I had the amazing opportunity to meet with fashion and lifestyle blogger Lisa Wong, the stylish lady behind Solo Lisa. We met at Cafe Artigiano on Granville and had a great time talking about everything from fashion to food, and the future. Lisa was so easy to get to know, and has such a caring demeanor - I find it amazing to converse with other writers because they're so literate, it's incredible. I barely had to edit out any "ums" or "likes!" After talking, we did a little photoshoot outside Holt Renfrew - I'm so in love with the colour palette of her outfit. This interview really captures Lisa's genuine personality and love for fashion - enjoy the insight into her world!
Let’s start off with a little bit about yourself and what you do for a living.
Well, I’m Lisa! For a living, I’m a professional writer at a software company; I write their manuals and documentation. In my spare time, I’m a freelance fashion writer for my blog, Solo Lisa.
Where did you go to school, and have you always had a particular interest in writing?
I went to school at UBC, and my intention at first was to major in psychology – I soon realized that it just wasn’t for me. My strong suit has always been English, so I decided to switch over to my first love and I eventually double-majored in English Literature and International Relations.
What influenced you to start your lifestyle and fashion blog?
In my final year of University I’d bring my laptop to the library all the time. I had a very odd schedule with a huge break during the day, so to fill those hours on campus I began to read fashion blogs. In doing so, I thought it would be great to start my own. I started off focusing on my personal life and pop culture, with a Spanish influence; my blog was called Solo Lisa Y Nada Mas (“Only Lisa, Nothing More”)
Why did you shorten the name to Solo Lisa?
My writings became directed more towards fashion and my personal style, which is when I changed the name, partly to reflect the evolving nature of my blog, and also because people who didn’t speak Spanish found the name quite hard to remember!
The part that I love about Solo Lisa is that you cover everything, from events to food and your personal style. On the topic of events, what would you say your favourites would consist of?
I love events that combine fashion with amazing people and great conversation. It’s beginning to reach events season, which is at times difficult because with a full-time job I’ll miss out on some really fantastic ones. But, I really enjoy Vancouver Fashion Week that comes up each year! * You can read Lisa’s reviews on VFW F/W 2010 here *
From your blog it shows that you love to cook! Where did you learn, and do you have your own specialty meal that always turns out great?
I’m really not a good cook at all! The reason why I started the “From Solo Lisa’s Kitchen” feature is because I’m trying to learn and develop my hardly-used cooking skills. So far I haven’t burned the kitchen down! I know a lot of hard-core foodies so its been causing me to start experimenting. My foolproof recipe is the Roast Chicken which always tastes delicious.
Is there a restaurant that you go to that never fails to deliver amazing food?
For Japanese, Guu and Hapa are always surefire. For Mexican, nothing has come close to Don Guacamole’s! There are so many great places – it all depends on my mood and what I’m feeling like.
Your personal outfit choices are always so well put together – how would you describe your personal style, and where do you get your inspiration?
I guess I would describe my style as classical with a twist. I love whimsical details! For inspiration, I check out street style, magazines, and tons of blogs. Runway slideshows and fictional characters also have a lot of influence, like old movies or TV series!
Any particular movies or TV shows of late that you’ve really loved the style in?
I fell in love with Zooey Deschanel’s wardrobe in 500 Days of Summer. Everything she was wearing was girly, but not too over the top, which suited her perfectly.
For sure, I really admire her as an actress – and she has a beautiful voice too! So what do you feel will be the hottest trend for Spring, and what will your colour palette consist of?
That’s tricky! I think a continuation of what was trendy in the past will come around again – I really don’t believe in treating fashion as something disposable. There is nothing wrong with finding something that really works, even if it was purchased a few years ago! As for colour, pastels are beautiful and are popping up in stores now.
Is there an article of clothing in your closet that you can’t live without?
Probably my black cardigan from Banana Republic! I wear it over everything, and just having a basic to throw over t-shirts or dresses is so essential.
What is on your most-wanted list for spring and summer?
Surprisingly, new bras! I went up a cup size so it’s a great excuse for me to completely restock. Also, a new shirt dress in a solid colour with tuxedo frills, and a crossbody bag as well in a statement colour (see the one she purchased here!)
Are there any stores or designers that are your favourite?
I love Holt Renfrew – so many beautiful things, it’s like a museum! It’s like you can look but can’t touch! For more affordable clothing, I like Forever 21 and H&M. Lately my wardrobe has evolved to include local designers, especially Two of Hearts!
As a well-known blogger, do you have any advice, for people just entering the blogosphere, on how to gain followers, stay relevant, and make connections?
Blogging is a very community-minded pursuit and what you’re doing is great! A lot of people reach out to like-minded bloggers – you can’t just blog from an island or mountain top and expect people to respect what you say. You’re just one blog in a sea of many, so the relationships you make with others is really important! Social media is called social media for a reason!
What are your top blogs that you read each day?
(1) Daddy Likey (2) Wendy Brandes Jewelry (3) The Style Spy
Wrapping it up, how do you see your blog Solo Lisa evolving in the future? And where do you see yourself in the next five years?
I never know exactly how it’s going to develop; your guess is as good as mine! If something changes, it’s because I’ve changed. In the next five years, I hope that I’ll still be doing something that allows me to write, and I’ll hopefully be married and a homeowner!