By: Amal Farhan
Are you one of those people who lazily crumple-up on your sofa when it’s too tough to
get things done? Or are you able to wisely find a shortcut and take one innovative step that does the entire job?
Bill Gates once said, “I choose a lazy person to do a hard-job because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it”. And this may be why this woman who regards herself as an impatient person, chose to do the hard job of introducing the first fashion search engine – TAGWALK.
“As an assistant, I spent hours searching for looks, I thought that there should be an easier way, a different way.” Unlike most of us, she didn’t just leave her thoughts hanging. She made it happen. Alexandra Van Houtte, a woman who is a little impatient found an easy way for fashion hunters to find every designer and look presented on Fashion Week. How did those working in the fashion industry manage searching and browsing for all new trends out there without a search engine? Imagine if we didn’t have Google as a search engine; that’s simply how it ‘was’ for the fashionistas till that April of 2016.
“I’d been a styling assistant for five years at Numero, Grazia, Glamour, Elle, and for Patti Wilson, and had become a stylist in my own right when I had my ‘aha’ moment. During those years, my main job was to look at the clothes, call them in, make mood boards, shoot, and return them. I’m an impatient person, and I’d become frustrated with the fact that nowadays everything else seemed to go a lot faster. Want food? Delivery! Want a car? Uber! Why was I wasting my time trying to remember where I’d seen a look? In fashion there are new trends and young designers popping up constantly, and I felt they were passing me by. I didn’t even have time to look at them. When the idea of TagWalk first struck me, I asked my friends who worked in fashion around the world if they were finding all of this as annoying as I was. I got my answer pretty quickly.” This made her emerge as a ‘saviour’ with Paris based start-up, TagWalk, the first fashion show and accessory keyword searcher for the New York, Milan, London and Paris shows.
How she made it happen
Van Houtte quit her job at Grazia in May 2015. Since then she started working on her major project. It took almost 6 months of preparation and she made it all alone. Now she has a strong team supporting her.