Former Barneys Fashion Director Amanda Brooks Begins "Creative Sabbatical" By Returning to Her Beloved Blog

Former Barneys Fashion Director Amanda Brooks Begins "Creative Sabbatical" By Returning to Her Beloved Blog
Amanda Brooks
(Photo by Joe Schildhorn © BFA)

Three days after Amanda Brooks started her new job as fashion director at Barneys New York, she took to her blog, I Love Your Style — a spin-off of the fashion guide she published in 2009 — to express some well-deserved excitement. “It is my DREAM JOB!” she wrote on the site back in February 2011.

But just over a year later, Brooks decided to leave the position and move to England, with little public explanation.

Apart from her relative lack of retail experience, the Barneys job seemed like a logical extension of Brooks’ life in fashion. This New York Observer profile from 2003 sums up her first 29 years pretty well. Her parents met through their mutual friend Lilly Pulitzer. At Brown, Brooks roomed with Carolina Herrera’s daughter and dated Diane von Furstenberg’s son. An internship with Patrick Demarchelier led to a friendship with Vogue’s Plum Sykes, who recommended that Brooks revamp Frédéric Fekkai’s line of accessories. Next, she became a muse to Tuleh, then took over the brand as creative director, all while writing a column for the nascent Men’s Vogue and freelancing elsewhere. She then became director of fashion at William Morris Endeavor, but at the time of her hiring at Barneys held none of these positions. Some pointed to her blog as a major qualification.

And now, after letting I Love Your Style gather dust during her reign at the luxury New York retailer, she’s back. It’s the first activity since she announced her departure. In her initial post on Monday, Brooks refers to this new stage in her career as a “Creative Sabbatical.”

“First on my agenda? To get my blog and up and running again,” she wrote. “I also have ambitious writing plans for the next year, and you all will be the first to know about them as they unfold.”

Then, she posted a few pictures of her Oxfordshire farmhouse, where she will move in June with her husband, the artist Christopher Brooks, and their two kids.

She’s not kidding about getting her post count back up. On Tuesday, she checked out the Selby’s tour of the home of Oscar de la Renta’s executive-at-large, Boaz Mazor. This inspired her to riff on collaborations between neo-expressionist painters and suggest some potential designer mash-ups. A Rick Owens-Lanvin pairing sounds like it could work.

And then on Wednesday, she blogged about Junya Watanabe’s trench coats — which are, sadly, weather-appropriate in New York.

There’s no word on what Brooks will actually be doing (aside from blogging) on the other side of the pond, but she will be in the same country as some of her husband’s more notorious relatives: his brother, Charlie Brooks, is married to the British journalist Rebekah Brooks, who was arrested in the News Corp. phone hacking scandal. The Cut thinks that could be the reason for Amanda’s departure, and it’s not a bad guess.

But for now, all we know is that she’ll soon be in the English countryside, even as she blogs about New York. Today’s post hints at her immersion into her new home in the U.K.: she compares American actress Leelee Sobieski’s new look to that of Princess Diana.