by Sophie Moeller
WHEN you see Lismore icons Arna and Vanessa Rogers in the community dressed in their customary creative and outlandish outfits they appear every bit the identical twins they are.
What you may not realise is: it isn't really the case. And that, they say, could be the key to their success. Opposites not only attract but complement too.
Vanessa will tell you she is the practical one who sets their itineraries, takes the calls and, when it comes to their music, comes up with the melodies.
Arna is the more technical one, she says. She's also the creative one and "that goes for the lyrics too”.
They don't read each others' minds, says Vanessa, but they share the same opinion. They don't need approval or permission from elsewhere because they've got each other. "Your opinion is the most important to me,” she says to Arna.
"That is what gives us the extra boost of bravery,” says Vanessa. It is what has given them confidence to pull off "the look” that now has them noticed by some of the biggest names in entertainment.
Last week was big for the pair when it was announced they had signed a recording deal with Universal Music Australia with the release of their first song by the label: Love Me Tender.
The twins have also just come back from Sydney, where they have been starring in their first feature film: The School, a horror movie written and directed by Storm Ashwood to be released internationally.
It was also announced the duo would be touring with Australian award-winning indie pop band, Sheppard a the end of the month..
Arna and Vanessa, now 22, have long been mixing their two loves of fashion and music on social media with 392,000 followers on Facebook, more than 72,000 on Instagram, and more than 90,000 subscribers to their YouTube channel.
They are more excited than ever about their move into the big time.
"We feel really motivated and inspired to continue working really hard and take our career to new places,” said Vanessa.
Growing up wasn't all that easy at school, however. They were victims of passive bullying, having been alienated socially and made to feel different.
"We decided if we can't blend in we will explore our difference,” says Arna, "we'd go the opposite way and start experimenting with our music and fashion.”
"That pain turned out to be the best thing that could have happened to us,” she said.
The twins say together they are able to keep each other inspired. They are responsible to one another for keeping their dream alive.
The name No Frills Twins speaks of their love of op-shopping and desire to keep away from manufactured brands. They then went on to study fashion and TAFE Wollongbar and then began their You Tube Channel as another avenue for self-expression.
"We don't like being unattainable or idolised,” says Arna.
"Our success has happened organically which has kept us grounded and when we come back home we feel so connected,” says Vanessa.
They are so excited by the opportunities ahead but having to leave Lismore to pursue their dream makes them "scared and sad”.
"Lismore is where we belong.”