From London to Palm Beach to Dallas, Maxine Trowbridge’s career has been paved by an innate fashion sense, marketing savvy and connoisseurship of culture. As a London College of Fashion graduate, Max began working in design. Ultimately, she moved to Miami where she got on the media roller coaster and never looked back. Stints at Ocean Drive and DuJour magazines led to her position today as Editor in Chief of PaperCity Dallas. There, she oversees PaperCity’s traditional format (the magazine was founded in 1994 and extended to Dallas in 1998) and the new luxurious digital website that launched six months ago. Style, home design, art, and parties are all topics covered and loved by Maxine and her staff. They feature Dallas tastemakers, trendsetters and philanthropists in print, online and at events such as the first annual Dallas Design Awards, which will be celebrated this coming October.
Do you prefer Max or Maxine?
My business cards read Maxine but most people call me Max for short.
Did you always want to work in the media?
It’s funny, yes and no. I graduated from London College of Fashion and majored in fashion design. When I was trying to decide my career path, it was between that and fashion journalism.
So, did you work in design after school?
Yes, my first job was as a designer for a fashion house called Mansfield Originals, which dressed Princess Diana and Princess Anne. Then, I met my first husband who was from Palm Beach, and we moved to America. When I was in Palm Beach, I worked for handbag designer Lana Marks, who is headquartered there, and oddly happened to be friends with Princess Diana at that time.
When did you transition to media?
In 2001, I moved from Palm Beach to Miami, and got a job at Ocean Drive magazine, about that time Jason Binn (co-founder of Ocean Drive magazine) moved to NY to start Gotham. So, I worked directly with the owner, Jerry Powers, and as Director of Product Licensing and Marketing, I built their first email database/newsletter system, introduced online video content, and managed licensed products such as Ocean Drive Eyewear and launched Ocean Drive CD. Prior to my current role, as I began to close down my business PinkMemo, I contacted Jason Binn regarding his launch of DuJour magazine, and was hired as the Dallas Editor for the first year.
How did you come to live in Dallas?
I met Ben (my husband now) in Miami where he lived at the time, and eventually we moved back to Dallas where he previously lived to start his own management-consulting firm. I left Ocean Drive magazine to take on the marketing and PR for Alsbridge, which was founded by my husband Ben. The bridge part is the bridge in my name. Once his business started doing well, I said to myself, “ok, I’m done, I need to get back to my world.” That’s when I created the blog PinkMemo (in 2007) in Dallas, New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. Sadly, I closed PinkMemo in 2013. Within a couple of months Holly Moore co-owner and editor in chief of PaperCity, reached out to me about my current position as editor in chief of PaperCity Dallas. It’s been a media roller coaster, although I did not plan my career that way.
How has PaperCity evolved?
Well, since I’ve been here, the main change is the revitalized and re-launched website
Aesthetically we are competing on a national level, yet, we are a regional publication.
What are your responsibilities as Dallas Editor In Chief?
I oversee all editorial content, and am responsible for creating all the stories covering Dallas. I work directly with Holly Moore, who is based in our main office in Houston.
PaperCity covers such an array of topics – fashion, art, philanthropy, and travel – how do you approach the editorial direction?
There is always an underlying theme each month. We do a lot of fashion, art and home design. Plus, Dallas is a huge philanthropic city and we always cover the social activities.
All topics that I love!
How does your team approach the website vs. the print edition?
That is a good question as we’ve learned a lot this past 6 months. We do a mix of web exclusive content, and stories that lend themselves from our print format to the web audience. Print is our opportunity to showcase bigger stories and some of the beautiful imagery from the magazine’s edit does not translate as perfectly on the web. So, not every print story ends up online.
You recently launched the Dallas Design Awards. Please tell us about it and what we can expect at the event in October.
Houston has been doing Design Awards for 10 years. Recently, we partnered with Dunhill Partners, the new owner of the Dallas Design District, on bringing the tried and true Houston format to Dallas. There are seventeen categories and entries are being accepted now through mid August. The Awards Gala will take place in October. Holly is always great in bringing in celebrity judges to Houston such as Mary McDonald, Celerie Kemble, and Barbara Westbrook. Hopefully, we can secure really good ones for our first Dallas event.
What are go-to reads daily? Monthly?
I read Women’s Wear Daily, obviously, Business of Fashion, and The Skimm. The New York Times came out with their version awhile back and I read that one, too. For my art kick, I like to get my Paddle8 fix every morning, looking at art pieces that I want to buy and which artists are up for auction. Artsy and 1stDibs fall into that category as well. For news, it’s BBC and CNN. Magazine-wise: I am in love with LOVE Magazine. Love LOVE!
You have great style. Where do you love to shop in Dallas? New York? London? Online?
I do a lot of online shopping and my favorites include Farfetch, Moda Operandi, and Net a Porter. I love Forty Five Ten, Stanley Korshak, Tenoversix and Traffic LA in Dallas. Highland Park Village is a go-to destination for Tom Ford, Alexander McQueen – I am there almost every weekend! In New York, it’s Dover Street Market, Bergdorfs, Barneys and Jeffrey. London is my favorite city to shop since I lived there for 7 years and have a comfort level. Every time I visit London, I always pop into Browns and Selfridges. Plus, I have to go to Liberty. There is no other store like it in the world!