I love following style bloggers. My last two full-time jobs have been for “fashion companies,” where everyone dresses on trend. Style bloggers give me inspiration for my workwear and even my weekend wardrobe.
When I started my blog several years ago, I focused on running (my blog was called That Running Girl then). However, after a couple of years, I felt pigeon-holed and constantly scrambling for content whenever I’d take some time off from running.
So I thought about what else I could blog about. I decided to tweak my blog to be more travel + lifestyle with some fitness sprinkled in. But anytime I would post “style” shots on Instagram, it would get better engagement than my other posts. And so I started posting more style-related things. And before I knew it, my blog had turned into a “style blog.” (Keep in mind, I say this with a grain of salt since my blog is relatively small.)
After a few months of style blogging, I came to realize a few things about the fashion blog world that I’ve felt convicted to share.
EVERYTHING IS STAGED
Seriously, everything. I used to see images on Instagram of beautiful bags next to cups of coffee or perfectly styled roses and think how glamorous it must be to constantly hang out at cute coffee shops with marble tables and to have fresh flowers in your home at all times. But here’s the real truth: I’ve driven out of my way after work, sitting in rush hour traffic, specifically to visit an “Instagram worthy” coffee shop so I could buy a coffee I didn’t really want so I could post it to social media. I’ve been that girl awkwardly trying to snap photos of flowers at Trader Joe’s because they would “flow with the aesthetic of my Instagram account.” I’ve even dragged my poor husband to brunch at restaurants just because they had cute tables or their floors were perfect for a shoe picture.
STYLE BLOGGING IS EXPENSIVE
I’ve always been a bargain hunter. I live for estate sales and thrift shops. But when you’re posting clothes in hopes other people will buy them, the outfit has to be available online and linkable. Because I have a mortgage, I’ve had to buy clothes, shoot in them and return them the next day. The truth is, my closet is pretty full of basic things like jeans, denim jackets and tennis shoes. Sure, I do love to dress cute, but a lot of the stuff I posted I don’t even own!
ANGLES ARE EVERYTHING
I am a petite person at 5’2″. I’ve always dreamed of being super long and lean, but that’s just never going to be my body type. So when I post photos, I will usually select the ones shot at angles that make me look thinner, taller, more toned, etc. Not that there is anything wrong with using the most flattering photos, but pictures can be deceiving! I constantly find myself comparing myself to retouched, cropped, carefully selected photos I see on social media, which will always be unfulfilling and a waste of energy.
BLOGGING IS HARD
This goes for all kinds of blogging. I look at full-time bloggers with tens of thousands of followers all the time and get jealous. Their feeds look so effortless and content seems to come so easily. But the reality is, their full-time job is to make their lives appear effortless, entertaining and glamorous. But behind the scenes, blogging is hours and hours of writing, re-writing, taking hundreds of photos and planning out content. These girls (and guys) work hard to create aesthetically pleasing social media and rich blog content. Seriously, props to you full-time bloggers. That is work.
FASHION BLOGGERS AREN’T ALL FRIVOLOUS
One thing that frustrates me whenever people see my blog and the outfit posts that accompany it is that they often make snarky comments about bloggers or roll their eyes at the “selfies.” However, most bloggers are educated, motivated, creative individuals who have a passion for food, fitness, fashion, etc. Just because you like to share that passion online does not make you dumb, egotistical or shallow. Honestly, most bloggers are brilliant businessmen and businesswomen that have figured out a way to make money doing what they love. If anything, what they do should be respected!
So I guess my takeaway is this: don’t compare yourself to bloggers. While their lives may seem glamorous and perfectly put together, the reality is that they spend a lot of time making it look that way. And respect what they do because it is a full-time job and then some! They work hard and their career is as legitimate as any corporate job!
As for Kin & Kodachrome, I will continue to share some of my favorite styles and you will see more coffee shop photos, but only when I’m actually enjoying coffee with a friend and not because I drove 30 minutes out of the way to get a photo. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the world of social media, trying to create this perfect world, and to compare ourselves to other people, but I so admire those people that are just authentic–whatever that might mean for them. So that is what I’m choosing: authenticity in whatever I post. 🙂