The Old Days


I was reading Lauren’s blog today and it reminded me of my “old days” of blogging. I know there’s a lot of talk about change, and like Amber (whose post I’ve mentioned before), I don’t think that the face of blogging has changed all that much, but rather the people who used to do it as a hobby have moved more into “professional” blogging, so for them it’s different. I know that what I present on my blog has changed several times over the years – it started off as somewhere to talk about my day to day life, including the odd outfit; then I moved into solely outfit posts and a post to me wouldn’t be a post if it didn’t include an outfit; and now I’ve moved more into “lifestyle” with less focus on clothes, mostly because of my current concern with perfectionism. I’ve tried recently to get over it, but I keep falling back into the same pattern – I don’t manage to take photos of my outfits so much because of work constraints, so when I do, I want them to be “good” ones rather than just the normal everyday kind of outfit that I used to share. I also seem to be wearing what seem to me to be more “boring” outfits, trying to pass it off as the weather, lack of funds, etc. But in reality, it’s more that I’ve stopped being so creative with outfits, trying to get that perfection with my looks that I see on other people by choosing more safe options, which is something I didn’t used to bother with.
One reason it’s changed for me I think is the different blogging circles I’ve moved in over time. When I originally started blogging, it was after reading bloggers such as Selective Potential, Delightfully Tacky and The Clothes Horse. The bloggers I used to follow weren’t the pros – they were normal girls who had a fairly significant following but had a couple of things in common: strangely enough, they were across the pond to me, they remixed their clothing items frequently, and they often wore vintage or vintage style pieces. I seemed to read the American community of bloggers at the time and knew very few British bloggers.
I was part of a group of girls at one stage who swapped clothes with one another started by Charlotte – she was at the time one of the only British bloggers I followed, but I know she also read and modelled her blog on similar ones to me (and also spent a couple of years abroad in America too). Through that group, I met girls from around the world, although mainly American still, some of whom I’m still friends with now such as Michelle, and I know she’s suffered similar blog identity crises to me over time and her “blogging face” has changed too.

Due to a few different factors, such as blogging like I do (personal style and lifestyle with a vintage and “real life” twist) being more “American” back when I started nearly 6 years ago but now being just as popular over here, more blogging communities springing up, and also my job in which I have to find and approach (mainly) British bloggers, I’ve now discovered a larger range of blogs closer to home that I follow. Generally I now tend to keep up with these ones more on a day to day basis, mostly because of work, which means the old favourites I used to read and that I fit in with have fallen by the wayside on my reading list and don’t get as much love as they used to.
It also means for me that the style of my blog has changed slightly as I’m reading more of these British blogs and mine has morphed in that direction. I feel like my style of blogging used to be more personal, more honest, more raw, and now I’m writing something that’s less me and more focusing on what I feel like my blog “should” be when comparing it to others that I tend to see on a daily basis. I now try to “save” posts for when I feel they should be going out; I don’t post as many outfits because they’re “not right” and they don’t necessarily fit in with the style I’m trying to portray or fit into; my posts seem to talk about my life, but aren’t quite the same as they used to be, the “me” that comes across seems a lot more flat and less personable than I used to me. I think the problem is I’m trying to fit myself into a style and community that doesn’t necessarily work for me whereas where I started is where I still really want to be.

This isn’t a rant or some big deep post, but more, this is how blogging used to be for me and how I’d maybe like to go back to that a bit more. It was seeing some of Lauren’s recent posts that were the same outfit posts and glimpses into her life that I’ve always loved, and the fact that those were the style of posts I always loved doing myself too, that made me think this. Yes, I do love doing the posts I currently write now, but I also put off sharing those outfit posts and talking about myself too much, and really it’s for no apparent reason.

I know I’ve tried doing this style of overhaul before, going back to writing whatever and whenever I want, but again, I kept falling back on new habits of trying to be perfect all the time and never feeling that I am. That old way of unapologetic writing and posting is what I want to do again, and come across as a real person. My posts don’t necessarily need a pretty image to make them perfect, but that’s what’s expected nowadays – and to be honest, my current design needs an image otherwise it doesn’t work, hence the image in this post! A “writing” post doesn’t necessarily need to have advice in it that other people can use and share, sometimes I just want a place to dump a load of words, and sometimes others will relate to these, and I know that there will be people out there who agree with me on this one!
So I’m not saying that blogging has changed necessarily, just that, as is natural, I’ve moved into different circles of blogging and unconsciously tried to model my blog on them, but it isn’t working for me or making me happy particularly in blogging. I’m not sure if I’ll completely change things here, but I’d love to be able to share more posts that are natural and easy without having to worry that they don’t fit the “style” I’m going for, or being concerned that people won’t like them. Nowadays one of the things I’m most excited about is sewing, and while I write about that sometimes on my blog, you probably wouldn’t know that from the information I share here. I’m too bothered about whether that post will be successful if all I do is write about what I’m currently making, or if the outfit I’ve put together is too boring, or if I don’t have any new clothes to share. Once upon a time, I used to write something because I wanted to share it and remember it, nowadays I “judge” my posts before they’re even written, choosing whether to share them or not based on whether they’re interesting, whether they’ll get shared, whether they’ll make money, and whether they “fit” with the style I’m going for. So hopefully I’ll manage to get back into that again and hopefully blogging here will start making me happy again rather than being the chore it sometimes is nowadays.

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