It’s been almost a year and a half since I started blogging as Une femme d’un certain age. Like Duchesse, I found that women our age just weren’t being addressed in fashion publications and blogs; like materfamilias, I hoped to “write to find out what I think” and to try and suss out my own style at this point in my life. And I hoped especially to have the kind of conversations about style that I don’t get to have much in my daily life, with those who share my interest beyond what the Celebutante du jour is wearing this week.
So while I have a better handle on my own style than I did two years ago, I also feel that continuing this blog is a way to continue refining, to throw some ideas out there for feedback, to maybe expand my horizons a bit, and to stay fresh. And while I’ve never imagined myself to be any kind of style maven, I do have my likes and dislikes, sometimes rather strong.
There’s an inevitable bit of judgement that comes with opining on any topic, and the trick seems to be finding that space between discriminating and imperious. My opinions about clothes and styles and anything else are just that, my opinions, and I expect disagreement with my view of things. Sometimes I disagree with myself looking back over a few weeks or months. Sometimes I worry that I’ll write something that will hurt the feelings of someone who regularly reads and comments on my blog, which is the last thing I’d ever want.
But I also wanted to have fun with this blog, and it’s hard to have fun while walking on eggshells while trying not to offend anyone. If something strikes me as ugly or ridiculous, I’m going to say so. And if you disagree, I know you’ll say so as well. I don’t know how well it comes through, but my snarkiest bits are usually written with tongue firmly in cheek and are not intended for internal use. And if I’m going to snark, it’s not going to be directed at people whose primary style consideration is that of practicality or frugality, it’s going to be aimed square at the bullseye on those who can afford to hire a stylist but still walk the red carpet looking like a two bit hooker or a shower curtain, or the designers who bring the outrageously-priced fugly.
Style is about so much more than just how we dress and accessorize. It’s how we are in the world, how we express who we are. You can dress exactly “right” according to body type, what’s current, what colors are most flattering, but if you feel foreign in what you’re wearing, you won’t look or feel your best. There’s often a continuum between what looks “best” from a purely external vantage point, and what feels best (if clothing didn’t appeal to our emotions, we’d have a total of two interchangeable outfits in our closets, one to wear while the other was being laundered) and at different times we may more back and forth on that continuum.
Materfamilias sums it up quite well here, I think:
Most of all, I feel that fashion and style should be fun. If you’re trying to please everyone, or trying to follow (often conflicting) sets of rules, the trepidation and self-doubt sets in, and you lose the joy. As someone who tends to question myself probably too much when it comes to style, I’m looking for more joy, more delight. The ongoing “conversations” about style in the lovely community of bloggers I’ve stumbled into is helping me to find it.
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