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Clothes Encounters Dish Out Budget-Friendly Fashion Vlogs

Jennifer Im and Sarah Chu from Clothes Encounters are part of the growing fashion vlog (video blog) trend, which is pretty much the future of fashion blogs. If you haven’t heard of them already, the duo constructs cost-efficient, head-to-toe outfits with current fashion pieces in their videos, providing a platform for young women to feel confident and fashionable. After experiencing the success of their Youtube channel together this past year, Im is moving away from her Los Angeles home to a University in the fall, which means that Clothes Encounters will carry over to her in the future.

Photo credit: David Michael Cortes
(L to R: Jennifer Im & Sarah Chu)
Before Clothes Encounters, Im always wanted to start a fashion blog, but felt the need to exhibit her style and personality differently. Instead of signing up for BlogSpot, where she would post several photos of her ensemble and type up a 2-paragraph, “What I wore and did today” schpeel, she and Chu decided to open their Macbook and record their first fashion vlog, “Summer Fashion Haul 2010,” one day.

“I didn’t wanna do it by myself. I thought my style was very monotone, and I wanted Sarah [Chu] to add a splash of quirkiness and whimiscal-ness,” said Im. “So I asked her to do it so she was like, ‘Yeah I’m down.’ It was kind of an overnight thing.”

They quickly developed a fan base since that video, which was uploaded July of 2010. With 38,000+ subscribers and over 2 million “total upload views,” they are obviously doing something right.

Photo credit: David Michael Cortes
The duo meets up once a week to film 2-3 episodes. Im writes the scripts, Chu edits the scripts, and they construct the outfits together. They also make DIY videos, where they teach their viewers how to make accessories such as earrings and headwraps, and style profile videos, where they interview their fashion-conscious friends.

“Basically, I make the skeleton and Sarah adds the cool meat and muscles,” said Im.

They typically film their speaking portions inside on a couch, and then move outside to film their ensembles. Im claims that they don’t consider this process as work, but rather, a time to hang out because of their busy lives. Since the outfit bits are dubbed with music in the final video, they use that filming time to joke around and catch up.


Of course, the girls have normal lives outside of Clothes Encounters. Chu enjoys reading, writing, and spending time with her boyfriend and family. Im likes to travel, shop, and go to shows. Both of them have jobs. In fact, there are fans that somehow discovered where Chu works and visit her from time to time.

Photo credit: David Michael Cortes
Im’s most memorable fan encounter was at Make Music Pasadena, an annual indie music festival held in Old Pasadena. Then fan was a young girl who would often ask them questions on Formspring. She was surprised that Im had recognized her.

“We try to put faces to the people that write the comments and stuff,” said Im. “She made a huge Tumblr post of our encounter and that was really cute and sweet.”

Along with the positive online feedback they receive, there are some bizarre ones that come along, too. Earlier this year, a man sent them a message requesting a 30-second video of their feet. Shortly after, one of their videos was featured on 4chan, a forum that is infamous for raiding websites. The online cult spammed their Youtube and Formspring accounts with disturbing questions and comments, which caused the girls to make comments “approval only” on their channel.
Check them out at Youtube.com/clothesencounters.

Photo credit: David Michael Cortes



About the Author

Mory Men is currently studying Literary Journalism and Digital Arts at the University of California, Irvine. She produced the Pacific Gateway Workforce Investment Network’s “Changing Lives” series and blogged for UCI’s Fashion Interest Group. Aside from writing and website designing,she enjoys going to concerts, shopping, and reading fashion blogs.

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