Sisters are often found swiping each others clothes or bickering over fashion choices, but not Louth-born siblings Ruth and Jane Flanagan.
The duo run the popular blog, Style Ignite, alongside their busy careers in the fashion industry. What makes this even more impressive, is that the pair live in different cities. All things considered, their impressive Instagram feed and magazine editorial-standard blog is consistently harmonious and cohesive.
Ruth (24) is enjoying what London has to offer, while Jane (28) is living in Dublin. They explain that their ability to ensure a quality aesthetic is down to their respective years studying design in college. With an eye for curating both imagery and fashion choices, their decision on Valentine’s Day 2016 to start a blog (“A true love for fashion,” they joked) seemed like a no-brainer.
“I studied Print Textiles Design in NCAD, and Ruth studied Visual Merchandising in D.I.T,” Jane told IrishTatler.com.
“We have developed our own styles over those years. From the beginning we knew we wanted a high-end feel to our blog. It takes a bit of time to establish your own aesthetic but eventually it falls into place,” she added.
The fact that Style Ignite is ran by two personalities seems rather unusual in the Irish blogging industry - and Ruth assured us that it only works because she is completely in alignment with her big sister.
This was taken today before I practically skipped home to get my facial done with @dermoiapp🐱Did you guys know that this is the worlds first & only mobile/at home service for advanced facial treatments!! Saves you trecking to the Salon!! They also only use natural products which we are big fans of. This was the perfect treat for me as I’m on Roaccutane and need to keep my skin hydrated. I absolutely loved it and I think you guys will too so use code ‘Ruth’ to get 15% off on your first facial . . . . #facialtreatment #beautytime #skin #skincare #naturalproducts #ootdfash #londonblogger #ootdstyle #streetstylefashion #wiwtd #ootds #looktoday
“We are both very passionate about the same things in life and this is down to sharing the same lifestyle as each other,” she said. “We had the same experiences and saw the same places growing up and so this is why our vision is so cohesive.”
“We are both very creative, love photography, and fashion so it just all came together to form Style Ignite,” Jane agreed.
As for simple housekeeping matters - like who posts to Instagram and when - would be enough to cause a rift among even the most laid-back family members, but these sisters seem to have the formula down-pat.
“At first we were a bit worried about how we were going to work efficiently on Style Ignite as we were living in two completely different countries,” Jane admits. “Luckily, it has really worked out for the best. We are now more attractive to brands as we are hitting both the Irish and UK markets. Now that we are living apart, we get to represent Style Ignite at events and meetings in both Dublin and London,” she said.
Ruth added that operating in this way has improved both of their work ethics and organisation skills.
“Jane now works with a fantastic photographer in Dublin named Remi (@all_about_portraits) and a student from the London College of Fashion takes my pictures weekly. I then retouch both of our photos on my laptop with Adobe Lightroom. We accumulate our photos and use an app called Planoly to see what picture look best next on our feed,” she revealed.
In classic sibling fashion, they then discuss via Whatsapp or over the phone, and “never post without each other’s approval”. As for emails, they will each answer different queries depending on whether they are Dublin/London based, and have agreed for now that posting to Instagram once a day in the evening is their sweet spot.
Admin work aside, the sisters both agree that managing a hobby like this can be a challenge alongside their work and social lives.
“Plan your outfits and shoot locations a week in advance and accumulate a couple of photos for the week ahead so you never feel under pressure to post something you are not completely happy with. This is our golden rule,” Ruth advised. “Organisation is the key factor to a successful blog.”
The Flanagans also believe that their blog gives followers a double-whammy of inspiration, as it fuses both of their style sensibilities.
“We both love basket bags, flatform sandals, high waist jeans and layering gold pendants,” Jane nodded. However don’t expect to catch Ruth in some of Jane’s flowing floral dresses.
“I think they look so nice on her however sometimes I find them a bit too feminine for me. You would rarely see me wearing a print,” she said firmly.
Now that we’ve cleared up regular fashion queries, there remains one burning question: the hair! Fielding through the comments on their Instagram page, it seems like how to achieve their Rapunzel-worthy locks is one of their most popular queries.
“Our grandmother had amazing hair so luckily we inherited her good genes. Our hair is both naturally straight so we don’t have to depend on straighteners and curlers every day which means less damage,” Ruth said - crushing our desire for a quick and easy tip to secure Princess hair of our own.
"Jane uses the Kérastase Nutritive Bail Magistral Shampoo and I use Aveda shampoo and go between their products and Kiehl’s Fruit Oil Deeply Reparative Hair Pack,” she shared.
Alas, if we can’t mimic their envy-inducing hairstyles, at least we can swipe up for more outfits in the meantime.