Lookonline.com is the longest-running online fashion publication in the world. We are pioneers of fashion on the Internet. Before there was Vogue.com, Style.com, businessoffashion, Hypermode.com, FashionInternet.com, NYstyle.com, Fashionmall.com, Elle.com, hairnet.com, Hintmag.com, and even Fashion.net ( by a few months), there was us. We have not always garnered the attention, funding, or notoriety of some other of these fashion sites, but those in our industry who have followed Lookonline’s development over the years know we helped pioneer the use of the Internet in providing original editorial content and real-time coverage of important fashion events.
Lookonline is a subscription based fashion industry e-zine (739 current active subscribers) that focuses on reaching those major influencers who work in or write about New York fashion.
Since our official launch was on December 1, 1994, as a BBS dial-up service (does anyone even remember what a BBS service is or was?), the Lookonline has been online “officially” for 26 years. However, we were already a BBS service by subscription in early 1993 (our first subscriber was Harper’s Bazaar), and it was not until December of 1994 did we began a website (hosted under another domain name) in addition to our BBS site. Later in 1995, we discontinued our BBS service and concentrated on developing our website using our own domain name ‘lookonline.com’.
For the record, our official launch was as a party/benefit called “CyberTaste” for the “Charge Against Hunger” program from American Express and Share Our Strength on December 1, 1994. The event was held at Sony Plaza at 550 Madison Avenue in New York. Over 850 members of the public and a small group of the press (WWD did not show up) attended the opening that featured 13 chefs from top New York restaurants serving their signature dishes; a designer auction, wine tasting, desserts, and a live 20 man jazz orchestra. According to officials at Sony, it was one of the largest, if not the largest event ever held to this day at the Sony Plaza’s Atrium. (Rhonda Erb put the whole event together for us). Major sponsors for the event included American Express, Food & Wine Magazine, Tourneau, Romana Sambuca, Coca-Cola Bottling Company of NY, Georgette Klinger, Colorite, and Sony Plaza.
I want to personally thank our many contributors who, over the past 26 years, have helped our site continue to grow. First and foremost my editor-in-chief, Marilyn Kirschner, whose fashion expertise and determination have set the tone for our editorial coverage; and senior editor Bernadine Morris, who lent her name, expertise, and a guiding hand. Also, a special mention goes to Randy Brooke, an exceptional photographer who was always there when we needed him; and Diane Clehane for providing us with first-class coverage of major fashion and entertainment events. Also, special thanks go to the late Susan Sommers for her naming our site, Adrienne Weinfield-Berg and Rhonda Erb, both good friends of lookonline, whose special assignment reporting gave our editorial greater depth; Stacy Lomman, Isabelle Erb, and Muriel Geny-Triffaut for their contributions, and Grace Mirabella the former editor-in-chief of Vogue for hosting our first three ‘Master of Fashion Video Interviews’.
And finally, I want to thank my wife Deborah Brumfield for putting up with me all these years. Without her help and support, lookonline would not exist today.
- Ernest Schmatolla, founder & publisher
- Contact: publisher @ lookonline.com