Zalando Collection: The Blogger Apartment

My first introduction to German etailer Zalando came via Uslu Airlines make-up. Trying to find an online stockist for some nail polish a year ago led me to this multi-brand site that also sells a mind-boggling array of international fashion labels. Now, alongside the likes of Equipment, Filippa K, Moschino and Sonia by Sonia Rykiel, it also boasts its own in-house line, Zalando Collection. To celebrate the launch of the second collection I was flown to Berlin to co-host an event with Amlul and Lesmads. Cue a two-night stay at Soho House Berlin (amazing in every way) and a day at the specially-created Zalando Apartment.

Sixteen bloggers from Germany, as well as France, Poland, Switzerland and Denmark arrived en masse to the rather fabulously decked out Apartment, for a leisurely brunch followed by full-on hair, make-up, self-styling and a very slick pro photo shoot operation – complete with instant retoucher and speed-printer. Plus in-between, a bit of gossiping, some cocktail guzzling, masses of Instagramming and even the odd photo-shoot-within-a-photo-shoot. I didn’t realize Germany had such a passionate blogging community but these young women are amazingly dedicated and boy do they multi-task. True digital hyphenates, they’re super-skilled writers, photographers, stylists and networkers, on all the social media platforms and easily managing multiple digital conversations throughout the day. My basic Lumix and BlackBerry suddenly felt a bit inadequate.

Designer Clarissa Labin made a brief appearance to give us an overview of the collection; a mix of masculine minimalism and softer, sweeter pieces to mash up at will. As the photos show, the collection lends itself to individual interpretation. My favourite pieces were the tomboy coats (no surprises there), graphic knits and banana-heeled ankle boots but I’m afraid I was a reluctant model. I’m strictly a behind the scenes kind of girl, much happier straightening other people’s hemlines or watching how they put their own stamp on an outfit…

The hilarious Gala Gonzalez and lovely Leni

Gorgeous Trine from Denmark. Hmmm, something tells me you’ve done this before…

Sarah and Nike (I think it’s pronounced ‘Nicky’) – loooved Nike’s laid-back skate-kid style

I believe this is what they call ‘controlled chaos’…

Jessy Mercedes came from Poland

*Adopts P’trique voice*: OBSESSED with Anjelica‘s impossibly shiny bob. Anjelica also introduced me to the delights of the trendy Hugo cocktail: Prosecco, sparkling water, elderflower syrup and mint. Oh dear…

Double animal print? Oh yes I did…

Sweet Rebekka and beauty blogger Ariane

It was great to meet Katja from LesMads. I get tons of traffic from this site but I haven’t worked out why as it’s all in German…

Instagram crazy

Main portrait photos: Patrick Houi
Behind the scenes photos: Sarah Ahrens
Video: Chris Leete
All other photos: Disneyrollergirl