Felicia Pennant, Season
We’re kicking off the work week with Felicia Pennant, editor-in-chief of female footy mag Season. Issue one was received with a cheer and it looks as if issue two is set to win another victory. We catch up with Felicia as the new issue is published
How was your weekend?
Busy! Did my hair which is a two day job – a Friday night in taking out my braids and washing my hair and then it was bright and early at my hairdressers on Saturday for a six hour stint in the chair. Then separate catch-ups with two of my favourite people: Saturday night drinks and a Sunday roast. In between Season stuff of course - sorting orders, invoices and making arrangements for our issue two party on 23 November at Dream Bags Jaguar Shoes in London.
Tell us about your journey to work.
Season zine is my side project - a labour of love – and my journey to my full time fashion job is thankfully short: 20 mins door to door on a great day without delays. I live beside Clapham Junction station so I’ve perfected my walk/sprint to platforms 16/1 to catch the train just in time. As it can be so squashed, I don’t read newspapers/ magazines on there but my horoscope via my phone instead. I listen to talkSPORT at work so no headphones before then and I go past Stamford Bridge - the home of my team Chelsea FC - every day which makes the route slightly better.
Describe the state of your desk.
I don’t have one! I actually work on the big brown sofa in my living room with my iPad nearby playing the radio – ideally a match – wrapped in the Chelsea FC blanket my Dad got me one Christmas. I have magazines and books nearby for reference and I’m a list maker so I have one handwritten and one on my phone to follow every day. Season zine one and two are boxed nearby with envelopes so I can pack orders to send out asap.
Which magazine do you first remember?
Gosh Mizz I think it was called. One of those now defunct teen magazines I read when I was about 12 that had boy advice and ‘fashion’ tips. I was more of a bookworm then and didn’t discover British Vogue and Elle until a year later when I asked my Dad to send me them in a care package at boarding school. He duly obliged and I was hooked to fashion.
Which magazine matters to you the most today?
Apart from my own… probably a weekly like ES Magazine, Stylist or Sport as they share what is currently or becoming mainstream. They can react to and explore issues in print more immediately than a monthly and in a more considered way than online. That being said, The Gentlewoman has been an inspiration and is my favourite overall. Meaningful content, a great aesthetic and it manages to both tap into and transcends pop culture expertly.
Which female football player matters to you the most today?
Eni Aluko. She’s Nigerian like me (I’m half), a qualified sports and entertainment lawyer with her own sports career consultancy on the side, who continues to kill it for Chelsea Ladies and England. She’s also a rare female presence on Match of the Day Extra which I watch religiously. I listen to and read a lot of football analysis and she adds a fresh point of view.
The first issue of Season was extremely well received and popular. Did you expect it?
Absolutely not. When you’re trying to do something different, there’s always a chance that people won’t get it or like it so the positive response has been incredible and mind-blowing. The press mentions, the social media shoutouts and we’ve quadruped our still small print run. Personal highlights include our issue one launch exhibition and party at KK Outlet and appearing on Norman B’s Life Elsewhere radio show in Florida. It’s very exciting to reach new audiences via new stockists like Colette and American Apparel. We’ve had website orders from as far flung as New Zealand and Tokyo.
Have you developed with the second issue or did you stick with what worked?
We’ve tried to do a bit of both. My intention is to make each issue bigger and better and I think you can see the progression most obviously in the great design job Natalie Doto did. We have a foil logo, more colour and more pages. Content is largely the same: insightful interviews, candid essays, inspirational shoots and thoughtful features connected to the Paris theme with a sense of humour. This was a more ambitious undertaking because I stayed in the city for a week during Euro 2016 to gather and shoot the majority of the issue. We have one more editorial, some amazing new writers and contributors on board- shout out to photographer Fee-Gloria Groenemeyer who shot most of the issue- so we’re getting there.
Pick a spread from the new issue and tell us what it says about your magazine.
One thing that came up when making issue two was how little I knew about French football beyond PSG’s dominance. I had never heard of Red Star FC before I spoke to female fans in Paris and when I found out about Pauline Gamerre- their General Director and the only women to hold the post in French football – I was determined to feature her. The spread represents our dedication to enlightening and empowering our audience as much as we can.
What are you finding most frustrating about your work this week?
Not being able to follow up Season emails straight away. I can only check emails before work, in my lunch hour and after work at six which can cause timing issues. Or people not replying at all so I have to ring them to follow up.
What’s going to be the highlight of this week for you?
I’m going to the Black and British 1Xtra talk with my sister which I’m really excited about. It will be interesting to see what points are raised and whether any of them are relevant to Season.
What will you be doing after this chat?
Getting straight back into issue two party mode. We’ll be screening Arsenal’s Champions League tie against Paris Saint-Germain from 7:30pm, which aligns nicely with our Paris issue theme. Afterwards there will be DJ sets from two of the hottest female DJs around K2RAH and DJ Gin until 1am. Thanks so much to Zlatan Ibrahimović Perfumes and Lack of Guidance for contributing to the event and we hope everyone can make it. Please RSVP: firstname.lastname@example.org