In October 2009, Sydney Poulton decided on a whim to start a blog with her new husband, Tyson, as a way to document their life together and keep in touch with their families. But what began as a personal daily musing took off nationally when she began to showcase her own outfits.
“I was inspired by the street style photos from the Sartorialist and just figured, why not?” says Poulton. Though the rest of the posts never veered from discussions of her daily life, readership boomed once the blogosphere picked up on her impeccable style.
Two years later, and with 10,000-plus readers to boot, Poulton has created a part-time job for herself. Outside of her work as a photographer and time with her newborn son, Everett, Poulton puts in around 20 hours a week running her blog, the Daybook. Her most popular feature? The humorous Awkward and Awesome Thursday posts, which chronicle the embarrassing, peculiar, and laugh-out-loud-funny moments of her week. Awkward and Awesomes have become something of a phenomenon among bloggers, with upward of a thousand people replicating them on their own sites.
We recently caught up with the new Washington transplant (she moved to Northern Virginia in August) to find out the fashion must-haves that no Washingtonian should be caught without and how she thinks her blog will evolve in her new city. When Poulton waltzed in, looking effortlessly chic in her gingham button-down, faux-leather pants, red lips, and beachy waves, it was easy to see why readers from all over the world turn to this twentysomething for fashion inspiration.
Describe your style in five words or less.
I’m a chameleon.
Where do you get your fashion inspiration?
Mostly from what I see on the street, and from street style blogs. I’m much more interested in personal style than in runway looks. I’ll see a look and think, How can I recreate that? I’ll dress super-girly one day, preppy the next, and a little bit hipster the next. I’m inspired by an eclectic mix of styles.
If you could have been born in another fashion era, which one would you pick?
The ’60s or ’70s.
What do you think are the major fashion differences between Washington and the Midwest?
In the small town where I went to college, it was rare to see people taking too many risks with fashion. In DC, everywhere you look, you see amazing personal style.
How has motherhood affected your style?
I don’t think it has. I still like what I like, and I’m still getting dressed every day, which helps me feel like my old self. I’m trying to live life as normally as possible, and have the blog reflect that.
What has been the biggest reward of blogging?
Connecting with my readers. I read each and every comment and every e-mail, and they all put a big smile on my face. My readers are wonderful.
What role do you see your blog playing in the DC blogosphere?
As Everett gets older, I hope to be spending more time in DC, exploring museums, trying new restaurants, and shopping. Once that happens, the blog content will reflect my life in a new city. Right now, it’s a little hard to do much exploring with an infant.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
We will hopefully still be in Washington, and I hope to have moved into the city by then. And I guess I will be chasing after a five-year-old . . . in my high heels.
What advice do you have for new bloggers?
Don’t blog in the hopes of making a career out of it. Blog because you love what you are writing and posting pictures about. People can spot passion a mile away, so odds are if you’re passionate in your blogging, you can be successful.
Rachel Bilson and Kate Bosworth.
Favorite DC neighborhood for shopping:
Tennis shoes with skirt suits—yay or nay?
Nay. Big nay. Even tennis shoes with jeans is a nay.
How do you feel about Crocs?
Never, ever, ever . . . ever.
Biggest fashion pet peeve:
When women wear tube or halter tops with T-shirts underneath.
Five winter wardrobe essentials for every Washingtonian:
A bulky knit scarf, thick knit tights, lipstick, a brightly colored coat, and plenty of layer-able tops.
Favorite current trend:
Faux-leather pants. But I like to pair them with something cozy, like a sweater or a casual button-up and either flats or boots. Keeping the top casual tones down the riskiness of the bottoms.
Trend you would like to see disappear forever:
Do you see any current trends that could become classics?
Boyfriend blazers. They really can do wonders for an outfit.
Favorite local blogs:
Rockstar Diaries and What Would a Nerd Wear.
Most practical shoe for Washingtonians:
Boots. Ankle boots for the summer, and over-the-knee or mid-calf boots for winter.
Favorite shoe in your closet:
It’s a tie between my Nine West Mary Jane heels and my red zipper boots from Famous Footwear.
Your go-to wardrobe items:
My black boyfriend blazer, which can make any outfit more sophisticated; and my Urban Outfitters red cigarette pants, which add a fun pop of color when paired with a neutral top.
Gray, baby pink, and cobalt blue.
And now, the lightning round—
Red lips or nude lips?
Sequins during the day?
Flats, stilettos, or wedges?
Prints or solids?
Leggings as pants?
I do it all the time. They are a pregnancy must-have, and so comfortable when you’re around the house all day with a baby.
Are you more likely to splurge on a shoe or a purse?
Definitely a shoe.
Finish this sentence: “I never leave home without my . . . ”
“Lip gloss or lipstick.”