Late last year or early this year (I can't remember), I began reminding myself to take a picture of my outfit every day, with a vague idea that they would somehow coalesce into a coherent post.
Blogging has come a long way since I created my Blogspot account a decade ago. I blogged because I loved suddenly discovering a community of people who loved the power of clothing and fashion the way I did - people who took grainy pictures in front of their dusty mirrors and messy rooms and shared them just because. I grew up reading fashion magazines but had no one to share my awe for my fashion idols Calvin Klein and Helmut Lang - and certainly no one understood why I was so enamoured of the style of Carolyn Bessette Kennedy. Discovering certain Livejournal pages and threads on TFS brought a previously silent world to life. I blogged because I was excited to be part of this space.
From this era of bloggers, stars emerged (of them, Susie Bubble remains the most prominent and happily, true to herself), though it was nothing like what followed. Until 2010, 2011, I could look forward original and thoughtful posts on Dreamecho, Style...A Work in Progress, Nonsense in Stilettos, Childhood Flames, Le Portillon, No Signposts in the Sea, Discotheque Confusion (she's still blogging!), Capture the Castle, Bakerby, just to name a few. Their blogs had less to do with a covetable or trendy aesthetic, and more to do with the fact that style was truly a part of their personal narrative, a means of expression. I got the feeling from their outfit posts that they didn't dress well to be admired, they dressed well because they admire a well-dressed self, whatever that might be.
The professional-looking style blogs we see today come from a very different place - less fangirl, more businesswoman. They don't interest me that much though. I prefer straightforward expressions of personal style - real clothes worn by real people who understand the power of fashion (like The Chic Pragmatist, or Pret a Porter P).
Many of the bloggers I mentioned above have stopped blogging - it is hard to blog if you are holding down a full-time job or full-time studies, so it doesn't surprise me that people have moved on. It was always personal after all.
I look at these photos of myself and I think about how sometimes people think there's nothing "blog-worthy" about what they wear. This is nonsense. Life is not a magazine shoot. Style doesn't only belong in magazines. I've chosen clothing as one way of communicating to the world who I am, and why wouldn't I post a picture of what I'm already wearing out in the real world, for all to see?
I think style blogs have a bit of a bad rep now - stimulating the appetite to shop is one key criticism. I think it's sad that the desire to dress well is often conflated with the need to acquire more, more more. I'm not sure how to undo that association, or whether it is even possible. But I do know that I continue to admire great style, and I continue to care about how I dress, and that is always going to be part of the narrative on this blog. You put it out there, because it's your point of view, and it doesn't matter what anyone else makes of it.