A Mile in Her Shoes: An interview with Charleston fashion blogger Taylor Brobisky

As I stroll through King Street’s fashion district on an early, cool Sunday morning, I prepare for the chat I am about to have with fashion blogger Taylor Brobisky. Walking past the chic and trendy mannequins displayed in the windows of H&M, Loft, Bebe and Banana Republic, I wonder what the fashionista would think of these styles. With her blog, “Holy City in Heels,” the Junior communication major takes on Charleston, displaying the city’s beauty and thriving fashion scene. So if you ever questioned shoulder pads, mixing prints or if your mom’s jeans are actually flattering, then walk a mile in this blogger’s heels. It may just strike up a passion for fashion that is unique, daring and noteworthy.

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Photos by Michael Wiser

CA: Tell us a little about your blog, “Holy City in Heels.”

TB: “Holy City in Heels” started as kind of a fashion journal for me – whereas I would take pictures, documenting the best outfits I put together. But now it’s kind of turned into more of a collaborative space. So I’ve collaborated with a bunch of bloggers from the Charleston area and it’s even given me some business opportunities.

Would you say that blogging is just a hobby for you or would you actually go into it professionally someday?

Ideally I would like to go into it professionally, just because it’s something I’m passionate about. Right now it’s a little bit more of a hobby, because I’m trying to balance school and another job as well. But I would love to take blogging down a professional path.

Who would you say is your fashion icon?

I go through phases of fashion icons. But right now it’s a blogger called Sincerely Jules. She just has like a boho, tomboyish vibe, but then again it’s very girly. So it’s like a perfect balance of both.

Who takes the majority of the photos on your blog? Because they look so clear and crisp!

My mom takes my photos! With my iPhone! [Chuckles.]

No way!

Yeah, and then the more professional ones are by Catherine Ann Photography. I did a photoshoot with her where I did like five outfits, so that equaled five posts on my page. But a majority of them are my mom and my iPhone.

Whoa, that’s a shocker! So how would you describe your personal style?

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I would say it’s a little eclectic, just because I’m mainly on the bohemian side but then I can add a little edge or a little prep when I’m feeling it.

There are so many fashion magazines out there these days – Glamour, Nylon, Vogue. What are some of your favorite fashion magazines?

Honestly, I love Teen Vogue!

Me too!

[Laughs.] Because they have some of the most outlandish stuff – like the spreads – but I love it! My mom, every time I get it, she’s like, “You know you’re not a teen anymore, right?”

I still subscribe to Teen Vogue! [Laughs.] Even though the teenage years are gone. What are some of your current fashion obsessions?

That’s a good question. Umm…right now I’m really loving Jeffrey Campbell’s new line of boots for the fall. Oh my gosh, they are amazing! I’m also really liking…there’s a new suede trend happening for fall – I just really want fall to happen now! I work at a fashion store and we have a lot of suede and like 70s vibe stuff and I’m all about that.

Any fashion trends that you just don’t understand these days?

I would say Birkenstocks, but now I’m obsessed with Birkenstocks!

They are really cute now! They come in so many colors – even with sequins. Speaking of trends, one of the biggest debates, probably among us college females – what are your views on leggings as pants?

Girl, if I said I didn’t believe leggings were pants, I’d be lying! [Laughs.] But I wear them with oversized t-shirts or something like that. Rather than leggings and a crop top! I don’t think that’s appropriate.

Is there anything in your wardrobe that you just cannot live without?

It would actually be this Rebecca Minkoff bag right here. Because it literally goes with everything! It’s just so versatile. You can make it a crossbody bag, and it’s my go-to bag.

Speaking of go-tos, on days when you can’t find anything to wear, do you have a go-to outfit?

I would say my go-to outfit is my pair of H&M flare jeans. Like I said I’m into the whole 70s theme happening right now. But I love wearing that with a boho tank top. That’s just super easy to throw on but still looks cute and put together.

Any favorite brands?

Like I said, I like H&M a lot. Jeffery Campbell, of course. Free People, though sometimes my wallet kind of screams when I spend money like that!

Where do you find most of your styles?

A lot of my stuff comes from consignment shops. There’s millions around here, so I really shop a lot at thrift stores. And then the store that I work at is called the Stylexchange, so I pretty much buy my wardrobe there too! That and H&M of course!

CA: Of course! What do you think is the best service your blog provides to people?

I feel like the purpose of my blog, rather than some that can like show off brands and stuff – I feel like mine kind of introduces brands to my readers. For example, I will collaborate with someone who projects towards an older audience, but I try and make it versatile so that any age can wear it. I feel like my blog is just there for outfit ideas, mainly. And honestly, it is just as much as a collaboration with the brand as it is with the reader.

Considering you are a full time student – you even mentioned that you have a job – how do you find time to run this blog, quite successfully if you ask me, and still get everything else done?

Well, usually I will put some outfits together or I will shop looking for outfits. And then when I am ready to shoot the outfits, I will shoot about five outfits per photoshoot. And then I can write my posts and edit my pictures. What’s nice about WordPress is that you can schedule when posts go up. And that’s my best friend! Because I would rather not sit in class and be like “Okay…post!” Whereas I have done that [Laughs.] But ever since I noticed the scheduling tool on WordPress, I’m like, “Okay, this works way better!”

So are there any ways you would want to improve yourself in the next year?

I do want to definitely blog more. I’m looking to refresh “Holy City in Heels.” Because I’ve had the exact same template, same exact look, for a year and a half now. And I just feel the need to refresh and revive it a little bit. And I kind of want to start doing some more “look for less” type outfits, rather than focusing on having the best brand or whatever.

Many may notice that YouTube has actually become a hotspot for fashion gurus to expose their secrets and styles. Just about all fashionistas use vlogging as a way to reach audiences, so would you ever venture into vlogging one day?

I would like to because I watch a lot of YouTube videos. That is how I grew up learning how to do makeup and stuff. And I feel like I’ve grown up with them! [Laughs.] Because I’ve literally watched them since I was in high school. But I think doing style videos – I’ve dabbled in it a little over the summer because I got a Gopro and I kind of vlogged a little bit up in New York [Chuckles.] So that was interesting, but I definitely need to improve my skills.

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So, tell readers about your proudest achievement.

Goodness, this is a tough one! I guess this is an achievement. “Holy City in Heels,” which you’ve seen it, I’ve taken on a very bold frontier per say. But when I was in New York I made a sign that said “Holy City in Heels” for “The Today Show” and it was pretty cool because I achieved getting on Kathie Lee and Hoda because of my sign! I would say that and then also I got an internship with a man who is very into the fashion scene. He is very close friends with people like Karen Kloss of “Who What Wear.” And I got to meet her. And basically, working with him during my internship really paid off just because I learned every aspect of the fashion world.

Would you consider the feedback on your blog to have been a positive one? How have the local Charlestonians responded?

I received a lot of love from Charleston. I think in my year and a half of blogging, I’ve received one critique and it was because I used the wrong form of “fashion sense.” I spelled “sense” wrong. Well, because when you’re on a typing rampage you kind of don’t think about it. The thing is, though, I spelled sense like s-i-n-c-e.

But that is like my only critique and I think that is pretty okay!

That is very much okay! So, what can we find you doing in your spare time?

I’ve taken on the new skill of skateboarding. Yeah. When you’re in New York and your cousin goes, “Okay we’re going to skateboard from the Manhattan Bridge to the Brooklyn Bridge,” you kind of have no other choice. So I really like skateboarding. My best friend has turned me into a beach bum, whereas before I didn’t really like the beach at all. And then probably binge watching One Tree Hill, honestly.

What do you find is the most frustrating aspect of blogging?

I would probably say it’s more of a frustration with myself. But just not being able to – I try to set the goal of posting two posts a week. But honestly, being a full-time college student, having a job, that’s just not realistic. I think that’s the most frustrating thing because the blogging community is growing like crazy and you just kind of want to like keep up with your friends. But it gets kind of tough doing that.

Would you encourage others, perhaps students, to start up their own blog?

Oh for sure! I had a polaroid camera and I would take pictures of my outfits that way and it was literally like my outfits on a hanger so that way I could be like, “Oh that was a cute outfit,” if I don’t have one I could just look at these. But then I started my blog, like I said, as a journal and all of a sudden it’s turned into a really successful thing! So even if you want to be a part of the bigger community or you want to just do it for you, I definitely suggest blogging.

Would you encourage others, perhaps students, to start up their own blog?

Oh for sure! I had a polaroid camera and I would take pictures of my outfits that way and it was literally like my outfits on a hanger so that way I could be like, “Oh that was a cute outfit,” if I don’t have one I could just look at these. But then I started my blog, like I said, as a journal and all of a sudden it’s turned into a really successful thing! So even if you want to be a part of the bigger community or you want to just do it for you, I definitely suggest blogging.

Next I’m going to ask you some fast, rapid fire questions. So, worst habit?

Probably splurge buying.

Most used emoji?

The little monkey covering its eyes.

The last thing you watched online?

One Tree Hill.

Heels or Flats?

Flats.

Celebrity crush?

Umm…Scott Eastwood!

Favorite place to go in Charleston?

Ooh, there’s so many. This is not a fire question for me! I honestly love Urban Outfitters. I know it’s a store, but it’s a beautiful building. I love just walking up and down King Street, honestly. Isle of Palms, the beach, it’s one of my favorite places ever.

And last but not least, could you tell our readers, what is the greatest satisfaction of being a fashion blogger?

I think the best part about being a fashion blogger is this thing called Charleston Blog Society and once a month we all meet up and do a potluck or like an event at a store and I just love seeing all my blogger friends and talking about what’s new. I haven’t been to one in months and I miss them! But there you get to talk about different ideas and I’ve seen a lot of awesome collaborations come from that. Yeah … that’s the best part about being a fashion blogger.

* This article first appeared in the October 2015 issue of The Yard 

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Chelsea Anderson is the Blog Editor for CisternYard News. She is a senior studying Communication at the College. Her journalistic journey began in high school while working with WTGR news. On any given day, you can find her watching soap operas, Keeping Up with the Kardashians or taking an intriguing Buzzfeed quiz.


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