long and short of it is that we don’t, she’s only been to LFW and NYFW. Travelling with dogs is really really difficult if you’re going TO the UK. From is no problem, they can come in cabin if they’re small enough for a marginal fee. But TO the UK they must be shipped cargo, a horrible and expensive procedure all around. The other alternative is to drive from France. The Eurostar does not allow pets which is beyond ridiculous.
QUICK-FIRE QUESTIONS – BUTTERS
There’s no doubt you’re a fashion pooch through and through. Which icon in history best epitomises your style?
Marilyn Mondog. I’m a blonde bombshell, if you couldn’t tell….
What are your must-have items for AW12/13?
I’m loving printed coats and doggy parkas. Also a shirt collar dog collar is just so chic.
Tell us about some of your favourite places in London and New york?
In London I love to go to Liberty for tea and shopping and 202 in Notting Hill for brunch. Holland Park is my favourite place to stroll…oh and of course the Harrods Pet Kingdom is a fashion dog must! In New York, I hang around the Bean Cafe in the East Village (they have great biscuits), like to dine outside at Gemma in the Bowery Hotel and accompany Mommy to Barney’s. My favourite dog watching spot is the Tompkins Square Dog Run, I’ve been queen of that place since I was a pup.
Have you had any modelling or film credits?
Loads of modelling credits, I don’t even know where to start! I’ve been in Look Magazine, i-D Magazine, Style.com and so so many more. I starred in one short film called “Join My Band,” Mommy took me to the premier where I was a little confused to see myself as big as I often fancy myself to be on screen and I barked a little.
What inspires you?
Sheepskin rugs (because they’re fluffier than me), chic people (because they’re the human equivalent of me), Karl Lagerfeld (because he’s my bestie) and White Girl Problems (cause they’re pomeranian problems too).
What would you be doing if you weren’t a full-time fashion pooch?
I’d be a Hollywood star or the first canine secretary of state, whichever is chicer.
You can follow Kristin at www.theclotheswhisperer.co.uk