My fashion editorial portfolio

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Having worked in the magazine industry for almost seven years, I’ve had the opportunity to work on various cover shoots, fashion editorials and have been fortunate to have worked with some of SA’s biggest celebs.

Here’s a snippet of my work over the years.

MY PERSONAL FAVOURITE PRINT COVERAGE TO DATE IS STILL THE FIRST FASHION RUNWAY REPORT I WROTE OF  SA FASHION WEEK.

 

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MAGAZINE COVERS

MAGENTA MAGAZINE STYLED EDITORIALS

 

WOMAN ONLINE MAGAZINE

 

KUIER MAGAZINE

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PRINT FEATURES

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8 mode trends wat my ongelooflik omkrap

So elke nou en dan gooi die mode industrie ons met ‘n vuile.

Hier is agt mode giere wat my laat gril as dit in die oortreffende trap gedoen word, want jy kry iets soos TE ekstra.

1 Ons word bles van al die knippies in ons hare wat alles behalwe doen om jou hare uit jou oë te hou
Ek het van haarknippies en alice bands gehou voor Blair Waldorf dit weer cool gemaak het, maar hoeveel knippies kan op een mens se kop pas? Partykeer wil ek vir mense my kleintyd ballet haargel aanbeveel, want dit lyk of niks anders werk nie en die beste deel is wanneer dele van die knippies oor hulle wangbene kom, want MODE. Mag jy nooit in ‘n elektriese heining vasloop nie, want met al daai staal en metaal in jou hare, dink ek nie jy gaan dit maak nie.
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2 Meisies kla dat daar nie meer hoogtepunte in hul lewe is nie, want al die highlighter sit op hulle gesig 
Om jou gesig te ‘bak’ vir 20 minute is nie meer goed genoeg nie, ons wil blink ook! Die probleem is, en ek is self skuldig, jy weet nie waar om te stop nie en dis okay, ek verstaan. Ek blameer die Kardashians. Dis een ding as ‘n grimeerkunstenaar vir 3 ure jou beste kenmerke uitbring, maar dis ‘n ander ding as jy met ‘n blosser kwas ‘n dun en strepie op jou neus probeer trek in twee minute. My geheim is om wanneer ek in die kar klim, met ‘n sneesdoekie oor my gesig te druk om onnodige produk af te kry. Dit maak mens nogals bang as jy na die tyd na jou sneesdoekie kyk, want nog ‘n gesig kyk vir jou terug.
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3 Crop tops word nog korter
Ek voel dat ontwerpers die woord ‘crop’ te ernstig opvat. Hoeveel keer kan jy iets crop voor dit lyk soos ‘n verlepte haarband? Ek hoop dis ‘n trend wat amper oppad uit is, want ek kan eerlikwaar nie dit werk toe, kerk toe of eintlik enige plek op Google Maps dra nie… tensy ek ‘n mom jean dra wat my bring tot my volgende punt…
 
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4 Mom jeans is terug
Om met jou eerlik te wees, hoekom was mom jeans ooit UIT die mode? Ek moet bieg, ek is eerlikwaar ‘n aanhanger van hierdie vreemde een. Mom jeans is die rede dat ek uiteindelik op die denim trein gespring het, want jy kan jou potlood van die grond af optel sonder dat Vrydagaand se gemorskos by jou naeltjie uitloer. Baie mense hou verby, maar ek lief ‘n paar mom jeans al dra my eie ma nie eers mom jeans nie. Unfriend my, ek sal verstaan.
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5 Om soos ‘n hawelose van die 90’s te lyk kos jou R1000
Moene jouself nederig hou nie – jy weet presies waarvan ek praat. Jy het hulle al in die mall gesien of Uber het hulle al langs jou afgelaai in die straat (hulle ry nooit self nie). Jy was tien ten een al op die punt om vir een van hulle jou laaste R5 te gee en toe besef jy, wag, hierdie persoon se uitrusting kos meer as my tandartsafspraak.
 
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6 Mense plant lettterlik wenkbroue op hulle voorkoppe en hanteer dit soos ‘n boerdery
Jy weet, vir iemand wat met wenkbroue wakker word in die oggend, lig ek hulle net as ek sien hoe lyk party mense se landerye of soos ek dit noem – wiel bande. As jy natuurlike donker wenkbroue soos ek het, bly stil, se dankie en pluk jou unibrow gereeeld. As jy nie het nie, is dit ook mooi. Kleur liggies in met ‘n potlood en gaan aan met jou dag.
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7 Almal loop met ‘n FRIENDS t-hemp rond al weet die jeug nie wat ‘n Rachel is nie.
Die ‘Friends’ hemde is orals. Almal dra dit. Minder kyk dit en nog minder is van plan om dit te begin kyk – Ek blameer Netflix. Waar is die ‘7de Laan’ en ‘Noem my Mevrou At Koster’ hemde’ en ‘Isiding-my-Nou’ hemde? Ondersteun plaaslike name, ons ekonomie kort geld om die Eskom prestasie bonusse te betaal. Jy weet mos.
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8 Tekkies oftewel sneakers is die millenial manier van ‘n spaar plan. Hoe meer pare in jou kas het, hoe groter is jou rykdom. 
Watter hakke? Steek weg, dis soooo 2015 om stiletto’s in jou kas te hé. Ek dra op die oomblik sneakers, maar kan nie verstaan hoe dit ‘n Tinder date heeltemal kan maak of breek in die eerste vyf minute nie. Hulle praat van die ‘sneaker culture’ en kry tot geheime partytjies waar net die cool hawelose kinders genooi word.
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BONUS: Crocs suck (nog steeds)
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Op die ou ende van die dag kan jy doen wat jy wil. Dis jou lewe en jou lyf, Ek was net lus om bietjie te kla.

Annette

XoXo

How I got 100K unique visitors on my website

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I launched Magenta Magazine in September 2017 and just knew that my millennial readers would love the brand as much as I do.

Magenta was launched because we identified the huge potential to launch a female millennial product over Africa as there’s not a lot of resources for African women to get the latest fashion, celeb and lifestyle news.

Under the mentorship of Grant Fredericks, CEO of African News Agency, I’ve managed to create and grew my website from 2890 unique visitors in the first month to over 105 000 visitors per month in less than 5 months.

We’ve also managed to get over 220 000 page views over that one month period – all by working hard and implementing effective online strategies based on research and digital consumer trends.

My motto is ‘CONTENT IS QUEEN’ and quality over quantity will always result in returning visitors and long term results.

Our top 5 countries – Reader Demographics

South Africa                       29.3%

Kenya                                   22.6%

Nigeria                                  16%

Namibia                               10.7%

Ghana                                   7.7%

Magenta readership growth since launch in September 2017

MONTH UB % GROWTH
September 2890 285%
October 11474 297%
November 22199 93.5%
December 36100 62.6%
January 47820 32.5%
February 105250 120%
March 98184 -6.7% (due to regular site crashes and server updates – we had too many readers on our site, so we had to upgrade our server to accommodate the growing website traffic.)

EXAMPLE OF OUR MAGENTA STYLE CATEGORY

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SOCIAL MEDIA

Social media is our biggest traffic source as almost 70% from our readers are directed to Magenta via our social platforms.

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It’s important to stay authentic to your brand. We use our Instagram platform to enhance our brand identity with is fashion forward, youthful and pink.

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With Twitter our strategy is to follow the latest trending topics and post breaking content as it happens. For example we immediately wrote a short online feature when it was announced that Bonang Matheba will be hosting Miss South Africa 2018.

See reaction to our tweet with link to site below:

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Besides using our Facebook Page as a website driving tool, I believe it’s extremely important to engage with your audience and build conversation around relevant topics.

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8 tips to grow your online traffic from my experience:

  • Identify your brand’s USP – Unique Selling Point – and stick to it.
  • Invest in social media advertising. Start off with a small budget and tailor your target audience.
  • Stay up to date with the latest breaking news and produce and upload trending content while it’s still hot and happening.
  • Use visuals to keep your readers longer on your site to lower your bounce rate. Research has shown that you only have four seconds to grab a person’s attention online, so make it worth their while… and data.
  • Invest in a proper SEO strategy by making use of keywords, alt & meta tags, image captions, inbound & outbound links.
  • Use relevant on hashtags to increase your posts on social media.
  • Finally, my golden rule is – if I won’t read it, I’m not posting about it.
  • My CEO told me in the beginning that I need to be ready for the ‘blood, sweat and tears’ moments. All of the above have happened, but if you believe in yourself and your brand, the results WILL show.

I’m not with Magenta anymore due to a promotion to Head of Digital at a Publishing House, but Magenta will always be my ‘baby’ and it served as a great research experiment to show that you can achieve anything you put your mind on.

Go to magentamagazine.co.za for all the latest lifestyle, fashion and celebrity news.

 

 

20 things you didn’t know about me

Life is short, tell your story.

Everyone knows that I’m that girl with the bangs chasing my magazine goals with a skinny cappuccino in the one hand and my pink phone in the other, but did you know that I am actually a big chess nerd who hates yoga? BOOM!

Here’s 20 things you didn’t know about me:

If I wasn’t in the magazine industry, I would have been a concert pianist playing classical masterpieces in Austria, Berlin and Paris.

I’m more obsessed with Bach than Bieber. My favourite piano piece to play to date is Bach’s Prelude & Fugue No.2 in C minor.

I was the primary school chess champion in Grade 1 – yes, I even beat the grade sevens and I’m owning that.

I haven’t worn a bikini to the beach since 2009. #workingonthat

People think my kindness is my weakness, but it’s absolutely my biggest strength.

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My grandmother’s full names are Anna Elizabeth and that’s where Annette came from meaning ‘graceful.’

I ‘published’ my first story when I was five years old. It was about a sheep and a fly having a fight, but still… I even illustrated the cover and asked my mom to make photocopies at school.

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I have never not had a fringe – it’s my identity. Anna Wintour has her straight-cut bob. Annette de Wet’s got the bangs!

The first time I saw my ‘now-husband’ in my life was in the doctor’s waiting room. I saw this guy wearing a blue tie and super polished shoes, looked at my mom who was with me at the time and said: “That’s the guy I’m going to marry!”

I have never smoked a cigarette in my life.

I’m obsessed with Jack Parow and I totally turn into a gangster poppie when listening to him.

I’ve ran two half marathons. And I didn’t die.

In University, I compared every guy I dated to Chuck Bass. I once dated a guy only because he looked and talked like Mister Bass. #donotjudge

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I type 80 words per minute and have the certificate to prove it. #NERD

My brows are naturally black, but my hair is light brown. People think I have ombre highlights and tint my brows regularly, but that’s just the way I was born. I’m old school, – when I wake up I already have eyebrows on.

I hate yoga. I don’t do the slay nor namaslay thing. The only downward dog you’ll find me in is on the couch with coffee – milk, two sweeteners.

One of my goals are to start an anti-bullying platform. I was bullied in grade 8 by my so called “BFF” and ended up with no friends. She would leave “You are fat” sticky notes against my cupboards, turned all my friends against me and spread the worst rumours you can image…. It got to a point where I lost all my self confidence and it literally took me 3-4 years before I was my crazy confident self again. I lost out on soooooooooooo much fun in high school, because of one person.

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I am not an avocado person.

I haven’t coloured or put any chemical products like a brazilian in my hair for 3 and a half years. #VirginHairDoCare

And finally, I absolutely love my life!

Always, Anne

xoxo

PHOTOGRAPHY: Rezaine Desai

OUTFIT: Shirt with slogan – Nicci Boutique | Leggings – Woolworths | Boots – Truworths

LOCATION: Arthurs Road, Sea Point

Be a ballerina bae with MRP

All that ballet jazz

I used to do ballet for 5 years when I was younger and I’ll never forget how upset I was when our ballet teacher moved out of town.

Just because I didn’t turn out to be a prima ballerina, doesn’t mean I can’t still look like one.

Meet MRP‘s new dance-inspired PROJECT collection.

“In this limited edition range, mixed fabrics and a muted palette take centre stage, while mesmerising silhouettes capture movement.”

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It was hard to choose (because I’m such a ballet obsessed snob) but here is my top 5 picks from the #MRPXPROJECT.

2. Asymmetrical Tee_R79.99
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3. Strappy Bra Top_R59.99
R59.99
6. Crushed Velour Bodysuit_R79.99
R79.99
10. Bell Sleeve Hoodie_R129.99
R89.99
14. Tie Leggings_R89.99
R129.99

Fashion Editor diary – what my day looks like

If you love what you do, you’ll never work again in your life.

I get asked a lot what a typical day in my life looks like. To be honest, I have no idea! Every day is different depending on if I have a shoot planned, if I have to sit the whole day and write copy, if I have to plan the next feature, maybe a beauty launch or if I’m running around with a ponytail sourcing clothing like a marathon athlete who missed the bus.

But that’s what I love about my job. You never know what’s going to happen next.

Here’s a quick glimpse into yesterday’s diary:

(WARNING – this might come across as extremely boring)

07h00 Wake up with coffee in bed thanks to Instagram Husband

7h15 Respond to work emails and send the latest fashion shoots PDF’s to the PR-brands. PR companies always ask for the PDF’s to show their clients (aka the brands we used in shoots).

7h50 Go for a quick 5 km run

9h00 Go to one of my favourite coffee shops (we don’t have the luxury of wifi at home) to finish two important fashion deadlines. I also receive new beauty copy to proofread so they can send it of to print while writing a post for my personal blog.

10h30 I’m off to the mall to do fashion returns from last week’s Friday magazine cover shoot. Luckily I did a lot of  returns on Sunday evening already (yip, work never stops) so it goes quick. Receive a call that the magazine wants to shoot our Winter Hair Issue cover. Today. TODAY? Yip, I’ve heard right.

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11h30 Phone make up agencies, hair brands and potential models like a crazy person to put together a cover shoot in two hours. I’m getting hungry… I’m moody #NOTGOOD

12h10 Grab a LOW GI popcorn and Coke Light on my way to another shopping mall to be in time for shooting two hair makeover features

12h35 Arrive 5 minutes late at the  beauty salon to meet the two models. Both are extremely gorgeous with beautiful natural curls. The salon packe out chocolate cookies just for us – how will I be able to resist? I love chocolate cookies.

12h50 We go through the  brief with the hair stylist while the photographer takes the before shots of the two models. I pray we can pull of this extra cover shoot waiting. Thank goodness we found a model on Facebook and she can be here in the next hour.

13h00 The hair makeovers are about to start. The one model is going bronde like Ciara and the other is getting a moisturising treatment. I have to make notes of the entire process and also squeeze in an interview with one of the stylists afterwards.

 

 

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13h30 I quickly go next door at Inglot to meet our hair cover model and she’s beautiful! We go through to the make up brief at Inglot Studio and I know she’s in good hands.

13h45 The photographer and I go location scouting for the cover. There wasn’t time to get permission from the mall, so we’re trying to dodge security. #BADASS

14h00 On the way back to the salon we stop for a quick bite at Subway, but I can’t enjoy the meal, because I keep getting work related calls and have to respond urgent emails.

14h15 Back at the salon and I take more notes before we head off to do the cover shoot.

14h45 The photos are incredible! The model knows what she’s doing and her girlfriend also came to support her. Both of them are Tony, so it’s quite special that I got to meet Tony and Tony.

15h30 I’m beyond excited about the cover photos and we head back to the salon to finish the makeovers. On my way I stop to buy a cold drink and spot my latest magazine cover on the shelves. The feeling is priceless!

17h15 We’re done and I’m very happy with the results. We take the final ‘after photos’ and we have two very happy hair goddesses… yay! There’s nothing more satisfying in my career to know that your model/ client is happy with your work.

 

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17h30 I go to the Woolworths Cafe to finish more work deadlines and start looking for product stills for a fashion DPS (double page spread).

19h00 Instagram husband meets me at the coffee shop with my mom (she came to visit) and tells me it’s time to log off. I’m tired so I listen.

20h00 Finally I get home and have a quick coffee before starting to plan my upcoming fashion editorial. I write all my sourcing letters (you have to get permission before taking clothes from stores) because I want to send it out first thing tomorrow morning.

22h30 It’s bed time and I have my latest Vogue magazines next to my bedside to get inspired for the next shoot… and the next one… and the next one.

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Always, Anne

xoxo

OUTFIT FROM WOOLWORTHS (buy it here)

Cream Sweater R699.00 | Dusty pink hat R299.00 | Sneakers R350.00 | Jeggings R350

LOCATION: Strolla, Sea Point

PHOTOGRAPHER: Rezaine Desai

How to ignore the bullies

A woman can never be to classy, too caring or too pink… well that’s according to me anyways.

I get judged on my appearance… a lot. Too much.

I love pretty dresses, glitter donuts, (sometimes) think that I am a princess married to my prince and if it’s pink, I’ll take two.

Because I’m marked by so-called society as “cute” and “girly,” people are so easy to judge me. My fellow fashionistas, I’m sure you’ve hard some of these before:

  • You’re such a snob.
  • Looks are so important to you.
  • You’re just in this industry for the glamour and freebies.
  • You think you’re better than us.
  • Just another pretty face.
  • You are so selfish….

And my favourite – she’s so lucky!

(No, I just studied for four years and worked my butt off for five  while paying back my student loan with massive interest. Still paying though. With interest.)

BUT

I say screw this, be you no matter who you choose to be. Just be you.

Appearance doesn’t matter. Size doesn’t matter. Your relationship status doesn’t matter and your background doesn’t matter either. All you should really care about are your morals and beliefs.

Don’t settle for second best.

Don’t be that girl who makes comments about other girls’ weight.

Don’t think you’re better than someone, because of your job status, your outfit or your haircut.

Treat the CEO and the homeless man on the street with the same respect.

Life’s short. Don’t hate.

Don’t hate on people who you think are better off, because everybody have 24 hours in a day and it really depends on you what you are going to do with that.

That Fashion Editor – she might be bipolar. That woman who just got a promotion – she might secretly suffer from major depression. That girl with the perfect body – she might just be exercising and eating healthy.

Nothing in life comes easy. It’s 10% luck, 40% hard work and 40% being nice to other people, trust me on this one.

I am sorry for always preaching, but I can’t stand bullying in the workplace and even amongst friends. It’s something that needs more attention, because it seems to me that bullying changed from mocking the ”fat kid” to trying to break down successful (and happy) women living their best lives.

Stop hating and start supporting – it’s worth it!

If you are being bullied or judged for being you, I would love to hear from you! Send me an email at alwaysanneblog@gmail.com and let’s end this.

There’s nothing more beautiful than women supporting women.

Always, Anne.

xx

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PHOTOGRAPHY by dannic_photography.

The not-so-much perks of being a Fashion Editor

Always Anne fashion blogger

“If you can handle failure, you can handle success!”

I hate it when people say I have the “BEST” job in the world with ”the most amazing perks” and my favourite: “All you do for a living is showing up at fancy events!”

Like, seriously dude?

There’s this saying that the media industry is the toughest one to be in and oh boy, were they right! So, you want my job? Okay, be my guest.

It took me 11 months to find my first internship while I was working as an Au Pair. My 5-day internship turned into two weeks turned into two months… and now it’s 5 years later.

I’ve heard the worst insults you can imagine including remarks about my weight, the way I dress and even my personality. I’ve been bullied, verbally harassed, worked overtime until after midnight and covered numerous events starting at 2AM. I’ve had salary cuts, sat in HR meetings because of false accusations, had to quit my job recently because of people with, let’s just say, really really bad personalities… all while sitting in traffic and attending events after a full day of intense deadlines at work. When you eventually get to the event, you can barely keep your eyes open and oh no, we don’t just have the cake and eat it – events are all about networking and finding new business opportunities for your brand while all eyes on you, because you’re ‘that girl’ from ‘that company’ with ‘that respectable reputation’.

If I had to tell you the situations I have been through (and survived!) you probably won’t even believe me.. and I don’t blame you. Because all that people see are the glitz and the glam, the Instagram posts at events and occasional freebies which in fact just makes up for our little salaries.

BUT.

If you ask me if I would do choose this career again if I had a choice, I would say yes without a blink.

I am madly in love with my profession. I’ve dreamt of having a career in the media and fashion industry before I even started primary school.

You can burn my soul, but you can’t bliss my passion.

I am starting 2017 in a new career with endless opportunities and already my new team feel like family. Will there be drama? Probably. Do I care? Probably not.

If you are also in the industry, just hang in there. Grow a tough skin and always stay true to yourself and your values.

5 years ago my first Magazine Editor told me the secret to success is to work and hard and be nice and since then it became my motto in life.

High five to all my fellow fashionistas in the industry for being fearless females – I salute you and have a sh*t load respect for every single one of you… except if you are a bully, stay far far away.

I’m so excited about what lies ahead for 2017, because the past is in the past and things can only get better from here on.

Always, Anne

xoxo

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