In Search of Style: Rediscovering Sources Inspiration

Just when I thought I was over FB for good, I joined the Classy Career Girl network and got involved in their private community page. The questions that my fellow female hustlers have been asking are getting my brain going on topics I love to think about like tips for being a successful woman in business, the challenges of starting a side hustle and work wardrobe inspiration.

Earlier this week, a fellow CCG (Classy Career Girl) asked where other group members go for fashion ideas and it got me thinking, where do go these days? I used to be a huge fan of Blair Eadie’s (if you don’t know Atlantic Pacific, you should) and for awhile I was really into Alexandra Pereira of Lovely Pepa, but in more recent months I’ve been in a real Death by Elocution phase (the looks they post are generally more neutral and minimalist in nature, but it reminds a magpie like myself to keep things simple). If I had to pick a person, I would definitely say Victoria Beckham—even her most casual looks are so well edited (and not impossible to replicate on the average budget).

For as long as I’ve had this blog, fashion has been a major component. I love style as a form of self-expression and I find searching for outfit inspiration to be downright therapeutic. The thing is, when I’m stressed and overworked, I find that that’s the first thing I let slip. I revert to all-black outfits that require little thought (and preferably even less dry cleaning) and provide little-to-no joy in wearing.

Blair Eadie of Atlantic Pacific

I used to spend hours poring over the looks of style bloggers, making notes on what I liked or didn’t like about the way they put things together, but it’s been ages since I truly followed any one person. Many times I just wait to see what Pinterest sends me as a suggestion and go down the rabbit hole from there.

Somewhere along the line I convinced myself that these bloggers I once loved had just gotten so extra, that all of their looks were like this one to the right (I love Blair’s style, but this ensemble makes her look like she’s going to play croquet in the early 1900s). I told myself that it was a waste of time to follow them because the looks they were posting were full of designer items that I couldn’t afford and didn’t have time to shop for knock-offs.

Now I see that the issue wasn’t the bloggers, it was me. I was in a place where spending my free time on fashion seemed frivolous and selfish. The thing is, it’s not, it’s actually something that really brings me joy.

Now I’m getting back to a place where I am once again indulging in my love of fashion. I am once again finding inspiration in the outfits that bloggers (old favorites and new ones) post.

I’m also taking the time to read the outfit credits. It turns out that Blair is indeed wearing items from previous seasons and that many of the new items were absolutely from brands I could afford like Zara, J. Crew, and Topshop (don’t I feel sheepish).

That being said, I’ll leave you with the very first look I ever pinned from Atlantic Pacific. Now I’m off in search of inspiration once again…

Vintage 2012 Blair Eadie

The first Atlantic-Pacific look I ever Pinned

 

 

Weighing in on the Street Style Debate

Garage magazine just came out with a documentary short about fashion bloggers and street style stars that has really lit a fire under the debate about their legitimacy and the rising trend of “peacocking” that goes on outside of Fashion Week shows (when you watch the video try not to laugh when Anna Dello Russo walks in sharp, repeated mini-circles while getting photographed by Tommy Ton – I just keep picturing her head on a peacock’s body, it’s a gif begging to be made).
While I think that street style started in a genuine place, I have to agree with Tim Blanks that it has definitely created some “monsters.” I was on Instagram the other day and Rebecca Minkoff had posted yet another picture of Leandra Medine, a.k.a. “ManRepeller” and people were sounding off in the comments:

@priscillamanon: I saw that exact coat at my local thrift store!
@stylephotos: Lord no
@breroz: I thought this was a homeless person at first!

After those 3 consecutive comments Leandra herself wrote back “you guys are really, really mean.” Listen, if you’re going to get famous off of the public, then you can’t get mad at them when they don’t like something you do. Fashion is a critical industry and if you were able to become famous by taking the fast track then I think that it’s only fair that you are subject to even more criticism than the normal designer/model. (Also, ManRepeller just published a book of essays, as a writer I find this as offensive as James Franco being published by Graywolf Press, but that’s a different argument).

I used to really like Kelly Framel, aka The Glamourai. I remember stumbling across her blog and thinking, “that’s cool, Silver from 90210 is doing a blog,” until I realized that they were 2 different people. I liked the way Kelly styled her outfits and she seemed accessible. Now it’s all professional photographs of her sipping Veuve Clicquot at sponsored events and I find myself rolling my eyes at times thinking, we get it, you’re fabulous, your life is awesome, bully for you! I accept that the entire concept of blogging is always self-indulgent on some level, but I think there’s a line that’s crossed with the blogger becomes subject and is tooting their own horn louder than their readers.

Personally, I’m over this TMI culture – if Facebook and reality TV ceased to exist, I would be totally okay with that (I’m not willing to give up Twitter and Instagram just yet, but I do think they should start banning certain people from having an account — ahem, Kim Kardashian). I have plenty of reality in my own life – give me fiction! Give me fantasy! If I’m going to get the truth I’m okay with getting it solely from experts who have the life experience and/or degrees to back their opinions!

If only everyone could be more like Ari Seth Cohen and the women of Advanced Style; I don’t think there’s a more genuine street style blog out there and those are the type of women I aspire to be, not these wannabe models who are the subject and purveyors of this kind of “street style.”

 

Or maybe I’m just jealous because I don’t have anyone to take pictures of me and all of my style shots are of the dreaded “selfie” variety (see below).

Rant over.
Bloggers note: Shout out to Atlantic-Pacific and Extra Petite for keeping their personal style blogs accessible and helpful. Blair Eadie of Atlantic-Pacific is great about showing readers how to rewear an item in a completely different way and she also lets readers know when an item she features in an outfit is older, but offers suggestions on where to buy similar items in the current season. Jean of Extra Petite is all about sharing helpful hints about everything from tailoring clothes for a petite frame to how prevent “pitting out,” as my sisters and I would say. While neither blogger is exactly revolutionary, they have the type of fun, feminine, put-together and timeless style that I admire.