If you’ve been crushing hard on blogger, photographer, and illustrator Garance Doré for nearly a decade, today's the day you’ve been waiting for: The frank, funny, and exceedingly charming writer just released her debut book. The coffee-table-worthy read, entitled Love Style Life, was five years in the making. “I was busy, of course, but I also wanted to do something meaningful,” Doré says. “I didn’t want it to just be a collection of things that had been on the blog. I wanted it to be something that could stand on its own. It took me a while to come up with the concept for the book — very soon after my blog started gaining traction and success, people started asking if I had publishers calling me.” The permanence of working on a book versus a blog proved to be a learning curve for Doré. “Once you finish a book, you can’t change or edit anything; that was the most stressful part,” Doré says. As for the title, Doré had that trifecta of words displayed near her desk. She decided to buy the URL “for some reason,” she says, and the name just stuck. As for the tone, Doré went beyond a sartorial how-to; expect colloquial and candid tales about all sorts of stuff. “It’s not just a style guide!" she asserts. "It contains stories from my life. It’s kind of like talking with a friend who tells you, ‘I’ve been through that, and here’s what I’ve learned.’ But I’m not telling anyone how to live. I wanted to stay away from that.”
Since we’re quite familiar with (and adore) Doré’s sense of style and her unfailingly chic lifestyle, we sought out some frank talk about the first word in that title: love. “I’m terrible at love," she says. "I’m very 100%; I don’t plan or calculate things. I talk about that in my book as well — it’s okay to be imperfect, it’s okay to make mistakes, it’s okay to fall in and out of love, it’s okay if you behave badly,” Doré adds. “You never know how long a love story will last…but you have to have some trust,” she says of the importance of living and loving to the fullest. “We’re still friends, absolutely; we were friends before,” Doré says of her ex-boyfriend (and ex-business partner), Scott Schuman. “I’m mostly friends with all of my exes. I’m that type of girl. I believe in forgiveness.” When you’re an ultra-successful blogger and photographer with 400,000 Instagram followers, ushering a new beau into the picture is kind of a big deal (especially when your ex was your romantic and business partner). But Doré’s current boyfriend, singer Chris Norton, was initially on her radar as a potential blog post subject, not a romantic interest. “I was with someone [Scott Schuman] in fashion before," she explains, "and [Norton] had this very interesting, very stylish type of life that I’d never crossed paths with — what is the life of a jazz musician like?” Norton ended up being much more than an interesting blog topic. In addition to meeting Doré’s loved ones, Norton had to "meet" the blogger’s followers, too. “I was spending a ton of time with Chris, and he started appearing on my Instagram, so people started asking, ‘Hey, who’s that guy?’" Doré explains. "Slowly, you install [a new significant other] in your feed, your life, everything. It’s interesting.” Doré says. “I’m very inspired by Chris’ life, his universe, and his music, so I've been talking about him more and more.”
For someone who’s experienced relationship endings and beginnings in the very public, comment-able social media arena, Doré knows a thing or two about navigating matters of the heart while a (sizable!) audience watches. “There is a way to share your life with your readers on social media or on your blog without saying too much. Riding that fine line is an art… You have to find your level of comfort and go with it. Whatever people say, that’s their point of view,” Doré says, pointing to the Kardashians as “very comfortable” with excessive relationship sharing. At the other end of the discretion spectrum, Doré adds, “there are people like Phoebe Philo, who doesn’t want to be on Instagram, and I totally respect both [Philo and the Kardashians]; they’re just different approaches.” Doré is “right in the middle” of the Kardashians and the Celine designer when it comes to the level of social media divulging she’s comfortable with. “Today, we all have to have a super-thick skin; as soon as you’re on social media, you’re going to get some very weird comments…but you can’t make everyone happy. You have to just roll with the positive comments.” When a breakup or other potentially traumatizing event goes down and having a thick skin isn’t enough (or perhaps isn’t possible, given the circumstances), there’s always the option of going cold-turkey, temporarily. “Take three or four days off, and usually, when you come back, everything is quiet,” Doré tells us. “We tend to forget that we always have the option of shutting down. Things get blown out of proportion on the internet." Doré adds that "our devices do have 'off' buttons!” Wise words indeed.