Meet the Instagirl of the Moment — Andrea Chong | SENATUS

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Meet the Instagirl of the Moment — Andrea Chong

2 September 2014

Text by Kien M. Lee | Photos by Amanda Wong | Makeup by Parichat Naidu

From helming a successful fashion webisode-series That F Word on www.clicknetwork.tv to emceeing an exclusive showcase for Victoria Beckham at Marina Bay Sands, Andrea Chong manages to exude a confidence beyond her years and portray that visage of glamour that has won fans over from Singapore and around the region.

Having only started her Instagram account last year, this pixie-faced blogger has taken over the visual-based social network by storm, amassing close to 80,000 followers with her infectious personality and of course, excellent photos to boot. And she’s done all this while still in the process of completing her degree at the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore.

We speak to the Andrea and find out about how beneath that upbeat and cheerful disposition lies a fiercely ambitious woman driven towards improving her craft.


So we met when you emceed the Victoria Beckham showcase but you were already "famous" before then, weren't you. How and when did you get started in all this instagramming and blogging?
Very recently! 2 years ago, I didn't have a blog, or Instagram, or Twitter. There were 2 motivations for setting up my blog — the first one was... I had been a "blogshop model" for one or two years and I’ve always been played the image of this sweet, 'kawaii' girl and I didn’t like that. I wanted to tell them that I could do more edgy, rocker-clothing as well. I found that setting up a blog was a way for me to establish my own identity. I wanted to debunk any stereotypes others had of me.

The second motivation was my clicknetwork show, 'That F Word' and the producers wanted me to have my own platform to reach out to my audience.

What do you like to do the most? Modeling? Hosting a show? Blogging?
I enjoy every part of what I do. If I had to choose, I'd do more blogging and Instagramming — I do that more as a full-time thing now. Whereas for my web series, we shoot once every 2 or 3 weeks.

I love what I do. Who wouldn’t?

I see you've also shared your experience with your followers?
Yes Amanda (incidentally, SENATUS photographer in this feature) and I ran the I Want A Fashion Blog workshop earlier in May this year! We normally receive plenty of queries about how we do what we do, so we decided to organise a very interactive and engaging workshop on fashion photography and fashion blogging!

The event was held at *SCAPE to an audience of 200, and during the course of the workshop we shared tips and gave advice on taking OOTD-worthy photographs, and how to sustain a strong blog and social media following. We covered everything from photography, blogging, social media marketing to fashion trends.

What would you say you’ve learnt in the past 6 months since then that you would add as insights for those who had attended your workshop?
It can get technical, from becoming more familiarised with Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), tagging, to search terms.

On a more PR side, I would say, keep things very professional. I don’t reveal a lot of my personal life and I like to keep it that way — that's personally what I think bloggers should be like, more professional in how they deal with others, and their own image.

So what’s different from the public Andrea and the private Andrea?
What you see is what you get with me. But I do have bad days — which I don’t show on Instagram.

I don't believe in lashing out online, expressing my "melancholia" online. It's not that I'm trying to maintain a facade, I just believe that if you have a problem, deal with it yourself.

How do you stay in shape? Do you eat well or exercise a lot?
I used to be very athletic when I was young, from secondary school to junior college. I did everything. I was on the golf team, did swimming, tennis, life-saving, scuba diving. 

So that’s something your audience doesn’t know about! What else?
I have a Taekwondo black belt. Am a certified scuba-diver and life-saver.

I don’t have as much time to exercise now, as I did when I was younger. 

How did you start on this whole fitness regimen when you were young?
My mom put my brother and I on all of this. She tried to give me all the opportunities she didn’t have when she was younger. She made sure that whatever we did, we achieved something out of it — Black belt with Taekwondo. And with golf, we had to get our handicap and participate in competitions.

I got them (black belt and handicap) both when I was 12.

Where do you see yourself going forward?
I look to Instagrammers like Kristina Bazan, Nicole Warne, and Jessica Stein as my role models, of who I want to be, of the direction I want to go towards — blogging about lifestyle and travel, infused with fashion.

And in fact you started the game late.
Yes I'm a late bloomer!

I feel like there’s so much to catch up on. I’m still constantly trying to improve myself. I want to improve the dreachong blog and my Instagram, and grow them into something bigger.

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