Share Style's Thea Cheang: The Style Community That Always Helps You Get The Look
Finally! A web community that lives up to it's name! Share Style is a newly launched website that focuses on the personal style of it's members. The site fosters a genuine connection with an audience that has proven to push the consistently growing style culture forward. Bloggers can upload their latest looks to their profile and others can shop their entire look all on the same website. (Literally the best of both worlds!) The community-style platform allows bloggers to promote their personal blog, while connecting with others and sharing style tips. Widening their social circle, members can follow their favorite profiles or simply choose the discover tab to search for new bloggers and looks.
We caught up with co-founder, Thea Cheang and she shared her inspiration that lead to Share Style, what it's like working with her co-founder, Sam, next steps for the brand and more. Before you even finish this article, you'll be creating your own Share Style profile! We're definitely interested and eager to see what the Share Style duo creates next. Get to know Thea Cheange below.
Name: Thea Cheang
Occupation: Web Designer, Co-founder
Location: Brighton, UK
ABN: Growing up, where did you look for inspiration? Who or what inspires you now?
TC: My first source of inspiration was definitely nature. When I was young I loved getting mucky playing with bugs in the garden. After a full day playing, I’d always come inside and start drawing pictures of my discoveries and adventures.
As I got a little older, I became heavily inspired by films and music. I remember listening to a lot of 60s and 70s music and watching films like Almost Famous. I think that's when I discovered my inner flower child and became convinced that I was born in the wrong era.
In my late teens, I went more into the alternative rock and indie scene and that sparked my transition into more of a grunge aesthetic. This is about the time I became obsessed with tattoos and starting looking at a lot of tattoo magazines for style and artistic inspiration. So when I hit 18, I immediately jumped on the opportunity to get my first tattoos.
Nowadays, living in such a fashion focused place like Brighton, UK gives me the chance to get inspiration from people on the street. I love seeing what everyday people wear and the way they express their own personal style.
ABN: When was the moment you realized your craft was more than just a hobby?
TC: I think it all clicked for me when I started turning my interest in design into building websites. I realized how huge the tech industry is and how much opportunity there is to be infinitely creative and make a living out of it.
ABN: How did the idea of Share Style come about? What's the brand's mission?
TC: It was quite a gradual process - both of us (my co-founder) were becoming more frustrated with online shopping. I’m quite short, so I found it really irritating to keep buying clothes that look fantastic on the model but then ended up being miles too long or clinging in all the wrong places. I just wanted to be able to see what the clothes look like on real people. The idea really grew from there and we decided to create a place where you can be inspired by clothes, words and people; all at once.
ABN: Give us a mini tutorial on how to work Share Style.
TC: The best way to get started with Share Style is to head over the the ‘people’ page, where you can see lots of style inspiration from the community. From there you can follow your favourite profiles and also comment on their photos to let them know what you love about their look. Of course you can also upload your own style photos and tag the items you’re wearing so that people can shop your look too.
If you’re in more of a shopping mood, you can browse from thousands of products on the ‘clothes’ page and save you’re favourite items to your own custom collections. I find this a really good way of keeping a virtual mood board for inspiration.
ABN: What is it like working with a co-founder?
TC: My business partner also happens to be my boyfriend, so it’s definitely interesting to live and work together. It’s challenging at times, but we’re also quite lucky in that we naturally work really well as a team. It’s just like working with your best friend, except you get an extra cuddle or two at the end of the day.
ABN: How do you brand yourself as a creative director?
TC: I’m definitely no expert and I’m still learning a lot, so I just try to reflect my personality as accurately as possible instead. I love being creative and I have lots of different design and style influences, so I try to reflect that through what I show to the world.
ABN: What advice would you give to girls who want to do your job? (or at least want to start the process)
TC: Definitely just have belief in yourself and your ability to make it. Then just stick at it! Be as stubborn as you possibly can and try not to become disheartened if things are a bit slow in the beginning. You can also try reaching out to people who inspire you in your field, you’ll be surprised how many people are open to chatting or sharing their words of wisdom with you.
ABN: If there was one fashion house you could work with who would it be and why?
TC: Hmm.. That’s a tough one, there are so many! I think if I had to choose one it would be Anna Sui. Her designs are so unique and fun - I love her use of print and I’m obsessed with her Spring '16 collection with all those florals, it makes me think of crazy holidays and sunshine!
ABN: Anything we should look forward to in your upcoming work?
TC: We’re actually working on completely re-designing the website at the moment. With the new release we’ll be putting a lot more emphasis on personalization and bringing all the different “bits” together. We’ll also be integrating with lots of other social media platforms so you can have your Instagram, Twitter or blog feed on your profile too, if you want. After that the next step is make our app! Everyone is crazy about apps these days, so we think this will be a great way to grow our network.
ABN: What is one closet item that you feel is absolutely necessary?
TC: For me, it’s definitely black skinny jeans. At the moment I’m loving ripped black jeans because it adds thats extra little oomph to my outfits without me having to put in any effort. I live in the UK, so I can usually get away with wearing skinny jeans right into summer as well.
ABN: What style trends are you looking forward to this spring/summer?
TC: I’m loving the bohemian romance trend at the moment. I’m still a bit of a hippie chick at heart and I absolutely love the soft femininity of florals and smock dresses.
ABN: If there was anyone in the world you could collaborate with who would it be? Why?
TC: It would definitely have to be Leandra Medine (Founder of Man Repeller). She’s an extremely talented writer and I love her sense of humour. She always gives the perfect balance between exploring popular trends and having her own very unique sense of style.
ABN: What your favorite song of all time? Why?
TC: ‘May This Be Love’ by Jimi Hendrix. It has the most beautiful guitar riff I have ever heard. I remember the first time I listened it to, it sent chills down my spine and I’ve been hooked ever since.
ABN: Tell us a little known fact about yourself.
TC: I once featured on a Blues Clues advert on Nickelodeon.