Startup Seven: StylePage, fashion’s new visual social network

Startup Seven: StylePage, fashion’s new visual social network

There is one thing that we virtually all have in common: we love to look at beautiful things. We’re head over heels, then, for StylePage, the new answer to every fashionista’s question: “Where do I go for visual inspiration?”

Style Page is a San Francisco based online community that is a visually inclined creative-type’s best friend. You can start by thinking of them as a Tumblr for fashion, but it gets better from there. Our affinity for stunning images of models, beauty, and clothes goes as far back as we can remember, and this site has some truly beautiful imagery to enjoy. (Also, they were deservedly a recipient of InStyle’s Best of the Web award for 2011.)

StylePage has built a community of over 10,000 screened followers that range the style gamut from fashion bloggers to interior decorators. It’s a great new way to admire other people’s work and network all at the same time. You can “Like”, like Facebook, “reblog” like Tumblr, and even follow people, like Twitter. But that has all been done, and we got to wondering how StylePage stands out.

We reached out to Rachel Maloney, Digital Fashion Director for StylePage. Not only does she have an amazing title, she’s also a legitimate fashion blogger in her own right, over at the popular blog TheRayandTheRo.

New York, NY and San Francisco, CA (with a comical amount of technological snafus) —

TWF: Tell us about your company.

RM: We are a community that showcases up & coming designers and creative individuals. Our goal is to create a tool that is a blogging platform potentially. If you don’t have time for Tumblr, and want to build something that’s easy for you to use, we want us to be your source.

TWF: If you can describe your company in 5 words, what would they be?

RM:
Passionate
Excited
Easy-going
Hard-working
Adaptable

Especially the last two — those are a must if you’re a startup business.

TWF: Tell us about your team. Who does what and how do you manage your staff?

RM: The business team would be Andrew and myself. We manage all the company’s marketing, design aspects, social media and all the press. I also manage all of our designer and user relationships. Adam, our CEO, told me to tell you guys that he makes sure the fridges are stocked and that we have a roof over our heads. (insert laughter on both ends here). And of course our developers that make sure the website works! So we’re small- and yes, I’m the only woman!

TWF: What is unique about your company?

RM: Well, I think the fact that I’m the only woman is actually unique. I bring the woman’s perspective to the ping-pong tabled offices.

TWF: What are StylePage’s future plans?

RM: In the next couple of months, we’re going to be focusing on tagging as well as creating categories. Content discovery is a huge focus for us next. StylePage actually looks completely different than how we started. We only had “like” or “don’t like” for our images. Soon we’ll be providing multiple-photo uploads and want to make “sharing out” very simple. Also, we’ll be embedding widgets to introduce people to the community and to showcase who has just signed up.

TWF: Tell us about the market you’ve been trying to target and the response you’ve gotten so far.

RM: Well, we’ve definitely been attracting creative types that are passionate about style. We find that we have such an amazing network of users that have sort of set the bar for these images and inspirations and the response has been amazing. Our analytics show that a large percent of our users spend a significant amount of time on StylePage every day.

We do have a huge designer market as well.  They range from the well-known, such as Nanette Lapore, to new Japanese designers that are fresh and new to the industry. Our goal is to promote their StylePage whether its through StylePage or Twitter. We’re also going to be giving our business cards to our best users so they can promote their StylePage on their own. The response has been great! We’ve only been around since June of 2011 and are still private but have over 10,000 users. We’re thinking that after our feature in InStyle’s November issue for “Best of the Web”, that’ll really be a kick-off point to StylePage.

TWF: What things inspire you the most, whether in business or in life?

RM: Our team! My entire team inspires me every single day. Everybody in the office, from the developers to the CEO, is on the same level. It really is an unbelievable team. Also, our users!

*****

We chatted with Rachel for a long time, including about how Jonathan Taylor Thomas used to be our childhood crush (which we promise was related to the interview). We knew that this was a lady we wanted to stay in touch with!

Two weeks later, the TWF team Rachel for lunch in NoLiTa at trendy restaurant Café Select. The lunch was fantastic- a cool hybrid of work and gossip, and Rachel Maloney was everything we expected: smart, attractive and very witty. We plan to have a long term webmance with her.

StylePage is a beautiful and inspirational product with a lot of (deserved) buzz. We look forward to watching them mature, and are especially interested to watch them build their business model. Check them out — you’re in for a real eye candy treat. (StylePage.com, Twitter, Rachel’s Twitter.)

Third Wave Fashion founder Liza Kindred, author Cyndi Ramirez, StylePage’s Rachel Maloney, and TWF’s Jessica Surbaugh. NYC, October 2011. 

Top image via StylePage.

This is part of our ‘Startup Seven’ series, in which we ask the founders our favorite startups about what makes them great. Find more of these interviews here!

Third Wave Fashion has been your fashion tech think tank since 2011. We publish the first ever printed fashion tech magazine, Third Wave.  Follow us on Twitter or subscribe to our newsletter to stay on top of the latest in fashion tech + wearables.

 

 

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