Frockwriter’s Top 10 posts of 2013 (and some of our fave photos)

Eyes on

Hope you’re having a fantastic holiday season.

With 2014 a few days away, we thought we’d reflect back on Frockwriter’s biggest (i.e. most-viewed) stories of the year – and a few of our favourite backstage shots that we took at various fashion events throughout the year.

In terms of traffic, our Top 10 is dominated by model stories. And one model in particular, Gemma Ward, stories about whom accounted for almost half of the list. But readers were also interested in journalism and ethics, intellectual property issues and the never-ending story about the sexualisation of women in marketing, with one three year old post about American Apparel curiously gaining newfound currency.

Below is a breakdown of the Top 10 in order.

Many thanks for your company this year. And a particular shoutout to our unwavering paid subscribers, the majority of whom have hung in there since July 8 when we joined the Fellt network and removed the Press+ paywall.

Since then we’ve been attempting to focus on rebuilding the traffic – some months, more successfully than others. Our subscriber content now comes in the form of ‘Frockwriter subscriber exclusives – gated content that is teased on the blog, but dispatched separately to subscribers. It’s something we trialled back in January this year, when the metered paywall was still in place, with considerable success.

Since July, we have only published one subscriber exclusive – an hour-long interview with Style.com editor in chief Dirk Standen, which we had some great feedback on.

There will be many more in the new year. We’re planning to bring subscribers at least one subscriber exclusive per week, ideally more.

We’re also planning to develop the newlook Frockwriter Live – which replaced our previous real-time photo feed on the sadly now defunct Posterous and a temporary Tumblr that was launched to coincide with this year’s MBFWA – but which has been largely on hiatus since July as well.

Many thanks, once again, to Sydney Stockholm’s Daniel Kjellsson and Johan Bergström for the opportunity to join Fellt and the outstanding job they continue to do booking major ad campaigns in what remains a challenging media market. Campaigns that have run back-to-back since we joined in July include Gucci and Net-A-Porter.

Thanks also to the various brands that have given us access to shoot backstage at their shows this year. Much appreciated.

Enjoy the break and here’s to a brilliant 2014.

1. Gemma Ward signs with IMG Models Australia, plots career comeback; ALK is off the grid

Broken on Frockwriter, news that the former world number one had switched Australian mother agencies from Viviens to IMG Models Australia, with a specific view to rebooting her modelling career according to the agency, travelled far and wide. Although a Vogue cover shoot was mooted to have been in the pipeline, many started to wonder why Ward’s comeback was taking so long. We had to wait until August for the answer, when news broke that Ward was five months pregnant with her first child with partner David Letts.

2. Bloggers vs journalists redux

Proving that there are legs yet in the bloggers vs journos story, our opinion piece prompted by The Daily Telegraph opinion piece about fashion bloggers (with special mention of Gary Pepper Girl’s Nicole Warne) allegedly “tearing down fashion” was the second most read post of this year – and the most commented upon since Frockwriter joined Fellt.

3. Gemma Ward and David Letts welcome a baby girl

Frockwriter didn’t break the news about the arrival of Gemma Ward’s new baby girl – that was The West Australian, after a staffer spotted a Facebook update from one of Ward’s brothers. However we did repost Nicole Trunfio’s Instagram shot of Ward and the baby, with other updates, including a statement from IMG Models. Innumerable pickups included Ward’s own Wikipedia page.

4. Cassi van den Dungen lands a Calvin Klein exclusive

Following on from her Miu Miu and Giles scores during the FW1314 shows in February and March, Cassi van den Dungen booked one of the most prestigious runway gigs of the Spring/Summer 2014 season – an exclusive for Calvin Klein Collection at New York Fashion Week. On the eve of the show, she also sat down for an exclusive chat with Frockwriter.

5. New faces: Juliette Perkins

Our New Faces posts about brand new modelling names generate a lot of interest throughout the year. One in particular wound up as the fifth most popular post this year – about 15 year-old New Zealander Juliette Perkins who was signed to Auckland’s Red 11 Models in August.

6. Gemma Ward is having a baby

We didn’t break this story either – The Sunday Telegraph did with this unsourced eye-witness account – but we were quick off the bat with coverage and obtained a confirmation from IMG Models.

7. Andrej Pejic’s popup wedding

Perez Hilton got pretty excited about an Instagram photo of a wedding certificate that was posted by Andrej Pejic’s bf Rembrandt ‘Remy’ Duran after a visit to the Cosmopolitan Hotel’s ‘Pop Up Chapel’ in Las Vegas in February. Frockwriter pointed out that same sex marriage isn’t yet legal in Nevada, spoke to Pejic’s mum Jadranka Savic, who described the stunt as “a joke” and we also drew attention to the “faux” wedding certificates offered by the chapel.

8. Apparently even American Apparel’s store mannequins have to spread their legs

We’re still not sure exactly what sparked renewed interest in this story that we originally posted in late 2010 after spotting a store mannequin with legs akimbo in the front window of American Apparel’s Adelaide store. In January, US news site Curbed published a story about the warehouse American Apparel uses to store its mannequins – some of which, interestingly, are reportedly sourced from porn retail. Given that Frockwriter’s post ranks at the top of Google searches for both “American Apparel store mannequins” and even just “American Apparel mannequins”, there could be a connection.

9. Maternity Ward

Yet another Gemma Ward post, this time discussing Ward’s paparazzi scuffle at Sydney Airport en route out of the country in October, plus her sister Sophie’s revelations in the same week that she had battled an eating disorder while working as a model.

10. La Fille d’O accuses Zimmermann of plagiarism

And finally, this post about cult Belgian lingerie label La Fille d’O accusing stellar Sydney fashion/swimwear brand Zimmermann of plagiarising its best-selling “One” bra and bikini top, generated a lot of interest (as did the followup story). Amusingly, although we didn’t register it at the time of the David Jones Autumn/Winter 2013 show in February, in compiling our favourite backstage shots from 2013 we spotted yet another local homage to La Fille d’O’s signature wiring in Willow’s Autumn/Winter 2013 collection, as seen in this shot, below, of Miranda Kerr getting ready to take to the DJs runway. It would be her last show for the department store. The following season, Kerr was replaced by Jessica Gomes as the official DJs fashion ambassador.

 

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DSC_0648-1 (dragged) copy

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PHOTOS:
1 - RENYA XYDIS, MIRANDA KERR AT DAVID JONES AUTUMN/WINTER 2013
2 - SAMANTHA SHORTER AT DAVID JONES AUTUMN/WINTER 2013
3 - JORDAN AND ZAC STENMARK WITH MONTANA COX AT DAVID JONES SPRING/SUMMER 2013/2014
4 - MADDISON BROWN AT DAVID JONES SPRING/SUMMER 2013/2014
5 - JULIA NOBIS AND NICOLE POLLARD AT BEC & BRIDGE, MBFWA
6 - NICOLE POLLARD AND MARISSA FINDLAY AT ZAMBESI, MBFWA
7 - GABBY WESTBROOK-PATRICK AT JAYSON BRUNSDON, MBFWA 
8 - APRIL TIPLADY AT EMMA MULHOLLAND, MBFWA 
9 - OLLIE HENDERSON AT ROMANCE WAS BORN, MBFWA 
10 - GABBY DOVER AT ROMANCE WAS BORN, MBFWA 
11 - JACOB HANKIN AT EMMA MULLHOLLAND, MBFWA 
12 - JULIETTE FAZEKAS AT EMMA MULHOLLAND, MBFWA 
13 - KIM RIEKENBERG AT EASTON PEARSON, MBFWA 
14 - RUBY JEAN WILSON AT SHAKUHACHI, MBFWA
15 - EASTON PEARSON, MBFWA 
16 - CAMILLA, MBFWA 
17 - LOUISE VAN DE VORST AT CAMILLA, MBFWA 
18 - MADDISON BROWN AT ROMANCE WAS BORN, MBFWA
19 - ROMANCE WAS BORN, MBFWA 
20 - OLIVIA THORNTON AT STAPLE THE LABEL, MBFWA 
21 - HOLLY ROSE EMERY (R) AT HELLO ELLE, MBFWA 
22 - DJ LEAH SIMMONS AT THE HELLO ELLE MBFWA WRAP PARTY