Born in Mexico and now based in London, Victoria Villasana started sharing her love for art, fashion, and adventure in 2011 through her blog, Style Marmalade. It is not only a fashion and style blog, but it also covers topics ranging from original D.I.Y projects to important social causes, such as femininity and religion, where she voices her opinion and stands true to what she believes in. What started as a hobby soon developed into a successful career of raising awareness as well as projecting her personality, creativity, and beliefs on to the world and her fans.
How did you end up getting to where you are today?
V.V.: It all started only as a hobby, but the blog began to develop with time. From the beginning I didn’t want to rush into making it an overnight success. I didn’t have a plan or a marketing strategy. In my eyes, I’m just sharing what I like and what I do. The blog opened so many doors work-wise and I’m glad I can do a combination of things for a living, especially since it suits my personality.
You grew up in Mexico but now live in London, what made you decide to make the big move?
V.V.: The backbone of a lot of my actions is curiosity and adventure. Whenever I feel too comfortable I like to take action. I traveled to Europe when I was 18 and immediately loved the cultural mix and the especially creative scene of London, so I decided to move here and learn as much as possible. I’m interested in experiences more than anything. I have a bit of a nomadic soul too, I have moved back and forth for the past 10 years!
V.V.: When it comes to blogging, one of the most important aspects is finding your niche, but I have to say that I really struggle with that. I’m interested in so many things that it’s difficult to find only one topic. I love art and culture, but I’m also really interested in personal style, food, philosophy, social causes, etc. I’ve always been a very curious person.
Where do you get the inspiration for your personal style and for the topics you write about?
V.V.: It comes out of a feeling of curiosity. The best thing for me is when I walk because I like to observe the world around me and when I move I feel more connected with everything and ideas start to flow easily. I also enjoy reading a lot of books and magazines about different topics. I’m a very visual person so I express myself through style. Personal style is so important, but it is never about trends, it comes from a deeper feeling of wanting to express who you are through your appearance.
V.V.: I enjoyed all my DIY’s. I have a lot of fun when I make them and most of them don’t require tremendous skill or craftsmanship, so everybody can do it! I actually wear them a lot and I like the reactions I get from people. ‘The Protest Jumper” was one of my favorites, I painted the words ‘FREE PALESTINE’ all over the jumper. When I wear it online or on the streets, it always initiates conversation and people ask questions. I don’t want just to provoke people but I can’t just sit in my comfortable house and write about pretty shoes and dresses. We need to remember that there are a lot of people in the world today lacking the most basics of human rights and we should do whatever it is in our hands to change that. Perhaps a silly jumper won’t change much but it’s a reminder of change and the change starts within!
Feminism has a lot of meanings in today’s society. What is your viewpoint on it?
V.V.: Feminism is about supporting and empowering women. We should encourage one another to follow what makes us happy and remain different from one woman to the next. It’s not about hating men either; it is about allowing women and men to be equally strong and sensitive without imposing gender stereotypes.
You’ve collaborated with numerous brands, photographers, and designers – what has been the most memorable or life-changing collaboration?
V.V.: I had so many great experiences since I started the blog, but collaborating with Vice magazine and Diesel have been amazing. But, the coolest thing (and this is going to sound super cheesy) but I love when someone writes directly to me and tells me how much they enjoyed something they saw in my blog or a blog post that inspired them. I think that brings the greatest joy.
Do you have a favorite artist or designer?
V.V.: I love the work of so many artists and designers throughout history, so it would be very difficult for me to pick one! Leonardo da Vinci, Picasso, Frida Kahlo, Chanel, Alexander McQueen, Vivienne Westwood…
What has been the biggest lesson you’ve learned since the start of your career as a blogger?
V.V.: Patience. Oh dear patience!
If you had one piece of advice to give a 20-something year old, it would be:
V.V.: Stay focused, work hard and don’t be scared to ask questions. Don’t wait for the opportunity to arrive or “the perfect moment”, make your own way and don’t find excuses, just take action NOW and roll with it – volunteer, intern, connect, read – stay hungry, positive, curious, and most importantly stay passionate about life. Don’t settle for anything less than you deserve.
Interview conducted by Jessica Manno