THE IT FACTOR
A Conversation with New Author ALEXA CHUNG
By Eden Herbstman
A line of girls wrapped around the Bookmarc store on Bleecker Street dressed like versions of international fashion icon Alexa Chung waiting for the lady of the hour to sign copies of her first published book IT. This wasn’t just the Halloween spirit in the air, but these mini “Chung-lettes” as well as girls all over the world, have been inspired by Alexa’s feminine meets downtown casual street style. But iconic fashion sense and filterless humor aside, Alexa just has it- that factor that can’t be put into words but you know she has. Even she doesn’t know how she made it to “it girl” status, a title she’s never taken seriously, but whatever it is, has lead to IT.
Her new book is a collage of photographs, personal drawings, style advice, brief anecdotes, and an overall glimpse into the mind’s eye of Alexa, as reflected by the cover image’s rectangular snapshot of Alexa’s signature cat eye. And even though she has over a million Twitter followers and another 585 thousand on Instagram watching her daily postings, Alexa is gaining a new following. Her view of the fashion world and beyond are now timelessly persevered, in more than 140 characters, all bound in the book of “IT.”
Eden Herbstman: How does it feel to add author to your resume? Was becoming an author something you always had in mind?
Alexa Chung: This didn’t feel like too much of a departure from all the stuff I did with British Vogue, and other fashion journalism things, but this is definitely new and exciting and a bit weird.
EH: Do you consider IT to be a diary in some ways, like you’re letting the public have a glimpse of your private thoughts?
AC: I wanted this to be more personal and more like a scrapbook of my life, but it is a bit of a weird feeling now that it is all out there. It feels like someone is raiding your knicker drawers on Saturday. I know that there is Twitter and Instagram and all that, but that I feel is a bit more controlled.
EH: What inspired the title for this book? It (standard use) is unique and ambiguous.
AC: I liked the idea of calling IT an it, like referring to the book that way. To talk about it is quite funny to say oh IT’s over there. Its also a play on the whole “it girl” thing. I never really understood being called that.
EH: For Halloween you dressed up as the Hamburglar and a 1960′s nun. Is silly better than slutty when it comes to costumes?
AC: I don’t know where the whole slutty thing came from actually, or how it became so popular. In England everyone is supposed to be very ghoulish and scary. I never thought the slutty thing was very appealing.
EH: Did you experience writer’s block at any point?
AC: Oh yeah. All the time. I would write at one in the morning usually and email my editor. You just power through it.
Alexa Chung is a fashion journalist, model, and co anchor on Fuse News. Her new book IT is available for purchase today.
Written by Eden Herbstman
Photography by Jonathan Grassi for Patrick McMullan.com
Design by Eden Herbstman
Cover/Page 1: Alexa Chung, BOOKMARC Celebrates the publication of IT by ALEXA CHUNG, BOOKMARC, NYC, October 30, 2013 Photography by Jonathan Grassi for PatrickMcMullan.com
Left- Atmosphere, BOOKMARC Celebrates the publication of IT by ALEXA CHUNG, BOOKMARC, NYC, October 30, 2013 Photography by Jonathan Grassi for PatrickMcMullan.com
Right- Alexa Chung, BOOKMARC Celebrates the publication of IT by ALEXA CHUNG, BOOKMARC, NYC, October 30, 2013 Photography by Jonathan Grassi for PatrickMcMullan.com
Page 3: Alexa Chung, BOOKMARC Celebrates the publication of IT by ALEXA CHUNG, BOOKMARC, NYC, October 30, 2013 Photography by Jonathan Grassi for PatrickMcMullan.com