8.16.2011

105 - When in doubt, add a vest.

Shoes - Jeffrey Campbell, Multi-Colored Bullet Necklace - Courtesy of Unearthen, Cuff - Courtesy of JFR.SE, Everything Else - Vintage

First things first:
The GiGi Vintage contest is running until Friday. That means you can still enter to win a hot cross (Ha! If ever you liked hardcore, you'll find that unintended word pairing a tad nostalgic!) necklace fo' free. To enter, just "Like" GiGi Vintage on Facebook here and write "I heart GiGi Vintage" on their wall!

Secondly, a certain comment made me ponder exactly what fashion blogging is. What are we all doing here, behind our computers with our DSLRs and platform shoes and memory cards galore? Where does fashion blogging fit in? Why is it important? 

I think that the first thing to acknowledge when asking this question is, "What role does fashion play in the world?" Fashion is an art form like any other, but is perhaps more telling from an anthropological standpoint than any other form of art because it is so wrapped up in the way our lives function on a day-to-day basis. Also, you've probably heard me say this before, it is the only form of art in which everyone participates on a daily basis. This even includes people who don't consider their aesthetics, either out of priority issues or out of different interests. The art of personal aesthetics is a form of visual communication. A person's appearance conveys their values, age, social group, economic class, and affinities. It helps us identify potential kindred spirits. It helps us know what to expect from one another. Certainly, we do not rely solely on fashion to tell us these things, but we do take it into account as part of a complex arrangement of symbols and social cues that serve as an initial springboard for our interactions with one another. Sometimes, this may be to detriment, but other times, it may be to benefit. It is, like anything else, a method of communication. When done artistically, it is a method of self-expression. Furthermore, like any art form, when done creatively, it adds an element of beauty to the world. For me, an interestingly-dressed person walking down the street can brighten up an otherwise grey and concrete day in Los Angeles, just the same as an intricate wall mural or public sculpture. Sometimes, there is an element of joy to personal aesthetics, and an air of fun that is contagious, lifting the spirit of the immediate community. I fear that this may self-involved, but I can only speak from personal experience: I cannot tell you how amazing it is when someone stops me on the street to tell me that they love the way I'm dressed. These comments are said with such full, genuine smiles, and by people of every background and age. To think that I was able to brighten someone's day simply by dressing like a weirdo is marvelous, and it is even more marvelous yet to see someone else whose appearance makes me smile. An interestingly-dressed person is walking graffiti when he-or-she leaves his-or-her home, there to add a temporary splash of additional interest to our world.

I could write a dissertation on all of this, but I will try to keep it brief for now. I think that the role of the fashion blogger in all of this is to keep the art of personal aesthetics democratic. We are here to bring community to the fashion world, to engage one another and delight in this common appreciation for all things visual. We are here to show the many different sides of personal aesthetics, sides that fit any wide range of budgets or taste. We are here to discuss the positive effects of fashion -- to show how it fulfills us creatively and how it can inspire strength and confidence. We are here to troubleshoot the negative effects -- to call out the ways in which the industry/media fails to meet the needs or moral expectations of the people. We inspire aesthetics, we inspire dialogue, and we inspire change. 

As for how it affects our confidence, I can (again) only speak for myself. I am not sure if I am a confident person because I dress like a silly person every day, or if I dress like a silly person every day because I am confident.  Of which I am sure is this: there is no shame in admitting that I am a stronger person because of the community with which I associate. Former riot grrrls may recognize the line that follows, but be assured that in this context, I mean it with sincerity, to all of my readers and to all fellow bloggers: I am proud to be associated with you.

Last but not least: I got a Twitter. Finally. See, I am turning 25 tomorrow, which is basically ancient, so really it's a miracle that I can use a computer at all. Me using Twitter at 1/4-of-a-century in age will be akin to watching:

A) a dolphin fly
B) Terry Richardson tell a young lady that her skirt is too short
C) me not get judged when buying a 36-pack of Mountain Dew at Costco (srsly, it happens people)
D) Brit wear a Spirit Hoodie 

I am going to give this thing a shot, but honestly, it's a lot of pressure. Follow me on Twitter and watch as I attempt to be witty in like 100 characters or less or whatever. You'll laugh! You'll cry! You'll...hopefully be patient as I get the hang of it?

33 comments:

  1. I love how you always write such interesting things. This sentence was my favorite,"An interestingly-dressed person is walking graffiti when he or she leaves his or her homes, there to add a temporary splash of additional interest to our world."

    I know this to be true in my everyday life. If I didn't dress in interesting ways or put any effort into my appearance, my life would be so dull and boring. I feel as if I have a boring life as it is, dressing just puts fun into the equation. I love getting comments form customers at work who just seem so delighted to be helped by me (I'm a barista and can wear whatever I want). We often end up getting into conversations about fashion. I love that.
    A good outfit will always brighten up my day no matter how shitty, even if no one comments. That is the role fashion plays in my everyday life.

    I love how you layered the vests. I remember the last time you wore the green thing, it looks even better this time. As for the shorts, I have a pair of thick tights I cut years ago that look exactly like this and they are still my go-to pair of layering-stretchy-biker shorts. love it. you make me want to get those shoes every time you wear them!!

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  2. This is by far, THE BEST post I have seen from anyone in a long while. I love your writing and how you put such though into your writing and in turn, give thought for your readers to leave with. I so much appreciate not just fashion for its bright colors, interesting patterns and perfect hemlines, for its bright colors and natural neutrals and pastels, but moreover style because of it's originality, personability and creativity. Amazing, amazing post.

    Thank you and I will be following you on Twitter. I just got one too and I am so not used to it yet! We can learn together.

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  3. I once had to explain to my fiancée what I liked about fashion, and I ended up presenting a ramble about how it makes me feel like a different person in every outfit, but I also feel more like me at the same time (and always reminds me of a certain lyric from the Verve's 'Bittersweet Symphony': 'I'm a million different people from one day to the next, I can change') and fashion in general makes people physically part of their own artwork -- they become artwork. Dressing down makes me feel down; I have to wear something interesting during the day to feel at home.

    I do love your insight behind fashion blogging and the community that goes with it, and have observed the same thing. My style's definitely inspired by the bloggers I follow along with my own roots, but I still wouldn't know what looked good unless I had my significant other, and fashion bloggers! (Especially you, I must say. You, Brit, Chloe Ting, and Strawberry Freckleface are my go-to fashion girls.)

    Don't worry, I've had a twitter for a long while now and still can't manage to use it often. I really should change that, as I'm following a ton of amazing people. I'll definitely follow you in any case.

    Also, happy birthday! I'm one who doesn't entirely believe in age, in terms of how many times the earth has rotated around the sun since one's birth. If it helps, you look awesome for your age. :)

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  4. what if i showed up to your house in a spirit hood and stilettos?

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  5. incredibly smart, hot, fashionable, cool, interesting and seemingly fun are all the words i would attribute you with! and of course what i aspire to be because of you. never stop. i love your words

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  6. You're very insightful and I really enjoy reading your long schpeels! And of course, seeing what you are wearing.

    Happy early birthday!
    xx maggie

    saltandleather.blogspot.com

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  7. i agree! funny how ive been sporting my denim vest lately, its so vesatile!

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  8. Your style is so freaking rad -- love every look you post. And the jewelry! Ooohhhh, the jewelry. <3

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  9. I feel just as strongly that the way people dress is a representation of what they want to show others. Most importantly that it is definitely a way of communication, albeit passively. I think this is most true when I look at my closest friends and they all have very similar styles as well as personalities. Great post, and as for your outfit I love the way you put those colours together.

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  10. I love how I leave your blog with my thoughts a running always. & I LOVE THAT YOU HAVE A TWITTER. & I also love that the terry richardson reference made me laugh.

    p.s. it's already tomorrow in my time zone so HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! xoxoxo

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  11. Love the whole outfit, those colours went so well together; those Jeffrey Campbells are amazing, the colour, the design and love how it's suede (I think?)! Love the earrings by the way!

    xx

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  13. i. love. your. bag.

    http://pinklemonsorbet.blogspot.com/

    Meena ♥

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  14. this sweater is amazing!so 80's!! give me it!!!!

    http://izumihiiiflower.blogspot.com

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  15. Thanks for:

    the great topical writing
    the regular posts
    inspiring me to shop thriftier
    getting me to dig out old beloved treasures
    helping me alter/remake stuff that didn't work
    convincing me to take more risks
    getting me compliments on my outfits
    making me love getting dressed again
    making me smile with your outfits

    I follow an insane number of blogs but lately I seem to end up here first. Keep rockin'!

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  16. you have a great way with words and i couldn't have explained this topic any better :)
    love the hair, love the top, love your blog! following you on twitter now too :)


    Blog | Twitter | Shop

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  17. I love your blog, you're style is fantastic! You've got a new follower!
    xxx

    www.londonlastnight.blogspot.com

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  18. Arrg so perfect :D

    xoxo, Céline
    areyouincorrect.blogspot.com

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  19. I LOVE those shoes of yours... especially with the green in your outfit!

    xxx
    www.ladyalamode.com

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  20. Beautifully written post. So true and inspiring. I can honestly say that this was the only explanation of what fashion is that has made perfect sense to me. Thank you for saying it so eloquently. Write a whole essay on the topic, seriously!

    Also, I love the green button up sweater vest.

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  21. Your writing is always amazing great post hun and another gorgeous outfit. I will so be following you on twitter xoxo

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  22. Loved to read your opinion! Great post, I always enjoy reading your posts! Go on like that.

    I'm following you on twitter from now on and I'm pretty sure it'll be fun :D

    The blog title is awesome! Great great great!!
    Love,
    Emily

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  23. I love this combo! the green knit is pretty awesome xx

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  24. Love that emerald on you! It suits your coloring so well, and you look darling in a high bun :D

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  25. I appreciate this thoughtful post, ad really enjoyed reading it. You are an inspiring lady inside and out.

    And Happy b-day. Turning 25 sucks, I felt the same way on my last birthday.

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  26. Wow that's a great outfit! Love the green sweater.

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  27. I love your posts
    you look great
    an your collection of necklaces is awesome!
    ceeharvey.blogspot.com

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  28. This is brilliant! You've really summed up beautifully what I think a lot of bloggers believe!

    I would love to make a post about this and link this post from my blog, would that be alright?
    (Im quite a new blogger, but if you want to check what you're dealing with my blog is: www.ritualprocess.blogspot.com)

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  29. I'm beyond obsessing over this look! Every piece is perfection and i want that cool green top!

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