Paulien Riemis, also known as the girl behind Polienne, is the most down-to-earth blogger I’ve met so far, with a great sense of style and ambition. On our super quick Starbucks date in Amsterdam, this gorge took her last minutes in the city to chit-chat about life and work. With photography by Kimberley Dhollander.
Her outfits have been featured on Lauren Conrad’s website and her blog won the Zalando’s Blogger Awards in 2014. Speaking of, she doesn’t only persuade you of revamping your wardrobe; she’s writes in-depth and is a major smart kid, currently graduating. Let’s hear how she does the trick and ticks all the boxes.
What are you currently studying / doing in life?
At this moment, I am graduating in English Literature at the University of Antwerp. I pick up modelling jobs every now and then, fill my weekly journal with press trips and blogpost sessions. Apart from that, my dissertation and obligatory social dates are also part of my daily schedule.
In which way is Antwerp an inspirational city for you?
I love Antwerp! It is so small and cosy, yet so much stuff is happening all the time. There are so many nice coffee bars, restaurants and above all the fashion scene is a true gift for every creative.
What city in the world would be your absolute dream spot to work?
Honestly, I would not want to leave Antwerp. The metropolises like London, Paris and New York are truly beautiful, however they are so very busy and hectic. I think Antwerp is so charming for that reason, that it’s so compact and inspiring in one.
Can you describe your style in 5 hashtags?
#Casual #Tomboy #Parisian/Scandinavianinfluenced #Elegant #Playful
Laptop, definitely. Or actually, my phone… first thing I grasp for early morning. I know, it’s not good. Then later on the morning I’ll have my cup of coffee.
How does your morning routine look like?
Mm, to be honest with you, I’m not a morning person at all. I usually wake up with my phone in my hands (think: trying not to drop it on my face while still in bed). Then I do the standard beauty and refreshment routine, have some oatmeal for breakfast and either work for school or the blog. It depends obviously on how the day is planned.
How much time do you spend for your blog every day?
I guess two hours at least. Answering e-mails, shooting outfits, writing articles and replying to comments takes up quite some time every day, but of course: I love it.
Can you give some tips and tricks on how to balance work and play?
Setting priorities is definitely my key to combining it all. I could literally have been in Cannes next week, but I had to say no. This dissertation is the first thing on my mind and it should done and ready before the summer. That’s my main aim. I’ve learned during my modelling career, that work and University are not always a match made in heaven. It’s just not a coincidence that the exams I did in first year, which I did in the weeks of shooting and modelling jobs, were my worst ever.
How do you handle a week full of press trips in combination with a social life / studying for school?
I don’t even know how it simply works out sometimes! I guess it’s mainly the tip I gave above. Just know how to set your priorities. If your goal is graduating, you should make sure that most decisions you make are beneficial for that aim. And as soon as I graduate for instance, the dreaming (and the working) can start all over again.
Is your aspiration to become a fulltime blogger with an office and colleagues?
Actually, no! I really love blogging and it would be amazing to do it forever. I would never be a fulltime fashion blogger fulltime though. The reason why I love it now, is because I can tell my readers what I do the other half of the time. Simply posting outfits and advertorials would not be fun if I hadn’t had any other deeper content. While I’m studying now, I love to talk with my readers about the typical study struggles and busy bee days. How would you position your study life in your daily life? Is it an extra to get a diploma which we all need or is it something you would really like to work with?
I think a diploma is not just a paper you need to own. You are learning so much in both ways of writing and thinking. As I am studying English literature for example I can learn so much to actually incorporate in my own writings for the blog.
What would you choose: a PhD position at a major University or a fashion editor position for a magazine?
Well… in that case I’d pick the fashion editor position, even though I know a PhD position would pay off so much more (also money-wise, haha). At the moment I just have so many dreams and plans, that I wouldn’t look forward to another couple of years of studying. Maybe later, just not for now.
Do you feel like you are enjoying a student life?
Haha, good one! In fact, me and my girl pal from Uni are massively exploring the student life at the moment. We never really did, but now realising the last weeks are ahead of us, we do go out to drink tequila shots every once in a while, or check-out the typical student parties. It’s fun for a few weeks, haha. Could not imagine myself doing this for years though.
How would you decorate your dream house?
Ooh, this conversation could go on forever now!
However, as Paulien was in a rush to catch the train back to Antwerp, we’ve decided to show you a link to all her articles related to interior. Click here for your next best interior crush.
Do you prefer working from home or going on location?
I love working in nice coffee bars! Also the library can be my best friend or home away from home during exam times. Home is calm, but working at a coffee bar for instance gives you such an incredible inspiration drive: love it!
What is your next big dream on the bucket list?
Graduating! Cum laude would be great, hehe.
Let’s list your favourites!
Emoji: The grinning face with smiling eyes!
Instagram filter: My favourite is actually a VSCO filter: HB2
Breakfast: Oatmeal with nuts, coconut flakes and raspberries
Restaurant: Le John in Antwerp
Work-out exercise: Medicine ball squats
Song that makes you happy: Balthazar – I Looked For You