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2017 WhichCar Style Awards judges: Emma Vidgen

By Anna Kantilaftas, 23 Jan 2017 Car Style

2017 WhichCar Style Awards judge Emma Vidgen

Real Living editor Emma Vidgen’s own style and flair shines through when she takes to the judging table at the WhichCar Style Awards.

Scrolling through Emma Vidgen’s Instagram account, it’s glaringly obvious she is an aesthete.

Her collection of images let us into her world of lifestyle, where travel, food and her cats make up the foundation of her profile. But as you’d expect from the editor of a fashion-forward Australian interiors magazine like Real Living, all things homes also make up part of her patchwork, just not from your average standpoint.

Idiosyncratic photos of foil streamers, leafy silhouettes, and angular buildings make it clear Emma’s perspective comes from a place of individuality. Exactly what you need when judging the WhichCar Style Awards. It also helps that Emma confesses she’s a closet revhead.

“I really enjoyed getting to play with cars,” she said. “The only thing I was disappointed about was that I didn’t get to drive them!”

Working in publishing for more than a decade, across titles such as Cosmopolitan, Dolly, and Woman’s Day, Emma stepped into the role of Real Living editor last year when Deborah Bibby ended her 11-year term.

After years of working as an entertainment journalist, Emma said the move into homes and lifestyle was a natural progression.

“I’ve always loved interiors, they’ve been a personal interest.

“When the Real Living role came up, it was a dream opportunity. I was such a fan of the magazine and it felt really natural to me.

“Style is all about expressing your individuality and in the context of cars, it’s very closely linked to good design and the synergy between form and functionality.”

“The thing we always consider when looking at homes for the magazine is thinking about how people will live and use the space and that’s the same approach I took with the Style Awards.”

Emma said she took the target market into account when assessing each of the finalists, considering how they’d use the car, where they’d be driving and who else they’d be driving with – not too dissimilar to the way the Real Living team study a well-designed home or beautiful hotel room.

It was this deliberation that sparked Emma’s flame for the Ford Mustang, no surprise given her penchant for vintage clothing.

“I really got a buzz from the Mustang. It spoke to my love of vintage; the way that they managed to reference a really classic design from its past and then update it with modern touches. I thought that was really clever,” she said.

“But I also thought the Audi was incredibly elegant, understated and refined. Everything about that interior cabin was so carefully considered and beautifully executed, but there was nothing flashy about it. It was a class act.”

Meet the 2017 Whichcar Style Award finalists.