Saturday, September 24, 2011

A Bone to Pick

Despite dealing with words for my job, I don't often think much of word-heavy blog posts of the Fashion variety. Not to say they're not valuable -- I just came here for the pictures.

Still, something has been bothering me about the Fashion blog world, and I feel the need to express it, despite it perhaps being unpopular: I don't like where blogging is going, or perhaps even where it has gone.

This Fashion Week, I've been reading a lot of blogs that make mention of the fact that they were, if not mistreated, rudely handled at the shows. Not being allowed to charge their phones, rows way out in the boonies, a general disdain. That's unacceptable, it really is. I would suggest that perhaps this comes from a view of bloggers, and blogging, as merely a trend, and one that is waning. Meanwhile, the institutional members of fashion -- the editors, the press, the ones with "real jobs" -- perhaps resent bloggers for their easy fame, while they do all the real work, and perceive them as not working hard enough and as amateur. This, of course, is just a guess. Moreover, if they do feel that way, they are of course wrong. Bloggers work incredibly hard, and a lot of times have jobs within the fashion industry itself.

But, let me just say: I like my bloggers amateur, and I've been long suspicious of and disappointed in what I see as the gradual institutionalization of the blogosphere. Fashion Week invitations left right and center, post after post of New York, London, Milan, and after party upon after party. Clothes (sometimes designer) in posts that consist only of the label "Care of ______" (ie - I got this for free pending that I wear it in this post). It makes the blogger so inaccessible to me, too much a fashion magazine and not a fashion blog -- and to me there is a difference, though both have places in my heart.

This is not to say that a blogger shouldn't have a sponsor, that they shouldn't have success -- or that some of my feelings don't spring from jealousy. But I miss the days when Fashion Blogging seemed to herald in a more open, varied atmosphere for fashion, one where you didn't have to wear designer clothes or be a certain body type, where it existed as a subculture of the fashion world. Since bloggers started hitting their stride, I feel like they've been more and more co-opted by the mainstream -- not that the mainstream is bad, but rather that I would like to have a subculture alongside it.

Moreover, lately, the bloggers who make it big, get invited to fashion shows and get into campaigns are those who overwhelmingly represent the same body type -- that of a slightly more realistic model (some even being models). It's not a crime to look like that, and in fact that body type should be represented -- but not to the exclusion of all others. And it's not the fault of bloggers like The Chic Muse, FashionToast, Fashion Squad that they are built that way, and they truly earned their success. But when they and their body types are the ones lauded as Super Stars and are invited to Fashion Weeks around the world, then again the blogosphere closes up a little more, becomes a little less varied. Of course there are exceptions -- I read plenty of blogs whose authors aren't a size two, and I read plenty who are but don't have any Fashion Week invites.

The problem, again, is this subtle institutionalization of the blogging world. As blogs are drawn into the Fashion world, they become slightly more closed off and less varied. It's not just body type. During fashion week, I see about 50 posts a day about a show I've never been to nor ever will, a party with people I've never met and can't relate to wearing clothes I'll probably never be able to afford (some again "Care of"), and Blogger meetups at New York hotels that seem more to underline their exclusivity than to share with the internet. Perhaps they were not meant that way. Still, I see less of thrifted outfits with personal unique touches. I see less of budgeting, and homemade beds and regular nights out (or in) with friends and what they (actually) wear to work or on the weekend and everyday chores.  I see less of who that blogger is as an accessible person.

That, to me, is why streetstyle had such an appeal: you saw what they pulled out of their closet to go about their daily lives, not what was sent to them in a box that they wore to a fashion show. For the record, I'm actually not that interested in designers and designer clothes. They seem more like templates to me, where real style comes in what a individual does with clothes. Yet more and more streetstyle blogs get their content from fashion shows, fashion events and very unnatural model run-ins, often wearing straight designer in unimaginative ways, or the ubiquitous black. It's that same inaccessibility, that same not-quite-real-life. I get tired of seeing the same hotel rooms, the same must-have shoes from the runway, the same view from a plane window, the same outfit possible only (or mostly) if you work in the fashion world or received one of those coveted Fashion Week tickets. Those have their place in a varied blogosphere, but they are the majority these days, and I want that openness and variety back.

I want bloggers to realize again that their own, perhaps slightly dull, lives were what really drew me, and I think others, to Fashion blogs. That the beauty of a blog is the opportunity to be a real, accessible person to the rest of the world. That if you took the same H&M dress we both have and styled it your own way, I would feel a real connection and a real draw to you. That the sexiest, most mysterious, most goddamn-I-wish-I-was-you photograph is the one where I can actually imagine being you. So although I don't want all sponsorship or all industry support to stop, I would like to take a step back from it.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Asos Blog

Found these over at the ASOS Blog "Spotted." The ASOS girls are clearly awesome. I'm especially loving the second outfit -- I need to find the perfect white dress/shirt!

Thursday, June 9, 2011


All from Columbine Smille

The girl really knows what she's doing. The shoes/pants/socks combo is particularly amazing. Love her brand of like ultra-cool business 

Add to that

unkown; unkown; unknown; Fashion Girl; unkown; unknown; unknown; Hi Styley; Blushing Ambition; unknown 

Really loving the staples of denim and boho for summer mixed with feminine and ladylike.

Summer Done Right

Some more old ones. The first two are from All the Pretty Birds, the others are unknown. Any IDs? The first girl is pretty much the coolest ever, right?