BLOGGING phenomenon Bryanboy’s interest in fashion started at the tender age of 10. He would borrow his mother’s magazines and bring them to school to read during lunch, never dreaming that someday, he would be featured in one of his favourite magazines, Vogue.
“Back then, people would laugh and make fun of me, saying ‘why are you reading Vogue when you could be doing other things?’,” says the 20-something (he didn’t want his real age to be published) Filipino blogger in an interview earlier this week. He was in Kuala Lumpur to host the after-party of Musa KL, a new boutique at the Avenue K shopping centre.
The only person laughing now, however, is Bryanboy himself, who was featured in last month’s Vogue (US edition).
He carries a copy of that issue wherever he goes, and is ready to gush about Vogue’s esteemed editor-in-chief Anna Wintour in a heartbeat.
“It was an honour and a privilege to have Anna’s approval. I’ve been reading Vogue since I was 10, and am so proud that I was included in her ‘favourites’ list,” says Bryanboy, who speed-talks his way through the interview, the smile never leaving his face and laughing often.
On the day of the interview, he is dressed down in jeans and a T-shirt, but he describes his personal style as “androgynous and eccentric”.
“I dread wearing a suit, I feel like I look like a waiter,” he says with an almost inaudible snort. “I pick pieces from the women’s range and mix them with more masculine things. I just don’t like looking like everyone else.”
His blog (Bryanboy.com) started as a travel journal six years ago as a personal diary where he shared every detail of his life, and mainly his love for fashion.
The site, which attracts over 7,000 readers every day, chronicles Bryanboy’s journeys to the many fashion shows he frequents around the world, where he uploads commentaries, pictures and videos from fashion events.
There is a personal touch to his blog, as he includes pictures of himself and his activities, the food he eats and the rooms he lives out of during his travels.
He also discusses celebrities, books, and photoshoots that he attends, giving his opinion on the subject and interacting with readers that comment on his posts.
Bryanboy is also on Twitter (@bryanboy) and he has 20,633 followers to date.
“Sometimes people ask me if Twitter is going to be the death of my blog, I haven’t blogged in five days and with Twitter it’s so easy, you just type out all your updates and its so quick,” says Bryanboy, laughing. “But I love my blog, I’m going to keep going at it for as long as I can.
“I never thought it was going to be like this, it is an interesting direction (where the blog is going), it’s very organic, it just grows as time goes by.”
The popularity of his blog kept growing at such a fast pace that it even caught the attention of designer Marc Jacobs, who fell head over heels in love with bryanboy.com.
In 2008, Jacobs designed a bag and named it after Bryanboy. The green bowler-style ostrich leather bag is called the Marc Jacobs BB Bag.
“I was shocked, and cried. He’s one of the world’s most influential designers of our time,” says Bryanboy of the time he found out about what Jacobs had done.
“He’s a great artist, he knows what sells, and it’s amazing what he’s done.”
Today, the Manila-born blogger spends his time at fashion shows, product launches and store openings all over the world, blogging continuously to thousands of fans hanging on his every word.
“Blogging is influencial because of the way we deliver information, we blog about young designers, and it raises awareness for them and it could do a lot. People can get a lot of different exposure because of blogs, that offer an alternative opinion to magazines,” says Bryanboy, who reads hundreds of blogs a day, and has 1180 blogs on his RSS feed.
“My blog is more like a personal diary, with an emphasis on fashion, which separates it from other blogs,” explains Bryanboy, who often locks himself in his room for days on end, blogging.
“People love the idea of following someone’s life stories, and people are normally curious about what goes on in my life.”
So curious, in fact, that he has had stalkers – including one who flew all the way from Germany, to his doorstep, just so that she could get a few pictures with him.
“If you have a strong identity and you can influence people, blogs can go a long way and can be a stepping stone for future careers,” he adds.
For now, Bryanboy only intends on remaining a blogger, and has no immediate plans to work hands-on in the fashion industry, or even in publishing.
“For me, my blog is nothing too serious, it is a very light read; it is entertaining and humorous. I love the idea of entertaining and inspiring people, and that’s what I really want to do now.”
* R.AGE put Bryanboy through our “Rapid Fire Test” and got him on film, too. Check out the video on rage.com.my.