She’s a big deal.
Tiffany & Co, Louis Vuitton and Dior Beauty think so. They’ve collaborated with 21-year-old actress, model and scriptwriter Sarah Ellen and flown her around the world to attend glamorous parties, launches and educate her extensively on their brands.
In June this year, Ellen travelled to Antwerp then Mauritius, following every step of the journey of a Tiffany & Co diamond. Sounds like a dream, huh? Well, Ellen says it was. “It was a trip to remember, that’s for sure. My journey began from the moment a Tiffany & Co diamond is dug out of the ground to when it hits a Tiffany & Co boutique. I learned that each diamond is responsibly traced and sustainably crafted. I got to visit the workshops that the diamonds are cut and polished in and meet the craftsmen, which was a really unique experience.” Ellen adds, “We even got to polish a diamond of our own! I now have a newfound appreciate and love for diamonds.”
With a combined Instagram and Facebook following of 1.7 million, her fans agree that she’s one to watch, regularly devouring the influencer’s global travels, beauty tips and her eclectic approach to fashion (see exhibits A, B and C). “I view my ‘online’ styling as a form of art and not necessarily outfits I would wear all the time,” she explains. Day to day is all about comfort, which often translates to jeans with a vintage top picked up from the weekend markets.
There won’t be much time for weekend treasure hunting, not with fashion month coming up in September. The former Neighbours star is a regular at the bi-annual shows, one of her favourite times of the year. “I usually attend the entire month, heading to New York, London, Milan and Paris,” says Ellen. “It means 30 days of outfits, and I’ll often plan for a day outfit and a night outfit – that’s a lot of outfits!”
The self-described creative director has her finger in a lot of different pies, and that’s also just the way she likes it. “Having a job that allows me to do one thing one day and something different the next is what drives me, so I don’t think I’ll ever settle with just one thing,” she says. “I don’t find it difficult to switch from one to another because everything I do interweaves with the other in some way.”
That’s good, because things are only getting busier. A move to New York in 2019 is on the cards, and there’s an upcoming podcast that sees Ellen interviewing people she’s met on her travels, discussing anything and everything from “pop culture and feminism, to random topics, like bitcoin.”
“Every single day I am grateful for the job I have today. It has been an absolute dream and a pleasure to work some of the most talented creatives of my industry. Coming from a small town in the west of Sydney, it feels surreal when I get to travel to work,” she says.
And for budding influencers hoping to replicate a little of that magic dust, Ellen says it all comes down to one thing: work work work.
Treat your business like a business: Stay proactive and think of how you can differentiate yourself from others. Invest time, money and research. I studied fashion business and interned at a magazine, and I think it helped shape my work ethic.
Learn the power of no: I’m not out here trying to be a ‘walking advertisement’ by working with every brand that approaches me. I genuinely have to like a brand if I’m collaborating with them, not only for my own sanity but also out of respect for the people who follow my work.
Pay attention at work: Neighbours was such a fun time for me and I learned so much, not only from the actors on set, but also the directors and production team. Ultimately, I’d love to be involved in a film as a director.
Sure, she might be 21-years young but when you meet Ellen, you quickly realise she’s an old soul; mature beyond her years. Whatever it is she decides to do next, watch this space.