Pandora Sykes has been on my radar, hanging in the peripheral, for quite some time now. There’s always an envy-inducing street style image in Tommy Ton’s fashion week compilations, and a hair cut to wish for. In the last couple of weeks though, this one-sided relationship has gone to the next level. Bordering obsession, but only because Pandora is so damn real, funny, and beautiful – some of my favourite things.
I scoured her blog – reading articles on the Hungry Bum syndrome ( I feel you sister ), the gunt we all dread and the dislike of our own boobs. Every article is a mini story of insight and laughs. Always touches the heart and speaks to my big-assed soul. I’ve learnt that Brazil hosts two annual bottom competitions, and that’s just the start of my new trivia collection. It’s not all bums though I swear. That probably says more about my strange reading habits and comedy-searching than Pandora’s own obsession.
Pandora is currently the Fashion Features Editor and Wardrobe Mistress columnist at The Sunday Times Style, completes the duo of the Pandolly podcast ( re-filling my ears with those English sayings and strange words I love and miss so much since the life redirection – an office without a swarm of Londoners is hardly worth the time ), dabbles in styling, and obviously publishes her hilariously perfected namesake blog, which I refer to as the UK’s one-woman answer to Man Repeller.
Since starting this blog, and discovering that I do in fact like to write and the English language can be considerably interesting, I’ve pondered the life of a fashion journalist. The hardest part now is a lack of Journalism or Literature or other fancy degree, and an aversion to writing in the proper way at all times. My written voice is the same as my talking voice. But Pandora, along with others including Leandra Medine, Amelia Diamond, and Clare Press, urge me to uncover that language on a deeper level. Play with it, but make it useful. Write for fun, and also inform. Use new words and phrases, dare with topics and make it all unique with your personal spin on life.
Time for some searched out lessons from Pandora.
– It’s not off-limits when it’s backed up with research. Take the bums for example. Taboo to some ( not I! ), but valid questioning and interviewing to give us one well-rounded ( ha ), opinion piece on the surge of loving bums. Who wouldn’t want to read that. As she has said in the past, wordplay is her foreplay. And her forte clearly too.
– Internships matter. As does making submissions and pitching freelance ideas.
– Be rigorous. Proof read ( woops ), keep it clean / simple ( again ) and find your tone.
– Look great always. Maybe not a prerequisite, but a worthy point to note nonetheless. Mix your style, test pieces out, and document the babing looks via photos. I sound superficial constantly adding this in as a list item, but it’s more than having a great wardrobe or body, it’s deep-seated understanding of fashion, building the outfits that depict you and having fun with it. Putting it on show to encourage the rest of the world too.
– Loving catalogues as a child is not weird. Had to add this one in for my own sanity, as a prolific circler of catalogue products in my child-years. Reassuring that I can still come to something more.
– Her advice, speaking to my soul : work your ass off. Work hard to deserve a good job, says the killer queen who freelances and blogs while also balancing a regular job. Rihanna was clearly singing about Pandy all along. I’m trying…
What have I learnt from doing these posts so far? Just a reconfirmation of what I already knew – I want to do everything.
And the style cues – a pair of versatile mom jeans, jazzy boots, a backless number up top, multiple fabulous rings, and of course some Bella Freud. Just the best ( now go and get lost in her style for a while ).
(Images from 1, 2, 3, 4)