Outfit Details: Top, Missguided / Skirt, ASOS (via Depop) / Belt, ASOS / Jacket, so old I can’t remember / Shoes, New Look (Old) / Hat, Forever 21 / Necklace, BlackMoonShop / Lipstick, Give Me Glow
Photo credit: Oscar Acton (thanks, little bro)
I took these photos whilst staying at home with my parents and here I am, coming home to speak to you on my blog after a long and uncomfortable break from what has been my online home for three years, as of today.
I’ve been after a denim button up skirt for an age, and finally bought this one from Depop. I am, quite honestly, too pear shaped for it so I have to use a belt to get it to fit both my hips and waist. Alas, the lure of 70s-style denim is too much for me so I’m determined to make it work. This missguided top is a dream and I’ve been debating whether I can get away with wearing it to work. My workplace is very casual but I’m still finding it difficult to get dressed in the mornings – apparently everything in my wardrobe is cropped, see-through, off-shoulder or backless, and people keep telling me this doesn’t count as “work appropriate”.
I’ve been thinking a lot about the way I blog lately, especially since spending a couple of days at home with my parents in September. There was a bite to the air and the leaves had begun to turn – I find autumn the most nostalgic season. This time, autumn reminded me of living at home for a year and putting all my energies into this little online space. I had only one friend in the area and my job hunt was failing me so I came here for company and a place to share my creative endeavours. Now – since graduating from my masters and living in my favourite city – I have more friends nearby, a job, and exciting activities and travel plans to keep be busy. This is great for me, but not for my blog schedule. I miss it though. I miss the quiet of sitting at home and making things by myself, as well as the routine of rushing back after work to finish a post.
I’ve been putting off posting because I want to be a better blogger but I’m not sure how. Over the last three years, I’ve changed quite a bit. I’m much more self-conscious about why anyone should care about what I have to say or what I’m wearing. Fashion and clothes interest me – and are important, actually, in social and cultural ways that they’re often not given credit for – but participating in personal style blogging suggests that what I wear is of prime importance in my life, which certainly isn’t true. I care about the environment, and feminism and animal rights and social justice and spend my working day puzzling over how to improve my little part of the world in some small way.
To be able to blog about clothes shows my privilege. Being a personal style blogger usually means you have the time to spend photographing yourself and thinking about what you wear, as well as the money to spend on a consistent supply of new outfits. I worry that unless my blog becomes more thoughtful, or helps my readers in some way, I am offering nothing valuable to the tidal wave of information that floods the internet.
When I realised that women’s magazines are “aspirational” because they suggest your life won’t be complete until you’ve bought into a trend, a diet, or a beauty product, I fell out of love with them. I hate the idea that someone might read this blog and feel like they need to buy something to be more fulfilled. I often read (and receive PR emails touting) guidelines for how to be fashionable, or rules for style, which I find both boring and anti-feminist. The notion that women “break the rules” by prioritising other areas of their life over their physical appearance is, I think, one reason girls are more likely to have a negative body image than boys. I am aiming to steer away from the side of fashion that encourages consumption and suggests the worth of a woman lies in her physical appearance. Instead I’d like to give sustainable and ethical living a louder voice in this space.
There’s nothing wrong with having a hobby, like blogging, that you do purely because you enjoy it and it’s an escape from everyday life, but less and less does this platform reflect what I value and want to pour my energies into. As my internet-turned-real-life friend Laila put it, “a blouse does not this girl make”. I want to find a way to integrate all of my interests alongside the outfit photos, recipes, DIYs and travel diaries that I still love to do. It might take me a while to figure it out, but I hope you enjoy the journey!
P.s. Archie has recieved some very exciting bunny treats from Millrace Garden Centre this week, so look out for a blog post from him soon!