As Editor in Chief at HELLO! magazine, Rosie Nixon has seen her fair share of celebrity ‘at-home’ shoots, so she knows exactly what to expect when we turned the camera onto her for our latest Style Insider. Rosie Nixon has one of those jobs that bubbles up endless questions, mainly George Clooney related of course, but she is not the one to betray secrets apart from to enthuse about the new generation of Royals and the newsstand winner that is Prince George. So with a day job where she is literally documenting history with iconic covers that last for generations to come, it is surprising she managed to find time to write her debut novel, The Stylist. The book, described by Joan Collins as ‘absolutely riveting, and so true!’ is a slice of Devil Wears Prada fashion world meets Bridget Jones’ witty British humour as we follow a wannabe stylist, Amber Green, through the ups and downs of the red carpet. If you work in fashion, you’ll find it oh-so familiar, and if you don’t, prepare for a sneak peek into what it is really like. Rosie will be joining us in the Chelsea boutique on Draycott Avenue on 17th August Passionfruit Bellini with a black raspberry liqueur supplied by Eclipse to celebrate the launch of her new paperback book; details at the end of this blog post. Aside from her hedonistic star filled work life, Rosie is down to earth, totally lovely and a breath of fresh air. Welcome to the world of Rosie Nixon.
DONNA IDA: Where are you from and where did you grow up?
Rosie Nixon: I’m a born and bred Londoner, grew up in North London, now live south of the river (don’t ask my parents about this migration, it’s still a sore point). I’m married and have two young boys under the age of three, we live in Wandsworth with our troublesome cat, Archie.
DONNA IDA: How did you get started in magazine journalism?
Rosie Nixon: Magazines have always been in my blood – from when I used to cut out my favourite song lyrics from Smash Hits and stick them back together creating my own ‘magazine’ when I was about ten. My first job was editing Barbie magazine, where I wrote stories and created puzzles about Barbie and Ken. It may sound funny, but it was actually a fantastic learning curve – I was responsible for all stages of the publishing process from writing, to editing, flatplanning, creating layouts and finally repro and printing. Plus I love a bit of pink. From there I worked at glossy titles including Bliss, New Woman, Red, Glamour and Grazia, ending up at HELLO!, where I will probably stay until I retire, because there is honestly nowhere I would rather work.
DONNA IDA: You’re now Editor-in-Chief of HELLO! Magazine, what is it like to be immersed in the celebrity world?
Rosie Nixon: I’ve just returned from maternity leave and feel so lucky not to have a sinking feeling about returning to work, because I do something I love so much. No week at HELLO! is ever the same – creating a weekly magazine and overseeing our online platforms is a fast-paced lifestyle and I’ll go from discussing the latest Royal news stories, to trying to secure an exclusive wedding, looking at layouts for the latest issue, discussing a web story, to attending a glam event, via strategy meetings for the brand. There is no time to get bored! I am very proud and protective about the fact that HELLO! is an upbeat title - we work closely with the stars we feature and we sell well with good news. There’s enough for people to worry about in life, HELLO! is about escapism and some ‘me time’ as we take you into the lives of the rich and famous.
DONNA IDA: What is your favourite ever cover?
Rosie Nixon: I can’t pick just one! The Royal wedding of William and Kate in 2011 was an iconic HELLO! cover, as are the editions celebrating the births of Prince George and Princess Charlotte – the nation looks to HELLO! to commemorate moments and those covers will go down in history. My favourites are also some of the weddings we have covered; Robbie Williams’s wedding was beautiful and it’s always exciting when we have a huge international story like the wedding of Brad Pitt to Angelina Jolie or George Clooney to Amal Alamuddin. I get so excited when the photos come in and love seeing readers pore over the pages, just as we do when we create the layouts in the office.
DONNA IDA: Are the celebrity weddings as much fun and extravagant as they look?
Rosie Nixon: I never get blasé about covering a wedding, it’s such a special day for the couple and their families and no two are ever the same. I feel a great responsibility to ensure we cover it respectfully, producing photos that are beautiful and will stand the test of time. Although the weddings we attend are generally really busy for staff, I often feel emotional and always wear waterproof mascara. And yes, when the work is done, we have been known to be last on the dancefloor!
DONNA IDA: What inspired you to write your debut novel The Stylist?
Rosie Nixon: I’ve been lucky enough to travel to Los Angeles many times during my career and have covered the major awards ceremonies including the Oscars and BAFTAs. I’ve always been fascinated by the people behind the amazing gowns we see paraded so seemingly effortlessly on the red carpet and thought it would be a fun premise for a novel. There is a showbiz wedding in The Stylist and, of course, I’ve had a lot of experience of those during my role at HELLO! Without a doubt my job has given me a good insight into the glam showbiz world I write about, but I am extremely protective about the stars I have worked with and would never betray their trust, so all my characters are fictional.
DONNA IDA: Your book received rave reviews, for anyone who hasn’t read it, what can they expect?
Rosie Nixon: The Stylist is a fashion-packed, fun-filled romp through red carpet awards season as we follow former London shop assistant Amber Green as she lands what she thinks is her dream job assisting infamous ‘stylist to the stars’ Mona Armstrong. But as the pair jet between LA and London dressing some of the world’s most famous personalities for glittering events, Mona is unravelling faster than a hemline and Amber finds herself in the centre of a confusing love triangle. What is Mona’s secret? Will Amber find love? And what the hell will everyone wear? You’ll have to read The Stylist to find out!
Rosie wears DONNA IDA Mixed Signals Top
DONNA IDA: Which are your favourite jeans from our shoot and why?
Rosie Nixon: I fell in love with the IDA blue denim Margot Culottes and had to get them after the shoot. I have worn them pretty much every day since, so you could say I’m obsessed. I would never have thought the culottes style would flatter someone under 5 foot 7, like me, but they really do.
DONNA IDA: Why do you think jeans are such an iconic item?
Rosie Nixon: You can wear jeans anywhere - there are styles that are smart enough for the boardroom, and a distressed denim is my staple for running around with the kids at weekends. You just can’t go wrong in jeans, and I always feel like myself when I’m wearing them.
DONNA IDA: Who is your denim icon?
Rosie Nixon: Kate Moss, for making the skinny jean a style staple. I know we’re supposed to have moved on, but I’ll never stop wearing skinnies.
DONNA IDA: Where in the world are girls best dressed? What kind of style do you admire?
Rosie Nixon: Wherever I go in the world, I’m always impressed with the fashion you see on London’s streets. We embrace individuality and creativity – and that is worth celebrating. I always try to support home grown talent and British-made fashion because it’s such an important industry.
DONNA IDA: Describe your style highs and lows?
Rosie Nixon: My Alberta Ferretti wedding dress was probably my favourite ever thing to wear – it wasn’t your typical wedding gown, but it had sparkle and a boho feel. I floated the whole day.
Lows were some best-forgotten dalliances with tie-dye, large plastic clip-on earrings and Grolsch bottle tops on shoes as a teenager (Bros have a lot of answer for).
DONNA IDA: What’s your favourite restaurant?
Rosie Nixon: Trinity in Clapham. I am a huge fan of the chef Adam Byatt’s creations – he makes proper English fare that looks beautiful and tastes out of this world – and the ambience is wonderful. I went there for my birthday last month and didn’t want the meal to end.
DONNA IDA: Where’s your ultimate holiday destination?
Rosie Nixon: I’m a sucker for LA because I have great friends there and I love destinations where I can get my city and beach fix in one place. The Californian coastline has special memories and I can’t wait to introduce it to my youngest, soon.
DONNA IDA: What advice would you give to a younger you?
Rosie Nixon: Don’t worry, no-one’s paying that much attention.
DONNA IDA: What’s next?
Rosie Nixon: Getting my feet back under the desk at work and juggling being a mum, seeing HELLO! go from strength-to-strength as the brand grows, the paperback launch of The Stylist on 11th August and the sequel – The Stylist Takes Manhattan – which will be on sale next June.
To join us for the launch of Rosie Nixon's paperback version of The Stylist at 6pm-8pm with Passionfruit Bellini cocktails courtesy of Eclipse Bars on 17th August at DONNA IDA in Chelsea please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org